Reunion

Last night I met up with my friend Claire, who I met at the Fashion Institute of Technology. We lived together while we were in college and she moved to California after graduation. She came to visit home and NYC for the week. I was so excited to see her!

We went to one of our old favorites, Chat ‘n Chew.

Love this place! First up was drinks. Claire got the flirtini and I ordered a red wine spritzer (Cabernet and diet coke) as the waitress looked at me like I was drunk already. Claire got her usual grilled cheese with sweet potato fries, while I went with the special Taco Fiesta salad. It was actually quite healthy if you didn’t eat the large fried tortilla bowl it came in! I obviously dug in before I got a chance to take a picture of the plating.

This salad consisted of greens, cajun grilled chicken, tomato, avocado, green beans, carrots, shredded cheddar, and crispy tortilla. I subbed the ranch dressing for plain old oil and vinegar, and didn’t eat the tortilla bowl.

I cleaned the rest of my plate though and was super full, but not too full for dessert. We walked over to Pinkberry after dinner.

The problem with this stuff is that I could eat a large in about 5 seconds. Instead, I went with the small original flavor topped with honey almond granola, dark chocolate chip crisps, and mango, and ate it in 3 seconds.

Claire brought me a present from her work. She gets a discount on Current/Elliott and brought me these cute cut off green jean shorts!

I obviously forgot to take a picture and do not have them near me, but I’m sure I’ll be wearing them this weekend. Thank you Claire bear! 🙂

We said goodbye, but only until Friday! I am going to meet her after work again before she leaves to head back to Cali.

Rando hair decided to stick out (on my forehead), but still a good picture of us.

I need to get out to California soon to visit this lady! Anyone have any cheap flight suggestions to Santa Ana or Long Beach airports from NYC/NJ?

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Inspiration

In the past two months that I have been blogging, the though of quitting has crossed my mind. I’m not going to lie, it is a lot harder than it looks. My job is extremely demanding at times and leaves me to either post a quick, meaningless post, or not post at all. All I think about is writing on here all day long and it makes me sad to not be able to execute all of my ideas on my blog.

This week at work in particular has been a rough one. This morning, I read Julie’s post. I have to say that ever since starting this blog, I have had small thoughts of changing careers. I am interested in social media, jobs in health, fitness, writing, etc. I feel like a whole new door opened up for me and I don’t know exactly where this might take me, but I do know that quitting is not going to get me anywhere! When I really enjoy something, I can’t just give up due to uncontrollable circumstances. I’ll say that this new passion has definitely caused me to dream of doing what Julie has taken a chance at. Obviously, it is way to early for that, but that was just the right inspiration that I needed this week.

Breakfast

Shhh..don’t tell anyone, but I read Julie’s post while sitting in traffic this morning and sipping on this:

I found an insulated cup for my smoothies so I can enjoy them on my morning drive, instead of woofing them down right after the gym before getting in the shower. This particular smoothie included a mixture of SunWarrior, spinach, blackberries, frozen bananas, and almond milk.

Since I missed a day, I’ll also share this concoction from last night’s dinner.

See how sprinkles make everything look pretty? 🙂

I mixed in the blender:

  • 1 1/2 scoops SunWarrior vanilla protein powder
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • a few ice cubes
  • pinch xanath to thicken

In the bowl I chopped up some strawberries (clearly unseen as they are sunk to the bottom of the bowl) and added whip, sprinkles, and some almond butter.

Fashion

A quick note that I want to cover is that I know I am missing the fashion element on this blog. I know that my intentions were to cover a healthy lifestyle including fitness and food. I also wanted to incorporate fashion because it is also a passion of mine. I have clearly been lacking because of time, but I do have some ideas floating around. On Tuesday, after having a long, stressful, non-blogging day at work, I asked Joe to take a picture of me. You’ll have to excuse his poor photography skills.

I was excited about some new purchases and intend to eventually have a seperate fashion experience on here!

  • Maroon/cream striped top:  J. Crew
  • Salmon pants: Zara
  • Nude Sandals: Charles David
  • Scarf: Limited (from like 5 years ago?)
  • Nude Belt: J Crew
  • Sunburn: Beach on Sunday

…and my pudgy looking face: the heat? Ew, haha….

I hope you can all hang on for this ride with me because I have so many ideas! Now, I am off to finish some things at work and meet Claire for dinner because she is in town for the week! Yay!

Happy Memorial Day

Hello Blogosphere! I fell off the map for two days, but I was enjoying time with my boyfriend and his family. I do not apologize for my short hiatus (as I find it important to take personal time when necessary), but I will apologize for not taking pictures!

You won’t see pictures of my sunburn, the yummy array of food grilled on Saturday night (turkey burgers, shrimp, etc), or the double extra large pizza that Joe ate all by himself at Pete & Elda’s (best thin crust Pizza in Jersey) to get a free t-shirt. We also consumed massive amounts of baked goods and sweets! Luckily, we were able to get a 6 mile run in this morning along the coastal highway. It was super sweaty but super awesome!

I did have a great Memorial day weekend at the beach and ended it with a wonderful dinner on the grill after arriving home today.

We grilled scallops (in lemon, truffle salt, and pepper), veggies (eggplant and zucchini in olive oil, balsamic, salt & pepper), and crab meat made into a salad (nayonaise, cocktail sauce, lemon, pepper).

Now to get settled and get some sleep before my busy week back at work. I hate coming back to reality!

How was your Memorial Day weekend?

Broccoli and Shrimp Bulgur Wheat

I will leave you with a recipe before I take off to the beach until Monday night. It’s clearly my lunch all next week hence the tupperware. I knew I would be gone this weekend and have a super busy work week, so I wanted to get my lunch out of the way. I cooked this up and separated in tupperware so it’s ready to go!

Broccoli and Shrimp Bulgur Wheat

  • 1 large bag of fresh broccoli, chopped in medium size pieces
  • 1 lb. small shrimp (I used frozen already cooked, but any will work)
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 cup bulgur wheat (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp. salt (I use truffle salt because I love it)
  • 2 tbsp. pepper
  • 1/4 cup dried parsley (fresh chopped would probably be better!)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
Add bulgur wheat and water to a large pot and let it come to a boil. Cover and simmer about 15 minutes or until cooked. Add in olive oil as needed, parmesan, salt, pepper, parsley and parmesan cheese. You can add less or more, it is really to taste. Cut the lemons in half and squeeze the juice into the mixture. If it seems dry, more lemons or olive oil will do the trick. After mixing it all up, add the shrimp and broccoli and stir. 

Super easy, healthy, protein/veggie/fiber packed lunch! I did take a few bites before storing it away.

Aside from cooking this, today I managed to go to the gym and complete an upper body workout, go to the grocery store, do laundry, and pack. I’m off to Joe’s parents beach house in NJ! I hope you all have a safe and fun Memorial Day weekend!

Us at the beach last year (he stole my sunglasses)

Accomplished

I think every company that offers Summer Friday’s should change it to SummerFallWinterSpring Friday’s. I need to get out at 1pm every week so I can accomplish as much as I did today. I came home and got a lot done around the house that I usually do on Saturday, which means I have a real weekend without chores!

I really contemplated just skipping the gym today. When I got out of work it was beautiful out, hot even. I felt like just relaxing, but I realized that the reason I had no energy was because I didn’t work out this morning. As soon as I got home, I changed and headed out so that I wouldn’t sit down and feel even more sluggish. I’m extremely happy that I ended up going because I had an awesome leg workout and a super sweaty cardio session.

I needed a protein fix when I got home, since I didn’t have my normal shake for breakfast. I made a berrylicious concoction.

Can you spot my sock? Oops! 😉 I cut up strawberries and filled the bottom of the bowl with them. I threw in some blackberries and a scoop of whip too! I blended up my smoothie and topped it off.

  • 1 c. almond milk
  • 1 1/2 scoops vanilla Sun Warrior
  • splash vanilla
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • handful frozen strawberries
  • pinch xanath gum

 

I hopped in the shower and started my to-do list. I had so much energy! I did a few loads of laundry, changed the sheets, unloaded the dishwasher and reloaded, folded laundry, did my nails, made my grocery list, cleaned the bathroom sink, toilet, kitchen sink, etc. Now all I have to do tomorrow is one more load of darks, hang curtains (psshh, we’ll see…they’ve been waiting around for me since February), grocery shop, and pack for the beach! 

After all of that, I was craving something else to eat. I felt like I needed another protein fix and what better way to get it than eggs and cheese!? I also wanted to try my new alternative bagels.

 

They don’t carry these anywhere near me and I have been trying to get my hands on them forever. The website charges obscene shipping but I found a tiny distributor that shipped for cheaper and didn’t require as large of a purchase. I wanted to make sure I liked them, first! I mean, it’s a bagel, what’s not to like? But, you know, just incase! 🙂 They are packed with fiber and protein at only 110 calories.

I made eggs the quick way–in a bowl in the microwave. It always makes a perfect little puff! I toasted the bagel with a slice of muenster cheese and topped it with ketchup and s&p.

Monster Sammy...Rawr! Okay...it's just the picture...

Perfect BFD (breakfast for dinner). Of course, ketchup squirted out during my first bite.

 

I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed it, but came to a realization at the end. I can never enjoy egg sandwiches to their full potential. I feel like I have to scarf them down because they are so messy that once you put them down, it’s over. It still hit the spot!

Now, I need to catch up on DVR from last week! I still haven’t watched the Grey’s Anatomy or Private Practice season finales. Whaaaat? I know, crazy!

Vacation Mode

This morning I could not stop snoozing for anything. It was like fresh baked goods. “Just one more… Okay, one more I swear that’s it”.. and by the time I knew it I had cut out half my workout in my head. I decided that I couldn’t do that and instead I’d just enjoy sleeping in and hit the gym after work. After all, today is the first summer Friday so I’m out at 1:00!

Lat night, Joe put the air conditioning in our room so that may have been why both of us had so much trouble getting out of our cozy bed this morning. That, and the fact that “Limitless” with Brad Cooper kept us up. I fell asleep before the end but it was really good up until that point.

Because I had some extra time this morning, I made a big bowl of oatmeal to keep me full all morning.

I mixed in:

  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
  • pinch salt
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds (makes it nice and fluffy!)
  • a few shakes of cinnamon
  • stevia packet
  • 1 tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 1/2 frozen banana whipped in at the end

I topped it with natural crunchy PB. Chocolate, PB, and banana might be the best combo ever.

I also made coffee in the French press. Hey, I’ll save the $3 Starbucks coffee one day if I can.

Don't cry over spilled coffee

I ended up having to take it to go for my pleasantly quick car ride this morning.

I guess everyone is already in vacation mode and took a long weekend. There wasn’t a stitch of traffic. I love how Thursday night comes and I already feel that weekend high. Then, Fridays at work consist of a lot of cube huddle ups discussing weekend plans. Joe and I intend to head down to his parents shore house Sunday and Monday. I can’t wait to be on the beach and grilling food.

Do you have any fun Memorial Day weekend plans?

Berry Warrior

Yesterday was just as I suspected; a long busy day. It continues today which is why I am so looking forward to a half day tomorrow and Monday off.

I got to the gym this morning and I felt like my eyes were barely open. I didn’t go to sleep that late but I think towards the end of the week my getting up at 5:00 am habits catch up to me, and by Friday I am just ready for a day to sleep in. I finished a 25 minute ab workout and was walking up the stairs to the treadmill and tripped like an idiot. I didn’t just trip, I seriously fell continuously up 3 steps, spilling my water all over, and obviously catching the attention of everyone around me. I completely lost feeling in my legs and felt like I had no control and couldn’t even catch myself. It was weird, maybe I need to take an extra five minutes in the morning to wake myself up. Anyway, I obviously kept walking like nothing happened like any other normal person would. Nothing happened, I didn’t trip, you’re seeing things.

50 minutes later I was more than awake. I did some sprinting and incline fast paced walking intervals while thinking about my breakfast, of course. I don’t eat before I go to the gym and I haven’t in almost 2 years. I get up so early that I just don’t feel like eating, plus Joe told me something about insulin levels spiking and burning more fat…something I have been meaning to google. Regardless, I always have a huge protein shake as soon as I walk in the door. I used one of my new purchases from Netrition; Sun Warrior!

I’m not going to lie, I have been using it but haven’t told you so I could save it for a review. I feel like it’s an acquired taste. And by that I mean the first time you taste it it’s weird/different but after that it becomes an addiction and I crave it. Maybe it’s my body craving raw vegan food because it’s all natural and good for you. Who knows, but this stuff is good.

In a blender went:

  • 1 and 1/2 scoops Sun Warrior (vanilla) 
  • A large uncounted handful of fresh strawberries/blueberries/blackberries
  • Half a frozen banana
  • 1/2 c vanilla unsweetened almond milk
  • a splash of pure vanilla
  • a tbsp of honey

All blended up

This turned out amazing.

As I was packing my daily VitaTop I remembered something. I decided yesterday that I am nominating myself to be VitaFan of the month on Facebook. That’s right, I’ve been buying these things since the first day Hungry Girl announced this new product. It was years ago and I have come to the point that I need to order in bulk from the website because I eat one everyday when I get to work.

Please give me some ideas for a picture that is not as cheesy as this.

I also finished Carrots ‘N’ Cake, the book,  this morning on the train so I will definitely be reviewing that, hopefully this weekend!