Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Feeling a little lost...

Kinda feel like I'm walking down a foggy path...
Spots of sun, but can't see what lies ahead. Enjoying the path and scenery... but walking based on trust that the fog will not lead me astray.

Sometimes living this way is refreshing. It allows you to focus on the now. It allows you to reach out and bond with others for guidance when the fog is too thick, and you realize you are not the first to walk this path. It allows you to stumble along without the impact of knowing the next chapter before it happens. You embrace the flowers that pop up along the way, and admire how pretty they look against the gray. It allows you to imagine and visualize what you want and wish to be waiting there beyond the fog.

For a major planner, all this unknowing, guessing, and dreaming can also be kind of scary. But it is teaching me that no matter what I have come across on my life path, it has not been anything that I couldn't either embrace or conquer.

I am kind of feeling in this funky fog for a few months now. The mild weather with rain and fallen leaves, slowly taunting winter to take his cold dark grip on the East Coast. I heard rumors of snow this weekend, so maybe he is finally emerging from the fog as well.

Ok I am done with all the artistically gray language and instead will just list a couple updates as I don't really have a whole put together post about any one thing in particular that's fogging up my woodlands.

2. Can't get myself to go to the gym, and also can't stop buying all the horrible snacks like pop tarts and donuts and fruit snacks. I think I have a full blown sugar addiction going right now, which only makes things worse as my pants get tighter and my face breaks out more and more.
3. The worst is already feeling crappy, and then trying to hide from the world deeper and deeper into the couch under a comforter, especially when this means hiding from friend's phone calls. If I know I would feel better if I would just get myself together and go out and hang- why do I keep pretending I am in a perpetual nap every evening and weekend? Oh wait, I do nap alot.

I think I'll be 100% better if I take care of #2. But I can too easily talk myself out of it right now. The tipping point is coming though. This is just how I work- tend to be an all or nothing kind of mentality.

Ok enough with that fog bearing down on me- overall work is good, David is great, Cake is cute, I love my family, and it's Christmas time!!!

** New grafitti background- not only because I have always loved street art, but recently saw a documentary on Banksy.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Lessons Learned

... from the Capitals hockey game in DC:
1) Make sure to update your GPS regularly
    So that you don't have to miss the 3 turns she is telling you to make while you are on a straightaway through a tunnel UNDER all the roads you are supposed to be turning on. Recalculating.
2) Leave earlier
    We may have made it to the game JUST in time, but had to pay $27 to get into the closest parking garage we could find. It was also scary because they double parked everyone in and made you leave your keys in the car. Needless to say leaving that garage was a mess.
3) Take the metro
    And make sure to check the metro maintenance schedule before deciding to take it. Friends at the game did not check and they ended up getting let out of the metro at the last stop far from the verizon center and having to find a bus to get them the rest of the way there. We drove them back to their car after the game because they had no idea where to go to catch the metro again.
4) Get an end seat in your section in the verizon center
    I think I'd rather stand up to let people in 10 times over having to be the one to try and squeeze by everyone to get in and out of my seat. We were up in the 400 level which was a great view of the ice, but we sat in the middle of a row, and to squeeze through to your seat there is literally like 5 inches of room to scoot along (plus a dramatic incline from row to row) to get into a row when other people stand to let you in. All I could think was that drunk people must fall over onto the crowd below them regularly. We also saw a very elderly man having to be escorted by two younger men balancing him on each side to keep him from falling over while scooting through. It really is like walking a tight-rope!
5) Make a night of it
    Best idea would be to just stay in a nearby hotel. Coming from Southern Maryland, the drive there takes the same amount of time as the length of the game. Would have been nice to get there early, stay in a hotel, walk to the verizon center, and be able to drink and walk back afterwards. Would have to choose our hotel carefully though as I do not think it is in the best area- but at least at game-time the streets were packed with Caps fans.

I leave you with my latest fav song: Blink 182, 'After Midnight,' off their new CD...

I can’t get my feet up off the edge
I kinda like the little rush you get
when you’re standing close to death
and you’re driving me crazy
Hold on as we crash into the earth
a bit of pain will help you suffer when you’re hurt, for real
when you’re driving me crazy

From your lips, the word’s a robbery
Do you grin inside? You’re killing me
All along we talked of forever
I kinda think that we won’t get better
it’s the longest start, the end’s not too far away
did you know? I’m here to stay

We’ll stagger home after midnight
sleep arm in arm in the stairwell
We’ll fall apart on the weekends
these nights go on and on and on

Friday, November 4, 2011

Gone and Back Again...

Hi world... if there is anyone left who has not given up on me. One thing that annoys me about other bloggers is when they take long breaks from updating their site. I feel like if I am bored and want to stalk you, you better have some good and up-to-date content there for me to read! But since I can't seem to get a steady flow going myself (hello 6 month break!), I guess I should really be admiring that pretty much everyone else is way better at this than me.

Back to the Basics

What is this blog for? To document David and I's engagement and love story- including getting prepared for our wedding- and in the future hopefully sharing stories about becoming parents!
Why document and share in a blog? Because sometimes I feel so far away from a lot of my family and friends in Baltimore, and around the US- New Jersey, Alaska, Delaware, Georgia, and Florida!
What do I want to blog about? My interests or significant events including: holidays, daily thoughts, pretty things I find in nature, my Cake, wedding planning, fitness, food and recipes, and hopefully condo makeovers if I ever get around to it.
When am I going to set aside time to blog? Hopefully at least once a week. Since I live by my planner I am going to have to make note of  it to make sure I do it until I can get the hang of it. Could be more or less depending on how busy I am at home and work, or if I'm on vacation.

So I'll stop boring you with my blog self pep talk and show some pics of the last 6-7 months in review!


Exploring the thrill of the gun range (never ever thought I would enjoy such a thing).


Me and Jules!
Her and AJ's wedding pictures are seriously so pretty, a classy southern style wedding at Sotterly.

Girls weekend in OC!

My first vacation to the FL Keys! David's parent's house was amazing, it will definitely be a yearly trip.

Dancing with all the local Jimmy Buffet's in the Keys :)


Taking Back Sunday concert in Baltimore- one of the most fun concerts ever- and so happy to go out with my sister and brother!


**Reserved the wedding date and bought my wedding dress!!!! ** No pics of course, but you can see overall wedding inspiration on my pinterest wedding board!


More beautiful weddings! We had David's cousin Brandon get married in VA, and our friends Alexandra and Matt... I LOVE her picture with the balloons!


No halloween this year for us (we were both sick), but we did celebrate the month with... another wedding! Another two great friends, Catie and Vince, that I have met here in Sounthern Maryland. They did an awesome purple and orange and black color scheme which worked perfect for being so close to Halloween.

Being sick didn't stop us from trying to have a great time at the local wedding! David stole the top hat and cane from one of the groomsmen. Of course he would then be innapropriate with the use of the cane all night.  Being sick did stop us however from a Halloween party in Baltimore the next day :(

Well that is not nearly everything, but about sums it up. I don't think you want to know all the details about the hours and hours of netflix or hours of working (or hours on pinterest) that took up probably the other 90% of my last 6 months! All I can say is... Arrested Development, Parks and Recreation, Workaholics = Love, Love, Love

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Breakfast on my Mind

My top work-week breakfasts…
Not sure about you guys, but I know when I am trying to eat healthy and fore-go my late night snacking and/or bowl of cereal, it makes me SUPER hungry in the morning. I wake up at 5:30am and usually the first thing I do is chug a big glass of water. I used to despise water in the morning, but have grown to NEED it. FIRST thing. But anyway, if I then get to work around 6:30am my next thing is coffee and skim milk. (Sometimes some chocolaty nesquik thrown in there too if I am feeling spunky… like this morning!) A cup of coffee and internet surfing will hold off my growling tummy until about 8:00 am. Then the fun starts…
Monday- Chobani Greek Yogurt (Pineapple) with Kashi GoLean Crunch Cereal (Honey Almond Flax)
This is just classic. Creamy Greek yogurt, any flavor is good, with crunchy Kashi cereal mixed in. Sometimes I get really snazzy and mix berries or peaches in too. This breakfast is good for satisfying a cereal craving. I keep a box of Kashi at my desk, and eat it not only with yogurt, but I have also eaten it with just milk and mixed into my oatmeal for added crunch texture. Beware this cereal does stay super crunchy- don’t wait for it to soften up or else it’ll be lunch time already. Health-wise this is also good. Greek yogurt is known for being high in protein, and the Kashi cereal box boasts “as much protein as an egg.” A serving of the cereal is 1 cup, however I usually use more like a half cup in yogurt. Protein and fiber are good in the morning to keep you feeling full (especially when you have a long stretch until lunch). Note my mug from the Great Smoky Mountains! I wanna go back there...
The nutritional stats:
Chobani (Pineapple, 2%):
Serving: 1 Container
Calories: 160
Total Fat: 2.5g
Sugar: 18g
Fiber: 0g
Protein: 13g
Bonus: 13% DV Calcium

Kashi GoLean Crunch (Honey Almond Flax):
Serving: 1 cup
Calories: 200
Total Fat: 4.5g
Sugar: 12g
Fiber: 8g
Protein: 9g
Bonus: 8% DV Iron

Tuesday- Cream of Wheat (Instant) with Brown Sugar
Hello Gram’s house! This was my favorite breakfast as a little girl, the cream of wheat so thick and creamy with milk and way-too-much sugar mixed in. As I grew and my Gram passed away I learned to make it for myself, but it just wasn’t the same. I hadn’t bothered making it for myself in a long time since oatmeal became the new ‘healthy’ hot breakfast of choice. But as I was looking in the oatmeal isle a couple weeks ago, I noticed they now make instant cream of wheat packets with no added sugar and my heart melted! I also looked at the nutritional stats (which I don’t think I had EVER looked at for cream of wheat) and was amazed. Oh that enriched farina.  I think I made a bowl that night as soon as I got it home from the store. I brought the packets into work along with a small container of brown sugar so now I can spend any morning I want pretending I am at Gram’s table eating her cream of wheat.

Instant Cream of Wheat:
Serving: 1 Packet
Calories: 150
Total Fat: <1g
Sugar: 0g
Fiber: 6g
Protein: 7g
Bonus: 30% DV Vitamin A, 25% DV Vitamin B6, 25% DV Vitamin D, 70% DV Iron, 20% DV Calcium

Adding a splash of skim milk and a couple teaspoons of sugar probably adds 60 or so calories. I ate some kiwi and honeydew melon a bit later in the morning as well.

Wednesday- Microwaved Egg & Spinach with Cheddar Cheese on an English Muffin

Best idea ever award goes to my friend Holly for alerting me to the fact that I can microwave an egg in a bowl and it turns into a perfectly cooked scrambled egg ball. I came to work prepared with a scrambled egg (1 egg + 1 egg white) in a Tupperware container (also mixed in some chopped fresh spinach, salt, & pepper), a slice of cheddar cheese in a baggie, and an English muffin (“Light Multigrain”- 100 calories and best punch of fiber- even better than the “high fiber” labeled ones- this irks my nerves to no end). Pop the english muffin in a toaster, open the egg container and pop that in the microwave for a minute (the egg fluffs up until you are scared it might overflow out of the container), then assemble it all for a perfect warm breakfast Sammie! Oooh it would also be good with a piece of Canadian bacon on top or mixed in with the egg. I won’t list out all the stats, but it has fiber, protein, calcium, and good calories & fats (total sandwich about 300 calories). Plus if there is a way to mix veggies in with my first meal of the day- I’m already ahead of the game.

Thursday- PB & B with Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Toast

Say whaaaat? That would be Peanut Butter & Banana (PB&B) on toast. Ezekiel Sprouted Grains toast. What is the deal with sprouted grains?
“Sprouting is the only way to release all the vital nutrients stored in whole grains. The sprouting process activates beneficial enzymes which cause the grains to sprout and become living and nutrient-rich. Stores of vitamins and minerals dramatically increase over the amount available in flour. Sprouting also converts the carbohydrates in grains into maltose, which is ordinarily done by the body during digestion, thereby predigesting nutrients for you. The enzymatic action enables the body to assimilate the vitamins and minerals more efficiently. Plus, the sprouting process naturally increases the protein content and decreases the calories and carbohydrates found in the original grain.” -
All I knew was that if my nutritionally-conscious blog counterparts are obsessed, then there must be something good.
Inspired by the Holy Scripture verse Ezekiel 4:9., "Take also unto thee Wheat, and Barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and Spelt, and put them in one vessel, and make bread of it..."
Ezekiel 4:9® Organic Sprouted Whole Grain Products are: Flourless, Organic, Complete Protein, and Sprouted Whole Grain
We discovered when these six grains and legumes are sprouted and combined, an amazing thing happens. A complete protein is created that closely parallels the protein found in milk and eggs. In fact, the protein quality is so high, that it is 84.3% as efficient as the highest recognized source of protein, containing all 9 essential amino acids. There are 18 amino acids present in this unique bread – from all vegetable sources – naturally balanced in nature.” -
Holy bread! How does one find this mysterious “Ezekiel Spouted Grain” bread? And then one day there it was. In the ever-expanding  ‘organic/gluten-free/health’ frozen foods isle in Giant! Yay! I bought it and keep it in the freezer, and just pull out slice by slice as needed. The calories per slice are a little more dense (especially if you are used to buying ‘light’ versions of breads) but with this one you are using it as a partial protein source. It is also very textured and nutty tasting, but I like that! I would eat 2 slices in a morning. (2 slices + PB + Banana = Around 450 calories) Here are the stats:

Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Toast:
Serving: 1 Slice
Calories: 80
Total Fat: <1g
Sugar: 0g
Fiber: 3g
Protein: 4g

Friday- Green Monster!

I know I have explained the Green Monster (GM) smoothie on here before, and it is still good. I usually make one on weekend mornings, or if I know it will be a long stretch until dinnertime in the evening. On CWS Fridays off, I will make one and do my core fusion yoga DVD (I am trying to get back into exercise again after hurting my leg, so far so good).  I basically use the following staples in my GM’s (more or less depending on how hungry I am or if I am sharing). Banana, a couple big handfuls of chopped spinach or kale, ice,  frozen berries (or any fruit), little blob of PB, splash of milk or vanilla soy or almond milk, add water to assist blending as needed.  Angela has a whole website dedicated to recipes, I hear the chocolate cherry bomb is the best!

And there you have it!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Mix

How does time fly by so fast? I find this disturbing.
I’ve been on exercise hiatus due to a hurt leg. I think shin splints, although I am not sure. It happened trying to run on the treadmill the day after a Sweatshop class. I felt my calf/shin being tight but thought I could just run through it. It only got worse, and I ended up limping out of the gym. I have read about listening to your body to avoid injuries a million times and yet I still managed to do it. I was so mad. Fast forward through a few days of icing, and a couple weeks of only walking, and I am stepping back up the exercise this week. It has felt perfectly fine, although I am still a little scared to run.
Florida trip is back on for June again and I am still so excited! The thought of warm weather makes me happy. In fact it is supposed to be 70s today! I am going to make David go for a walk with me this evening.
Also over the last month we have went from getting married in Vegas, to not Vegas, to Vegas again- all with some excitement, laughs, tears, craziness, and finally back to excitement along the way. Mandalay Bay Hotel is the place, but I am still researching to find out what is the best deal for a reception. The musts? Some good food, and open bar, and ideally dancing at some point.
The best  idea so far is THEultra Mix Lounge:
There is a DJ in there, and we would have our own private part of the lounge sectioned off for the reception. We would have open bar, and there are the most amazing views, plus a balcony, and the package also includes some food and a cake. The bad side is that it is only 2 hours and is on the expensive side for only providing hors d’oeuvres, mini sliders, and mac and cheese as far as food.
Second idea I am waiting on a call back for is group dining at the Mix Restaurant:
This is gorgeous!!! I love this space!!! This idea would work for a nicer dinner. Perhaps we can work out an agreed price and smaller selection of dishes for the party, with still an open bar, and the cake. After dinner we could head up to the lounge for dancing and whatnot.
Other reception ideas I have looked into are a full catered dinner in a ball room, renting the penthouse suite for the night, and also just having a plain old big group dinner at some of the other restaurants! Besides planning out the wedding itself, I found some pretty cute favors and Vegas save-the-date magnets that I am excited about!
Mandalay Bay is also having a pretty cool special right now- makes me want to go!!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Ok so here is a chart of my weight changes that I have been tracking into an excel sheet like a huge dork. I just think it is interesting to examine visually. I think that last spike up is hilarious- right after 3/3/2011. Gee what could cause this? LOL. I would say my steady go-to weight is right around 128. That is the hardest to drop and stay below. I recognize I am working more to just tone up the bum now versus lose weight, but I still like to track it anyway. Motivating: Seeing short curvy celebrities/models with lean healthy figures. Discouraging: Knowing they are the same height as you but still weigh 20lbs less. Ick.

Speaking of motivation, we just confirmed our summer vacation to Key West! I am so excited to go! We were originally planning for June, but we decided to bump it up to the first week of May so that we can go with his parents. We need the help navigating to the island (and to the house), figuring out how to set up their house/pool/scooters, and overall they aren't bad company anyway :) All I know is that their house is on Big Pine Key! Other than that, I will just be along for the ride and I am sure I will enjoy every moment of it!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Birthday Update!

Howdy ya'll! I should be dead tired from a lack of sleep last night (just couldn't get tired on a Sunday night so I didn't end up laying down until around midnight, then David woke me up at least twice in the middle of the night since he stayed up even later than me, then the cat woke me up an hour before my alarm, then my alarm went off at 5:30am, which would really be 4:30am if clocks didn't spring forward) but actually I feel pretty good today!

Haven't jumped on here to blog because I haven't really been taking any pictures, although I mean to. What I do have are some pictures to recap from my birthday two weeks ago, and later some updates for vacation, weddings, and other fun things!

26 Years

No birthday is complete on my work team without getting your cube decorated. Mine was done in a candy-land theme. My whole desk was covered in red table cloth with the whole candyland game board recreated across the desk. Candy, candy, and more candy was spread all around, following true to the gameboard with "Lollipop Woods," "Chocolate Swamp," "Licorice Lane," etc.

This was the view from where I sat all day. I believe a total of 2 donuts made their way to this exact position, as well as a peice of ice cream cake later in the day! No birthday of mine is complete without that too!

Once I got home, I found two boxes waiting by the door for me! Excitedly getting them in the door and opening them, I found an awesome fruit edible arrangement from my Mom and Dad and the cutest arrangement of purple flowers from my best group of friends in the world, Tara, Scott, Ashley, Hugo, Christina, and Caroline!

Why is it that the center of my birthday excitement centered around food? Wasn't complaining at the time but I am complaining now because of the fact that it has totally derailed my eating since then. I also got pampered with a dinner out and trollbeads from David's parents, and an amazing and expensive half-squishy & half-firm pillow from David! Oh, and a birthday card about farting from David. He knows how to make me feel special :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Recap of Packer Fever

Hi everyone! Hope you're having a romantic valentines day weekend! David is working long hours all weekend, but I have a special meal planned for us tonight. <3

I wanted to recap our trip to New Jersey last weekend where we celebrated the Green Bay Packers win over the stupid Steelers! Still sore about the Ravens loss, the Baltimore fam along with David and I were able to join my sister Jenn and brother-in-law Keith and celebrate some Steelers ass-kicking! The Packers club basement was decked out with green & gold, a huge projector-screen TV, a keg, and plenty of Jezynowka blackberry brandy. Even a kiddie corner where my nephew Jake had his own table and snacks and a little flat screen TV for spongebob watching!

 Go Packers! There were lots of celebrating shots! Jenn and Keith also cooked up tons of awesome food including perogies, tater tots, 3 kinds of wings, sausage, & kraut. Mama Heck brought her yummy potato salad and I brought veggies n hummus dip in attempt to stay healthy, although somehow I probably ate my weight in tater tots followed by one or two brocolli florets haha. In previous Packer celebrating, Jenn somehow slipped that a) she used to work at Hooters and b) she would put on a Hooters outfit for David if the Packers go to the superbowl. David was not about to let this one go. Like the good sport and hot mama she is, David got his hot wings served to him right, with a little sugar on the side!

Haha what a sh*t eatin grin on his face.

We ended the night with a soak in the hot tub, and some strawberry tobacco from the hookah for dessert. Definitely a great time!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

February is for Lovin'

Hello world!

Not all that much to report. I've been continuing on a good path with healthy lifestyle changes, having some good times with friends, having some gross time with kitty Cake, and having some very interesting wedding thoughts...

First off with my spring slim down, I am not going to post my exercise over the last week, but I will report a total of 6lb weight loss now! I am surprised by how fast the holiday weight came off, and also now remember how good it feels to work out n eat my veggies! As promised, I said I'd review the new Core Fusion DVDs I got. I only have done the BootCamp, and it was pretty awesome.

I really enjoyed this video as my first introduction to a yoga type workout. The moves seem to focus on flexability, yet also build in some weights and strength moves. Lord knows I need help with flexibility so I was happy. Although some of the 10-min segments claimed to be 'cardio' it was not the hardcore sweat-drenched-jumping-around-type cardio I am used to, but at the same time, my thighs and arms were killing me as you go through sequences like jump backs, planks, squats, downward dogs, etc. Also, the ab section was insane for me. After doing the video the whole way through the first time, I felt soreness in my inner thighs and my obliques. Overall- it's idfferent in a good way and I will definitely be doing it more often.

I also took a bootcamp class at the gym last night with the future MIL, and while I am sore today, I don't think it was worth $10, especially when the instructor teaches the Sweatshop class for free which is very similar.

OK now for a gross story...
David noticed Kitty had a 'dingleberry' hanging from his behind and promptly scooped him up and threw him out on the balcony for me to handle (David has a bad gag reflex when it comes to these things. Looking forward to seeing how he handles a baby! Haha) I go out there armed with one dry and one wet papertowel. I grab Cake around the belly so I can see his arse  and grab at the hanging poop ball with the dry papertowl and pull. And pull... and pull. The little poop ball was attached to a long string I was pulling out! In my mind I am like omg what is this? Looking at the string, examining as best I can from arms length away, I determine it is floss. Although gross, this was so funny because kitty does always play with my floss string sitting on the bathroom counter while I am following my dentists orders nightly. Never thought he would go get the string after thrown in the trash! I go in to tell David about the experience and he said, and I quote, "omg Cake had a turd tampon." Can't make these things up.

Hopefully you don't have a gag reflex, if so I am sorry for the above :)

On a totally different note (sorry I can't think of any good transistion here)...

David and I have been discussing wedding plans. And we have an idea that I am finally getting totally excited about versus feeling stressed about. Nothing set in stone but lets just say that our wedding photos may look something like this...
Can you guess where this is ? ! ? !  Details to come...

Well I am off to grab some sushi for lunch, then hittin the gym and packing for a trip to Annapolis tonight for Melting Pot dinner, Baltimore for a night, then New Jersey for Superbowl!!!! Go Packers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Weekend Update

Just got back from a great weekend in Baltimore! David and I got to take Travis out to celebrate his 21st birthday, and all the Bmore homies showed up to make it an extra-special awesome time! Travis said it was a family reunion and that he had the time of his life! We went to a little local bar, Casey’s, and while it was a little cramped, we managed to take over a table and a corner by the door and party it up! Travis started the night with a pina colada at dinner (haha), then a shot of vodka straight when we arrived at Casey’s, then went beer for beer with the boys all night. He had a great time and sang and yelled and danced and fell in love with all the girls there, got a little sick at the end of the night (as to be expected) but we got him home safely and with great memories.  Caroline owes me pictures…
Had a lazy Sunday at Tara’s house with the whole group which was just what I needed, I miss those girls so much. David spent Sunday in a love affair with Scott and Hugo in the basement playing a made-up bottle cap game that was like the greatest thing ever invented to them. Several times one of us girls would poke our head in to check on them and there seemed to be more talking about the rules than actual playing of the game. Rules of which made absolutely no sense… “he got a blind raven!!!!! **massive giggling and yelling** “ So we stayed later than I initially wanted to, getting home to SOMD at 11pm, but it was worth it. I ate some great greasy food, totally chillaxed and got to catch up with my girls, and overall had a great Sunday. I agree that if we ever find a genie in a bottle, our first wish is to be able to teleport. On the drive home, David sang and air-drummed his little drunk self out through about 3 songs before muttering something about not being able to wait until he can play that game again with Scott and Hugo and how they are the most chill friends ever, and then passing out and sleeping the rest of way.
David was so sweet this Monday morning! I knew I’d be dragging getting out of bed this morning  and he had off today, so I woke up to him bringing me a cup of coffee in bed <3
So that was my ‘epic’ weekend recap, and now for some recipe/exercise updates as promised:
First, the stew recipe I promised. For me, red wine and tomatoey beef broth is a match made in heaven, so I loved this easy dish:
Recipe #1- One Dish Beef & Vegetable Stew
(I can’t remember where I found the original recipe, but I believe it called for lamb and white wine, and I used beef and red wine. It also called for everything to be cooked in a dutch oven, moving right from stove to oven. I don’t have a dutch oven so technically it turned out to be a two-dish process. Also, the main vegetables you need are the tomatoes and onions, all other can be changed as desired depending on what you like or what you have on hand!)
1-1.5 lb Stew/Lean Beef, Cubed
1 Small Onion, Sliced
1 Box Button Mushrooms, Halved
2-3 Stalks Celery, Chopped
1-1.5 Cups Baby carrots
1 Large Potato, Diced
1-2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 Can Stewed Tomatoes
1 Can Fat Free Beef Broth
1 Bay Leaf
1 Tsp Thyme
½ Cup Dry Red Wine
Salt & Pepper to Taste

In a large and deep frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil, brown the beef cubes on all sides (does not have to be cooked through). Set beef cubes aside in a 13X9 glass baking dish (or do it all in dutch oven if you have one) and add carrots, onions, mushrooms, garlic, celery, potato to pan to lightly brown. Once browned but still al dente, add to baking dish with beef. Pour in can of stewed tomatoes, wine, and spices, and mix around. Add beef broth as needed if not liquidy/“stewwy” enough. Cover with aluminum foil and stick in 375 degree oven for 45-60 minutes, stirring/checking on it occasionally.

The first night I made parmesan risotto (from a box) to eat with it, and another night had it over mashed potatoes. It would also be good over rice or egg noodles too! The stew itself is pretty low cal, if you trim the fat off of the beef and load the stew up with vegetables!

Recipe #2- Meatloaf Burgers -à A m a z i n g

(Recipe adapted from I only made a couple minor changes but the premise is that the burgers turn out ½ vegetable and 100% juicy and awesome!)

1 lb Lean Ground Beef
1 Large Green Zucchini, Grated
1 Small Onion, Grated
1-2 Tbsp Bread Crumbs
1-2 Egg White
1 Tbsp Tomato Paste
Salt & Pepper
Provolone Cheese
Rolls (I recommend Potato Wheat Rolls!)

When I did this, I only did it for half of the beef since I wasn’t sure if David would like it. The mix really turned half of a lb of beef into 5 decent sized burgers, while the other half only made 3-4 small burgers. Basically you just mix it all together with your hands, really making sure it will stick together well, and form patties. Not sure exactly how much zucchini and onion to use, I just eye-balled it so that the mix would be about half and half (or maybe a little more beef than veg), and use less onion than zucchini (like 25/75 % onion to zucc veg ratio).  I topped my burgers with more tomato paste and cheese and thought they were out of this world awesome!!!!!! And you are eating an amazing burger that is half veggie! So of course I ate two!

For the exercise, starting off from my where I left my post last week…

Free Body Step class on base! 60 mins (Note: I didn’t win anything this time)
Rest (Looked at townhouses)
Friday (Gym scale said 131.0 lbs):
Treadmill, total 45 mins / 3.7mi
Elliptical 30 mins / levels 5-11
The Firm ‘500 Calorie Burn’ Video 60 mins (sosososo sore after this one)
Body Step class on base! 60 mins
Played Kinect (Squats/Jumping/Kicking) 30 mins
Friday (Gym scale said 128.4 lbs!):
Treadmill, 5 mins walking 4.0mph incline 2%/25 mins running 5.5-6.5mph incline 2%/10 mins walking 4.0mph incline 5% ~ totaled about 3.7 mi.
Saturday (Drove to Bmore):
The Firm ‘Maximum Cardio Burn Plus Abs’ Video 50 mins
Sunday (Drove Home):
Rest as previously explained J
Monday (Today):
Rest- just going to grocery store.

I also ordered something called “Core Fusion” videos last week (Only $7-8 on Amazon). I heard good things about it- and I am expecting something like a pilates/cardio/yoga mix. I have always wanted to try pilates and I feel more comfortable trying it by myself in my own home before taking any related classes at the gym. I will do a review on it once I get them!

TTFN (lol)…

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Ice Ice Kitty

Brrr it is cold outside, and sheets of ice were covering the ground last night and this morning! David and I braved the freezing rain and icy parking lot last night to walk across the street to a friends house. Bill and Holly had just bought the condo right below the condo they were renting, and finally had everything moved in. It looked very nice, some things were upgraded, some things not, but overall very nice. They have two kitties, one of which I can't disclose the name (racist), but is the cutest thing ever. Very petite fluffy kitty with splotches all over like someone chased it around and blotted it randomly with different colors of brown, white, and black paint. But the cutest thing EVER- MITTEN PAWS! I love polydactyl cats!

We needed some mittens like that for our walk back home!

Other kitty encounters this week included Tuloose, another awesome furry friend that "head bumps" you to say hello. Tuloose resides at our friends Priscilla & Avram's condo, which is one of the newer built condos around the corner- very nice! All you have to do is get your forehead near Tuloose and he'll head bump you back. I love it, I am currently trying to teach it to Cake, but I guess seeing a giant forehead moving towards his face scares him away :-(

What Cake does like is his daddy holding him like a baby and letting him hold his treat bag like a baby learning to hold it's own bottle. Cake is so excited to hold the bag and nibble the edge, just waiting for daddy to open it up and give him some. Lol it's the little things that make me happy...

Back on the healthy girl bandwagon, I have officially lost 2 lbs so far. Contributing to the weight loss has been the following exercises, and quite a few lunches supplemented with these:
Big ol' salad with beans mmmmm. I am lucky that the cafeteria in my work building has a pretty good salad bar (although slightly expensive). As I discover new exciting healthy recipes, I hope to start sharing those as well. I will reveal in my next post the recipe for a stew that I have been eating on all last week, along with high protein mashed potatoes .

Thursday (finally getting back to the gym, and it wasn't as bad as I was dreading, scale said 133.4 lbs, yowza!):
Elliptical (Random hill mode, level 6) 40 mins
Treadmill, 10 mins walking 4.0mph incline 5%/10 mins running 5.2mph incline 0%/10 mins walking 4.0mph incline 5-10% ~ totalled about 3 mi.
Free Body Pump class on base! 60 mins (got to see old familiar faces of the base energy zone regulars/trainers and also won a food container with a lid that double as an icepack! Note: Was so so sore after this class...)
Rest/ Walked to lake to feed ducks
Monday (scale said 131.4 lbs):
Treadmill, warm up + 4 mins running 5.2mph, 1 min running 6.5mph/ repeat for total of 30 mins + cool down ~ totalled about 3.5 mi.
Wednesday (today):
Free Body Step class on base! 60 mins (maybe I'll win something else today!)

Besides feeling good about myself health-wise, I also got a nice surprise last week by being honored at work at the quarterly "PMA 299 All-Hands Meeting." These meetings are held by the Captain of the H-60 Seahawk Program which I support, and describe all the events that have been happening, upcoming issues to be aware of, introduction of new personnel, and passing out of team awards ("Top Hawk" awards). The meeting was held in the base theater in order to fit all of the 150 or so people that support the PMA. Well after all the team awards were passed out by each of the team leads, the Captain himself got on stage and announced he had "one other special award to give out for great work done on a high priority effort, so Kady Heck would you please stand up!" Aaaah and my heart was jumping around inside! I got all the different looks of appreciation, admiration, and jealously from my team members that I could secretly hope for :o) The Top Hawk Award now sits proudly displayed on my desk...