Weekending: Baby snuggles, Dry Bar, a Wedding & Lots of Errands

Hi there! How are you doing today? This past weekend was a good one- just what I needed after a stressful week.

After work on Friday, I headed to my friend Jess’s apartment in the North End to hang out with her, some other SMC friends and Jess’s sweet little baby girl, Nora. Jess had Nora in August, but because of everyone’s crazy schedules, we hadn’t had a chance to meet her yet. Snuggles with her was the perfect way to relax me 🙂

The rest of the night was spent passing the babe around, drinking wine, eating pizza and just hanging out. They’ve got an awesome little deck off the living room so we bundled up and headed out there to finish the night.

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After teaching on Saturday, I headed to Chestnut Hill to cash in my Groupon for a blow out at drybar in Chestnut Hill. Have you guys ever heard of drybar or been there? If you haven’t, it’s a salon that only washes, dries and styles your hair. Their slogan, “no cuts. no colors. just blowouts.”, is a perfect way to describe their services. What I loved about the place is that it’s such a girly-girl activity! They charge $40 for a blowout which also includes a cocktail… because cocktails make everything more fun, right? I couldn’t help but have a glass of champagne during my 12pm appointment. I literally did burpees and then had bubbly… so fitting 😉

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I was given a “menu” which had all of the styles listed out. The names were names of cocktails and I went with the Cosmopolitan as it was a loose, wavy style.

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Never mind the blowout, I could have had my hair washed for an hour- the scalp massage was so wonderful! From start to finish it was the most relaxing hour, and such a fun way to treat myself to some pampering! Unfortunately, the weather sucked and therefore my hair did not keep the look I got at the salon, but oh well. Nothing you can do!

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Later in the day, RM and I headed to Beverly to attend his cousin’s wedding. While it was freezing during the outdoor ceremony, it was very thoughtful and heartfelt… I just wish I could’ve had a glass of wine to help numb the cold temps! I didn’t take many photos during the night because I was meeting so many people and didn’t want to be that girl taking a million photos, but I’ll say it was a super fun wedding. His family likes to have a good time and we danced all night!

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We slept in until almost 10am on Sunday, which is a very rare occurrence for me. After breakfast we went for a nice walk to soak up some of the nice weather.

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After our walk, we split ways and I headed out to do some major errands. I’m having a party in a few weeks and wanted to get festive decorations so I headed back to Assembly Place with my first stop being Christmas Tree Shops. I love going there to get decorations as they are super cheap!

From there, I did a little shopping at the stores and scored with a great dress at Banana for $12 and new sneakers at Reebok for $50! My last stop was TJ Maxx where I finally was able to find something for the wall above my mantle. What do you think?

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I also decorated the hall area- I love how festive it’s starting to look!

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After decorating and cleaning, I finally made dinner. I sautéed a bunch of veggies and cooked some chicken and made a very tasty chicken and veggie stirfry.

And that sums it up! I could’ve used another 4 hours on Sunday to get everything done, but that’s ok. Although this week is busy, I’m going to do my best to stay calm and focus on one thing at a time. I have so many blog posts I want to write, but I’m going to try to not stress about getting those done if I’m tired and not getting home and sitting down until 9pm each night. I need to give myself more time to unwind at night!

Questions for you: What did you do this weekend? Have you been to drybar? Have you decorated for the fall or Halloween?

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Weekending: Massages, Farmer’s Market, Lots of Shopping & Grill 23

Good morning! It’s time to talk about the weekend! I don’t know about you, but I feel like Tuesdays are a lot harder than Mondays. I’m not exactly sure why, but I think it has to do with the fact that I generally just roll into Mondays without much thought and I’m usually pretty busy, so the day goes by fast. Tuesdays, though, are the days where everything from the weekend tends to catch up with me. It’s terrible getting out of bed, I’m yawning all day, and I have to really give myself a pep talk to get a workout in, because I know that’s exactly what I need to get some energy.

Friday

I treated RM and myself to massages at Exhale Spa. Per usual, the experience was perfect: relaxing, calming and just a really nice escape from reality. After our massages, we headed to Whole Foods to get dinner: salmon, spinach and carrots. Paired with a nice Malbec and you have a happy Monique.

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We started Saturday morning by making a trip to the Waltham Farmers Market. Athena and Ashley- thanks for the great recommendation! RM got some meat and I came home with a bunch of veggies, for half the cost of what I’d pay at the store. The only annoying this is that I could be getting these from my dad for free if I was going home anytime soon!

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We also stopped at Whole Foods again for weekly groceries and I splurged on a couple of festive treats. Pumpkin Fig granola and Pumpkin Cranberry “chips”? Yes, please.

After lunch, we headed to Assembly Place to check out the new stores. Although it was beyond crowded (hello, rainy Saturday), we were able to shop around enough to get some great deals. I forgot to take pics of everything, but here’s a pic of one shirt I got, as well as the necklace RM gave me for our anniversary.

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He also got me a gorgeous handmade frame. These are really special things because they are handmade in India. I can’t wait to get a picture of us to put in the frame.

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Although it was really tempting to stay in on Saturday night because of the rain, we made our way to dinner at Grill 23, which is one of the nice steak houses in the city that I had not been to yet. Per usual, we scored seats at the bar and enjoyed drinks, oysters and a delicious meal.

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Not the best pic, but oh well! It was a great dinner and so fun to finally have a weekend date night!

We went for a nice walk on Sunday and then headed into the city for some more shopping. It was too nice to be stuck inside all day!

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Later that evening, we came back to my place so I could do my Sunday meal prep. I had a lot going on: stuffed peppers, meatballs, acorn squash, roasted veggies, sautéed veggies, quinoa and kale. #thankgoodnessforwine

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I also whipped up a batch of these beauties. Grain free pumpkin chocolate chip muffins? Ummm, yes. I added in walnuts, coconut flakes and did half almond meal, half coconut flour and they came out SO good. Such a healthy, tasty treat!

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And, there you have it. Another weekend roundup in the books. Although we were on the go a lot all weekend, we didn’t have a timeframe which was wonderful. We did what we wanted when we wanted- if only all weekends could be like that!

Your turn! What did you do over the weekend? Have you been to Grill 23? Do you go to a farmer’s market? Have you baked any festive treats yet?

#OOTD {I do wear real clothes}

I love when other bloggers post pictures of what they’re wearing for a “regular” day of work. Since I am by no means a “fashionista”, I can always get tips and ideas from what I see in these posts. One of my favorite fashion blogs to read (and Instagram/Facebook accounts to follow) is J’s Every Day Fashion because she is not only fashionable, but fashionable on a budget. I don’t think I’m daring enough to pull off some of the looks she posts, but I love seeing them for ideas on what’s appropriate colors/patterns/trends to combine.

Even though I’m not as creative with my outfits (I tend to err on the side of classic, rather than trendy), I thought it would be fun if I shared a week’s worth of work outfits to show you that I do wear something besides workout clothes- although if you follow me on Instagram, you may think differently 😉

Tuesday (I work from home on Mondays, so my outfit is generally jeans and a t-shirt)

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  • Shirt- Banana Republic Outlet (last year)- I think it was on sale for $30 or $40
  • Skirt- Banana Republic Outlet (so long ago)- Definitely on sale, but can’t remember how much
  • Necklace- Banana Republic Outlet (last year)- on sale for $13
  • Shoes- Nine West, from TJ Maxx- $25

Wednesday

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  • Top: Banana Republic- this year, on sale for $32
  • Pants: Loft- last fall, on sale for $20
  • Shoes- Adrienne Vendetti on sale at Marshall’s for $15
  • Watch- Movado (a number of years ago)

Thursday

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  • Dress: Banana Republic Outlet- $12 (super steal last spring)
  • Watch: Michael Kors
  • Shoes: Loft ($40)

Friday

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Our office is casual dress all the time now, but I still stick to jeans usually just once a week.

  • Jeans- Forever 21 $11
  • Top- Express- a friend gave it to me
  • Necklace- PJ’s Unique Peek Boutique– $15
  • Shoes- Adrienne Vendetti from a few years ago

So, there you go! A peek inside a week’s worth of work outfits.

Questions for you: Where do you get most of your “work” clothes? Are you into fashion and following trends or do you stick to the classics? Any deals I need to check out?

 

 

 

Workouts and Weekending

Morning, friends! I hope you had a great weekend! Thank you so much for your awesome comments, Twitter shares and Facebook shares on my “You workout
 you can eat what you want”. I had a blast writing that post and was happy to see that so many of you could relate to it!

I’d love to say that both my workouts last week and weekend activities over the weekend were mind-blowingly awesome, but, they weren’t. On the plus side, I got out of the house which was a very nice treat after having been cooped up inside my little apartment by myself all week!

Friday night after work, I headed up to my friend Lisa’s apartment for a glass of wine and social interaction. It was perfect!

Saturday morning, I got up, worked out (mostly back to normal!) and then hit the road to head north. Although I was feeling and looking {mostly} better, I knew I didn’t want to go out, so I thought it was best to swing home for a night. I stopped in Kittery to “look” quickly at Banana Republic and ended up scoring BIG TIME. Can you guess how much I spent on all of this? 1 dress, 1 pair of pants, 1 skirt, 2 shirts, a necklace and perfume? Hint: It’s under $100!!!

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Apparently I was into leopard print…

Once I got home, I showed my dad an incredibly sore, swollen area on my back and we decided to go to a walk-in clinic to get it checked out since I’m in Dallas Monday and Tuesday this week (really not great timing…). Turns out I had a staph infection and was put on antibiotics. Great. Just what I needed after my week!

Needless to say, being home with my parents to take care of me couldn’t have been any better. I got to have wine, snuggle and play with the cats and even got some “get better” flowers from my mom’s friends. They sure know how to make a girl feel better!

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Charlie’s “sleeping like a log”… get it… in the wood bag, haha I thought mom was pretty funny for that one!

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Sunday was a relaxing day around the house. I filmed a workout video, napped (I didn’t sleep Saturday night, I think because of the Prednisone… sucks), blogged and just tried to relax. I’m nervous about this quick trip to Dallas because being tired and run down is really the last thing I need right now!

Let’s talk about workouts…

I have a whole post going up tomorrow about my mentality towards working out last week (and physical inability to do what I usually do), which was definitely a struggle for me at times, but at other times it was literally the last thing on my mind. Although I wasn’t able to DO most things because of how painful the sores/bumps were on my hands and feet, I was able to get creative with some workouts, which allowed me to get movement in without pain- made me feel so much better!

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- Nothing
  • Tuesday- Nothing
  • Wednesday- I came up with a “no contact, no impact, no equipment” workout that took me about a half hour to finish, including a warm up. I’m posting it on Wednesday for you!
  • Thursday- I g-chatted with Athena during the day and voiced my frustrations about my physical limitations and she gave me a bunch of “doable” exercises to do. I ended up playing around in my apartment for an hour after work and got in a great sweat sesh with no pain! I also walked 3 miles in the day since it was warm and sunny (and I hadn’t stepped foot out of the apartment in over 48 hours…).

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  • Friday- I was able to jump and make a fist with my hands on Friday!! So I did about 30 minutes of different exercises in my apartment since it was raining outside (meaning I couldn’t walk).

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  • Saturday- I had a great workout in my apartment before leaving for Maine. I did about 35 minutes of kickboxing and 15 minutes of core strength, no-weight arm exercises and some squats/lunges.
  • Sunday- I filmed my workout from Wednesday, which was about all I did. I had intentions of going snow shoeing, but due to lack of sleep and time constraints, it didn’t happen…and that’s ok!

This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- If I slept last night, my plan this morning was to get up early and do a quick 20-30 minute workout before heading to the airport. I know I won’t have time on Tuesday to workout, so I’d like to get something in today if possible.
  • Tuesday- Nothing
  • Wednesday- Finally back at the gym (I hope!!!). I’ll probably take it easy and do some light, no-impact cardio before I teach pending on how I feel. I missed these guys last week!
  • Thursday- Teaching my SHRED and Kickboxing double… Hope I’m feeling back to normal at this point!
  • Friday- Not sure. I may try to get something done in my apartment or it could be a rest day since I have plans after work.
  • Saturday- Teaching kickboxing at the Oak Square YMCA
  • Sunday- Not sure… it will probably depend on how my workouts for the week went.

And, that about sums it up!

Questions for you: When’s the last time you had a limitation inhibiting you to workout like you wanted to? What do you do when you can’t do your usual workouts- skip a workout all together or try to improvise and come up with something that is doable?

Weekend in Maine: getting out of dodge

City life can be so tiring. We are constantly rushing from one thing to the next: plans, work, gym, catching the next T or next stop light… always rushing. While I don’t mind a fast-paced lifestyle most of the time (I like to do things fast. All the time. Maybe that’s why I get so run down!), there’s something to be said about “getting out of dodge”, and for me, that’s heading to Maine for a weekend of complete R&R. Maine living is completely the opposite of Boston living and sometimes that’s exactly what I need.

With that said, after teaching my kickboxing class on Saturday, that’s what I did; made the trek up north, but not without a number of stops on the way. Not being on a timeline is something I don’t do often (or well, for that matter), so it was a nice treat to have the day open for anything I wanted to do!

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side note: how fun are my new pants?! Love them!

I stopped off in Kittery, which, in hindsight was a terrible idea since it was so busy, but I did score some good deals at Banana Republic so I guess that made it worth it?

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New pants that match the suit I bought this summer, 2 new blouses and a new sweater… all for less than $100! The outlet was 50% off. Doesn’t get much better than that! I also stopped off at Lowe’s to get a digital thermostat to help make regulating my heat easier.

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My last stop of the day before going to my parents was the hair dresser. I usually go to a salon in Boston, but as of late, I haven’t been happy with my hair cuts and she has gone up to $65, which I think is outrageous! I decided to get my hair cut in Maine since it’s $26… yes, that is a huge difference. She went a little shorter than I had wanted, but hair grows and I’ve always been more of a short hair person than long hair.

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I wonder how it’s going to look curly… hopefully not too short!

We had a dinner party on Saturday night at my parents, which is always a fun thing. What made it even better was how much bubbly people brought; sometimes I think they do it just for me and “Burpees to Bubbly” 😉

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Have I mentioned how much I love being home?

Sunday consisted of church with both parents (dad doesn’t always go, so it’s a nice treat when he does) and then lots of shopping at Wal Mart, Kohls and Market Basket. I also visited with my friend Meredith, which is always a special treat. She sent me home with ice cream.. the best ice cream!

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Yes, that’s liquor ice cream. Strong liquor ice cream.

We had visitors in the afternoon on Sunday… another one of my favorite parts of going home. I wish people my age did afternoon cocktail hour on Sundays that just consisted of a few cocktails and a few snacks.

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Bubbly and blogging… how fitting.

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Starting sweet Emma off young… her favorite thing at my parents’ house is the plastic wine glass collection. And Longaberger baskets.

For dinner, mom asked what I would want and randomly enough, I requested Beef Burgundy. It’s something I have made before, but likely wouldn’t make again for a while so it was the perfect meal to have her make me. Served with fresh, roasted garden veggies and garlic mashed potatoes (from the garden, too) made for a delicious meal. And, speaking of gardens, look at the last of the tomato crop from my dad’s garden.

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I wanted to have a “guess how many tomatoes” game on B2B, but that would require me counting the tomatoes and there were just too many to do that!

And, that about sums up my weekend. I’m heading back to the city feeling refreshed and ready to attack a few crazy weeks of work travel, parties and teaching. Bring it on!

Questions for you: Where is your favorite outlet shopping? What was the best thing you did last weekend?