Five on Friday {4.1.16}

Good morning! And happy April and Happy Birthday month to my fellow April birthday friends 🙂 I could’ve gotten you guys so bad with an April Fools joke (quitting the blog, canceling the wedding, being pregnant, etc.), but I’ll spare you that and just get right to the Five on Friday topics for today!

  • Mary’s Gone Crackers– We are always on the hunt for healthier chip/cracker varietals, so when I saw these on sale at Whole Foods, I had to try them out. The verdict? I am a big fan! RM likes them, but still prefers the Almond Thins we usually have on hand. I like the Mary’s crackers because they are full of seeds and the ingredient list is pretty clean.

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  • Signs of Spring- There may be snow in the weekend forecast, but for now I’m focusing on little signs of spring around our apartment, including these pretty flowers!
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  • Wedding Registry Gifts- With the wedding shower in just about a month, the gifts have started coming in and it’s so exciting. I joked that every day is like Christmas these days! I know we technically know and picked out everything we’ve been getting, but it’s still exciting to see and feel the gifts. I was especially excited to get 2 sets of the “fancy” place settings I registered for since I had only seen them on line. I love them even more in person!!

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  • Book Club- Tuesday night was book club night, which is always a fun time. Our friend Lauren hosted it in her absolutely adorable Charlestown apartment and the theme was “all the dips”, meaning everyone brought a different “dip” to enjoy. Since most people brought appetizer dips, I offered to bring a dessert dip, which was a big hit- we joked it was like we were eating grown up Dunkeroo’s (remember those things?!). I found it here, and chose it because it was SO easy… and because it was called “Cinnamon Roll Cheesecake” dip and that sounded heavenly. I highly suggest throwing a dip party at some point in your life!

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  • Dresses for Wedding Festivities- I hit up Assembly for some shopping before book club because between my shower, bachelorette party and rehearsal dinner, I am in need of some dresses. I found one at the Express Outlet that I liked, but then when I went to Off Saks, I ended up finding this baby that I liked even more. Best part? It was priced at $220, but I got it for $48! What do you think?

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And that does it! This weekend should be much more relaxed than the past handful of weekends. I’m teaching tomorrow and then hopefully going to a deadlift/hinge mini group training at Foster Fitness and that’s it for set plans. I hope to knock out a bunch more of the Box FIIT Certification, have a date night, meal prep and go to church- whatever you have on the agenda for the weekend I hope you enjoy yourselves!

Questions for you: What’s your favorite snack chip/cracker? What’s your favorite dip? Do you have any suggestions for where I can find a white romper or two piece outfit for my bachelorette party? What’s on the agenda this weekend? Get any good sweats in this week?

 

 

 

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Five on Friday {3.27.16}

Good morning! TGIF, right?! I’ve felt like this week has DRAGGED on, which I can only attribute to teaching late on Tuesday, which isn’t something I tend to do. Oh, and just feeling really off this week. I feel like I’ve been fighting something for a few weeks now, and finally this week I took a day to just rest… which brings me to my first Five on Friday topic…

  • Taking time to rest- If you know me, you know I’m not good at resting. Whether it’s resting from the gym or resting from work or anything else, I’m not good at it. I have one speed: fast- I’m always going-going-going, and while I can sustain that for a while, there always comes a time where I’ve just had enough. All the signs were there, too: I wasn’t recover as quickly from my workouts, I felt achy, irritable, tired, yet not able to sleep well, diet was off, throat started to hurt. Basically, my body is telling me to SLOW THE EFFFF DOWN! So, yesterday I took a day for me. I felt so crappy as Wednesday wore on and pushed it too much in the class I taught so by the time I got home I was pretty miserable. I NEVER call in sick, but I did that yesterday morning and ended up sleeping soundly until after 9am, which also NEVER happens. I spent the day resting, hydrating, reading and blogging and it was glorious. Being go-go-go isn’t a bad thing, but it’s also so important to pump the breaks every once and a while and just do nothing. I needed that!

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  • Lent– For my fellow Catholics out there, today is Good Friday, meaning Lent is coming to an end. In years past I would give something up, but over the past few years I’ve started adding something instead. I added 10 minutes of meditation a few years ago and last year I did a daily gratitude journal, which was a nice way to appreciate all of the positive things in my life. This year, I planned to do the same but lost steam about halfway through. For a second I felt like I failed, but then I remembered that it isn’t about passing or failing. It was just something that wasn’t working for me right now- and that’s ok! I have been good about not eating meat on Fridays, so I’ll focus on that instead 😉
  • New glasses- I finally got a pair of glasses that I really like! I ordered a pair originally that I thought I liked, but when I got them home, I decided they were just not what I wanted. Luckily LensCrafters has a 30 day satisfaction guarantee so I went back and got these bad boys. While they are similar to my Ray Bans in the fact that they are plastic, they have a different shape and color so it makes them still seem new and fun.

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  • Wedding registry gifts– My bridal shower invites went out last week and it’s been so fun checking our registry to see things get checked off the list! AND, we received our first gift the other morning, which was a super fun surprise. Thanks to my SMC girls, we now have a wine fridge and I’m SO excited about it!
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  • Meal Delivery Services- I mentioned earlier this week how I am a brand ambassador for Just Add Cooking and although I plan on recapping everything for you next week, I have to share with you now that I am SO impressed with the company and the meals we’ve received and cooked so far. It has made cooking and dinner FUN by spicing up our normal meals. Stay tuned for some discounts I’m sharing next week.

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And that does it for me! I’m hoping that by the time I wake up today I feel much better and more like myself. As for weekend plans, I’m teaching tomorrow morning and then we are heading to my sister’s apartment for an early Easter celebration with my family. We will head to RM’s mother’s house for Easter dinner with them on Sunday.

What are you guys up to this weekend? Are you celebrating Easter? Do you give anything up for Lent? How has your week been? Do you ever just take time to rest or take a mental health day?

Five on Friday {3.11.16}

Good morning! TGIF 🙂 I know everyone has been talking about the weather, but I mean, seriously?! I have 3 words for you: Soak. It. In! I hope you’ve all had a great week- mine has been fairly quiet… and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it. I even had a day where I had nothing planned after work, which hasn’t happened in MONTHS (literally). It was so nice to be able to run some errands and still get home at a reasonable hour.

Let’s talk Friday things, though 🙂

  • Bagged kale- Kale is a serious staple at our house. Both of us eat a ridiculous amount of it, and while it’s easy to cook (we just season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and EVOO and then bake it), we both HATE preparing it when it comes to de-stemming it and washing it. I found this bag of organic pre-washed & cut kale at Whole Foods and decided to try it out. While I still had to pick through the kale pieces to remove stem pieces, I found the whole experience to still be faster than the traditional way and about the same price. Totally loving it!

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  • Veggie Teriyaki Stir FryHummusapien has done it again! I whipped up a batch of her Veggie Teriyaki Stir Fry since we had cooked brown rice (I accidentally ordered it when we ordered sushi last week) and other veggies on hand and, per usual, it’s a huge hit. RM went back for seconds and thirds and couldn’t stop raving about it! We’ve eaten it plain, served over kale and shredded brussels sprouts and beneath an over-easy egg. There’s really no wrong way to eat it. GO MAKE IT!

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  • Box FIIT Certification– I am slowly but surely making my way through this certification. It’s proving to be a much bigger commitment than I really needed to be doing at this point in my life (with wedding planning and a new class on my schedule and everything else), but I’m really learning SO MUCH and am totally enjoying it. I just wish I was able to make more time for it so I could get it done quicker, but I still want to keep blogging and having some time to relax at night so I’m taking it slow.

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  • {Potential Spoiler Alert!!}Breaking Bad– Ok, I know we are WAY late to the party, but we have been plugging away at these episodes and seasons and it gets crazier and crazier. For those of you who watch it, am I the only one who doesn’t like Walt?! We just finished Episode 7 of Season 5 where he killed Mike, who I loved! I was seriously so sad 😦 and he was so mean to Jesse, who I also love. UGH!
  • Soaking up the sun– Wednesday’s weather was just TOO GOOD to not soak up, so instead of running after work/before teaching, I laced up and hit the pavement during my lunch break. I surprised myself with sub 8-minute miles and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of the run… it felt so liberating to run in just a tank after so many layered clothing runs!

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And that does it! As for weekend plans, I’m getting together with my SMC girlfriends tonight, teaching tomorrow and then shopping all day with RM. I’m heading home on Sunday to do some serious wedding stuff with my parents.

Questions for you: How has your week been? What do you have planned this weekend? Did you get outside to enjoy the weather this week? Have you found any good new recipes lately? What’s a show you’re loving these days?

Quick & Easy Spaghetti w/Clams

Good morning! If you follow me on Instagram, you probably saw me post a sneak peek of this recipe over the weekend. I wanted to share it with you today because it’s SUPER easy and it’s a great Friday night recipe during Lent. RM said he used to make this dish a lot but for one reason or another, hadn’t made it in forever. I’m so glad he did because it was such a treat to eat a dish that is quite different from our “normal” dishes.

We wanted to use the Jovial brand of pasta, but since RM said he couldn’t find it he went with regular old Barilla Gluten Free. You really couldn’t tell it was gluten free! Other than that, you just need some canned clams, EVOO, white wine & lots of garlic and hot pepper flakes.

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Ingredients

  • Spaghetti/pasta of choice
  • 1 can of chopped clams (we used Bumble Bee), drained, but save the juice
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • Plenty of EVOO (we used our olive oil that we infused with dried hot peppers)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup white wine
  • Plenty of red hot pepper flakes (if you like it spicy! less if you don’t)
  • salt & pepper to taste

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Directions

  1. Boil water for your pasta/spaghetti and eat a pan with EVOO (again, we used red hot pepper infused olive oil that we make and always have on hand). Once the pan is hot, add in your chopped garlic.
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Five on Friday {2.12.16}

Good morning! TGIF 🙂 Have you guys had a good week? Mine has been great- between teaching and a get together with my girlfriends it’s flown right by. Let’s get to some of my favorite things right now.

Five on Friday

1. GALentine’s Book Club Night- Our friend Amy hosted book club this time and in true Amy fashion when it comes to anything holiday/party related, she knocked it out of the park with her decorations and overall festive feel. She and her roommate cooked up a terrific dinner of chicken parm and we had a blast talking about the book (and other random topics) over wine. AND Amy made us all hand-made valentines consisting of a card and a “De-Stress Coconut Oil Body Lotion” which she described as “this tranquil blend of chamomile, lavender and frankincense can help relieve discomforts associated with stress and anxiety”… anyone want to place an order for some? 😉

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2. Cuckoo’s Calling– Speaking of book club, this was the book we read this past time and while it took me a bit to get into it, I ended up really getting hooked. I read the last 150 or so pages in just a few hours! We are reading her sequel next: Silkworm- I can’t wait! We are also reading 5 Love Languages since we’ve got a little extra time until the next meeting. Have any of you read either of these?

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3. Wine Expo– RM and I were trying to decide what to do for V-Day and when my friend mentioned the Wine Expo, I thought that was a great idea. I searched through some old emails and found a promo code which took $10 off the admission price, which was just icing on the cake (VALDAY16 is the code if you’re interested- there is still availability for Sunday). I’ve been to the seminars a few times, but never the full expo so I can’t wait!
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