Tag Archives: eats

Mid Year Resolution Gut Check

I’m a little astounded that we’re halfway through the year already. It feels like Christmas was a few weeks ago — how has the summer gotten here so fast?

I figured it was about time to give myself a little look in the mirror and see how I’m doing with my resolutions.

1) Re-introduce weights.
I could be doing so much better with this. I love lifting. I just need to remind myself of that. This month, I’m re-introducing it in manageable, baby bite sized chunks. Then, next month I’ll add a little more. I want to be toned and feel great come September for the half (more on that in a minute) and our beach trip.

2) Run a half marathon. 
I signed up for this race! Yes, I actually did it! And, to boot, I got my husband and two good friends on board as well. I’m registered, we have a hotel room, I’ve got a training plan, and dammit I am going to do this!

3) Vary my reading.
I’ve been doing pretty good with this little goal. I’m realizing that I’m definitely better at knocking out non-fiction as opposed to classics. That’s a pity because there are so many classics I want to read. I’m hoping that having a Kindle (and free access to a lot of these books) will improve my classics record.  Don’t forget to add me as a friend on Goodreads! I love stealing book ideas from people. 🙂

4) Write letters.
I did pretty well with this for the first few months. Then, I got a few letters back and saved them with the intention of responding. They are still sitting in my cubby of the living room table. Whoops! I’ll work on sending some post cards from my trips this summer!

5) Get student loans under $X.
This is going very well. We are chugging away. I did some calculations yesterday about how much we’ve paid off in the (just under) two years we’ve been paying on the loans. I am astounded by how well we’ve done. Definitely on track here to meet my goal and pay off the loans before this time next year!

6) Cook!
Doing very well here too! Hubs and I have definitely been entertaining a lot. I’ve been picking a lot of our recipes for our meals and am generally starting to feel very at home in the kitchen!

7) Stop wasting time.
I gave up Facebook for Lent and that helped with this for a while. Lately, I’ve found myself killing time again lately. Refreshing facebook, twitter, and news sites. Re-checking blogs that I just looked at. Mindlessly watching TV that Hubs has on. I’m trying to avoid these time sucks but by the time I realize what I’m doing sometimes, I’ve wasted half an hour! Must stop wasting time! 

I’m satisfied with that. Looks like 3 goals could use some improvements and 4 are coming along swimmingly! Thankfully no huge failures on the horizon here! How are you doing on your New Year’s Resolutions?

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MAY-jor Disbelief

Please insert my problems with grasping the fact that it is already May here.

Okay, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way… You know that new months bring new goals!

A quick look back at April:

1. Be ready to start half-marathon training (aka be able to run three miles with minimal walking breaks). Sadly, I can’t report a lot of excellence here. I did get my 5k time down to where I wanted it — but that was with a lot of walking mixed in. I’m happy because I know my time will decrease as I run more but I’m pretty disappointed I didn’t make this more of a priority. I’m putting together my training plan this weekend and know that I need to get serious fast or I will be woefully unprepared come race day. 

2. Complete 6 strength training work outs. (3/6) [Modified KB workout from Women’s Health, Abs and Arms on 4/15, Arms and Shoulders on 4/20] Obviously, another work out fail. I need to get on track with all this — no wonder my weight loss progress has been stagnant. I’ll definitely be revisiting this for May.

3. Make 3 more new recipes, including something to share. (5/3) [Spanish Egg and Potato Tortilla, Lentil Stew, Kelly’s Chicken Curry in a Hurry, Homemade Stovetop Paninis, Emily’s Surprise Muffins] I excelled at eating and cooking this month! I wish I was as good at sticking to work outs as I was about cooking! Stovetop Paninis were probably the biggest winner here — so many variations to make delicious, easy dinners. Very pleased that we finally got to use ANOTHER wedding gift (stove top panini press).

4. Read 5 books, for real this time! (6/5) Another success! Nice to make up some ground from last month.

5. One of these books should be a classic. (1/1) I gave up on finishing Mansfield Park in April and focused on Anne of Green Gables. Success!

6. Stick to our weekly budgets. (2/5) Perhaps not so great here. We did better than March, but I’d like us to be a lot better about sticking to our weekly budget.

 

What’s on tap for May? (So glad you asked!)
1. Create half marathon training plan – Meeting with my “team” this weekend to put a training plan together!
2. Complete six strength trainin work outs (0/6) – No excuses. Half Marathon training means I need to build some muscle in order to carry my body more efficiently!
3. Read six books (1/6) – I have SO MANY library books out right now that I need to plow through!
4. Of those six, read two classics (1/2) [Mansfield Park] and one non-fiction (0/1) – This should go fairly easily since I finished one classic at the start of the month and our book club pick is non-fiction. Hooray for working toward my goal of diversifying my reading!
5. Beat my previous 5k time during this month’s 5k – My first 5k was run in absolutely horrid conditions. I’m hoping to do much better this time!
6. Eat at 3 new restaurants – slightly counterintuitive to following our budgets, but I’m tired of being stuck in a rut getting Chipotle or to go from Whole Foods. Then, at the end of the week it feels like we didn’t really enjoy our meals out even though we had a few of them. I’d rather eat out less and try out new places!
7. Be more consistent with blogging! Post at least 16 times this month. (1/16) Self explanatory! I love comments and reading other blogs, etc so I need to post more and be consistent!

In other news, I think my back is really on the mend! I was able to touch my toes last night without wanting to scream so that’s a huge victory. Hopefully I’ll be able to go for a little run this weekend and start weight training again as well.

What are you aiming to do this month? Do you have any races or big events coming up?

Oh, and if you live in the DC area — anyone want to help me try some new restaurants?! 🙂

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Ready for it!

Good Morning Folks!

The pollen has abated marginally so I’m feeling much better. Also making me feel better, the reintroduction of CHEESE into my life! That’s right folks, Lent is over and cheese is back on!

Hubs and I celebrated Easter with a yummy brunch at Alexandria’s Evening Star Cafe, lots of baking/cooking on my part for the week, and a Mac and Cheese dinner I’ve wait a month and a half for!

Source: http://www.wisconsinmommy.com
Truffle Mac and Cheese from Noodles and Company!

I could have handled more cheese, but really, it hit the spot! Yesterday I also had: quiche made with grueyre (among other things), grits with cheese, and numerous cheese samples at Whole Foods. I fully intend to continue my cheese domination today as well.

Yesterday’s kitchen creations were another round of Rachel’s Spring Chicken Cups (I’m eating one right now on a toated english muffin) and Emily’s Surprise Muffins. Both were excellent successes! Last time I made the spring chicken cups, I overcooked them and didn’t add enough veggies/flavor. This time they are bursting with onion, garlic, chives, spinach, and some cheese (of course). Love! The Surprise Muffins have been declared by the Husband his FAVORITE muffins ever! I drifted from Emily’s vegan take and used cow’s milk, an egg, etc. For my “filling” I tried out Crofter’s Superfruit North American Spread. I’ve wanted an excuse to give this a try for a while and found the muffins to be the perfect venue for them. I’ll be making another two batches of these muffins tomorrow for my work’s bake off! I also can’t wait to try them with other fillings. Yum!

Training runs are going fairly well. I’m still having some trouble motivating myself but I keep telling myself I really have no choice now! That seems to be working pretty well. What’s not going well, is my attempts at reading a classic this month. I picked Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park as it is the last full Jane Austen novel I have to read. I am not really enjoying it and find it very slow. I’m at the halfway point and just now starting to see a glimmer of an actual plot. Come on Jane Austen, don’t let me down now!

My coffee and muffin/egg breakfast has come to an end, so it’s back to work with me. How was your Easter? And, what have you been cooking up lately?

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Awkward Kitchen

Sometimes I wish my husband would go on work travel.

Okay, that’s really not true.

The ONLY reason I wish he’d go on work travel? Anna food. Husband and I enjoy 99% of the same foods. The 1% of difference comes from his willingness to try animal organs (no thank you), eat rabbits (I had a pet bunny), and his love of SPICY food. The food that I crave, normally, is much simpler than what my husband likes. He loves to cook when it means HOURS in the kitchen and a HUGE spread at the end. When he cooks like that, he enjoys my help but is also just as happy to do it on his own.

My husband seems to excel at everything he tries for the first time. And he’s SO MUCH FASTER than me. I tend to get a little harried when other people are around and find that prep/cooking times need to have at least 50% added on to them to accommodate my pace.

I am getting better and I’m trying to encourage myself to feel more comfortable. My husband has NEVER been negative or hurried me. He is a wonderful encourager in the kitchen. But, I’m just not good at not being good at something. 🙂 I’m quite the perfectionist.

Lately, husband has taken the back seat in meal planning and let me take more control. I really love planning meals and now I get to run with it. Somehow, this makes me feel more comfortable. I’ve been coming up with lists of ideas for meals and discussing them with him. We pick our favorites and he lets me take the lead in the kitchen. I’m still unsure sometimes, but I’m definitely getting more confident in the kitchen. 

And, I’m actually really looking forward to cooking this week. Since I’m the one suggesting the meals, I know I won’t suggest something I’m not comfortable fixing. Here’s to slowly expanding my comfort levels in the kitchen.

Oh, and if husband wants animal innards for dinner he will always have to fix those for himself!

 

Are you/were you ever uncomfortable in the kitchen? What helped you?

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Back in the Saddle

I love the feeling of accomplishment that comes from toughing out something you really didn’t want to do in the first place. That’s what I did yesterday. I didn’t want to run — still sore from Tuesdays Kettlebell attempts. But, I reminded myself that (a) I was going to HH/needed to earn my beers and (b) the half marathon wasn’t getting any farther away. It wasn’t pretty, but I’m so glad I did it. I’ll be lacing up my running shoes again tomorrow (either before or wayyy after my brunch with a few friends).

What I don’t love right now is the pollen. Ugh! I can’t breathe and my throat is sore. I love spring time and the arrival of temperate weather but it really wreaks havoc on my ability to suck in oxygen. I guess I can properly appreciate today’s nasty, rainy weather since it is hopefully washing away some of my nemesis!

I’ll be packing in an early lunch today before heading out to meet up with Aidan and head to Nicole’s baby shower. I’ve got my gift (which I may wrap in a garbage bag to keep it from getting soaked in transit) and I’m excited. I’ve never been to a baby shower before! I’ll have to try and control myself when it comes to finger foods and drinks. My weight has been falling again and I don’t want to mess that up. (This is one of those times when the struggle of giving up cheese for Lent comes in handy – it keeps me from eating ANYTHING and EVERYTHING  I want.)

Speaking of cheese, I have a hot date with Noodles and Co for a huge plate of Mac and Cheese in a week and a day! Anyone want to join me for that? (Or for the run I’ll be doing in an attempt to try and counteract some of that?)

Do you suffer from pollen like I do?

What’s your favorite party finger food? Mine is probably pot stickers or cheesy dips!

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Snacky McSnackerson

Thanks y’all for your kind comments on my previous post. Things are a little better/I’m trying not to let stuff bother me too much right now. Working out last night definitely helped!

I am ravenous today. I feel like my body realized it worked out last night and is now demanding payment. I’m trying not to snack as I have a lovely lady date this evening (happy hour and the Smithsonian Craft Exhibition) but it has been hard to keep my snacky hands to myself. This morning we had a staff meeting which led me to confront my arch nemeses:

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Sigh. I resisted their siren song. I even kept my fingers out of my boss’ candy bowl (even though he has twix AND rolos right now). I’m pretty pleased with my will power. 🙂

I had plans for a workout tonight, but my lady date takes precedence. I will, however, be lacing up my sneakers and heading out for a run tomorrow. I’m kinda looking forward to it.

What else is on deck? A lot actually! Tomorrow is a delightful day of telework followed up by a happy hour/hockey watching with Husband’s former coworkers (all of whom I adore). (Bonus fact: Tonight’s lady date is the wife of one of those coworkers. You should probably check out her blog!) Saturday I’ll be going to a baby shower for a friend from school and his wife. It promises to be laden with delicious homemade fingerfoods and handcrafted cocktails. (The girls throwing this thing are serious about it!) Finally, Sunday will contain another training run and a brunch date in Old Town with a few friends. Dear Weekend, I like how you’re shaping up!

Are you snacky today? More importantly, what are you up to this weekend?

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Hot Saturday Night In

That’s right folks, coming to you live from my HOT Saturday night in! Actually, it’s nice not to have anything to do. I’ve got Pandora queued up and a little dog for company.

I worked on a new recipe this evening. It’s another from the Test Kitchen Slowcooker Revolution book — I love that thing! This is a breakfast recipe – a sausage and potato Spanish Tortilla. I was super excited to find an egg recipe that didn’t call for copious amounts of cheese. The apartment smells awesome right now, but I have come to the conclusion that I would never make it as a prep cook. I’m absolutely slow as molasses when it comes to chopping and dicing, etc. I always forget how slow I am because Husband is usually around to help. Ha ha ha! Oh well, as long as the end result is good…

I finished up curious incident of the dog in night time  this evening also. It was an interesting reading experience. If you haven’t  read it, the story is told by an autistic teenager. You get some intriguing insight into all his quirks and compulsions. I enjoyed that the chapter numbers are all prime numbers. It was kind of like reading Room since the narrator isn’t “fully developed” like in most books.

I’m beat this evening! Today had lots of errands, a minor stint of helping a friend move, and making muffins in addition to the Spanish tortilla. (I certainly hope this is as good as it smells!) Husband is over at a friend’s tonight for guys’ night so I’m going to take advantage of having the apartment to myself and watch a little trashy tv. Y’all have a good night!

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