April 16, 2009


Can you guess who sent me blondies? :o)

Yes indeedy, I am a lucky recipient of VeggieGirl's walnut-fig spread blondies! There is a reason these are so famous and earn the big bucks in blogger bake sales. They really are that good. I emailed VeggieGirl when I got home to tell her that the package had arrived and that I dove into them so fast that I might have even eaten some of the bubble wrap too by accident. :)

This package was extra-generous and above-and-beyond on VeggieGirl's part because I did nothing to deserve them! I had intended to send her a care package of some products I wanted to share with her, but I pulled the plug at the last minute because I was afraid of aggravating her allergies. She sent me thank-you blondies anyway! Along with a card and some sweet words as well. Swoon! I will try my best to make these blondies last more than 24 hours. No promises.

Backing up to snack time today, I was having one of those moments where my body was asking for a little something more than what I'd eaten for lunch, so I figured I'd try one of these Pure Protein Hot'n Healthy Oatmeal Squares in the Chocolate Chip flavor (I may have also been coveting a coworker's chocolate chip cookie at the time...).

I have read many a rave about these around the blogosphere, but I was not at all impressed. It tasted fine, but considering that I could have yesterday's snack (Oikos Greek yogurt and a handful of nuts) for the same 200 calories, I will take the yogurt. This square could fit within the palm of my hand, so it didn't have volume working for it, for one thing, and it didn't even taste very good. There was a distinct resemblance to cookie dough, but then why cover it in fake-tasting icing? I even warmed it to get maximum flavor effect, but it was still just ok. I bought two other flavors to try, and I'm certainly willing to give 'em a go, but based on this one experience, I would not buy them again, as they really don't have much redeeming nutritional value, though they pack a lot of protein into a convenient, (too) small package.

Harumph. I have better things to talk about, like an early birthday present from the boyf. :D

To know me is to know that I drink a LOT of seltzer. I go through a couple liters per week with my habit of drinking a seltzer with lime at dinner every night. I credit seltzer with my ability to drop down to 1-2 Diet Cokes per week, in fact. I like me the bubbly drinks.

Therefore, what more thoughtful gift is there than a soda maker from Soda Club?!

Trust me, this is the coolest thing you've ever seen. Simply fill one of their bottles with a liter of cold water, screw into the soda maker, and pull on the lever to carbonate the water. Sure beats the heck out of me standing there blowing into water through a straw for 15 minutes. ;)

He also got me a huge assortment of flavor essences for seltzer, a sampler of mixes to make sodas (everything from root beer to ginger ale to cola to diet versions of all flavors) and a replacement canister of Co2.

Voila my first bottle of homemade seltzer, flavored with a couple drops of the orange essence:

I drank the whole thing at lunch today! I guess that's one way to hydrate...I did the pee-pee dance all day long!

I can't say enough good about this contraption. Here are just a few of its virtues:
  1. It requires no electricity (or battery power, for that matter)
  2. It is environmentally friendly because I will no longer need to buy and recycle used seltzer bottles (see #1 also)
  3. It takes far less time to make my own seltzer (it's basically instant) than to go to the store and buy it
  4. Oh yeah, and I don't have to pay for seltzer anymore! $core.

So thank you, boyf, for a truly thoughtful gift. Between unlimited sparkling beverages and some extraordinary blondies, I have been treated right fine this week! I think we know what I'll be thankful for in my journal tonight. :)

Feels more like birth-palooza than just a birthday, and it's not even Monday yet! ...Now, I wonder if I could make champagne with the soda machine...


Anonymous said...

What a cool green and money saving gift - definitely the kind that keeps on giving :)

Lane said...

That is so cool!!! Way to go Alex! I want to play with that, what an awesome new toy!

Anonymous said...

you are seriously the most popular reviewer on earth. I drink like 3 liters of seltzer, club soda or pellegrino aday. I can not get enough. I was just researching seltzer machines on amazons and here you are with your handy review but a day later. love it.

ChickPea said...

Cool! I always say you can't have too many kitchen gadgets--that one looks right up my alley;)

Elina said...

Awesome goodies! I want those blondies!! :)

Dori said...

That is so cool, I never heard of a seltzer machine! Also, those blondies look AMAZING! Jealous.

VeggieGirl said...

YAY!! :-)

healthy ashley said...

Those blondies...... oh wow!

K from ksgoodeats said...

First of all, YAY for VG blondies! Second, what WILL they think of next?! That thing is so cool!