Sips, Saturday, Sherlock

Before Saturday began, I celebrated FriYAY!

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It was an especially exciting day since it marked the start of my 2 plus weeks of vacation!  Sadly, the BOY had to work late, so I celebrated Friday night date night with Cooper.

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We caught up on my DVR and set the table for our Saturday lunch guests.

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Then curled up to cuddle and read.  I am trying to get my book finished before the trip and already have some new books and mags packed and ready to go.

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I slept fantastically and was sad to hear my alarm go off early this morning.  The BOY and I had one last training session before vaca.  I’m bummed that I didn’t get any pics of us in our matching boxing gloves, but here’s a recycled one.  I did this a bunch today so it seemed legit.

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The BOY and I came back home to pick up a bit and a little before 10am, my mom came by to drop off Cooper’s Hanukkah gift and pick me up for our nail appointment.

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Then my mom and some friends came back to our house for lunch.  We made two kinds of chili, a huge salad, and had fruit and dark chocolate for dessert followed by lattes from my Nespresso maker covered in whipped cream…Mmm!.  After lunch, I had to run out for a few errands.  On my way home, I swung by to pick up take out Coopers Hawk and a bottle of wine for dinner. 

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While we ate dinner, Cooper enjoyed/stalked his new toy.

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So the BOY called me at work this week to tell me that there is one episode of Sherlock available online.  The next season doesn’t come out until 2017, so we were super excited to spend Saturday night sipping through Sherlock.  I’m not planning to stay up too late tonight because I have a busy day of packing up my tropical clothes while it’s 1 degree outside tomorrow.  What can I say…

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LOL!

 

What are you up to this Saturday night?

Do you watch Sherlock?  Any good book suggestions?

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Random Wordy Wednesday and a Recipe

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1. THE BLOG

So although I have blogged a bit less this year, I am still blogging.  Why does this matter?  It came time to renew my domain and despite the fact that blogging does not play as big of a role in my day to day life, I seem to like it enough to sign back up without thinking twice about it.  Speaking of blogging…I do need to update a few pages.  Perhaps that will be part of my 2016 goals.

 

2. RECIPES

Speaking of the year ahead…I took the easy way out last week with 2 Ingredient Chicken, but between the BOY and I and all our new kitchen toys, I think we will have more new and unique recipes on LWYD this year.  I am already loving this Cleansing Carrot Ginger Soup (topped with raisins…Mmm!).  This week, I also made turkey meatballs.  Believe it or not I didn’t use my crockpot (it was busy), so I used my other favorite kitchen tool.

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I should admit that there are people who were made to make meatballs and then there is me.  Have you ever seen meatballs so not round?!  Thankfully, they tasted amazing (even though I left out the bread crumbs).

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3. WORKOUTS

Tuesday morning, I was running circles around the track again watching the cold, miserable snow through the windows.  Thank goodness for Serial to keep me company!  I am all caught up and already downloaded a bunch of podcasts for our trip.

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4. WEATHER

Brrr!  Baby…it’s cold outside!

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5. TRAVEL

Thankfully, it’s getting REALLY close to honeymoon time…

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Sunshine, here we come!!!  I’ve ordered us TONS of sunscreen, water shoes, snorkels, and more in prep for the big trip which is less than a week away.

 

6. COOPER

He is just so darn cute!  Except when he lays on your face in the middle of the night : )

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What’s on your mind today?

Crockpot Turkey Meatballs

From Sally’s Baking Addiction

Ingredients

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 pound 97-98% lean ground turkey1
  • 1 pound 92-93% lean ground turkey1
  • 2/3 cup (40g) Panko (I omitted this)
  • 3 Tablespoons (45ml) olive oil
  • 1/4 cup (22g) grated parmesan cheese
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 large onion sweet onion, sliced
  • two 28-ounce cans crushed tomatoes

Directions

  1. Beat the egg in a large mixing bowl. Add the ground turkey, Panko, 2 Tablespoons olive oil, parmesan, garlic, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Mix everything up just so the ingredients are combined – avoid overmixing. Roll into desired size balls – mine were slightly larger than a golfball. Place all rolled meatballs on a large baking sheet.
  2. Place onion slices in the bottom of the crockpot, topped with 1 can of crushed tomatoes.
  3. Coat a large skillet with remaining Tablespoon of olive oil and bring to medium-high heat. Lightly brown the meatballs (only 6-8 meatballs at a time) for about 1 minute on each side. Do not skip this step – read above for why. Layer the meatballs into the crockpot as you’re browning each batch. Once all browned meatballs have been added to the crockpot, pour remaining can of tomatoes on top.
  4. Cover and cook on low for 6-6.5 hours. Serve with pasta, as meatball subs, plain, etc. No matter how I serve them, I always top with a little chopped fresh basil. Store leftovers covered tightly in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Sally has a ton of notes, including how to make this without the crockpot like I did, so check them out!

Multitasking Monday

One week into the new year…can you believe it?  Where does the week go?  Seems like just yesterday, I was hosting a fry party and now I’m running around my house making food for the week, searching for my lost marriage licenses, and listening to some new podcasts.  I am multitasking like crazy, trying to make the most of this Monday after a fun and busy weekend!

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Saturday morning, the BOY and I were back at the gym after the last two holiday weekends, training together with free weights and dumbbells.  We left with some serious sore arms and made our weekly trip to the Target before running a few other errands.  I refueled with a ginormo latte!

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We spent the afternoon cleaning our garage to fit in a car and then napping before getting dressed up for sushi date night.

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Sunday morning was another early wake up.  I drove into the city to meet my mom and some friends for a yoga class. 

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I forgot my phone so here is a recycled picture from the same studio.  Ironically, it was take exactly 1 year ago and the day looked quite similar : )

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After yoga, I met some of my old coworkers for a fun brunch, catching up over coffee and omelets.  Then, I was back home to scoop up the BOY for dinner with his parents.  On the way, we stopped by my parents house quickly to say goodbye to my dad who leaves for Florida today and have a quick pre dinner glass of wine with my mom’s new wine glasses.  When I woke up this morning, it occurred to me that I did not get close to what I wanted to get done this weekend…hence the busy day today. 

Cooper’s view on Mondays…ha ha!

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It was tough for all of us to get up and moving today!  And then it took me extra time to get myself pulled together and out the door.  My first stop was the gym for an intense training session.  My biceps were still sore from Saturday and the resisted burpees were brutal, but it was a GREAT workout.  Afterwards,  I hung around for a yoga class.

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I don’t typically double up on workouts, but I have been wanting to take the Monday morning teacher’s class for awhile.  With a busy week ahead, today was the perfect day to get there.  The class was tough, not just because I was tired, but absolutely incredible and inspiring.  I left the yoga studio feeling invigorated for the week ahead and at peace with the week behind.  I ran a few more errands, including the grocery store where I stocked up on fresh produce and meat for this week’s meal plan.

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I made lunch and then began the serious multitasking with laundry, meal planning, and initial packing piles.  And continued to look for our marriage licenses which now appear to be totally gone.  Ugh!  In the kitchen, I put tomorrow’s dinner in the crockpot and began pealing carrots.

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For lunch this week, I decided to try Candice Kumai’s cleansing soup.  I love starting the year with a warm and hearty clean soup!

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The soup was fairly easy to make until the end.  My food processor isn’t big enough to hold everything, so I did it in batches.  However, they turned out inconsistent, so I ended up taking my immersion blender to the entire bowl in the end.

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Which made a HUGE mess, but worked like a charm.

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I spent the rest of the afternoon working away on a variety of things including making a batch of Fig and Date Energy Balls and trying on my bathing suits before going back to the kitchen to make dinner.

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Since my crockpot was in use, I washed my Dutch Oven for it’s next job.  For the second week in a row, Cooper kept me company while he begged for his dinner.

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I accomplished a whole bunch of stuff today, so as always on Monday nights, I happily collapsed onto my couch for a bit of down time before bed.  After packing up tomorrow’s lunch, of course.

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Do you multitask?  I do it ALL the time…even right now : )

Meal Planning 1/11/15

Monday: Turkey Meatballs (recipe to come)

Tuesday: Slow Cooker Island Pulled Chicken

Wednesday: Feta and Spinach Chicken Burgers and Broccoli

Thursday: Pork and Veggies

 

Cleansing Carrot Ginger Soup

From Candice Kumai

Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1  yellow onion, finely diced

2  pounds organic carrots (2 bags) scrubbed, peeled, rough chopped

4 garlic cloves, crushed

1 bay leaf, dried

2-3 tablespoons ginger, freshly grated

6-8 cups low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock (*depending on desired consistency)

1⁄2 teaspoon nutmeg

1⁄2 teaspoon sea salt, to taste

Directions

In a large stockpot, over medium heat, add the olive oil and sauté the onions just until soft and fragrant, approximately 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add carrots, garlic, bay leaf, ginger and sauté for an- other 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add in the stock and turn the heat up to medium (a mild simmer). Cook carrots and onion until soft, approximately 20 additional minutes. Remove the bay leaf, discard.

Carefully add the soup to a food processor or blender (an immersion/handheld blender works, as well). Pulse until well combined and a pureed soup forms. Season nutmeg and sea salt. Ladle into soup bowls and serve hot. If desired add a bit of extra ginger, or orange zest to top off soup.

*For a thick soup opt for 6 cups of stock; for a thinner soup go for 8 cups.

The First Meal Plan of 2016

After eating a whole lotta fried food on January 1st, I knew the rest of this week needed to include some greens.  And I had bought some veggies to go with our aps on new years day and…umm…totally forgot about them while I was drinking mimosas and eating off the cheese plate.

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So, I started my Monday at the gym and then swung by the grocery store on my way home. You will definitely see a theme to this week’s meal plan…lean meats and veggies!  Exactly what we need to start the year off feeling good and energized.

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I had a busy Monday picking up the pieces of a fun filled 4 day weekend.  When I came home, I found my un used veggies and started making Buffalo Turkey Chili for lunch this week. 

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It was fun to use our super sharp new knives to easily dice up the veggies.

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And this is one of my favorite chilies!  Note: recipe is below!  You can make it with chicken or turkey.

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I had company in the kitchen, who was less helpful and more sing whine for my dinner : )

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I can’t blame him because I think he is still recovering from his cousin Roscoe’s visit.  On the exercise front, yesterday morning was a run around the track(and more Serial) and tomorrow morning, it’s treadmill intervals.  And I am planning to bring the BOY with me. 

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Which means, that I will be heading to bed soon.  The goal…to rock the new sale bikini I just bought for under 30$ from Athleta that finally arrived in the mail today.  #Countdowntohoneymoon

 

Meal Planning 1/04/15

Monday: Turkey Burgers and Sprouts

Tuesday: Chicken Tacos (made from 2 Ingredient Chicken)

Wednesday: Fish and Veggies

Thursday: Pork and Veggies

Lunch: Buffalo Turkey Chili

Happy FryDay!!!

Happy New Year Everyone!

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How did you welcome in 2016?!

Me?  Why, thank you for asking…I had the happiest of new years celebrations! 

I started December 31st with a run around the indoor track.  I finally began Serial Season 2, which kept me engaged as I ran what felt like a million circles around the tiniest of tracks.

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When I got home, I made a Nespresso that made me smile…

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What a happy accident!  Then it was off to work for a crazy, busy day!

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After my shortish work day, I came back home and showered.  Then the BOY and I got ready to host NYE with my brother, SIL, and their 4 month old puppy, Roscoe.

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We were so excited to have them come out and celebrate with us and kick off our weekend ‘staycation’.  I can’t say that it was love at first sight for Cooper though : )

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We hung out and talked while noshing on aps (and of course decorated glasses for midnight).  Roscoe made himself right at home with Cooper’s toys and the BOY’s chair.

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We had the most unbelievable dinner and I have to admit that I didn’t do much of anything to help…except pick out a great wine from our Napa trip. 

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The BOY made braised short ribs in our new pot, while my sister in law made champagne risotto.

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And…then the BOY made seared scallops on our new salt block.  YUMMY!

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It was seriously a five star meal!!!

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After that, the new years shenanigans began.  We played cards against humanities, Wii tennis, and attempted to get our selfie stick to work with all of us and a puppy as we started the countdown to 2016!

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We stayed up WAY too late and New Year’s Day began with a lot of laying around and rehydration.  We made a fantastic breakfast casserole for brunch with bacon and fruit.

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Around noon, things got serious…

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The fryer came out…

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Friends came over, mimosas were poured, an apron was donned…and FRYday began!

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You name it…we fried it…and dipped it in anything and everything!  And that proceeded for hours and hours accompanied by beer and mimosas and plenty of other snacks.

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My favorite was the BOY’s homemade chicken strips.  They were AMAZING!

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And for dessert…more card and Wii games and of course, fried Oreos.

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We stayed up too late for the second night in a row and woke Saturday morning with new memories and wonderful stories to share.  And I had a bit of a stomach ache : )  The best part…there were still a few days left before it was time to go back to work!

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I certainly didn’t start off my year healthy, but I did start it off happy!!!  I am still smiling about all of the fun we had hosting this 2 day celebration!  I am looking forward to another exciting year ahead!

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The Year of Letters

Two big events marked this year for me and both involve adding some extra letters to my signature!

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First off…I took my pediatric specialization exam in March and found out in June that I passed, adding the letters PCS behind PT to my professional title.

And then…I became a MRS!!!  Although I haven’t officially changed my name (it’s coming after the honeymoon), that will change two other letters in my last name.  It’s like I’m an entirely new person.  Well…sort of!

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A mix of these external name changes and a year dedicated towards taking care of my mental and physical health has made this year remarkable!  I am grateful for every moment!

2015 Bucket List

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LIFE

Set and follow a budget (for real!)- Oh man!  I swear I am super organized, but have totally struggled with this!  We were all over the place with some months being better (or worse) than others.  Definitely something for the newlyweds to work on in 2016!

Pass my test– Woo hoo!  All of that library time paid off.  I am now a Pediatric Clinical Specialist (PCS), which has me smiling from ear to ear!

Have a fun stress free wedding day– Done!  It was the most incredible and memorable day!  It was stress free and full of love and excitement. I swear my heart is still full of happiness from sharing this special day with the people who mean the most to us.

Stay healthy– Two big sinus infections took me down, but the second wasn’t nearly as bad as the first and other than that, I would say it was a nice and healthy year.

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BODY

Do a triathlonThe decision has been made that this won’t be a big racing year…so no triathlon.  And I am A-okay with that!  I am broadening my horizons a bit with exercise and doing tons of yoga!  This decision is helping me feel more balanced and less stressed, and we’ll just have to see what 2016 holds for races and tri’s.

Feel confident in a bikini- I wore my bikini a few times this summer with more confidence than I have had in years!  As always, there is work to do, but feeling happy with myself on the beach was a HUGE accomplishment!

Continue to build muscle strength– I have definitely gotten stronger this year. I see it in my yoga class and at work, which is really important to me.

Keep my skin healthy– Success!  My focus on eating clean and drinking water, plus regular facials has paid off!

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MIND

Be present– I have been soaking in every moment, big or small and have appreciated EVERY moment this year!  I feel so lucky and grateful!

Teach more yoga/take yoga trainings- I think this may end up being more of a 2016 goal. I’d love to do a yoga retreat AND my adult yoga certification.  I was able to talk about kids yoga on a Podcast, which is something I never would have even dreamed of in January. 

Read good books– Check!  I started the year as a reading machine, took a mid year break and then picked back up.  I’m also looking for suggestions…got any?

Give back and volunteer- Ugh! Major Fail here!  I have been donating food, money, and clothes, but not as much of my time as I would like.

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Other Second Half Highlights

Acro Workshop

Thanksgiving in New York

Arlington Million

Door County

Nashville

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Tons of lunches and dinners with our friends!