Five on Friday {5.27.16}

Good morning and TGIF! I have a few hours of work and then I’m off until Tuesday- amazing! I’m hoping for good weather- I need to work on a tan for the wedding 🙂 Let’s jump right into some highlights going on this week:

  • Yogathon hosted by lululemon- On Saturday, June 5th, lululemon is hosting a 12 Hour “Yogathon” in Honor of Nation Cancer Survivor’s Day at The Street in Chestnut Hill to benefit two organizations devoted to sharing the health benefits of yoga. There are various different classes to choose from, so if this interests you and if you’re around on June 5th, all you need to do to register is make a donation of any amount to bodhi & mind yoga, which offers free one-on-one yoga and meditation practice to women battling breast cancer, and Triyoga Boston, a non-profit organization offering therapeutic yoga classes, using the Yogathon Eventbrite page.
  • Thankful for great friends– If you follow me on social media, I’m sure you know that I had my bachelorette party last weekend. I will do a full recap on it, but for now I’ll just say that I felt SO special, thankful and grateful for having so many wonderful friends in my life. They planned the most amazing weekend, filled with lots of my favorite things and I ended the weekend feeling so humbled by everything everyone did for me.

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  • Bags & Beats @ GymIt- Earlier this week, I taught my first classes at GymIt in Watertown as a result of completing my BoxFIIT certification. I was pretty nervous going into the classes: new gym, new crowd, new class format, new app… after 4 years of mostly teaching at the same gyms to the same crowds, this totally put me out of my comfort zone, but you know what? I think I kinda rocked it! I had big shoes to fill, but I think members were happy with the classes I taught so I’m hoping to grow them over time. If you’re interested in checking it out, I teach on Tuesdays at 5:30 and 6:30pm and the classes are Bags & Beats so we use the heavy bags and do punching combos to the beat of the music mixed with non-boxing exercises. It’s a fun class and Tuesday reminded me that it’s so important to get out of our comfort zone and try new things because sometimes that’s exactly what you need to ignite a new fire within.

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  • Embracing the weather & season- Yesterday I decided to take a rest day. It’s been a long and busy week and I feel like I’m still catching up on sleep/getting back to normal after my bachelorette weekend, so I decided to take a rest day yesterday. I knew I needed this because after my run on Wednesday, I felt abnormally sore and tired. I set my alarm yesterday morning to get up and go for a walk before work, but when my alarm went off I realized I would benefit more from sleep. Listening to our bodies is so important, and somethign I admit I still have to work on, but I was proud of myself yesterday for listening to my body and resting (and enjoying vino after work).

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  • New Workout Plan- With our wedding coming up (38 days from today, to be exact!), I decided that I wanted to spend some time focusing on me when it comes to workouts. Lately I’ve been teaching a lot and have had a lot of other things going on so my own workouts have fallen a bit by the wayside; I still workout 5-6 days a week, but they aren’t as structured or formatted as I’d like them to be in order to see changes I’d like to see. With that said, I reached out to my girl Athena to have her create a month long upper-body focused workout plan for me for the month leading up to my wedding. I am by no means trying to lose weight, but rather I just would like to tone up my upper body and back and see what kinds of changes I can make when I consistently follow a plan. She sent me the workout plan the other day and upon first glance it looks great and I can’t wait to start- sometimes just having a new plan to follow is exactly what you need to get excited about something again!

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And that does it for me! We don’t have a lot planned this weekend which is really nice. I’m hoping to get some sun, sleep and relaxation 🙂

Questions for you: How has your week been? When is the last time you got out of your comfort zone? Do you like to follow structured workout plans? How are you embracing the weather?

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Weekending: Making Sausage & Pasta

Good morning! Another weekend, come and gone- how come they go by so quickly?! This past weekend was a real treat on the food front- too good not to share!

Weekending….

I had an apt in the city after work and after that I met RM for a drink and some snacks, but not before enjoying my “to go” wine from my waxer:

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When I met up with RM, we ended up going to Nix’s Mate- I enjoyed a rose bubbly, he had a delicious beer and we ended up getting some oysters and shrimp since they were only $1 each!

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To help with my Box FIIT certification, I’m trying to get to more Box FIIT classes so I hit one up on Saturday morning. It wasn’t as hard as George’s, but it was still a great workout and I seriously cannot wait until I can start teaching my own classes!!

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I hadn’t seen my sister in almost 3 weeks so after class I met up with her and our other friend Amy for manicures in Southie. Amy and I ended up getting the same color and I love it!!

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The rest of the Saturday was spent at our friends Jessi and Chuck’s apartment doing all sorts of cooking. RM and I went to the north end and picked up the sausage and then headed over to their place to get cooking.

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We opted for 8 pounds of meat which ended up yielding about 35 decent sized sausages. RM also had the butcher grind it and season it (2 ounces of salt per 10 pounds of meat) to help save time. We decided to do 2 different kinds: regular and garlic/parsley/parmesan and I don’t know which one I liked more! The whole event was so smooth and seamless- we were all pleasantly surprised by how easy it was! In just a few hours we had loads of sausages to enjoy.

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And, if that wasn’t enough, Jessi and Chuck broke out their recipe for homemade pasta and sauce- umm hello deliciousness! Making pasta with the Kitchen Aid attachment was SO easy- RM was ready to go out and buy the adapter yesterday!

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Between the homemade sausage, which cooked in the homemade sauce and the homemade pasta, the meal was pretty freaking amazing!!

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We also played games and drank lots of vino while we waited for everything to cook. It was seriously one of the best Saturday afternoons we’ve had in a while… even though we were so exhausted by the end that we went to bed at 9:45 haha

Sunday started out with being up nice and early thanks to our early bed time so we ended up going back to the Deluxe Town Diner in Watertown for breakfast. Our breakfast looked very similar to how it did the last time we went there, only difference was that RM got an omelet this time.

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I love being up and out early- getting to Whole Foods at 9:15am on a Sunday was such a nice treat! Besides Whole Foods, I went to Target, cleaned the house and then RM and I went to LensCrafters to get new glasses. Since I still love my current glasses, I opted to go for an entirely different style so I can rotate between the two. I’ll show you a picture once we go pick them up. Later that day we went to visit his mom since she just got home from vacation. We had pizza and salad and it was perfect!

And that about does it! How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun or different? Did you get in any good workouts? Do you like boxing workouts? What’s your favorite breakfast item to order? Have you ever made sausage or pasta? What do you have going on this week?

Weekend Eats & Drinks

Good morning! Our weekend was relatively low-key, but it was filled with some good eats, drinks and restaurant visits so I figured that was worth sharing- enjoy!

Friday

My company always does pizza lunches before big sport games, so last Friday was no exception. I haven’t been in the office to reap the benefits of any of the recent pizza luncheons so it was a nice treat for me this past Friday! I always take a whole plate of salad (if available) and start with that because it ensures I get in some veggies and it helps to subside most of my initial hunger before inhaling 3 pieces of pizza and then feeling sick from stuffing my face with too much pizza!

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I had some gift cards to use at Hopsters so we went there for pizza, salad and drinks for dinner… you know it’s a good day when you have pizza for lunch AND dinner! We got the sausage and arugula pizza and the beet and goat cheese salad- both were fantastic!

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Saturday

After an incredibly hard yoga sculpt class at CorePower (no seriously, it was so hard!!), I met up with my sister and friend Jessi at Loco in Southie for lunch to chat about my bachelorette party. While the margaritas were awesome, I picked the wrong food entrée. The waitress suggested the burrito so I took her suggestion, but it had too many big potatoes and not enough meat… not to mention it was served WITH potatoes. Thankfully my sister shared some of her burger with me which was really good. We ran into one of my friends from work which was such a fun addition to the lunch!

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For dinner, we decided to make some quesadillas. I kept it basic with just peppers and onions and leftover coconut crusted chicken. They were SO good and successfully kicked my Mexican craving that was not satisfied at lunch.

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Oh, and bubbly. Snowy nights most definitely call for bubbly… but then again, I’m not sure what nights DON’T call for bubbly 😉

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Side Note: We finally started to watch Breaking Bad- have any of you watched that show? So far it’s a little intense for my liking, but I’m giving it a shot! We are only 4 episodes in.

Sunday

In traditional Sunday morning fashion, I whipped us up some healthy pancakes first thing. It was another great batch and we think it’s almost time for me to perfect the recipe and share it with all of you! I added raspberries to some of mine and it was a very tasty addition.

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We ended up having RM’s brother and sister-in-law over for the game so I set out some healthy-ish snack food while we waited for the wings to cook. We made two kinds: baked buffalo and then slow cooker honey garlic and I have to say, the buffalo stole the show for most of us! I also made some chocolate chip banana bread bars which were a big hit.

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And that about does it! I hope you all have a great week- and be on the lookout for some exciting news that I’m sharing on Friday!

Questions for you: Where is your favorite pizza place? Did you go out to eat at all this weekend? Where do you go for Mexican food? What did you do for the game?

The Week In Review: Birthday Celebrations, Christmas, Weekending

 

Good morning! It feels good to be back 🙂 Besides one post last week, I decided to take the week to just detach a bit- I had no desire to blog so I figured it was a sign I should take a little break. I’m back today, though, to recap the week! With RM’s bday on the 23rd, Christmas week is always a little crazy and chock full of celebrating (read: indulgent food, lots of dessert and plenty of drinks). Even though I’m off today, I’m excited about getting back on a little bit of a schedule this week… that is, until New Years Eve 😉

Monday- Last week I organized a little holiday celebration for a few of the teams at my office. We went to Kings in Lynnfield and had a blast drinking, bowling and munching on various passed apps.

Tuesday- After work on Tuesday, I went into the city to meet up with my sister and some other people at Back Deck for a drink before they went to the Nutcracker. I had wanted to go, but with it being the day before RM’s bday, it was just too much.

Wednesday- I used a floating holiday on Wednesday which was a nice way to ease into the holiday. Since it was RM’s bday, I told him I would make him whatever he wanted for breakfast. He decided on banana cinnamon French toast- how delicious does this look?! It was 2 pieces of Ezekiel bread, 2 eggs, dash of milk, plenty of cinnamon and sliced bananas that I sautéed in the pan.

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After breakfast, I left the house to let him study for his big broker exam (who schedules a big exam on their birthday?!) and hit up a class at Orangetheory. The first time I went to that studio was over the summer and the class was good, but not crazy hard. This one? Much harder! It was endurance day so we ended up starting the class on the treadmills for nearly a half hour! My base pace was 7 and my pushes were in the 8’s and then sprints in the 9’s and 10’s… I was dying by the end!! The strength session was also more challenging and I was sore the next day. Can’t wait to go back!

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I finished up with shopping and wrapping while RM headed into the city for his test. A few hours after the test started I hopped on the bus to be in the city when he finished so I could take him out to dinner. Luckily, he passed the exam so not only were we celebrating his bday, but also that! It was a very good day and Davio’s did not disappoint!

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Thursday- We took our time getting up on Thursday and eventually went into the city for birthday massages (well, birthday for him) at Exhale Spa. Per usual, the whole experience was wonderful- it’s really the best place to get massages!

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had to rick my “mistletoe & mimosas” T!

After we were finished, we hit the road to head to Maine. I went to Christmas Eve mass with my family and then we prepped for family friends to come over. It was a another successful Christmas Eve party! Good group of friends, plenty of delicious food, lots of bubbly and laughs. I did not take many pictures as I was just having too much fun being present in the night.

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Friday- We woke up later than normal on Christmas morning and found ourselves nearly rushing through presents- oops. We all got lots of great things, but I have to say that my sister’s gift to me was probably my favorite -it was so incredibly thoughtful and I loved that it was wedding themed since up until now, I hadn’t really received anything wedding-related. The ring holder is absolutely perfect, the shirt is so “me” and the book filled with all of the important things so far (“the ring”, “the Date”, “the location”, “not the dress”, “the band”…) nearly made me cry! I can’t wait to fill it up with things throughout the wedding process and then with photos from the big day.

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After presents, we packed up and headed back to MA to do Christmas with RM’s family. I didn’t take any pictures, but his mother and sister made a delicious meal, we had fantastic wine and opened more presents. I loved the sweater and necklace that his mom and sister got me- now it just needs to get cold enough to wear them 😉

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Saturday- I started out the day working on our wedding website and then hit the pavement for a 3.5 mile run, followed by some upper body strength circuits. After a rest day on Christmas and indulgent food for a few days, it felt very good to move!

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After lunch, the post holiday blues started to hit me and I had to laugh as I realized my outfit was coincidentally mirroring my mood.

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I knew I needed to get out of the house so I returned a few things, went to the library to get another book for book club and then decided to grab a glass of vino at Branch Line while waiting for RM to be done with his things for the day. I brought my book in and totally enjoyed sipping my Chardonnay while I read (even if it did seem weird to people who saw me).

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The rest of the night was spent relaxing- we ordered in, I kept reading and was in bed by 10. It was perfect 🙂

Sunday- I decided to get up and make us healthy pancakes. I changed the recipe by adding in another egg and we both agreed they may be the best batch yet!

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The rest of the day was spent being incredibly productive: 2 loads of laundry, changed the sheets on the bed, put away Christmas gifts, cleaning the entire apartment, grocery shopping, meal prepping and blogging. I did get RM to food shop with me and happened to sneak in a bouquet of flowers 😉

 

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Meal prepping isn’t always something I want to do, but once I get going- and especially once I’m done- I’m always SO happy I did it. I still have to make a meatloaf and cook the kale today (and RM has string beans and broccoli he wants to cook- we go through veggies so fast in this house), but knowing the most time consuming part is done is amazing.

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And that about does it! I know this post was long, but hopefully the pictures kept you reading. I can’t believe Christmas has come and gone, but at least we have our wedding to look forward to in the next 6 months or so!

I hope all of you had a fantastic holiday week!

Questions for you: What did you do to celebrate the holiday this year? Do you have to split holidays? Do you have any traditions? Meal prep- love it or hate it? Did you do any shopping after the holiday? Are you taking any time off this week? Any good workouts to share?

Weekending: Birthday Celebrations & Decorating for Christmas

Good morning! I hope you all had a great weekend. Although we did lots of Christmas-y things, it sure didn’t feel like Christmas with 50-60* weather all weekend. I’m not complaining, though, I’m sure we will have freezing temps and snow soon enough!

Before we recap, I want to wish my sister a very happy birthday!!! I hope you have a great day! xo

Friday

I really wasn’t ready to head right home after work on Friday so I texted my friend Jessi to see if she wanted to meet up for a drink on my way home. Lucky for me, she was around and willing to meet up! We met at Assembly Row and puttered through Home Goods before grabbing seats and some vino at the Legal Seafoods bar.

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I stopped at Whole Foods on the way home to get stuff for dinner: quesadillas! We had chicken we needed to eat and I was in no mood for a boring chicken and veggie meal. I feel like Fridays should be fun meals, not boring standard meals.

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We used Ezekiel wraps, chicken thighs I had baked earlier in the week, freshly shredded Gruyere cheese and veggies. I plan on writing these up in a post of their own because they were that good!

Saturday

It was my Saturday to teach and it was fun because there were lots of friends in class! I can tell winter is coming because each week my numbers continue to increase.

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We had a rare Saturday where both RM and I were around with no real plans. He took advantage of it by starting to study for his broker exam and I started to do some decorating. Since we loved the quesadilla’s so much, I offered to make them again for lunch!

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Later in the afternoon I popped over to Target to stock up on some household items… $85 later and multiple things I didn’t “need”. How does that store always do that to me?!

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We decided to get our Christmas Tree later in the afternoon. RM’s family always gets their tree at Russo’s in Watertown so we went there. I was totally impressed! The tree wasn’t cheap, but it just seemed to much healthier than the ones I’ve previously gotten at Home Depot so I didn’t mind spending the money.

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My sister was celebrating her birthday on Saturday night at The Brahmin so RM and I decided to head in a little early and grab some sushi at Red Lantern since it’s right next to The Brahmin. We got bubbly, spicy edamame, avocado salad, a spicy tuna roll and a salmon avocado roll and everything was fantastic!

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Once we got word that my sister was at The Brahmin we headed over. It was such a fun night- I definitely drank more than usual and more than I probably should have, but I don’t go out like that very often so it’s all good. We laughed, we danced and we took birthday shot shots- so much fun!

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RM and I were both craving pizza when we left, but we couldn’t find an open pizza joint so we ended up at Tasty Burger. I had never been and I have to say, although the burger was good, it wasn’t as good as Shake Shack! RM refused to share with me and made me get my own… two bites in and I decided I didn’t want a burger so we ended up taking it home, haha the fries on the other hand? Those were totally hitting the spot!

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Sunday

We slept in (no surprise there) and had a nice lazy morning. I whipped up some healthy pancakes and then went back to Target to get a new tree stand since the one I’ve had for a few years apparently had a big crack in it and leaked all of the water we added to it… so not fun!

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The rest of the day was spent decorating, food shopping and taking a stab at making Rosa’s sauce. I had a few bites and it definitely isn’t as good as hers, but it’s still pretty good!

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It’s been so fun decorating “our home” and getting our first Christmas tree together! We have so much fun living together that I sometimes still feel like we are playing house 🙂

For dinner, we had some paleo slow cooker wings that RM threw together- they were fantastic!

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And that about wraps it up!

Questions for you: Did you do anything fun this weekend? Have you gotten your tree and/or started decorating for Christmas? What’s the best meal you had this weekend? Any fun drinks or Christmas parties?