Monday Moments

RASPBERRIES by vivian tang

Morning A&C (Amazing & Challenging Arms & Cardio) Workout (click for more info lol), homemade healthy banana bread, crazy July rainstorm, glorious summer fruits, better-than-original vegan mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐, and… a small big decision!

Yesterday Monday recap in pictures and moments.

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Started off Monday high in energy and with a workout first thing in the morning!

Monday post workout 6/25/16

Sneaky post-workout selfie that took up the last bit of strength I had left in my arms. 😂 I’m joking, but man, my arms were so sore afterwards (they still are as I type this the following day).

I did what I call “Monday’s Challenging Arm and Cardio Circuit,” and I shared my full workout in the previous post (click the link!). It is an upper body workout interspersed with 5 minutes of cardio in between each circuit, and it uses mostly bodyweight, dumbbell, cables, and treadmill exercises.

Be sure to check out that blog post if you want to have an awesome and effective arm workout on hand for your next session!

After spending 1.5 hours in the morning at the gym, I came home hungry and craving BANANA BREAD! 🍌 Thankfully, I had a beautiful loaf of my Oatmeal Banana Bread that I baked last Thursday. The bread is entirely gluten-free, sugar-free, high protein, and the texture is so dense and soft and fluffy!

I’ll post the recipe in a separate post some other day if people request for it! 🙂 Let me know in the comments below.

I added some cacao nibs for a chocolatey crunch. 🙂

It was almost lunchtime, so I made this while snacking on banana bread… Let me just say leftovers are godsend when it comes to post-workout lunches. 🙏

Not the prettiest of lunches I’ve made, but sure delicious. The most work I put into this was steaming some broccoli for 15 minutes (the hardest part was waiting!). Then I threw in a bowl: leftover roasted wild salmon from Sunday’s dinner (linked), leftover steamed brown rice, leftover roasted zucchini, the fresh steamed broccoli, and some spiced crystallized “erythritol” sugar that I made a week ago.

I’ve been loving adding this spiced sugar on top of my salads, bowls, etc. It adds a nice spicy sweet kick!

And here’s some more pics…

The most beautifully delicious sweet watermelon. I love it when watermelon gets a little too over-ripe. The texture becomes super “shaggy,” if that’s the word of it. Maybe the picture will help me explain…


I ran some errands, and luckily, I got back into my car just in time to stay dry from the rain that immediately started pouring down super hard on my drive back home. A bit of a surprise but the perfect setting to a relaxing rest of the day. I was so glad to have gotten my workout of the way, so that I could enjoy an afternoon of beautifully frightening rainstorms with some laptop work and yoga.


Every year in July, we get a lot of weeklong rain here in South Texas, and the first bout of serious rainstorms of Summer ’16 started Monday afternoon. The mid-July weather goes like this almost every year in Texas: Sunny morning, and then a rainy storm-filled afternoon. Texas summers may be unbearably hot, like “I’m baking in an oven” hot, but Texas rainfalls are one of the more enjoyable parts of the summer… except the rampant mosquitos that tag along after each rainfall… That said, the idea of being stuck inside while it’s thundering, lightening, and pouring outside is such a cozy and relaxing scenario for me, hahaha. It’s also nice because the rain brings in cooler weather.

It is actually thundering super hard right now as I type this, and I’m sitting by the window (not the smartest idea), and a HUGE thunder just boomed right near me. I’ll be honest and say that did scare me a bit!

Eating by banana chocolate chip oatmeal cookies while watching the rain

Cookies that I baked on Sunday while staying inside watching a rain storm… not a bad scenario if ya ask me. 🙂


Blowing raspberry kisses. 💋

Another favorite part of Summer… all the berries. 🙂 You can’t tell from the photo because I didn’t put a reference, but these raspberries are HUGELike quarter-size huge.


Made myself a little afternoon dessert while watching the rain: 0% greek yogurt, raspberries, and a couple of my banana oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. 🙂 🍪

Mei Mei enjoying the rain.



The rest of Monday yesterday looked like some evening yoga to the rain, a delightful organic peach…


Another reason why I love Summer ❤

and a delicious vegan mapo tofu 麻婆豆腐 dinner with a side of stir fry loofah squash from our garden.


This is a mapo tofu dish that I invented with the idea of using minced mushrooms instead ground meat to make the dish entirely vegan. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, coming from a half-SiChuan family, I’ve been eating MaPo Tofu pretty much my entire life, and I think this vegan meatless version of 100 year old Chinese dish. In yesterday’s edition, my dad added some sweet peppers for color and taste.

Let me also know if y’all want the recipe to this, and I will write a separate blog post for it!


The decision to make my brand new website live!!!(!!!!) It was sort of a on-the-whim decision, but I’m glad I did it, so I can start blogging again, as I’m doing now. Yay!

Hope y’all had an awesome Monday and are enjoying your Tuesday!

Thanks for reading it up all the way ’til here, and let me know if you want me to post that banana bread or chocolate chip cookie recipe!

xx, vt


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