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Simple Things A to Z

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Last night, Brian and I met with the planner at our wedding reception venue.

Right from the get-go she took us upstairs, offered us some wine and cheese and said let’s get to business.  She is my kind of girl!

The meeting was everything I needed.  Basically, we were just touching base to make sure that we were all on the same page since we made these arrangements over a year ago.  She told us we were ahead of schedule, and made me feel like we really had a handle on things!  Thank goodness!

Breakfast

I knew exactly what I was having for breakfast this morning when I woke up.

Yesterday, there were little scrapings of peanut butter in the jar, so I immediately made myself a batch of overnight oats in a jar to eat this morning.  My oats were then topped with blackberries and strawberries and totally hit the spot.  Yum!

Friday

Ok, so it is Friday, and I really don’t feel like sitting at a desk all day and doing “work” stuff…but I gotta!  So, In order to make Friday fun, I found this little survey to share the simple things that make me tick.  You can see Julie’s survey on Peanut Butter Fingers, Chelsey’s survey on Clean Eating Chelsey, or Dory’s survey on Living with Healthy Hunger.  Enjoy!

The Simple Things: A to Z

A – Almond butter.  I have to restrain myself around the stuff, because it is just so. darn. good.  My favorite varieties are homemade, Justin’s, and Maranatha

B – Brian, my fiancé.  He is my best friend, and I can’t wait to marry him!

C – Christmas. I absolutely LOVE the holidays, especially Christmas.  I love the feel in the air, the traditions, and being close with my family and friends.  Needless to say, I can’t wait for the winter season to roll around.

D – Down time.  I need to work on taking advantage of it more often.

E – Exercise.  Moving, being active, and challenging my body is something that I do, and love to do most days of the week.

F – Friends and family.  Mine are pretty awesome, and I can’t live without them!

G – Grocery shopping day.  I love to go the grocery store,  slowly go through the aisles, and pick the perfect ingredients for every meal coming in the next week.

H – Help.  I love to help out when I can and feel like I have a job and I am needed.  I also welcome help when I need it! 😉

I – Ireland.  Brian is Irish, and his family has remained in close contact with his relatives there.  I can’t wait to meet them someday!

J – Jewelry.  I love accessories and I feel that jewelry totally makes an outfit.  It doesn’t have to be the fanciest or most expensive, just something that puts a little flair of “you” in whatever you are wearing.

K – Kangaroos.  Australia was one of my favorite places to visit while I was working on a cruise ship.  I was lucky enough to feed some, pet some, and get very up close and personal!

L – Love…

M – My Mom. She just gets me when no one else does, she is a great listener, and love how our relationship has developed into my adult life.

N – Nuts.  They say you are what you eat…well, I eat a lot of nuts. 😉

O – Oatmeal.  One of my favorite breakfasts whether it is hot, overnight, in a jar, I love it all the same!

P – Planning.  I have to have my planner with me, and I love trying to schedule everything…even though that is impossible!

Q – Quiet time.  Typically I love to be loud, and around people, but I need that time to myself where I just think.  It’s nice.

R – Running. I love it because all I truly need to complete a run is me, myself, and I …and my running shoes.

S – Strawberries.  They are my absolute favorite fruit. Growing up, we would go strawberry picking each year and I would eat so many that my tummy would hurt…every single time!

T – Traveling. I love experiencing different cultures, different traditions, and just seeing how other people live!

U – Upcoming events.  I love putting things on the planner so that I can look forward to it all the way until it gets here!

V – Vegetables!  I love them so much, and they make me feel so good J  I love them raw, roasted, steamed, baked, any way you make them… I will eat them.

W – Weddings. This summer, Brian and I have attended more weddings then I think I have in my life. I love being a part of the celebration and being able to celebrate this special day in the newly weds’ life.

X – X rays…ummm…Xcellent food! (that was a STRETCH!)

Y – Yoga.  I never had a true appreciation for yoga until I began taking it in order to prepare myself to teach it on the cruise ship.  I haven’t kept up with it as much as I should, but I love the completely relaxed, loose, and free feeling I have after a great yoga session.

Z – ZZZZs… I love getting my Z’s in 🙂

What are some of the simple things in your life?

A Little Bit of This or That

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Good Morning!

Can you already believe that it is hump day?  It seems as though this week is flying, and I am not complaining one bit about it!

Before heading to the gym to teach my Yoga Sculpt class this morning, I had an interesting first meal of a glass of almond milk (so good!), two plain rice cakes with some Laughing Cow cheese, and some unpictured egg whites.  Usually I crave something sweet first thing in the morning, but this meal totally hit the spot and gave me plenty of energy to teach.

A white but tasty meal

Survey

Do you remember surveys???  Back in the day, I used to love filling out the surveys with all of my information and the e-mailing it to my entire address book of friends!  I still love surveys to this day.  I love reading about other people, and I love answering the questions.  So, when I saw this little survey on Courtney‘s blog and on Clare‘s blog…well I just had to join the club 😉

1.Run/workout in the heat and humidity or freezing temps and snow?

It really depends on the situation.  I am resuming my half marathon training this week, and usually run my races in the summer.  On the fourth of July this year, Brian and I ran a 6 mile race in 90 degree heat and humidity…and I hit a personal record!  Who would have guessed?  On the other hand, when it is winter, as long as the sun is shining, the snow is glistening, and I am dressed appropriately, I love a nice brisk snowy winter run.

2. Have washboard abs or flat abs?

Does this mean to look at or have?  To be realistic, I would have to say flat…I don’t think I could ever have anything near washboard abs due to my body type.

3. Dr. Oz or The Doctors?

Before I had my day job, I had plenty of time to catch  up on my daytime TV, but now I don’t have time to even watch night time TV.  I guess I will say Dr. Oz because I haven’t really ever watched The Doctors.

4. Cardio or strength?

Tough one!  I love the high and adrenaline rush I get while doing hard core cardio, but ever since I started lifting heavy weights on the cruise, I have started getting a high off of that too!  I gotta say both 🙂

5. Cravings: Protein or carbs?

I would probably say carbs J  At least recently, I always love a good bowl of oatmeal, fruit, veggies…but I try to incorporate some form of protein at every meal!

6. Jillian Michaels or Bob Harper?

Recently, I have really been getting into Jillian Michaels.   She has some amazing podcasts that are very informative, and share her opinion but don’t push it on you.  They are great to listen to in the car on the way to and from work.

7. Frozen Yogurt or Ice Cream?

Although I love both, I am going to have to go with Frozen Yogurt.  I love the self-serve and adding my own toppings!

Fro Yo is kind of like ice cream 😉

8. To train: Upper body or Lower body?

I totally neglect my lower body, which I need to change.  I think I see quicker results in my upper body, therefore, I train it more often…

9. Protein powder or food with protein?

Food with protein is always the top options, and I try to get most of my protein from fish, eggs, and dairy.  There are sometimes though that I like to eat foods that don’t have a lot of protein in them, like smoothies and oatmeal.  When I enjoy these foods, I will add protein powder to supplement the protein that the meal is missing.

10. Lunges or squats?

Oh! Tough one!  They both hurt, but I am going to say lunges because for me I think they are harder, so I like to work at them more.

11. Sweet or salty?

Can I say sweet and salty?  I love a good trail mix!! However, if I am just craving something, it is probably going to be sweet 🙂

12. Workout attire: cute or comfy?

Cute.  I really like to have matching outfits, and especially when I am teaching I like to look halfway decent and not like I rolled out of bed.  Feeling like I look good always motivates me to work harder and do better!

13. Body Pump or Heavy lifting?

I have recently been working to become certified to teach Body Pump, and I love it!  However, when I complete my own workouts, the majority of the time I do heavy lifting rather than the lighter weights with higher reps like Body Pump.  I find that I am able to get stronger that way, and increase my weights in Body Pump more frequently.

14. Yoga or Pilates?

Pilates.  I used to hate yoga, then I had to learn a format and teach it on the cruise!  I will say that Yoga feels great, but if I had to pick a class to go to it would for sure be Pilates.

15. Nike or Adidas?

Well, currently, one pair of shoes is Nike and the other is Adidas.  When it comes to workout clothing though I usually pick things up at Target, Marshalls, or TJ Maxx!

16. Running on the treadmill or outdoors?

Honestly, I get so dizzy on the treadmill it is usually just not even worth trying more than walking on the darn thing, however!, Monday I tried a new kind of treadmill and was able to complete three miles!  I will always prefer running outdoors.

17. Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s?

I absolutely love both!  They are both a bit of a drive from where I am currently living, so it is like a special treat when I shop at either one.  I love the selection at Whole Foods, and I love the prices and specialty products at Trader Joe’s.  What can I say, I love ‘em both!

18. Summer or Winter Olympics?

Summer for sure.  I am loving the gymnastics, diving, swimming, a touch of running…basically it is all awesome!

20. Steamed veggies or roasted veggies?

Roasted.  I love roasting up veggies with onion and garlic pieces for lots of flava!

 

Now it’s on to you!! 

  • Do you prefer strength or cardio?
  • Do you prefer cute of comfy workout gear?

Friday Food Survey!

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It’s Friday!  My brain is totally in weekend mode, and I just want to hang out and enjoy the beautiful weather.  Since I can’t do that and I really love filling out surveys, I filled out this food survey that I saw on Clare’s blog Fitting It All In!

I hope you all have a lovely Friday and a great kick-off to the weekend 🙂

Coke or Pepsi?

Growing up, I would drink a TON of diet coke, now I don’t really drink much pop at all.

Lemonade or Fruit Punch?

Fresh lemonade please!  I rarely drink either of the two, but something about lemonade screams summer.

Caramel Apple or Cotton Candy?

Caramel apple, cotton candy is like eating air…

Butterfinger or Snickers?

Snickers.  I remember digging through my Halloween bag just to find the snickers, they were like  gold!

Pudding and Jell-O?

I would have to say pudding.  I haven’t had Jell-o in years, but chocolate pudding was always a tasty treat!

Turkey or Chicken?

Currently?  Neither…

American or Provolone Cheese?

Provolone, especially on French onion soup!

Crackers or Cookies?

Depends on the crackers.  There are some pretty delicious crackers out there.

Pretzels or Chips?

Pretzels.  Haven’t had them in a while, but I love the dark super salty version…dipped in chocolate.

Mexican food or Japanese food?

That is tough!  I am going to go with Japanese simply because of Sushi.

Chinese food or Italian food?

Italian.  I love mozzarella and fresh tomatoes with some fresh basil…so light and crisp!!

Pie or Cake?

This one really depends on the situation…I enjoy both!

Ice cream or Cookies?

I LOVE baking cookies all the time, but can rarely turn down an offer to ice cream.

Fro Yo is kind of like ice cream 😉

Pasta or Pizza?

Pizza!  And as a special treat, a super thick crust…I love crust!

Soda or Juice?

Hmmmm….neither really?  How about water??

Chocolate Bars or Chocolate Truffles?

Chocolate truffles, they are fancier, richer, tastier, and just better!

Apples or Bananas?

Toughy!!! I love both!! So I can’t choose 😉

Salad or Soup?

Salad for sure!

Cauliflower or Broccoli?

Another toughy!! I would say cauliflower though…even though I love both!

Onion Rings or French Fries?

Again haven’t had them in forever, but onion rings.  I am an onion girl through and through.

Blizzard or McFlurry?

I am going to have to go with Blizzard on this one…top two flavors…Pumpkin Pie and Banana Cream Pie, yum!

Fried or Poached Eggs?

Poached.  My mom can make a perfectly poached egg…I have tried maybe twice and failed at both attempts, but they taste good!

Crepes or Pancakes?

Pancakes!  I LOVE pancakes for breakfast because you can make so many different kinds, healthy or not.

Hashbrowns or Roasted Potatoes?

Roasted potatoes for sure…with ketchup.  My mom makes really great fried breakfast potatoes too…they go well with the poached eggs.

Oatmeal or Cereal?

Oatmeal for sure, I eat it everyday!  How could I not pick it!

What are your favorite foods???

Still Sitting Here and the Food List Challenge

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Good Evening!

Today was pretty uneventful on my front.  Sometimes that can be a good thing, but today, I wish I had a little more action.

 

Ever since I have come home from the cruise I have been applying for jobs, subbing as a group fitness instructor at various gyms in Indianapolis, and random odd jobs here and there.  More or less, applying for jobs has been my full-time job.  So, today, I got up, showered, got dressed and ready, and then I sat at the table at my computer virtually all day.  And I am still in the same spot.  I did take a lunch break, a workout break, and a dinner break, but I realized that on days like today I need to get out of the house and go somewhere.  Otherwise it is like there is no break and separation between “work” and “home.”

Does anyone work from home?  How do you separate your work and home and avoid working around the clock?

 

During my first break of the day, I had lunch.  A delicious salad with tuna and egg whites, broccoli, red onion, celery, topped with salsa mixed with cauliflower hummus.

I make salad many days out of the week whether it be for lunch or dinner, but there are some times when they just taste way better than usual…today was one of those days.

 

After my break for my bodypump workout, I made a quick dinner of steamed broccoli and asparagus with leftover baked tofu (from Friday).  It was great and simple!

Have any of you heard of The Food List Challenge?  I read about it this evening as I was eating my dinner. It is a list of 100 foods and you simply check the foods that you have tried and compare the results with other people.  I love experimenting with new cuisines, so I thought I would share the foods I have tried.

 

To be honest, I had to google some of these foods to see what they even were!

1. Abalone

2. Absinthe

3. Alligator

4. Baba Ghanoush

5. Bagel and Lox

6. Baklava

7. Barbecue Ribs

8. Bellini

9. Bird’s Nest Soup

10. Biscuits and Gravy

11. Black Pudding

12. Black Truffle

13. Borscht

14. Calamari

15. Carp

16. Caviar

17. Cheese Fondue

18. Chicken and Waffles

19. Chicken Tikka Masala

20. Chile Relleno

21. Chitlins

22. Churros

23. Clam Chowder

24. Cognac

25. Crab Cakes

26. Crickets

27. Currywurst

28. Dandelion Wine

29. Dulce De Leche

30. Durian

31. Eel

32. Eggs Benedict

33. Fish Tacos

34. Foie Gras

35. Fresh Spring Rolls

36. Fried Catfish

37. Fried Green Tomatoes

38. Fried Plantain

39. Frito Pie

40. Frogs’ Legs

41. Fugu

42. Funnel Cake

43. Gazpacho

44. Goat

45. Goat’s Milk

46. Goulash

47. Gumbo

48. Haggis

49. Head Cheese

50. Heirloom Tomatoes

51. Honeycomb

52. Hostess Fruit Pie

53. Huevos Rancheros

54. Jerk Chicken

55. Kangaroo

56. Key Lime Pie

57. Kobe Beef

58. Lassi

59. Lobster

60. Mimosa

61. MoonPie

62. Morel Mushrooms

63. Nettle Tea

64. Octopus

65. Oxtail Soup

66. Paella

67. Paneer

68. Pastrami on Rye

69. Pavlova

70. Phaal

71. Philly Cheese Steak

72. Pho

73. Pineapple and Cottage Cheese

74. Pistachio Ice Cream

75. Po’ Boy

76. Pocky

77. Polenta

78. Prickly Pear

79. Rabbit Stew

80. Raw Oysters

81. Root Beer Float

82. S’mores

83. Sauerkraut

84. Sea Urchin

85. Shark

86. Snail

87. Snake

88. Soft Shell Crab

89. Som Tam

90. Spaetzle

91. Spam

92. Squirrel

93. Steak Tartare

94. Sweet Potato Fries

95. Sweetbreads

96. Tom Yum

97. Umeboshi

98. Venison

99. Wasabi Peas

100. Zucchini Flowers

I have tried 53 out of the 100 foods listed.  How many have you tried??

Now, I am off to do something non-work related for the rest of the night and get out of my chair 😉

 

5 4 3 2 1 and Ogre Cookies

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Hello!

The other day, I saw a 5 4 3 2 1 post on Gabriela’s blog and I thought that it would be a great way for me to share a little bit about myself with all of you.

5 Words to Describe Myself

  1. Energetic
  2. Positive
  3. Multi-tasker
  4. Musical
  5. Family-oriented (the hyphen makes it one word)
4 Favorite Foods
  1. Caesar Salad (my friends used to call me Caesar Deal)
  2. Salmonsource
  3. Peanut Buttersource
  4. Smoothies
3 Things I am Most Proud of Accomplishing
  1. Becoming an ACE Certified Personal Trainer.  Becoming certified had been a goal of mine for so long, that to finally actually do it was scary, fun, exciting, and just an overall intense but great experience.

    I'm ACE Certified!

  2. Starting this blog.  Again, it was a goal of mine to start one as soon as I began reading healthy living blogs.  I love sharing stories, recipes, and workouts with others, and this makes it a great way to stay connected with friends, family, and people I have yet to meat!
  3. Graduating college.  I was officially the first “Deal” to graduate college.  I have always loved school, and college provided me with many memories and life lessons that I will never forget (well maybe some I will forget 😉 ).
2 Favorite Workouts
  1. Taking a really hot, sweaty, intense group fitness class that incorporates cardio and strength training (or teaching one!).
  2. The elliptical.  I love being able to catch up on the morning news, Today show, or the Food Network…multitasking at it’s finest!
1 Thing to Expect From My Blog
  1. My life.  This blog was designed to truly capture a glimpse into my daily life, and while I have a fun, positive attitude most of the time and share my workouts and kitchen triumphs and fails…sometimes I just get sad or have a bad day, and that is totally normal.

Now I have a recipe to share with you!

Ogre Cookies

I was excited and nervous to try this recipe.  Excited because I love trying new things, nervous because I thought it might not turn out.  Well, Brian gave it the official taste test and said this recipe was a go!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup pureed avocado (I used 2 small avocados)
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Mix-ins of your choice!  Mine included:  walnuts, pecans, white chocolate chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips, and raisins.
Preparation:
Preheat oven to 375.
Mix together avocado, corn syrup, and brown sugar (can also use honey for the sugar…I was just out of that ingredient!) with an electric mixer until smooth.  Mix in the egg and vanilla.
Then add flour, powder, and salt until combined.  Mix in your chosen mix-ins.  Place by Tablespoon full onto an ungreased baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes.
Enjoy!  Note:  these cookies will be slightly green 🙂