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Dig-IN A Taste of Indiana

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Yesterday was a beautiful, warm, sunny day in downtown Indianapolis.  It was perfect weather to spend downtown, outside at the third annual Dig-IN A Taste of Indiana event.  

 

Brian and I purchased tickets to this event all the way at the beginning of the month.  I saw a discount for it on Twitter, read about what the event actually was, and Brian made the immediate impulse purchase of the tickets, but I am sooo glad that he did!

Dig-IN is an annual event that “demonstrates that investment in Indiana food and agriculture, through education, experiences and  conversation, benefits our community and economy.”  This event truly showcased and advocated the slow food lifestyle while featuring local food and food growers, while providing educational speakers about food from local food producers and experts.

Not only was this event educational and tasty while celebrating Indiana’s farmers, it was simple!  All that we did was purchase our ticket in advance, check-in, receive a wristbad, and a passport telling us what was at each station and where each station was.  Once we were in, each taste was included in the ticket price.  The only extra thing that needed to be paid for were full glasses of beer and wine, but tastings were complimentary!

 

We met up with Kegan and Tori for our afternoon full of Indiana eats.

 

As we entered, it was almost overwhelming.  There were so many booths, we didn’t really know where to start.  We were extremely hot, and the first thing we saw was a frozen treat that we immediately gravitated toward.

 

The treat was a blueberry buttermilk popsicle from Nicey Frozen Treats, and it was so good!  Very creamy, and very delicious.

 

We then wandered on to sample more things.  Brian found some chicken and noodles.

 

I then saw some homemade maple syrup, and rather than trying a sample, I tried to listen in on what sounded like the recording of a commercial!

 

Best Boy & Co had some delicious chocolate sauces and barbeque sauces.  My favorite was a hot mustardy sauce…it tasted like mustard pretzels!…and my second favorite was the chili hot fudge.  The chili hot fudge was so smoky and flavorful, yet sweet at the same time.  Yum!

 

They even had eco friendly spoons for us to sample with.

 

Frittle Candy offered a tasty selection of peanut brittle with sesame seeds.  It was nutty, tasty, crunchy, and sticky.  The mini treat was so simple and cute all the way down to the brown boxes with their logo stamped on it and their mini business cards.  I loved it!

 

The wine cake mix samplings.  It was very tasty (we tried the strawberry), and I felt pretty clever since I had done this myself before with just a regular box of cake mix!

 

We then wandered around to the back of the park, and Brian heard a familiar voice.  We popped inside the tent with the Dig-IN Speaker Series to see one of our classmates and his friend from Butler, Kristin Hess!

 

She is pretty awesome and worked with David Hoppe to create a book called “Food for Thought:  An Indiana Harvest.”  This book really captures the personality of Indiana food through stories and beautiful photos taken by Kristin herself.  It was really a neat experience to sit in and listen to them both speak so candidly about their experiences gathering these stories and photos from Indiana food growers and producers.  I definitely want a copy of that book!

After listening to Kristin, it was time to head to the wine tent.

 

Not only were tastings included in our ticket price, but we got nice, glass Dig-IN wine glasses to take home.

 

Then, it was time for some food truck action.  Brian’s favorite dish came from a food truck called Spice Box that featured Indian dishes.  The dish served yesterday was Channa Masala, a sample of spiced chicken and chickpeas.

 

My favorite came from this little food truck, Duos.

 

It was a potato, mustard greens, and goat cheese quesadilla with salsa verde.  All of this was served on a whole wheat tortilla.  Seriously, it was soooo good!  I think I am going to try to recreate it at home sometime 🙂

 

We then sampled our way through some more wine and delicious eats.

 

Zest! Exciting Food Creations, Indianapolis featuring house-made ricotta with peach and white corn puree topped with Twisted Sistaz popcorn made exclusively for them by Just Pop In!.

 

These cookies were by Just Rennie’s Cookie Co. and they were seriously the bomb.  They were soft and delicious, and so gooey.  They were really, really good.  Out of the three flavors sampled, the Cranberry cookies were my favorite.  I think I am going to recreate that recipe too!

 

We then stopped at the Traders Point Creamery booth.  I have eaten at this restaurant once and want to take Brian their because I know he will love the delicious cheese.  This farm is completely organic and raises their own grass fed cows, pigs, and organic free range chickens.  Their sample was a delicious gazpacho…so good.

 

I started to chat with one of the ladies at their booth, who happened to be the marketing manager.  She gave me a block of their famous Fleur de la Terre cheese to sample, and boy is it delicious.  The taste is slightly sharp, salty and just plain good!  I made sure to save some to experiment with in a recipe this week.

 

Fermenti Artisan featured their fermented garden krout with capriole and farms old Kentucky Tomme (goat cheese).  Tasty.

 

Our last taste of the day was at Black Swan Brew Pub’s booth.  I seriously have to take my mom and sister there when they visit next time.  Their sample was the Black Swan Signature Reuban, and it was so good.  I requested mine without the meat and was seriously impressed by the delicious flavor of the entire little sample.

 

They built the sandwich right in front of us, then torched the top to melt the cheese.  How cool is that!?

 

All in all, Dig-IN was an amazing experience and way to showcase Indiana food and agriculture, and I cannot wait to go back next year!

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Weekend Full of Events

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Hello friends!

Sorry for the slight blogging hiatus.  This weekend was action packed with a lot of fun activities, and a little bit of behind the scenes blog work (more on that later this week!).

Saturday started out with my Body Pump class.  I am getting more comfortable with Pump each week, and I find myself adding in more little jokes, singing a bit more, and just having more fun with everything overall.  I absolutely love starting out my weekend with this amazing class and workout.

 

After teaching Pump, I headed over to visit Brian at an open house for the student run dental clinic that he is a part of.

I was able to meet the dean of his program as well as some of his class mates.

 

The facilities were so new. I was very impressed by how nice everything looked.

 

 

Once we were done with the clinic open house, it was time to shower and clean up for the evening.  We had not one but two cookouts to attend.  The first cookout was for Brian’s clinic group in dental school, and the second was for our friend, Tori’s, birthday.

 

 

 

 

It was a perfect night to be outside, so the cookouts were great to have as our evening plans. At the dental school cookout, everyone brought a different dish, and there was such variety!  I brought my homemade hummus along with some veggies and pita chips.

 

There were so many things to sample, I didn’t know what to pick.  The dessert table looked pretty darn tasty, so I kept my pickings pretty small in order to save room.

Celery with some corn and bean salsa, corn chips, potato salad, more veggies, cheese, and some plantains.  Yum!

 

After our food settled, Brian and I shared some goodies from the dessert table.  Not quite sure what everything was, but there was a little chocolate and peanut butter goody…that little gem was by far my favorite!

 

After chatting and hanging out for a bit, we then headed over to Tori and Kegan’s house.  We were happy to celebrate Tori’s birthday, but we were super excited to meet the newest member of their family…

TEDDY!  Isn’t he adorable!?

 

We spent the evening chatting outside, drinking a little wine and just relaxing…so perfect!

 

Sunday

I made sure to limit myself to one small glass of wine last night early in the evening because I knew that I was heading out for my long run today.  9 miles was on the agenda, it felt oh so good to check it right off the list!

 

I then made a delicious breakfast of carrot cake pancakes for Brian and I (recipe coming soon..), showered up and got ready for the day.

 

Brian and I had plans to attend Dig IN-A Taste of Indiana with Tori and Kegan.  This event showcased Indiana growers and their high quality dishes in sample sized bites in the beautiful White River State Park in downtown Indianapolis, IN.

This event was so amazing, and I can’t say enough great things about the people, the food, the atmosphere, about everything…so I will be dedicating an entire post to this wonderful event later in the week 😉

 

 

After Dig-IN, Brian and I were definitely ready to go home.  We ran a couple of errands, then came back home to prepare for the week.  We weren’t exactly starving for dinner, but we needed a little somethin’ somethin’ in our bellies, so I whipped up some veggie and cheese plates.

 

The cheese was from Trader’s Point Creamery.  Trader’s Point is an organic dairy farm in Indianapolis, IN.  They had a booth with delicious gazpacho soup at the Dig-IN event, and while we were in line I think that we just hit the lucky spot because the marketing manager just happened to be standing there and gave us some cheese to take home to sample!  You know how I feel about free things…

She didn’t just give us any cheese, she gave us some of their famous Fleur de la Terre.   This cheese was slightly salty, and had a slightly sharp flavor…so delish!  I made sure not to eat it all and save some for a recipe later in the week 😉

After such a busy and fun weekend, I am more than ready for a good night’s sleep.

Hope you all had a great weekend too!

What was one fun thing that you did this weekend?

  • Attended the Dig-IN A Taste of Indiana event…can’t wait to share the details soon!

Staying Healthy in the Summer Heat

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Today, I asked Andrea, a great friend from my good old days at Butler University, to guest post.  She recently started her healthy-living blog, and I absolutely love it!  I love reading it, and I love being able to talk about blogging, healthy eating, exercises, and how sometimes it’s nice to enjoy just a plain old good glass of wine.  After all, it is all about balance 😉

Andrea shares some great tips for staying active and healthy in the summer heat while keeping up with a busy schedule.

Guest Post:  Staying Healthy in the Summer Heat

Hi everyone!  My name is Andrea and I blog over at www.A-Doctor-In-The-House.com.  Here is a little bit about me:

I am a third year medical student at Indiana University School of Medicine and I am obsessed with all things healthy-living and science of course 🙂

Typical Day Going To Work 🙂

I just started my blog in June and I am loving every bit of it already.  My goal is to share recipes, work-outs, tips for staying healthy, and sciency facts.  Another huge goal for my blog is to meet new people and learn as much as I can about food, fitness, and everything in between!!

I met Tara when we were both in college at Butler University.  I was actually really good friends with her fiancé Brian all through college because we were both headed in similar directions- he was going to dental school and I was off to medical school.

When Tara started her blog, I was hooked from the very start.  I have been an avid reader and I can honestly say that her blog was a huge inspiration for me to start one of my own.  When she asked me to write a guest post, how could I not be thrilled??

Since it’s right in the middle of summer, Tara asked me to blog about how I stay active and healthy all summer long.  I find myself longing for the days when summer was an actual vacation and I could take as many pilates classes as I wanted while grilling out every night.  Unfortunately, I’m stuck in the hospital all day basically every day and so fitting in a healthy life-style is a challenge that I’m still facing.  I learn new tips and tricks all the time and I hope to share them with you!!

Here’s how a busy medical student stays healthy in the heat:

1.  Get outside!

Just being outdoors makes me feel better and gives me energy to make good choices throughout my day.  Summer is the best time to take advantage of long days and warm weather so whenever I can, I get my butt outdoors.  If I don’t have to be at the hospital early, I will run outside in the morning.  Just a quick 3 miles is enough to wake myself up and start the day on a great note.  If I happen to get home early, I will take my workout to a playground!  There is a great park about 1.5 miles from my house- run there, do some push-ups, lunges, and other strength work around the playground, run back- you’ve got a great workout that makes the time fly by!!

Ducks along the canal I like to run on!

2.  Get grilling!

Fire up the grill because it is the most delicious way to prepare healthy food all summer.  Plus- it saves your kitchen from heating up the entire house.  I have made grilled kabobs, Vietnamese marinated beef for spring rolls, and tons of veggies this summer.  You can check out some of my recipes on the Food page of my blog.

3.  Get prepared!

This doesn’t apply to summer exclusively.  I have found that when you live a busy life, the only way to be successful when it comes to staying healthy, is to plan ahead.  I make most of my food for the week on Saturday or Sunday (whichever day I happen to have off from the hospital).  This way, it’s a no-brainer when I am packing my lunch in the dark at 4am.  I have tons and tons of friends who eat out every day and not only does this make me cringe thinking about how much money they spend, but also how many extra calories they would save by making meals at home!

So there you have it! My 3 best tips to stay active and healthy this summer.  I try to remember every day that life is a balance.  You won’t see me pass up too many trips to get frozen yogurt, and trust me- I load it up with all the toppings!  I have to miss my workouts every now and then when I’m studying hard for an upcoming exam.  No one is perfect all the time!  But the fabulous summer weather makes it easier to get moving outdoors and be active.  And don’t forget summer produce!  I’m pretty sure I could eat a whole watermelon by myself!

These are healthy cupcakes with a secret ingredient in the frosting!  Check out the recipe on my blog 🙂

Enjoy your summer day and I hope you go do something fun outside!
//

Sweet Snacks

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Hello again from Florida!  Here is a special guest post from Courtney over at Sweet Tooth Sweet Life sharing some delicious summertime treats with all of you today.  Enjoy!

Guest Post:  Sweet Tooth Sweet Life – A Summertime Favorite: Sweet Snacks

Hi everyone! My name is Courtney and I’m the author behind the blog Sweet Tooth, Sweet Life. I’m a 28-year old personal trainer and former elementary school teacher (you can read a bit more about that here if you’d like). I live up in Upstate, NY with my husband and high school sweetheart, Jay, and have lived here all of my life. When I’m not training, you’ll most likely find me blogging, in the kitchen, or spending time with some of my favorite friends and family.

Before anything, let me just go ahead and give a quick shout out– “Thanks so much, Tara, for inviting me to guest post while you’re away! Hopefully you’re having a blast while on vacation on sunny Florida!”

So anyways…let’s talk about summer for a second. I don’t know about you, but I absolutely love summer. Living in Upstate, NY, I don’t have the pleasure of experiencing warm weather year-round, so when it’s here I make sure to soak it up as much as I can.

I love to dine al fresco, enjoy a cool glass of wine on the back deck, and just hang out by the pool with some yummy snacks. Oh yes…I love my snacks. I also have quite the sweet tooth (in case you couldn’t already tell by my blog title) so you can bet that, a majority of the time, there are going to be some deliciously sweet snacks out by the pool.

In case you’re like me and enjoy the occasional sweet snack now and then, here’s a few ideas for you to try for the next time you’re hanging out by the pool…or heading to a barbecue…or doing absolutely nothing at all. 😉

Creamy Fruit Dip

Chocolate Peanut Butter Pretzel Sandwiches

Cookies & Cream Cake Mix Cookie Bars

White Chocolate Oreo Cream Squares

Enjoy!! 🙂

Got to Get My Crafting Hat On

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Today pretty much felt like Friday all day.  Did anyone else have that feeling?  Whenever I get the Friday bug, it just makes it so hard for me to focus and not want to spend the day pinning on Pinterest!

This morning, I taught my Cardio Intervals class and reused a workout.  Don’t worry, we were all super sweaty with plenty of endorphins kicking in by the end.

Here is a little proof:

Note: the sweaty slicked back hair

I think it’s amazing how quickly I get ready at the gym, when I feel like it takes hours at home!  I guess it’s because there are less distractions, and there really isn’t anything comforting about being in the gym locker room.  After I was showered and ready for work, I seriously felt like a new woman.

Today, my job had me running some errands and meeting some customers (I like days like that best, because sitting in one spot all day drives me nuts!).  Luckily, while I was out and about I got a phone call from my eye doctor letting me know that my contacts were ready to be picked up.

Thank goodness for that, because I have daily wear contacts…and let’s just say I had been stretching my current pair longer than one day.  My eyes will be happy tomorrow to have a fresh batch to pop in!

 

Dinner

When I got home, I was extremely hungry…as usual.  For some reason I didn’t get anything out of the freezer or plan what I was having for dinner.  I guess I thought it would just magically be made or something when I got home…however that wasn’t the case.  I wanted something quick with protein and veggies, so I made a delicious batch of scrambled egg whites with cottage cheese, low fat cheddar cheese, zucchini, onion, tomato, spinach, and of course topped with a little salsa.

Yum!

Now that dinner is all taken care of, it is time to put my crafting hat on!

I love making crafts, but I have always thought that I am a pretty good copier.  If you give me the template or a sample, I will do a pretty darn good job of making a replica…just don’t ask me to create the original design 😉

During the summers when I was younger, in addition to signing us up for swim team, golf lessons, and summer day camp my mom would buy us a ton of crafts to keep us occupied and out of trouble.

Some favorites:

Paint by Numbers

source

 

Candle Making Kits

source

Clock Making Kits

source

By the end of the summer, we basically could have opened an art gallery 😉

Questions of the night:

  • Are you good at crafting?  What are your favorite kind of projects?
  • What did you do to keep busy in the summers as a kid?
  • Did you have the Friday bug all day long???

My New-To-Me Favorite Exercise Move!

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Yesterday was a much needed day of rest and relaxation.  After practicing body pump for a couple of hours, I was ready to join my friends down at the pool.  While they enjoyed alcoholic beverages, I thought that with the heat (it was 100 degrees!!), the fact that I ran 6 miles in this blazing heat, and my extreme exhaustion, I thought that hydrating would be better for my body than dehydrating…so I sipped on VitaCoco coconut water out of a red cup so that I looked like I was part of the crowd 🙂

Since Brian and I knew that we were going to be away from the house all day long, I made sure to pack my 6 meals so that I wasn’t starving or in a situation without food.  Dinner, was a simple baked piece of cod, roasted broccoli, and an unpictured rice cake.  Nice and easy, I was so thankful to have packed my bag of meals the night before.

Workout

Another reason I had to take it easy yesterday was so I could teach my Cardio Intervals class this morning.  I am absolutely LOVING teaching this class because it is fun, guaranteed to work up a sweat, and the group of regulars I have coming to my class is great!  They always tell me how shocked they are when class is over because the hour goes by so fast.  Time flies when you are having fun…

This week’s workout included one of my new-to-me favorite moves…Suitcase Crunches.

Caterpillars:

Begin with your body in a plank position, making sure to keep that booty in line with the rest of your body.

Walk your feet in to your hands, placing your body in a pike position.  Keep that belly button pulled into the spine!

Walk your hands away from your feet back into plank position, and repeat by walking your feet into the pike position.

Suitcase Crunches (this is one of my favorites!):

Begin holding a weight with your arms extended above your head and your legs straight and flat on the ground.

Pull the weight down toward your feet and bring your right leg into your chest, peeling your shoulder blades off the ground.

Repeat on the second side


Link to how to perform the carrioca.  Enjoy the workout!

Of Possible Interest:

Nice and Homey

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Yesterday, I have to admit that I was a little bit overwhelmed and wasn’t quite sure if Brian and I would finish putting our apartment together.

We started with several piles that looked like this:

And ended with rooms that looked like this:

There are still some finishing touches, things to be hung, and little organizational things that need to be figured out, but for the most part it feels very homey and ready to be lived in!

After working hard to get everything accomplished, we headed to another graduation party for another one of Brian’s cousins.  We entertained ourselves with a little round of corn hole.  Unfortunately, Brain and I lost…at least we had a good time!

We then came home and got changed to head out for a 4 mile jog.  The weather was pretty warm, so we decided to take it easy and just enjoy the run and each other’s company.

Afterwards, we both felt great!  A run always makes me feel more energized and accomplished 🙂

Brian stayed home and got his hair cut by my sister, but I headed to the grocery store and found this little gem:

It is a salad packing container.  You put your lettuce and salad on the bottom, and then you can put other little goodies on the top that may make the salad soggy.

I put lettuce, broccoli, onions, and tomato on the bottom.  On the top, I put tuna salad and salsa…I wasn’t quite sure what to put in the super special extra little container on the top, so I left it empty!  Tomorrow, I will think of something.

After grocery shopping and packing lunches, it was time for dinner.  Brian’s dad made cod, squash, and onions in a parchment paper pouch.  It was deeelish!  I just love the flavor of cod, to me it is a meatier fish with a slightly buttery flavor (when cooked right).  Tasty.

On the side, a little bit of quinoa mixed with brown rice.  A perfect Sunday night meal.

Breakfast

At the store yesterday, peaches were on sale and I couldn’t wait to add them to my breakfast this morning! I made myself a bowl of egg white oats and topped them with some peanut butter and a white peach!  Unfortunately, I didn’t realize that instead of purchasing egg whites I purchased egg beaters.  They are right next to each other on the shelf, and I must have just grabbed the wrong box.  I didn’t even realize until I poured them into the oats last night.  They still tasted pretty good, so I guess the little mix-up wasn’t too terrible.

I hope you all have a great Monday!  Today, is the first day of my first full week of work 😉  Wish me luck!