Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Tori Amos

Did you all think I had stopped listening to music? I know it has been awhile since I posted anything of substance. I am sure you all are busy making Vegan Pumpkin Pie awaiting my next post. Well here it is.

I got to see Tori Amos. Wow. (the last time I saw her was the mid 90s, so its been a few years) Her US tour is over. Sorry. However you can go to her website and download a DVD....well worth it. Her latest album, American Doll Posse is fun and rich at the same time. What made this show extra special is I got to catch up with an old friend and spend time with her and her husband. Thanks Danny and Azurae for the tickets, tex mex, margaritas...good conversation. You two are Fun with a capitol F!!!

So back to the show. ADP tour is my kind of show. Very theatrical, costumes, wigs....Tori has created 4 alter egos, Santa, Clyde, Isabel and Pip. She does the first half of her show as one of these alter no two shows are the same. Then leaves, does a costume/wig change and does the back end of the show as Tori. I got to see Isabel....yup....I got to see the political figure. She did songs such as Yo George, Tombigbee (LOVE THIS SONG!!, & Scarlet's Walk. (these songs were MY highlights from the Isabel set)

She leaves and the band rocks out to Professional Widow. What is great is this is the first time you actually hear them at a level that is perfect. These three guys are amazing together (and that is not even doing them justice)...Jon Evans, Dreamy Dan Phelps and Matt Chamberlain. (I have been a Matt fan for some time now, most recently he played on Brandi Carlile's album, The Story.) I wish the musical interlude could have lasted much longer.

Tori returns (in a silver sequin jumper that I would kill to have) and once again, commands your attention with new and old tunes. The songs I won't forget....Sweet Sangria, Cornflake Girl, Butterfly (just her and the piano), Concertina and for an Encore....she played Josephine. Josephine is probably my favorite song she does so I felt lucky to see it live.

If you are not a Tori fan, have never tried to be one.....give American Doll Posse a chance. (and let me know what you think)

"from in the shadow she calls. And in the shadow she crawls, clutching her faded photograph my image under her thumb. Yes with a message for my heart. She's been everybody else's girl maybe one day she'll be her own."

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Vegan Pumpkin Pie

I've finally found a pumpkin pie recipes without eggs and no dairy! (I am trying to at leaset get back in the swing of no dairy and very little meat) From last week's Denver Post comes this recipe which originally appeared in Vegetarian Times magazine:

The filling for this vegan recipe needs to set overnight in the refrigerator, so make it the day before you serve it. Also, if you are going to use fresh pumpkin for the pie, do not use the jack-o'-lantern type; the flesh of these large pumpkins is too watery and stringy. Instead, look for small pumpkins, sometimes called pie pumpkins or other varieties of winter squash. To bake, cut pumpkins in half and remove seeds. Set, cut side down, in a lightly oiled baking pan. Bake at 400 for 30 to 40 minutes. Scoop out the cooked flesh and puree. Serves 8.



1/2 cup unbleached flour
7 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar or granulated sugar cane syrup
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons canola oil
3 tablespoons soymilk plus 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
3 to 4 tablespoons water


2 cups canned pumpkin or pureed home-cooked fresh pumpkin (see intro)
1 cup low-fat soymilk or rice milk
3/4 cup granulated sugar cane syrup or 1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 tablespoon dark molasses or to taste
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice


In medium bowl, combine both flours, salt, sugar and baking powder. In small bowl, mix oil and soymilk mixture. Pour liquid mixture into dry ingredients and mix with a fork until it holds together in a ball. If it is too dry, add some water, a little at a time, until dough is moist enough to roll. (If time allows, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.)

Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin forming an 11-inch circle. Line a 9-inch pie plate with the dough. Flute or crimp the edges with your fingers or a fork. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. (you can do this or you can just go to Whole Foods and buy a non-dairy crust....that's what i did!!!)

Preheat oven to 425.

In large bowl, mix all remaining ingredients until smooth and blended. Pour into prepared crust and smooth top. Bake 10 minutes.

Reduce oven temperature to 350. Bake until filling is set, about 50 minutes. Set on wire rack to cool, then refrigerate overnight.

** UPDATE ** The pie turned out very well - firm and tasty. It wasn't as sweet as other pies, but that's easily adjusted by adding more honey and/or molasses

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Thanks for Nothing

It's that time a year. Thanksgiving. Where we take a look into our lives and you may ask, "what am I thankful for?" I am sure by the title of this post you just might think this particular blog is going nowhere good. Well, indulge me for just a few paragraphs, I have had a lot of time to think about "thankfulness" in the last week.

It was one week ago, last Sunday that I was cycling with a group of 10 in Austin and I was part of a pretty nasty bike accident. Nasty in that I probably took the worst spill out of 4 of us that got thrown off our bikes. After CT scans, X-rays, Dr. visits, Physical Therapist, more x-rays, sleepless nights, not being able to get comfortable I came to a very Grinch like place where I was saying, "Thanks for Nothing" In other words, Negative Nay-Nay had emerged and it was not pretty. Even though Dr's said to stay positive, I was tired of prednisone, Motrin, drink water, lay flat for four days, no doing ANYTHING. As most of you can probably tell at this point....not fun for Colleen. Still don't know what the complete outcome will be....the main diagnosis being is my back is really hurting and I have some numbness along the right side of my body....I can't get an MRI done for another week to see what kind of nerve damage there might be. So that is the update that is my bike accident.

By now you are probably saying...GET TO THE POINT WILSON!!!! So, yes, thankfulness.

(insert long dramatic pause)

I need to be honest, I started to blame everything around me for my pain.... Not a good place to be. And in all of this, I realized....
"Colleen, you are selfish, not thankful."

So now I will share my thoughts that are thankfulness.

Why do we wait until this ONE day a year, the 3rd Thursday of November to BE THANKFUL??

Yes, you could give me the whole pilgrim/indians/picnic answer but I mean why such a build for this one day??

What if....what if we chose to be thankful the other 364 days of the year that Thanksgiving was truly a celebration of that?

What if giving thanks meant transformation not just participation?

Are you following me? Are you seeing it? We can change just by giving thanks!!! We can be transformed people because we give thanks for everyday, normal things and people. Try it. Just one day. (and this Thursday doesn't count) What if you called a family member in April and told them why you are thankful? What if you did this with a friend? Wouldn't their lives be changed? See it works both ways.

I believe that an internal spirit of thankfulness equals change....and can cause healing.

Let's remember what happened to the Grinch at the end of the story..."And what happened then? Well, in Whoville they say that the Grinch's small heart grew three sizes that day."

Who doesn't want that? What is stopping you from being thankful and are you willing to change that?

Cause I am.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Veteran's Day

Americans who support our troops are called the 'silent majority' I hate war just as much as the next person. However, I have a Grandfather that fought with Patton's army in WWII and I have a father who did two tours of Vietnam and is still a Marine that works hard to make sure we are free. It is Veterans Day and I just want to show solidarity and support. I have a cousin that is in the Airforce and it seems like whenever i ask, "What can we do?" (He is in Iraq) he always replies with, "We need your support and prayers."

Hmmm...pretty simple. I come not from a place of being Democratic or Repulican, Liberal or Conservative. I ask that today, you try to put those lines aside and Thank A Veteran.

Yes, I want there to be no war. I still believe in hope for our country and the world.

Let's remember that today we live in the land of the free, only because of the brave.

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Tortoise and the Hare

Yes folks, its that time to bring up my favorite Fable....the one where the slow man ends up taking the Victory. This is going to happen with my swim, I just know it, and I can feel it! (and today is a perfect example)

I went swimming at lunch today....1900 meters total, I am pooped but know it was good for me. There was a gentleman in the lane next to me, I noticed that he seemed to be in a race (with who I am not sure). But good Lord, the guy was breathing so hard in between strokes I thought it was Darth Vader in the lane next to me. Everytime we would start out swimming at the beginning of a set, I could tell he was trying to beat me. I just stuck with the plan. Use the Touch, Pull and Roll, count my strokes and relax. The water is your friend. He was being coached by the same lady as I was and was doing the same workout. In the end, I finished 150 meters ahead of him, all because I followed the simple rule of:

"Slowly does it every time!" said the Tortoise.

Ironman Coach....check.

Yesterday was a huge day for me as I sat down with what I was hoping would be my Ironman Coach starting in January. She is what I like to call...the coolest 46 year old, soccer-mom-Kona-age-grouper-bad-ass. In other words, she juggles 3 kids, a husband, training for Ironman, going to Kona....THREE TIMES,....she is super-duper cool. Her name is Jennifer Reinhart and she coaches with Texas Iron.

We got to sit down for lunch yesterday and I went home very happy! We talked about goals, we talked about the dedication it will take to get there. It was really amazing! I never thought I would be to this point of trying to conquer a 2.4 mile swim (which by the way is going really well and I am feeling AWESOME), a 112 mile bike (no problem folks) and then a marathon. (yes, that is 26.2 miles)

I know that I can do this. Everyone has their own insecurities with training for something like this and I tend to beat myself up over and over again. But when I left yesterday, I knew that Jen was going to push my limits and see me through my very first Ironman.

She has this really amazing positive vibe about's just awesome!

I can mark that off my checklist. Got my Ironman coach, I am ready to rock!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Swim Videos

Went to swim clinic tonight. Got to see what I look like under water because it was time to watch the videos from last week. Wow. The truth hurts. I AM making progress so I can't be too hard on myself BUT seriously.....zipper here, pull here, touch here, elbow here, then kick here, breathe here, ...AHHHHHHH, too much to think about. My brain hurts after tonights clinic.

I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.

Can I get some water wings please?

Shallow Coll

Call me Shallow...I don't care. I just think he is YUMMY! And did you see....2:46 at the NYC marathon.

Now if I could get him to STOP making out with 21 year olds.

This picture made my Monday....thank you Maggie.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Ironman Florida!!!

A bit of a shout out to:

Patrick Evoe (Pro from Austin)
Richard Freer (Pro from Austin)
Clint Carbonneau (Tri coach from Orlando, FIRST Ironman!!)
Rick Stafford (First Ironman!!!)
Damon Krueger (friend from Michigan)

I will be watching AND I am getting updates via Text Message....rock it out my friends!!!

You ALL inspire me in this sport!!

Phoebe Running Style...

Got up this morning for my 10 mile run. It went ok....kept a 9:07 pace for the 10 miles.....a little slower than I want to be for my Marathon Goal Pace, but I have time.

I have to say, I think I looked a little bit like Phoebe in the video above. (one of my favorite episodes by the way)

We had to to 3 miles of hills smack dab in the middle of the 10 miles and it was SO hard.....and I think I looked a bit like her...and I didn't CARE, cause I felt so FREEEEEEEE!!!

***Quick update on the swimming: It is getting really good you all! Two weeks into my clinic and it is starting to make sense. I have to now take the new things I have learned and work on endurance!! Very exciting that now I am at 15 strokes for ONE length of the pool....when I started the swim a year and a half ago, I was at 32. I HAVE IMPROVED and I am really LOVING swimming now that I can see it making sense and gaining confidence! YIPPEEEEE. Ironman CdA, here I come!!!***