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That Little Thing Called Life

5 Aug

Sorry I didn’t post yesterday. That little thing called life got in the way ūüôā

At any rate, yesterday morning started off with a nice 35 minute walk/jog, followed by 25 minutes of toning.

Today, I did some speed work and jogging for 45 minutes. It was intense ūüôā

I spent the last two mornings at the enrichment program, but today was my last day, so I won’t¬†be going to school/working any more for at least three weeks. I think I might go crazy!

Both days after work I went shopping – yesterday I went to Target, CVS and Rite Aid (I’m in search of other fueling products for my runs). Today I got an oil change and went to Kmart (I’m looking for a food scale. Anyone have any suggestions on where to find one?)

Both days after shopping, I headed to the library to get some reading done. The only difference is today I have my laptop with me, and yesterday I didn’t, hence the reason why I didn’t blog.

Unlike yesterday, I have no plans for this evening.

Last night I went out for happy hour with four other girls. It was a fun night, and definitely needed.

I’m not sure what I’ll be doing tonight. Likely making dinner (I’m thinking stir-fry)¬†and just hanging¬†out at the house. Not that I’m complaining. Sometimes you need a down night.

I think I’ll get a start on that concert post.

Have a good afternoon!

Keep smiling!

Anyone have any fun plans for the evening?

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Shop-aholic I am not… except for the past two days

3 Aug

 

Pretty, Pretty Dresses ūüôā

I have a confession to make.

In a move very unlike me, I have spent the last two days shopping.

One very important thing you should know about me is that I do not like to spend money, and when I do, it is only on items I feel I truly need.

Something else you should know about me is that I really do no like to shop (Well, I guess I need to clarify that and say “shop for clothes,” because I do love food shopping, and can spend hours at the grocery store. Which I did today). I do not have the patience to go through rack after rack of clothes, so really the only time I clothes shop is when I absolutely need something.

Having said all that, yesterday I visited Ross, TJ Maxx and Marshall’s with my best friend, TP, and enjoyed every minute of it. I think I looked at every article of clothing that I could fit into, and then some.

Then today, TP and I ventured to Big Lots, Family Dollar and Aldi (not really clothes shopping, but not really food shopping, either).

I didn’t really buy too much today at those three stores, but yesterday I bought three dresses at Ross. I think they are all super cute, and I can’t wait to have the opportunity to wear them!

After hanging out with Tara this afternoon, I came home and went to the grocery store, where I did spend an hour and a half going up and down every isle. I spent $40, and considering I went there without really knowing what I needed, I’d say that was a splurge. I bought some fun items though, including a few I have never purchased before: tofu, sparkling seltzer and these energy bites.

Hmmmm, I wonder how good these will be?

I am super excited to try the energy bites, since I am currently looking for ways to fuel on my long runs. Has anyone tried them? Does anyone have any fuel recommendations?

Speaking of long runs, I ran 55 minutes this morning, which totalled about 6.6 miles. I had to use an application I found on my Droid to keep track of my run, since my Garmin is still acting up. I tried calling the company today, but was not able to speak to anyone before I gave up on the 30 minute wait time. I will be emailing them this evening to see if I can get any help that way.

Yesterday was a cross training day, so I rode 45 minutes on my bike, then did 20 minutes of toning.

Currently, I am sitting in my kitchen listening to the washer whirl, and impatiently waiting for the apple sauce cake I just threw in the oven to bake. It smells suuuper yummy, and if it tastes good, I will be sure to post the recipe for you.

I know I have promised you a recap of the concert we went to Saturday night. I assure you, I will get my butt in gear and have it up for you to enjoy, soon!

In the mean time, keep smiling!

Do you have your own washer and dryer at home, or do you have to take yours to a laundry mat?  When I lived in my apartment I had a washer and dryer in the basement, which cost $1.75 to wash and $2.00 to dry. It was a pain in the butt to have to lug everything up and down stairs, in addition to having to pay for it, so I am so happy I now have the luxury of my own washer and dryer.

Playing Catch-up

2 Aug

Hellooo!

So,¬†¬†I have some really fabulous photos to post from Saturday’s concert, but my camera is currently MIA (I think it’s in my Jeep, to be honest), so they’ll have to wait for another post.

Not that I don’t have enough to post about anyway – I haven’t posted since Friday! (Well, technically I posted¬†just a few hours ago, since Friday’s post didn’t publish when I thought it was going to, but we still have a lot of catching up to do!)

When I last left you, I was re-grouping from my best friend’s grandfather’s funeral services.

As it turns out, Friday was also my best friend’s husband’s 30th birthday, and while she is having a party for him this Saturday, she felt bad that she didn’t have anything planned for his actual birthday, besides a funeral.

Well, when JP got home from work Friday night, he proclaimed only Pizza Hut would tame his hunger. I must admit, I wasn’t thrilled by the idea, but I called my bestest to see if she and her birthday boy husband would be interested in joining us. They said yes, and we were off.

Turns out Pizza Hut can be a pretty fun place, especially since our local branch is BYOB. That meant sangria for me and TP, and Summer Ale for JP and the birthday boy. Seriously, we could not have been happier. It was a great night.

While stuffed, we came back and tried the brownies I made for the birthday boy. To be honest, they were okay, but nothing to write home about. I think keeping them in the fridge made the brownies too hard…

Saturday morning, I ran 10 miles instead of the planned 7. I was actually all set to run 11, but then my Garmin quit, and I had no idea how much further I had to go to reach 11, so I just started walking.

I spent the rest of the day hanging out outside, since it was so beautiful, and getting ready for the Gary Allan/Brooks and Dunn concert. All I have to say about the concert right now is OH MY GOODNESS.

Sunday was a rest day for me training-wise, and that’s exactly what JP and I did – rest.¬†We did end up going to TP’s house to hang out by her pool and to have dinner and get ice cream, but that’s about all we did all day – hang out and eat. And it was grand.

Sorry, no pictures today. And I’m now a day behind in posting, but I’ll be back tomorrow with a re-cap of today, and the concert. Woo-hoo! Get excited!

Keep smiling, all. Have a great night!

Can you believe it’s August already? What’s one thing you want to do before the summer is over?

It’s Friday!

2 Aug
(NOT SURE WHY THIS DIDN’T POST FRIDAY, BUT HERE IT IS)
Can I get a heck, yeah!

So glad it’s Friday and the weekend is finally here.

While it is a day for celebration, I started things off with services for my best friend’s grand father. He had been sick for a really long time, so it was for the best when he passed away Monday, but it doesn’t make losing him any easier.

I spent from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. with her family, so needless to say I’m a little exhausted this afternoon.

Fortunately this was a rest day for me, so I’ve spent the day prepping myself for my long run tomorrow. My training plan shows I’m supposed to run 7 miles, but we’ll see how I feel in the morning. I hate being relegated to specific numbers. I know I will push myself to run at least 7, but I’m hoping I’ll be in the mood for more. We’ll see what happens. To be honest, since I got back from my vacation, I really haven’t been in the mood to exercise, despite the fact that I’ve been feeling bloated and weighty (this feeling usually motivates me to work extra har). I’m hoping this feeling with pass soon and I’ll get back in the groooove.

My delicious dinner!

Changing tracks, I was very excited about  my dinner last night, since it featured a new-to-me product, and it was sooo yummy.

I had picked up two packages of Pepperidge Farm sandwich thins yesterday, since I had a coupon for them, and they were on sale at Target.

I paired a thin with some shredded chicken seasoned with pepper, garlic and italian seasoning, as well as some chipotle hummus and spinach.

Let me tell you, this combination was fabulous, and it left me feeling very content.

I paired the sandwich with some steamed zucchini and summer squash, and could not have been happier with my meal.

Chocolate-Peanut Butter Yumminess

As promised, I also baked the brownies from the Tasty Kitchen.

Unfortunately, I did not take step-by-step photos, and I haven’t tried the finished product yet, but they look yummy!

Well I am off to read a few more emails, then relax for a little bit.

I hope you have a great evening.

Keep smiling.

Do you have a favorite baked good? If so, what is it? Do you make it on your own, or is it store made?

Is Cheerleading a Sport?

27 Jul
Good Afternoon!

I hope everyone is having a great day today.

I know I am.

I started off with a not-so-easy 55 minute run, in accordance with my half-marathon training plan. I had to use my cellphone to track my time, because my Garmin is not functioning at the moment (grrrrr!). Needless to say, I am not sure how many miles I went, but I know 55 minutes seemed like FOREVER. Thankfully, it was only about 65 degrees when I set out at 6 a.m., so it was the perfect temperature to get in a few miles.

After my workout, I hopped in the shower, had some cereal with strawberries and milk, grabbed some coffee, and was out the door to the summer enrichment program.

It’s so weird to be back at work after a week off. Strangely, I have been exhausted the past two days (you would figure I’d be rested after my vacation, but, no), and the students seem to be just as tired as I am. The good thing is that the program is only for two and a half hours in the morning, so just about the time the students start to get rammy, it’s time to send them home to their parents. Score!

Now I’m at the library, taking advantage of some free ac and internet.

Squad photo from my senior year of high school. Can you spot me?

The title of my post was actually derived from an article I just read in our local newspaper. It discussed how “U.S. District Judge Stefan Underhill ruled last week that cheerleading is ‘too underdeveloped and disorganized’ to be recognized as a sport at the college level.”

Now, as a former cheerleader myself, I have to disagree with this statement. I know there are a lot of people out there who believe otherwise, and you know what, that is totally fine. But I know I worked my butt off at cheerleading practice, and was just as athletic as any of the other athletes at my high school.

To support my point, I tried looking up the definition of “sport” in Merriam Webster¬†online. The definition wasn’t really anything earth-shattering, so I looked up “athlete” instead. The definition is as follows: a person who is trained or skilled in exercises, sports or games requiring physical strength, agility, or stamina. (You can find this defnition here).

Personally, I don’t know how you could consider cheerleading to NOT be a sport¬†after reading¬†the definition of an athlete. Of course, one could say cheerleading is actually an exercise or game, but, really? I think that argument could also be disproven.

I am really not one for arguing, so I am just going to leave it at that. I believe what I believe, and you are entitled to your own beliefs as well.

On that note, I am going to go hassle¬†the folks at Garmin and see if I can get my watch fixed. It’s such a downer to be training for a half marathon and have no idea how many miles I’ve been running…

Have a good day, everyone.

Keep smiling!

What do you think? Is cheerleading a sport?

Back in Action

26 Jul

 

 

JP and I getting ready to head to Bar Harbor

Sorry I’ve been MIA for the past week.

I was on vacation with my family and really needed a break from everything, so I left my laptop at home, and picked up my cell phone only if I needed to make a phone call.

Best decisions I could have ever made.

I’m sure you¬† have lots of questions about my¬†vacation, but¬†I really don’t have too much to say about it. That’s not to say I didn’t have a GREAT time, but we didn’t do anything so spectacular that I feel like I should bore you with the details.¬†We ATE A LOT, which I’m slightly stressed about,¬† but it was totally worth it, and you only live once, right? We also hung out by the lake my parents live on, so there really isn’t a whole lot to recap about that, either.

With that being said, I did take some photos I thought I could share with you. I hope you enjoy.

My parents, JP's grandpop and Mom, and JP and I at the top of Cadillac

JP and I in Bar Harbor

JP at the base of a bridge we visited

View from the observation deck of the bridge... GORGEOUS

JP and I in the observation deck

It's a looong way down...

Visiting Fort Knox

Stephen King's house

Gerber Daiseys that lined the isle of a wedding we attended

The happy couple

JP and I getting ready to head into the reception

Hiding from the Heat

8 Jul

 

So, my best friend, TP, and I, <that’s us in the above photo at her July 4 party>¬†were supposed to go to the beach today, but given the current heat wave we’re experiencing here in New Jersey, we decided to be responsible and stay home. Sometimes we make good decisions. Sometimes we don’t. Last night’s decision was one of the times when we were actually thinking.

When I woke up at 6 a.m. to get my work out in this morning, it was so foggy and sticky that I was immediately glad we made the decision we did. Oh, and it was already 75 degrees.

Today was a speed work day, which was both good and bad. I knew, given the weather, I would not be able to run a straight 4 to 5 miles, so the quick speed work I typically do around the local park trail would be a good change. But sprinting for 30 seconds at a time with 1 minute of rest for 20 minutes proved to be a little more difficult than I anticipated. But I stuck it out, and 50 minutes later I was glad I had gotten up and completed my work out before 7 a.m.

The past few days I have been heading to the library after my morning shower and breakfast to both beat the heat and actually get some work done.

Today, since TP and I are heading to the mall after she gets some morning errands done, my schedule is a little off, and I’m feeling less than¬†productive. Does anyone else have that problem? I know I rely on schedules way too much, but I feel like I will not get anything done if I don’t make lists or have plans set in advance. This makes things a little difficult for JP and I, since he is SO not a schedule person, and having recently switched to a new job, his new schedule makes it really hard for us to make any plans. It’s something I need to work on, since it’s not always possible to schedule life, but old habits do die hard. Oh well, I guess being a little less than productive isn’t always the worse thing, right?

So, for breakfast I had some overnight oats with blueberries, grapes and a couple of almonds thrown in.

And for dinner last night I made JP and I some blackened tilapia and¬†cut-up veggies on the grill, and a tomato-cucumber salad for some added bulk. It hit the spot on such a warm day. Also, let’s talk about how I love the tilapia filets. There were eight filets in the pack, which I bought on sale for $5.99, and they are sooo¬†easy to cook on nights when I really don’t feel like cooking. I would definitely recommend them to anyone looking for an easy fish option.

For dessert, we sampled some banana butter from a local farm. JP loves bananas, so I picked it up just to see what it was like. Honestly, I am not a huge fruit butter person, ie – apple, pumpkin ( I DO love me some nut butters, though), so I wasn’t the biggest fan of this butter, but JP liked it, so that was good. I’m not sure I’ll be picking up another container for a while though, given the $4 price tag.

Well, I guess it’s about time for me to get ready for my day.

Have a good one.

Question of the day: Do you like fruit butters? Or any type of butter in general?

I love crunchy natural peanut butter. I am always trying out new brands, and still haven’t found one I absolutely can’t live without, but I do know I cannot live without my PB.