Adding Insult to Injury


Is the fact that it’s staying light out until 5:30pm these days making anyone else deliriously happy?! 8)

It’s even helping me get motivated to go to the gym more since it’s not dark when I leave work. Darkness makes my brain think it’s cozy time. It’s not, brain!!!

Tonight I worked it out with a tough and sweaty treadmill routine:

LOVED those 8.0/6.0 intervals! I think anything is possible for 1 minute and alternating between a moderate pace and a sprint makes the time FLY. Plus it totally works your buns and abs.

Something I need to start toning ASAP in order to squeeze into the skin-tight, majestic purple bridesmaid’s dress I’m donning in a wedding later this Spring. Eek! (I’ll gladly do it for you, Laura!) ;)

How far in advance do you start working out with purpose before an important event? I always shoot for 3 weeks, which inevitably leads to 2 weeks, which ultimately ends up with me vigorously working out 4 3 2 days before the big day. Gosh! Right?!

In other news, it appears that bad things DO occur in threes – including in the kitchen. In the past two days I’ve experienced:

1. Exploding garlic

2. Burnt roux

3. A terrible, no good, very bad slow cooker dinner!


It’s true! Yesterday my Slow Cooker Moroccan Brisket with Red Onions & Apricots hadn’t cooked all the way by the time I got home from the gym, resulting in a tough piece of shoe leather swimming in warm beef broth and red wine in my crock pot. Yeeeeah…


I let it cook on low for 3 more hours last night before putting it to bed, and it did finally shred. The one thing this dish did right.


Tonight I heated up the shreds, red onion and apricots with another splash of beef broth and tasted it. “It’s okkkkay…” I tried to convince myself as I briefly pretended that the brisket didn’t feel like little shoe strings stuck in my teeth.


“I bet it’ll be crazy delicious when it’s all mixed up with fluffy couscous!! Yeah!”


I reheated the parsnips that had also been tossed in the crock pot the morning before, added a flourish of parsley, closed my eyes, and dug in…


It was awful.


It was! So sad! Ben thought the parsnips were potatoes gone rotten!!! (That was actually pretty hilarious because he dug in thinking they were potatoes…)


I don’t know…I’m sort of obsessed with seasoning meat with cinnamon, but the combo of cinnamon, cumin, coriander and garlic in this recipe just did NOT jive. Plus I don’t think brisket is the best cut of meat for a slow cooker meal. I’ll stick to chuck!


To add insult to injury, the couscous I had romantically thought would turn the entire dish around turned out to be quinoa! :roll:


It was actually quite serendipitous because not only was it the only yummy component to this meal – re-kindling my love for the chewy, poppy, complete-protein – but Ben inhaled one and I couldn’t stop laughing.


It was soooo sad, poor guy!! He has this really unfortunate habit of inhaling the tiny little couscous and quinoa pearls every time I make them (I always tell him to slow down when he’s eating!) but I seriously can’t help myself when people get semi-hurt. I laugh until I cry! :lol:

I know, I know – terrible character flaw. At least I slapped him hard on the back while I snorted. He was very appreciative… ;)

When the coughing finally ceased, a pizza was popped in the oven and all was right with the world.

Until we meet again, slow cooker. Until we meet again.

Off to clean the kitchen – good night!


What are some of your bad habits?

Mine include laughing when people get hurt, and picking my nails when I get anxious. Oh also, obsessively vacuuming my house. :oops:

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  1. Shannon 01.25.2011

    I wish it was staying light until 5:30 here in the Northeast… it’s still dark when I get out of the gym at that time here, boo!

  2. Nothing is worse than a slow cooker meal gone wrong. I had clipped a fantastic sounding slow cooker bbq beef recipe from the newspaper. The beef didn’t cook enough to shred, and it was horrible.
    Thank goodness there is always pizza!

    Bad habit: Not returning phone calls. I’m awful!

  3. I’m loving that it’s staying light later too! The dogs are getting longer walks outside each day :) I tear the white part of my nails off (ew, I know) whenever I am nervous or bored.

  4. The ingredients all sound so good. It’s a bummer it didn’t turn out!

  5. Bridget 01.25.2011

    I love that it’s lighter longer! Bad habit is not folding laundry right away. Not cool when there’s 5 of us. I need to get better at that!

  6. Bummer your dinner wasn’t amazing! I totally laugh when people fall down and chew my nails when I get bored. Oops!

  7. So sad that it didn’t work! Slow cooker meals can either be awesome or they can be HORRIBLE.

    I love that it’s staying light out longer! That means spring has to be somewhere in the near future, right!?

  8. I also laugh when people get hurt. Its just so funny when they fall down! Assuming they are not hurt. I am also HORRIBLE at returning phone calls. I just really dislike talking on the phone!

  9. Dani 01.25.2011

    Awww man! It is such a bummer when a slow cooker meal doesn’t turn out. It’s so nice to have slow cooker recipes on hand when you know you don’t want to have to prepare much when you get home from work that night. But then again, maybe it’s more of a bummer when a meal you’ve slaved over is a flop?

  10. Dream Mom 01.25.2011

    Bummer on the slow cooker meal. I’ve had some like that too. LOL on three weeks out for getting in shape. I am not in shape now so it would take a lot longer.

    As for bad habits, I guess laughing inappropriately when someone says something stupid or when I think someone is going to be mad about something. I remember one time when I was married , my husband insisted that I cut his hair with one of those electric clippers. It was one of the first few years we were married. He kept talking and talking while I was cutting when I accidently went right up the back of his head with the shortest clipper. And it was the day before Thanksgiving. Gasp! I started laughing hysterically thinking he was going to kill me for making a stripe up the back of his head. The only way to fix it would be to cut nearly all of his hair off or cut the bottom up a lot so you wouldn’t notice it as much. He chose the latter option and we went to Thanksgiving with a stripe up the back of his head. My family noticed and said they were sure he’d never let me near his head again. He laughed and said he would make me do it until I got it right, lol. Oh, what a good sense of humor he has.

    • Iowa Girl Eats 01.25.2011

      Ahhhahaha, poor husband! *making mental note to triple check the clipper level next time I’m buzzing Ben’s head…* ;)

  11. Rachel 01.25.2011

    My Seasonal Affective Disorder LOVES that it’s no longer dark when I leave work! I too am horrible at returning phone calls, and I chew pen caps.

  12. Lindsey 01.25.2011

    I bite around my nails/pick at them when I’m nervous/anxious too! It’s one of my New Year’s resolutions to break the habit…so far, so good :)

  13. Renee 01.25.2011

    Sorry about your brisket. My bad habit is I stay on this computer too much! I seriously need to limit myself. We had pizza tonight too because this cold, rainy, cloudy (more snow than usual) weather is getting to me and after picking up some groceries, I just wanted to eat and get on the computer. Of course, your bacon guy video made me go to youtube and watch everything he had on there. The one about bologna was HILARIOUS! So my workout tonight was laughing. LOL Thanks for the funnies, girlie!

  14. Miranda 01.25.2011

    I have been very happy this week because it is light until 5:30! I am ready for spring.

    I would say my chocolate addiction is one of my worst bad habits! I need a twelve step program. And if obsessive vacuuming is indeed a bad habit, I might have that too.

  15. hehe, I would have laughed too! I also find it oddly hilarious when people get semi-hurt, but even moreso when I get hurt. I’ve fallen down flights of stairs and started giggling like it was no big.

  16. JennyV 01.25.2011

    Please tell me you’re also an AFV (America’s Funniest Home Videos) watcher? I cannot help laughing, jumping, and ‘owwing!” every time I see that show!

  17. AmyLou 01.25.2011

    I’m a bridesmaid in a wedding in May and I’m all ready shredding out for it at the gym. Combo of letting myself go over the last 2 years, not having anything in my closet fit any more, and wanting to look great for one of my closest friend’s weddings.

    Question: Have you always been that fast of a runner? I try to do intervals, but right now, I’m stuck at 5 mph for 4 minutes, up to 6/6.2 for 1 minute, and back again. The 6’s kill me, and they are your recovery! How did you build up to your current speed?

  18. I wouldn’t consider obsessively vacuuming to necessarily be a bad thing. ;)

    I love love LOVE brisket, and I’m sorry to hear yours didn’t turn out. If it’s any consolation, the meal looked really pretty.

    I laugh in appropriate situations as well. Can’t help myself.

  19. dmcgirl 01.25.2011

    I have put roasts in a slow cooker and then thought I turned it on when all I did was plug it in! ;-(

    My bad habit is rubbing in the beautiful california weather we have been having. I know! Horrible!
    But come see! LOL ;-)

  20. Lauren 01.26.2011

    Sorry to hear dinner was a fail. You could have fooled me, it looked incredible!

    My bad habits include gum chewing, incisively and correcting people’s bad grammar.

  21. Tina (from Tosa) 01.26.2011

    This is going to be my FB status today! It is so appropriate for me.

    I seriously can’t help myself when people get semi-hurt. I laugh until I cry!

  22. Hope 01.26.2011

    I’m sorry that your dinner didn’t work out. At least it looked pretty! My dinner was similar last night. It wasn’t horrible but I didn’t really end up enjoying it. I was sad because I spent so much time preparing it. I hate when that happens!

    I have a habit of picking the skin around my nails when I get nervous. I hate doing that though. It makes my nails look horrible! I liked when I had fake nails because I couldn’t do it! But they are too expensive to maintain.

  23. Katie 01.26.2011

    The whole idea of the dish sounds delicious! So sad to hear it wasn’t very good. And WHAT? It is staying light til 5:30?? That is different in time zones?? It’s dark by 5 in Boston!

  24. Mimi 01.26.2011

    It was probably good luck that you “chose” quinoa — Because the meat was no good, you were still able to get some protein!

  25. Joy 01.26.2011

    I also laugh when someone gets hurt. I laughed when my mr. (who was then just my boyfriend) slipped down the icy stairs, bump! bump! bump! and I’m pretty sure that 6 years later he hasn’t forgiven me. Not my fault he is hilarious when clumsy. Sorry to hear about the slow cooker. I’m always worried my slow cooker meals won’t turn out because mine is impossibly huge and it takes a lot of food to actually make anything.

  26. Stephanie 01.26.2011

    Hah! I would be an obsessive vacuumer (is that a word??) if my vacuum actually worked!! What kind do you have? I’m always in the market for a good vacuum!!

    My bad habit is letting dishes pile up and not rinsing *properly* I’m so easily distracted and BUSY!!!

  27. Lesley 01.26.2011

    I have a bit of a similar thing with the laughing. It’s not so much when people get hurt, but I laugh a lot when I’m nervous, so sometimes that means laughing at a situation that isn’t really funny. Other bad habits include nighttime skincare (I just don’t), returning phone calls/emails, and washing bed sheets. I’m good with laundry, but I always forget the sheets!

  28. Ha, I was literally laughing out loud at the end of the post. I can just imagine Ben inhaling some quinoa and then not being able to stop laughing about it…and then YOU coming over and slapping the back of his neck and beginning to laugh until you cry. HIL-arious.

    Eh, moral of the story: a frozen pizza can always save a meal fail.

  29. Biting my nails!

  30. Roz 01.26.2011

    Bummer about the slow cooker “bust”. The recipe sounds good…oh well, lesson learned. My bad habit? Not flossing enough. BAD!!! (and I hear about it with every dental visit…)
    Have a great day. Better luck on dinner tonight!

  31. what a bummer…it still LOOKED appetizing.

    ha i’m obsessed with vacuuming too…and making sure our trash and recyclables are always taken out. drives my husband crazy :)

  32. Allison 01.26.2011

    Ha! I have the same character flaw. It’s actually been passed through my family. When someone runs into a wall we laugh hysterically and then ask if they’re okay.

  33. […] in need of a good, not insanely difficult treadmill workout. I found one on Iowa Girl Eats website, but it is way too intense for me (at this point, someday I hope to be that fit). Does […]

  34. Lindsey 01.26.2011

    Hi, I know this is a little off topic but how do you wear your hair when you workout? I just got mine cut short and it’s too short for all of it to stay in a ponytail. Do you just wear a headband or bobby pins?

  35. kate 01.26.2011

    What a bummer! I love quinoa and Moroccan food. But sometimes recipes just fumble!

  36. haha- those photos are definitely deceptive then because it looks delicious! (Maybe I should go back and read it to make sure it wasn’t actually a joke)
    In order to maintain my SANITY while I am in this torture they like to call law school, I work out 6 days a week. However, when it comes to special events, its more about cleaning up my eating than working out…on that front…usually a month or two but recently I have revamped my habits and I *hope* it sticks!
    Bad habits?
    (a) drinking diet coke ( waaaaaaaaay less now, thank Goodness)
    (b) procrastinating- I have come to terms with this fact. I will never be any other girl LOL
    (c) spending money….although MUCH better now
    (d) etc.

  37. Sam 01.26.2011

    hey i read your blog a lot, but don’t comment. just wanted to say thx for posting your treadmill workouts. for some reason its more fun (and therefore easier on the treadmill) to do someone elses (sp?) made-up work-out than my own …

  38. A.J. 01.27.2011

    I know what it is like to have a slow cooker recipe go bad. My slow cooker when on the fritz one time and I came home to a house filled with smoke and a TOTALLY burned dinner!! Nastiness. So disappointing to spend time making a dinner and then not have it work. With how many new recipes you risk trying, though, you have a good track record of dishes turning out!

  39. […] that I was okay, so I went on with my plan to go to the gym tackling this interval workout from Iowa Girl Eats. Again, I did 3.5 miles running, but then I cooled down walking for a bit […]

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