Defying Gravity (kinda sorta)

Vanity.  I try not to make it an daily issue, but we as human beings are what we are, and there comes a time, secretly or not, that we would love to fix this or that.  As we age, GRAVITY does take it’s tole, and we are left with bits and bites that we would LOVE to change.  I try not to make it my daily focus, but after hiding under a bushel for most of my adult life (and my bushel was over 100 lbs…. 🙂 ) what I try to do to maintain my youth is not so far fetched for me, and if I can help someone out that may have some of the AGING or WEIGHT LOSS issues, and experience the same GRAVITY PULL, then so be it.  🙂

When I was of the larger variety, I really didn’t do much on anything to attract attention to myself.  My hairstyle was always my main focus, the only thing that I was “vain” about, and has always been a priority.  Given I was pretty much raised in a hair salon and so that part makes some sense.  But my face was always hidden under glasses that I wore full time from the age of 12 and to be honest, I just didn’t care because I wasn’t the person I wanted to be.  I’ve worked hard to regain my health, to extend my life, and yes, to look like the image I’ve always had in my head……within reason and without being completely delusional or where therapy was needed……Heehee.

I’ve invested in proper and good quality makeup that won’t make my face looked caked and old.  One can only hide so much, there is no miracle cure (that doesn’t include extensive surgery), and I do pay the price having self imposed extensive abuse onto myself by being overweight and smoking for nearly 30 years.  But I can HELP in some way.  So I have researched, and watch many many videos on how to help myself camouflage this and that.  There are two things that I truly dislike about myself, and that I am trying to fix to the best of my ability.  Now this is my issue, but there are some that may be bothered by the same thing, and this may help. My two things……………SEVERE LOOSE SKIN UNDER MY EYES and HOODED EYES.  Now the loose skin under the eye came from having cholesterol pockets removed and then loosing weight, so the surgery mixed with the weight loss created excess skin.  Without further surgery, it is what it is, but I do have some great moisturizing creams that have helped.  Other than that, makeup videos that show how to “hide” them.  LOL  That’s it.

2013-09-19 11.37.50And now, the HOODED EYES.  You will see by the pic that I posted, it’s quite severe.  My “hood” goes right down to my lashes, and sits on my lashes, hiding any kind of lid whatsoever.  To some this may be not bother them, to me it’s like a NEON sign.  It’s the only thing I see.  More likely than not, I had really never noticed because I wore glasses.  This past year, I did have eye surgery, and now I don’t wear glasses other than to read.  So with my eyes exposed all the time, I now see them, and I really don’t like them.  It’s also quite heavy since it does impose some weight while it lies there.

So what did I do??  Research.  I found a product, and watched the videos, and decided to try it!!  I’m loving it.  It is a drastic change?  No, but it is a change, enough so that when I color my eyes with powder, you can actually see some of it…….LOL  I’ll update this post, as I get ready this weekend to go out and I’m all “dolled up”, but for now, this is just a picture of having “lifted” my hood, to expose a wee part of my lid!!

10866149-eye-magic-boxThe product is called Magic Eye.  They are these little strips that you place either above or below the crease of your eyelid and it holds it up.  I can blink, I really don’t feel them, and I was able to put makeup over them and they stay put.  I am presently wearing two of them, due to the fact that I have a very very hooded eye.  They come 64 to a pack.  It may take some playing around with, and getting the proper placement, but I think it was well worth the effort and I was lucky enough to find my spot right away.  I place one in the crease, and one right below the crease.  Comfy Comfy and for me, that’s all I need.

Health and Love

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Peanut butter….or not!

I know that awareness the awareness of peanut allergies, especially in school has become something of importance.  I recall when my daughters were going to school the education on peanut allergies was just beginning.  I remember specifically my eldest daughter probably in grade 4 or so, was asked by a fellow classmate if she was willing to sign a little contract that she would not bring anything “peanut” to school for lunch in order to be able to eat with her in a separate classroom.  Not long after that, the ban on peanuts started getting stronger and stronger, and less tolerated in any schools.

I do understand the danger.  I myself carry an epi-pen though I doubt that bees will be banned any time soon, nor do I plan on staying indoors in order to be safe.  But I do get it, and hope that just by banning the issue that they are not thinking that the issue is taken care of, but rather concentrate more on educating everyone about such allergies.  Once school is done, we all have to live in a world where we must be responsible for our own actions.

20130918_22300320130918_223023With all that said, I came across this product at one of my many trips to Costco (I’m a big fan…LOL)  It’s called Wowbutter.  There is absolutely no peanuts, and yet, surprisingly, it taste just like peanut butter.  This is a toasted soy spread.   There are truly better minds than my own out there, and my hats off to them.

When you first open the jar, and you had a blindfold on, you would not know the difference at all.  Upon tasting it, you would SWEAR it was real peanut butter.  After eating more of it, you can distinct, and I mean you would really have to pay attention, but you do get a wee wee bit of soy taste.  It’s so faint, that had I not known ahead of time, I would not have looked for it.

The label clearly states that it was prepared in a 100% peanut, nut, gluten, dairy and egg free facility.  This is a rare occurrence.  It’s some some amazing stuff.  It is absolutely Gluten Free.

20130918_223041The really neat part is that you can peal off the label and behind are school labels that state that the product is 100% Peanut and Nut free.  Parents can actually give their kids this great product, and give that back the days of PB & J and they can stick the little sticker on their bag just in case anyone would ask.

I’m really loving this new product, and am definitely recommending it.  I’m back to eating my ant logs without the ants……….LOL  (celery sticks with peanut butter).  Yummmmm.  I also used it today in my Smoothie.  I used Greek Yogurt, Wowbutter, Agave Nectar, Goji Berries and frozen mixed berries.  Blitz Blitz in my Nutribullet and WOWWWWW it was so good and very filling.

So even if you do not suffer from a peanut allergy, this is still the BOMB, and something that can be enjoyed, has protein, and is GF.  All pluses in my book.

Health and Love

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Slow Transformation

So this is new for me.  I’ve always enjoyed the vintage era, vintage look, and as those who may have visited my wedding website, it’s evident that the theme is streaming VINTAGE. But that has slowly transcended into my every day life, one day at a time, one adventure at a time, one hair trial, makeup trial, hair accessory at a time…..LOL

I did post my reviews on makeup and as I continue to do so, you may notice that many of the reviewed makeup will in one way or another play a role in my “look”.  I don’t wear my vintage face everyday (that would be aloooottttt of work…..LOL) but whenever I can, it’s my look of choice.  It’s just so much more fun!!!

I believe I did post a pic recently with the mascara review, so that was the beginning of my “playing with style”.

20130917_191750Here is another one, (I made some curls in the front) and if anyone is interested in the “how to”, then let me know.  I’ll do what I can.  Keep in mind, this is an adventure and journey in progress, so I don’t proclaim to be an expert by any means, just a willing student and teacher.

Health and Love

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Keeping it Fresh

With my ongoing quest to keep my food tasty and healthy, I’m writing out this VERY easy recipes, but the moral of this story is taste.  It takes minutes to make really, but it delivers the qualify of flavors that I love and that make my taste buds dance.

It often happens that I’m half listening to the television and something catches my eye.  Well this was one of those moments, and yet I always come into the story more than half way through and then I struggle to figure out what it was, or how to replicate it.

This time I got lucky, I got a name….LOL  which really wasn’t much help when I went online to check it out, but putting pieces together (which is what my talent really is) I came up with what I thought it should taste like (ok, so it’s what I like…LOL)

It’s called Chaat Salad.  Now from my understanding there are several versions of this salad, but it’s foundation in Indian cuisine.  Yummmmm one of my favorites.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of my own, but have however found one that looks identical.  Try it, I promise you, you’ll love it!!  The fun part is always the fact that you can play around with since it’s so basic.  What I enjoy is that there is no oil at all.

chaat saladChaat Salad

1 can of chickpeas (rinsed well)

1 small red onion (diced finely)

1 tomato (diced in small pieces)

Fresh Cilantro (chopped and to taste.  I’d say at least 2 tbsp)

1/2 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp garam masala

salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp lemon juice

Toss Toss Toss.  That’s it.  Enjoy

Health and Love

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Getting older (but wiser….LOL)

I haven’t gone through any blogs on products that I’ve purchased, reviews as such, but I think it’s about time that I change that.  Recently (and most likely because of my upcoming wedding) I’ve taken to really wanting to look my best.  I’ve also adopted a more “retro” look, I’ll say, but more on the vintage side with a modern twist.  Or maybe, let’s just say it’s “my style”.

So the Wedding theme is in fact “Vintage” with a side dish of “Diva”.  So you’ve got the old with the bling!!  I think it’s a match made in heaven.  I’ve had such a great time, that it’s my intention to start a wedding consult business.  Luckily for me I’m great at research online and I’ve found some amazing people who are contributing to the wedding, at AMAZING prices, and much less then competitors.  It’s a matter of getting quotes, not just relying on referrals.  Anyway, if anyone is interested on some of my own vendors, please visit my website.  It’s a “Pay it Forward” kinda thing, so for me letting others know what great service I got is a BONUS for me!!  Brunet and Drozdowski Wedding……enjoy.

So onto the reason for all the verbal blah blah blah from above.  In my quest to LOOK MY BEST, I’ve researched and sought out products, though maybe on the more elaborate side of cost, have made me a very happy women (who is in her LATE 40’s).  So I’ll do one product review at a time, and hopefully this will help others.  So onto Problem Numero Uno!!  (the first of many……..LOL)

5-bourjois-clubbing-ultrablackI have no lashes.  Nope, they are thin and sparse.  I know there are some amazing mascara’s, and eyelash growers, and curlers, and techniques, etc etc, but all in all I just wanted to find a mascara that would not run down my face, that was black black, and that ACTUALLY made my lashes thicker.  I wasn’t expecting miracle (and I’m still getting very generous not so real lashes put on before the wedding 🙂 ) but this was a close to a miracle I was going to get.  So much so that I went back and bought three more boxes……….just in case!!  🙂  So it’s from Bourjois Paris.  A great company for makeup, on the upper crust price wise, but there is always a deal to have, and I’ll find it.  And I did.  This mascara was on with a bonus eyeliner for $20.  Frankly, I thought that was a steal.  So after going home and trying it on……….I was SOLD.  This mascara is the “cat’s meow”.  O…M…G I love it!!

IMG_20130904_110331I’m posting a recent picture of myself where I did myself up, and I think it shows what I’m talking about.  Nothing exaggerated, but surely decent enough for everyday life.

So if I had to give anyone advice out the millions and millions of mascara’s out there, I can say this.  Bourjois Paris – Mascara Volume Clubbing Ultra Black.  I’m not going to run out anytime soon, nor do I ever plan on going without.

So that’s it for me at this time.  I’ve got a new recipe for “Chaat Salad”.  It’s just about the easiest thing I’ve ever made, and it’s yummy yummy.

Health and Love

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Eat your Oatmeal

I must apologize, because frankly I thought I had truly blogged about this a year ago (it’s obvious that I got distracted at some point, which then led to being distracted even further……I blame it on age…LOL).

So it’s only when I came to look for my morning “goto” that I couldn’t find it within my own blog……..gee how embarrassing is that?  Hahah

So a year ago, I was working in an office, and frankly, I’m not the person who gets up in the a.m. has breaky and then gets ready for work………No, No.  And actually I’ve never functioned that way.  I’m the “head right for the coffee machine, perk, sit and wake up” kinda gal, and I have to sit, check my emails, blogs, FB, etc, THEN go and get ready for work.  My “normal” is actually eating at my desk while things get going in the morning.  I CANNOT eat first thing.  It just won’t happen.  So one of my co-workers (who is the same as I am) brought refrigerator oatmeal.  Now I’m sure this is nothing new, but for those who are like me, and need their “good deed” and protein rich breaky, this a great!

Now since I “HATE” make Honey’s lunch (and I mean Hate with every fibber of my being…just sayin) I wanted something that I could prepare on Sundays and keep in the refrigerator door!!  This stuff is amazing, and has so many combinations, that once again, will be totally up to your imagination.  I have made some slight alterations to the recipe, but it still tastes amazing.

refridgerator oatmealPlease visit “Refrigerator Oatmeal” and then explore all the different version this site has.  It’s amazing.  Now the changes I made were to use Gluten Free Oats.  I also use the 0% Greek Yogurt, and I’ve been known to use different flavors other than plain.  I also use Almond Breeze for the milk, and I use Agave instead of Honey.  That’s about it.  Everything else is a go.

I also like to use a 2 cup mason jar, simply because it can be easier to stir.  But the one cup works just fine too.  Whatever you have handy!!

Enjoy yourself, have fun with it………

Health and Love

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Ascension – Nadine Lalonde : Xlibris

Ascension – Nadine Lalonde : Xlibris.

An old and dear high school friend has written her novel.  What an amazing accomplishment.  I am honored to spread the word and wish her the best success.  Please visit the website and buy her book.  You won’t be disappointed.

Health and Love Always.

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Kimchi Soba (Great stage name I think…LOL)

I saw a few things this morning that I wanted to test out in the kitchen.  So they may not be pretty, but OMG (a.k.a. Oh My Godddddd) they taste GREAT!!  With a little finesse and some imagination when it comes to presentation (which frankly is just not my strong suit, but I WILL learn, I’m determined….LOL)

So I’m going back to my Soba noodles because they are just simply yummy and once again, Gluten Free, and so for me it’s a double dose of good for me, and super tasting.

My second LOVE is Kimchi.  I’m pretty sure I’ve talked about this before, and it’s surely worthy of a second mention with one exception.  Kimchi is FULL of flavor, I mean really full, BUT it’s pretty much a one trick pony!!  Kimchi is Kimchi!  It makes a great add in to any stir fry, but then what.  So I came across a recipe for Kimchi pancakes which is called Kimchijeon.  I struggle for words on what this tastes like.  It’s a little pancake that has flavor beyond compare.  Though Kimchi is spicy, in this pancake, the spice is not overdone, just a wee bit of heat, with a great taste.  This would be amazing as an appetizer to go along with the cucumber Soba noodles that I also made today.  Two great ways to impress your guest.  The dressing that goes into the Soba noodles for the cucumber cups is the dipping sauce for the pancakes.  What better way than to mingle these two together.  As a snack, or appetizer, I know you will enjoy and appreciate how low fat and healthy these two recipes are, and how you can further experiment with them.

In this particular recipe, I actually pureed the Kimchi in my Nutribullet.  It was like a paste.  You will notice that Kimchi is quite chunky, and for the pancakes, these would be much better pureed or very thinly chopped at best.

So here we go…………

20130828_165905KIMCHI PANCAKES

1 cup of Kimchi (chopped thinly or pureed)

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup of any two flours (this is open to what your preference is.  If you are Gluten Free then go ahead and use what you like.  I used Corn flour and GF pizza flour that I had handy)

Puree your Kimchi or chop it fine so that there aren’t any really big chunks in the pancakes.  Set aside.

In a bowl, mix in two flours (1/4 cup each) or 1/2 of flour of choice.  Add to one cup of water.  Let sit for a few minutes.  Add the Kimchi and mix thoroughly.

In a skillet, heat some grape seed oil (my oil of choice).  I also use a cast iron skillet, but again this doesn’t affect the outcome in any way.  Heat your oil, and try to keep on even medium heat.  Trial and error folks…….LOL  (See picture 🙂 )

Take a tablespoon worth of the mixture and add to pan and then flatten out with the back of the spoon.  Brown on both sides.  They will get dark since Kimchi does have some sugar in it.

That’s it.  You can cut in wedges and dip in dressing (see marinade for cucumber soba noodle cups)

20130828_170013Please note what the nutritional information is on Kimchi.  Kimchi is made of Korean cabbage, green onion, red pepper powder, sugar, salt.  So for all those pancakes, the Kimchi accounts for minimal calories and fat. The sodium is a little high for my liking, but all in all I can’t complain when the nutrition is there and it’s all natural.  This is fermented which again is an awesome benefit for my Thyroid.


As many english cucumbers that you require

One bunch of Soba noodles (I always make more because I use them for Soba Noodle salad.  I also say “bunch” because soba noodles usually come in little packets within the bag.  You can see an image on my blog “Lets Soba”)

Green onion to garnish

2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1 tbsp of sesame oil

1 tbsp of soy sauce (or GF Tamari)

20130828_171513Prepare your soba noodles according to package direction.  I only boil mine, like pasta, but for only 3 to 4 minutes.  Drain and cool off with cold water.

Prepare your marinade with the vinegar, sesame oil, and soy sauce.  Pour marinade over noodles and let sit for as long as possible.

Peel your cucumber.  Cut the cucumber cups about 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick.  Use melon baller, spoon, or whatever you need to hollow out your cucumber cups.  It takes very little soba noodles to fill the cups.  I twirled them around a fork and put them in.

Top with green onion, or you can top with sesame seeds which would be a nicer touch.

So there you go, my adventure in the kitchen today!!  🙂  Hope you enjoy, and try something new.  They ain’t for demmmmmmm fancy places no more…….LOL

Health and Love Always

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When an idea actually works!

Well this post came to me tonight, because I had done groceries, and I don’t know about you, but I start looking at everything I bought and want to implement ALL of it into one meal…LOL  But then you start to visualize and think, and come to the conclusion “this is what I’m going to make for supper”.

Now we all know that there are times these ideas fail miserably.  Where I’ve eaten a meal and thought “hmmmm I really imagined that it would taste much better…”…LOL  But then, there are those rare moments where it actually tastes GOOD.  I’m happy to report that this was one of those moments.

As it’s a well known fact now, I don’t eat alot due to Gastric Bypass.  But what I do eat, I really want it to taste great!!  So tonight I was on my own, as Hubby to Be was at a Board Meeting.  I had bought him his Hot and Sour Soup, so he was a happy man!  But for me, I wanted to still keep with my regiment, and so I did.  Here was the outcome.  Different, but was truly flavorful and was EXTREMELY low in calories and fat.  So here is what I “remember” putting into it!!  🙂  I am also very lucky to have an amazing Asian grocery grocery store in Ottawa, at T & T and these ingredients are readily available.  Yah for me!!


1 chicken breast diced

garam masala, curry powder, ground cardamom, coconut extract (use only a wee bit of the extract cause it can take over.  I put in the smallest of amounts just to say it was in there.  As for the dry spices, about 1/2 a tsp to 1 tsp each depending on the amount of chicken you have.)


1 clove garlic, minced

2 tsp of oil

2 handfuls of Kale, chopped

2 tsp of sunflower seeds

2 handfuls of soy spouts (these are like bean sprouts but larger.  They have the same stem, but the tip is like a soy bean, they are much more flavorful)

1/2 cup of Kimchi, pureed

So the first thing to do is to make sure that you prepare everything, because really, this comes together very quickly.

Dice your chicken breast and mix it with the dry spices.  If it’s a little pasty, just add a smidge of oil.  Put chicken aside for a bit to get those flavors.  Prepare everything else, and have everything on standby because this really doesn’t take long to cook.

In a skillet, add some oil.  Add your minced garlic for less than a minute just to flavor the oil.  Add the sunflower seeds, and kimchi puree.  (I pureed the Kimchi in my nutribullet and made a paste out of it).  Stir these ingredients together and heat through.  Add the diced chicken.  Start to cook, but it won’t take long.  Add the kale and then the Soy sprout.  Add a little water to steam.

Stir for a few minutes.  Once the Kale has wilted and the sprout are just a little soft, it’s DONE!!  Quick, easy and oh so good!!  🙂

Health and Love Always.

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Lets Soba

I’ve got a couple of recipes, and you know I only blog about those that I would DEFINITELY made again.  These are gluten free, and they were yummy!!  🙂  As I’ve always stated, for those with Gastric Bypass, we eat so little………the stuff better taste freakin’ good!!  So I’ve got a few pics of these two recipes and I apologize now that I’m “a little of this, and a pinch of that” kinda cook, but at least the ingredients are accurate, and I’ll do my best to give measurements.  What’s nice about these, they are really up to you and what you want it to taste like.  More or less garlic, more or less sesame oil, more or less tamari (GF soy sauce or use homemade GF soy sauce).  The other part of today’s chow is that this was spanned over two days, between two people with using the soba noodles twice, and that’s always handy.  Cook it once but eat twice.  🙂

20130823_092101So, first, Soba Noodles.  I get mine at the my local Asian Grocery store called T & T.  They have a wide variety which is great.  You can read about Soba Noodles but the short version is that it’s another word for buckwheat and therefore the noodles are gluten free and they are also one of 11 types of Asian noodles that are safe for the gluten free diet.

The other evening, I had this tremendous craving for beef broccoli.  Honey was gone working, so I decided to be proactive and got supper prepped.  Well that was my intention.  So I chopped the broccoli and did a quick blanching.  I put my stewing beef in it’s marinade.  I’ve got the water going to cook my soba noodles and then it happened………….the power went out!!  NOOOOOOOOO  But yes, yes it did.  So I waited for a bit, took the puppies for a walk.  But, nothing, no power.  So after some discussions and hearing a multitude of sirens at close enough range for half an hour, I figured that even if the power did come back on, it wouldn’t be for a while.  A call to the hydro company confirmed that!!  Oh the disappointment, my craving was going right down the drain.  This was no longer going to be my main attraction of the day!!  How sad!  So I waited.  A full day (and yes, the power finally came back, but it was literally 4 hours after it went out…LOL)

Now the only bonus to this process was that my meat had now been sitting in it’s marinade for the past 24 hours.  DELISHHHHH….So if you can marinate overnight that would be great, but not necessary.

Beef Broccoli with Soba Noodles

  • A head of broccoli (cut into flowers and you can use thin slices of the stems)
  • Soba noodles (I used the two packets as above picture)
  • 5 Tbsp GF Teriaki Sauce (I bought it at Costco and I LOVE it)
  • 1 Tbsp corn flour
  • a little bit of oil to fry with
  • crushed garlic (to your taste, 1 – 3 cloves)
  • 3 chopped green onions

20130823_182402Mix 3 tbsp of the Teriaki Sauce with some minced garlic, and 1 tbsp of corn flour.  Mix with the beef and cover well.  Let marinate for 30 minutes, but as I stated before, overnight is best.

Bring a pot of water to a boil.  Blanche the broccoli for a minute or two.  Remove and run under cold water to stop the cooking.  Then bring water once again to a boil to cook the soba noodles.  Once water is boiling add the soba noodles.  These should only take 3 to 5 minutes, but follow the package directions.  Rinse under cold water.

Heat a wok or a large pan on med high.  Brown your marinaded beef.  Cook fully, all your parboiled broccoli, then toss in your noodles.  Add the remaining 2 Tbsp for Teriaki sauce and heat through (about 1 minute)

Serve and top with green onion.  That’s it.  I always like my crunch, so I did add some toasted almonds.


Here is also the picture of the Teriaki sauce that I get at Costco.  I love it and it’s useful for so many things.  Get yourself some!!  You can also visit Organic Ville.  They have some awesome GF products.  🙂

So now with the second recipe you can use this same Teriyaki sauce or you can use the GF Tamai.  Whatever you like.

This next salad would be served cold, or room temperature actually.

Cold Soba Noodle Chicken Salad

  • 2 chicken breast
  • 2 tbsp tamari sauce or teriyaki sauce
  • 1 minced clove of garlic
  • sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  • one green pepper (sliced into thin strips)
  • toasted almonds
  • 4 green onions chopped
  • left over soba noodles (about two cups)
  • a handful of baby spinach

20130824_172222Take your leftover cold soba noodles and place them in your salad bowl. Add some sesame oil to your taste and to loosen up your noodles.  Add your sliced green peppers.

Meanwhile, boil your chicken.  You can always pan fry it as well.  If you boil them, you can add some ginger in the water.  Dice up your chicken if you pan fry it.  If you boil, boil it whole, let it rest, and then shred.  Let it cool, but it doesn’t have to be cold.  Warmish is good enough.

While the chicken is cooling, in a small bowl, mix together the tamari, garlic, and vinegar.  You can add another tbsp of sesame oil if you want.

Put the salad together.  Add your chicken, put in your spinach and then add your tamari sauce and toss.  Add your toasted almonds, and green onions.

This makes a great “to go” salad, picnics and work!!  Enjoy

Health and Love!!

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