Lately I’ve Been xxxii…

Taking sick days for a nasty cold

Reconnecting with (aka binging on) Scandal

Teaching Yoga!!!

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Hosting dinners

Problem solving how to type when the x key is broken on my computer

Appreciating the sunshine

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Baking Breads

Taking yoga and barre classes

Meeting my niece

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Drinking a ton of espresso

Reading Books

Spending Saturday nights in

Watching Indiana basketball

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Sitting by our fireplace

Cuddling with Cooper

Celebrating my parent’s Birthdays

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What have you been doing lately?

Slowing Down {Not By Choice}

Life has been busy, hence my lack of recent blog posts.  I have been committing to my yoga practice, trying to enjoy some outside bike rides and fires, working hard on a few different projects, and enjoying time with my new roommates.

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I have been drinking wine, teaching kids yoga, attending donut club, playing on the 606, reading like crazy, drinking a ton of espresso, and this past weekend we did a family trip up to Green Lake, Wisconsin.

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What I haven’t been doing much off…cooking, baking, and blogging.  I’ve been lucky enough to have some help in the kitchen and of course my BBQ master.  Plus, with new roommates, there are more of us to help out with all of the meal planning.  Last weekend was so super busy, I never even made it to the grocery store!  So that being said, it was very clear when about 2 weeks ago I was playing tennis with my dad, went to shag down a run away ball, and fell in a hole, rolling my left ankle to the sounds of cracking and popping that perhaps the universe was encouraging me to slow down.

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I iced and taped my ankle and focused on rest throughout the weekend.  I took a night off from yoga teacher training and an easy bike ride throughout town (see picture above).  At a time when my yoga practice was escalating and getting more intense, I too a step back.  It wasn’t easy but I listened to my body.  Luckily, the 5k I was supposed to run the next weekend got cancelled and by this weekend, I was feeling 85% better with only mild amounts of pain with lateral movements and Warrior II.  Last Friday, I even went out for a pain free run and Saturday morning did a fun yoga session on the dock with my mom in Wisconsin.

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However, Saturday took a sad turn when my right big toe got sliced by a sliding doggie gate.  It didn’t look good for my nail but didn’t look bad enough for a trip to the rural Wisconsin ER.  We bandaged up my toe and the weekend proceeded on with boat rides, food, crazy doggies, sunsets, and wine!

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It was a wonderful weekend get away and we all appreciated the sunshine and stories.

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Yesterday, I decided to have my toe checked out by the podiatrist.  All the funny walking had my left ankle acting up again and I wasn’t sure what to do with the wound.  The good news…no signs of infection.  The bad news…my big toe nail was coming off.  Somehow I made it through 2 marathons with all 10 toe nails and here after a casual weekend in Wisconsin, I was losing my first one.

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I was instructed to rest and so rest I did.  I spent last night off my feet, but didn’t sleep so well last night.  I took today off of work, figuring my right toe and now sore left ankle weren’t ready for the ball pit at work.  After a mid morning nap and a bandage change, my toe was feeling much better.  So much so that I got a bit antsy.  Since yoga, running, and biking were on the ‘No’ list, I took advantage of a yoga glo meditation.  And then whipped up 2 new raw recipes for snacks for the week.

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Which means after a quiet few months, I actually have some recipes to share.  The first one, I modified a bit using a little almond milk instead of extra honey to help the dough come together.  Both recipes below are as written without my modifications.

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These protein bites are super delicious and won’t last long in your house!  I was so successful that I decided to try one more with dates and peanut butter since we had both in the house.

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For this recipe, I added a little extra chia and because I didn’t have peanuts, I used a mix of nuts from a trail mix.

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I had to try a tiny bite before putting the bars into the fridge…

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And they are also super delish!  After all of the activity, I was ready to retreat back to my chair with a little more rest and some ice.

Because clearly, someone, somewhere is telling me to rest and slow down.  My plan for the week is to let pain be my guide and build up my activity level slowly as able each day.  I know that I will be back in my gym shoes and on my mat soon enough.  And within the next year, I’ll even have a brand new toe nail!

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Until then, I’ll be hanging with my new nurse!

How do you know when you need to slow down?

Have you ever lost a toe nail?

 

No Bake Cinnamon Vanilla Protein Bites

From Cotter Crunch

Ingredients

  • 1 heaping TBSP ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (around 65-75grams) Vanilla Protein Powder
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup honey ·
  • ½ cup almond meal or peanut flour (you can also just finely grind raw almonds) ·
  • ¼ cup nut butter (creamy no stir works best)
  • ¾ cup of gluten free quick oats or gluten free cereal of choice
  • Vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Grind up your oats or cereal in a food processor and transfer into a mixing bowl. This is optional. You can keep them whole as well and adjust the addition of honey.
  2. Add your almond meal, protein powder, cinnamon, and nut butter. Stir ingredients all together.  Add in your honey and vanilla then mix again well with hands.
  3. Roll into 1-1.5 inch balls and place on cookie tray or plastic ware with parchment paper underneath.
  4. Dust with additional cinnamon and vanilla protein if desired.
  5. Keep in fridge or freezer for up to 6 weeks (if they last that long).

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Bars

From My Sequined Life

Ingredients

  • 1 cup pitted, whole dates
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup peanuts
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 tbsp chia seeds (or 2x as much)

Directions

  1. Add all ingredients to food processor and process until the ingredients break down and become a mostly cohesive mixture. You will still have little pieces of peanuts remaining, and the consistency of the mixture should hold together when you press it together.
  2. Line a rimmed dish with parchment paper and press mixture into it, leaving your desired thickness.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 45 minutes before slicing. Store bars in the refrigerator.

I’ve Missed You Blog World!

Well   Hello   There   Everyone!!!

I am back and settled(ish)!  Cooper…is another story, but we will get to that! 

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Let’s see…since last we chatted, life has been BUSY…

We packed up our entire house.  And by we, I mean myself and my parents.  The BOY did pack one full box but before you think he did nothing, he was in charge or organizing our last minute move on a holiday weekend. Not an easy job!

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July 1st was a gorgeous day and our movers were amazing and efficient. Before we knew it, were standing in an empty home.  Full of emotion, of course, as the excitement of our next adventure begins with the nostalgia of having 10 years of memories in this house (including our first kiss!).

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I was super grateful for the assistance of my P’s but even more thankful that they took us in to their home when we had none without question.  The three of us traded in our 3 bedroom home for a bedroom.  The first few nights were rough as we couldn’t find a thing and had Cooper crammed in with us.

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But Saturday night we had a BBQ with my bestie and her family and it really did feel so good to be home!

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The rest of the weekend was catching up on life, unpacking, getting organized, laundry, and grocery shopping.  The 4 us had a meeting to meal plan out the week, which has been very successful.  My dad found a white board to keep track of everything and has also added a countdown until our move out date : )

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Which brings me to the excitement of the week. We signed a lease for a Chicago apartment (and there was much rejoicing!) but it’s not available until September 2nd…

So we are living it up with my parents, appreciating the home cooked family meals (including my dad’s famous stir fry) and laundry service and hoping that Cooper can adjust to living with 4 adults as opposed to his usual 2. There has been a bit more hissing lately!

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#trainselfie

The BOY and I are also commuting together which might be an even bigger challenge than moving in or planning a wedding : )

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On the yoga front, I am LOVING my training.  We had some time off but are probably about half way done and I am already feeling sad for when it will be over.  I am reading a ton and learning a lot.

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I am doing way more yoga than running and feeling really good about it.  Comfortable with myself as I am growing each day of this journey that I know (hope) is just beginning.  This past weekend we taught each other which was exciting and nerve wrecking!

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And if that’s not enough excitement…the Tour de France started this week (more rejoicing!!).  I’ve got the entire family watching and cheering on my favorite riders.  Between that and the Olympic trials, our blooming social life, and trying to capture a few minutes of down time, life has been plugging along!

But I’ve miss you guys!  Tell me what’s going on with you…

Past, Present, and Future

This non-blogging thing is becoming quite the bad habit, but after you read this post, I am pretty sure you will forgive me!

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I’ll start by filling you in on the PAST week (or so)…

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After maintaining some nice balance of work and play, water and wine, sleep and fun, our house went up on the market for rent last Friday.  The BOY and I got some instant attention and spent all of last Saturday out and about while people came by to check out the place.

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By Saturday night, we were happy to just be home enjoying a cheese plate and wine out back.  Even this guy liked chilling in the back yard…

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And by Sunday, I realized that wine and warrior III don’t mix so well after a 75 minute hot class and a few hours of pose clinics during yoga teacher training : )  Sunday night, we had rental applications and a lot of good feedback on our house!  And by Monday night, we had renters…who needed to move in July 1st!

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OMG!!!

This week was a mix of work, yoga, and apartment searching in hopes of finding a quick place to move in to!

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We spent Wednesday night and Thursday in the city, desperately searching for apartments and drinking and dining with my brother and sister in law (who were kind enough to house us!).  By this morning, it was pretty obvious that we did not have a place to live, despite one last attempt of walking through the 606 pleading my eyes to find a ‘For Rent’ sign.

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All while enjoying the most amazing Bucktown coffee…

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Which brings us to the PRESENT

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This picture is the EXACT present…

My Friday off was not nearly as bad as the one in which I scrubbed my grout, but was pretty busy.

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With 1 week until our move, it was time to start packing!  I called in reinforcements to help make the most of the day…

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My parents arrived with lunch around noon and because they were dog sitting, they brought Dancer along as well.  We packed what seemed like a million boxes and I was feeing accomplished until I realized all that was left to pack. 

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Around 4pm (with physical and mental exhaustion), we went in different directions as I headed off to yoga training and my parents took a bunch of boxes home.  Which brings us to your next question, I am sure…

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What’s Next?  For now, the FUTURE looks like this…

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Meet our new roommates!!!  We are moving in with my parents…Cooper and all for a month while we continue our apartment search in Chicago.  The pros…we have a place to live and the location allows me easy access to work and yoga training.  The BOY and I may be commuting together on the train into the city.  The crazy…we are moving in with my  parents…Cooper and all!  In 1 week!!!

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Which means tomorrow is day 2 of packing and because of yoga training Sunday, it needs to be SUPER productive.  After that, I fear you may not hear from me for a bit.  It will just be short break, I promise, but with all of these changes and responsibilities, I may not be able to prioritize the blog until things have settled.  Like I said, I knew you would understand : )

 

Tell me about your past, present, and future!

Anyone have a 2 bedroom apartment they want to rent me in Chicago?!

Another Wedding!

Okay, so I didn’t wake up Friday feeling PERFECT, but after a hot shower and a bunch of meds, I was able to make it to the gym for a much needed strength workout.  The rest of Friday flew by as my mom and I ate lunch, got our nails done, and then grabbed coffee…where I ruined my nails and then returned to have them fixed.

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Although I wanted to spend Friday night like this…

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I bucked up and the BOY and I enjoyed the start of his sister’s wedding weekend with the rehearsal and then dinner.  We called it an early night and appreciated a good night’s sleep.

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Saturday morning, we woke up to sunshine.  I went for a quick 30 minute jog to boost my immune system.  It was pretty pathetic but amazing to be outside in the sunshine.

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Saturday started with coffee and quickly progressed to mimosas, hair, makeup, adorable robes, pictures, and eventually a wedding!!!

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The BOY and his sister…

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She is a beautiful bride!  The wedding was tons of fun and not surprisingly, we spent the entire night on the dance floor with our new friends!

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As you may have noticed, we’ve had many weddings over the last few years.  My brother and SIL in 2014, ours in 2015, and now the BOY’s sister.  Our family is just continuing to grow and expand.  This weekend, we added a brother in law!

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After brunch this morning, we stopped by the Minute Clinic to pick up meds for the BOY (no he didn’t want to walk again…ha ha!) because he has an ear infection.  We spent our day resting (this included a 2 hour nap) and relaxing thinking thoughts of wellness.  Perhaps, we had a little too much fun last night.  Nah…there’s no such thing!!!

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Cheers to the new Mr and Mrs!!!

Mayday Monday

Today was not the kind of Monday that I wanted. I literally ran around ALL day and finally at 7pm got to crash for some down time!  I was so busy that I never found time to fit in a workout.  Which is a totally bummer because after our weekend trip to New Jersey, I needed to burn a few calories.

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We did a quick two nighter in the garden state to celebrate my cousin’s daughter’s bat mitzvah.  The weekend was full of activities and surrounded by family.  It was truly an incredible time!  We miss everyone already!

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Sadly, the BOY came back sick and I think that the rest of us are coming down with something as well.

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BTW, since it was a 13 year old event, my SIL and I thought it would only be fitting to take as many selfies as possible : )

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We flew in late last night and I happily crashed in my bed where I slept for as many hours as possible!  Then it was Monday and off in many directions I went.   I treated a few patients, ran to the grocery store, did laundry, and then cleaned up our house for the real estate agent who came by to help us decide on our next step.  You guys are so amazing!  And I appreciate all your support and excitement with our move.  You may also have to be a bit patient with me as I now have a lot of house cleaning, organizing, and decluttering to do, which will definitely take A TON of time!  On top of that, I am creating my anatomy power points for yoga training and working on a state certification.  We also have another big family event coming up this month…all of that means that there may be a few less blog posts.  But I will try to make them fun and meaningful : )

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Kind of like this weekend : )

 

Meal Planning 5/09/16

Monday: Thai Food

Tuesday: Crockpot Butter Chicken

Wednesday: Chicken Burgers

Thursday: Tacos

No French Fry Bars

The bad news is when you play all weekend, there is a lot of work to do on Monday.  And I don’t mean work, work because it is still the weekend (for me), but house work!  I would have loved to have spent Monday on my couch, cuddled with Cooper, and catching up on Scandal.  Instead, I woke up and immediately started creating laundry piles. 

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Saturday morning, the BOY and I woke up to snow.  Not a lot of it, but more than anyone wants to see in April!

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The BOY and I went to the gym for our training sessions and then quickly packed up before driving downtown.  My sister in law has been wanting to try Soul Cycle and I was more than  happy to accompany here to the Old Rihanna vs. New Rihanna class.

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We had a lot of fun working up a sweat.  Then the guys met us for lunch and beer at Corridor.  The weather was odd, alternating between hail and sunshine, but we managed to walk around and shop before making our way back to their house.  We had a little bit of down time before getting ready for our family friend’s wedding.  My mom, SIL, and I drank bubbles while we got our hair done at the dry bar, and then everyone got all dressed up for the wedding.

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We danced the night away and had a great time together!  Sunday was another fun family day, but this time the weather was gorgeous!

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We walked all over the city, racking up close to 7 miles.  Along the way, we discovered an amazing little bakery and fueled up with cupcakes (and a not pictured cookie sandwich that was consumed during the walk)!

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The BOY and I didn’t get home until late Sunday night, and we stopped and picked up Thai for dinner on our way home.  I was feeling exhilarated with the excitement of the weekend and crashed for a good 10 hours Sunday night.  Which brings me back to this morning.  After getting a few loads of laundry going, I grabbed leftovers for breakfast and debated if I wanted to go to the 9:30am yoga class.  A run would have been ideal, but after yesterday’s 60 degree weather, this morning was chilly.

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So off to yoga I went!  And then came back home to get myself organized for the day while sipping on a Peanut Butter and Banana Protein Smoothie.  I made my grocery list and our meal plan. 

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With the cold weather, chili was top on my list…Mmm!

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So I had the opportunity to bump into an old coworker of the BOY’s last week.  She mentioned that she saw him eating one of the protein balls I had made.  When she asked him what was with the healthy fare, he said that I made them so that he doesn’t eat French Fries (LOL!).  I actually make them so that we have healthy snack options throughout the day, but the French Fry comment had me cracking up.

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On that note, I made another batch of bars this week and we can just call them ‘No French Fry’ bars!

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These are actually a Luna bar knock off and absolutely delicious!

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You’ll have to make a batch and let me know if they keep you away from the drive through : )

 

What is your favorite mid afternoon snack?

 

Meal Planning 4/04/16

Monday: Chili

Tuesday: Sesame Honey Chicken

Wednesday: Burgers and Veggies

Thursday: TBD

 

(Homemade) Peanut Butter

Chocolate Chip Luna Bars

From Lauren’s Latest

Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup dry roasted unsalted peanuts
  • 24 oz. pitted dates
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips
  • pinch sea salt

Directions

  1. Place peanuts into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to chop into fine pieces without turning into a paste. Add in dates, chocolate chips and salt. Continue pulsing until one large mass comes together in the bowl. Line a 9×9 baking dish with parchment paper or plastic wrap and press date mixture evenly into the dish. Dip your fingers into water to prevent sticking. Place into freezer or fridge for 30 minutes.
  2. Remove completely from pan using excess plastic wrap as help and cut into 10 even pieces. Wrap each bar individually in plastic wrap and store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.