Thursday, July 25, 2013

Friday's Comin'!

I think this might be in the top five of happy-Friday's-tomorrow moments of late. It has been a LONG week. Not a bad week, but a very long week. We had to bail on doing our 5k this weekend (which I'm still really sad about), so that means we now have no set plans for the weekend (other than working/serving Sunday). Bring on the lazy slacker weekend!

I am very much looking forward to jammie pants, stalking visiting the bakery Laura found that carries macarons, and watching movies and reading books.

Speaking of books, I FINALLY jumped on the Divergent bandwagon... if you liked the Hunger Games trilogy, this is similar, but I enjoyed it much more than the Hunger Games. I'm not sure how I feel about the casting for the Divergent movie, yet, but this first book was amazingly good! I read all 500 pages in less than a day, so it's an easy read that you won't want to put down.
So good
And this gelato has been ALL OVER facebook and instagram lately. I looked up all the flavors and wanted a minimum of five immediately. This one is the one Hubby brought home from Target, and it's seriously life-changing. I'm dying to try their Raspberry Chocolate Chip and the Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup flavors, but this stuff is NOT even close to being MFP-friendly (not that I'm caring right now, but eventually I will be).
A rock hit CC's windshield the other day. He's hopefully getting it fixed this afternoon for not a lot of money. Several insta-friends thought we'd discovered a UFO, which I found pretty hilarious. So sorry to disappoint.

Our sweet, adorable, sleepy puppy... She came home from Grandma Camp where her cat harem lives. She's always tired after that, but I would be too if I was surrounded by five crazy cats for five days.
Have I mentioned that tomorrow is FRIDAY?! Praise the Lord!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Feeling Crummy

You ever have one of those days where you feel gross? You feel large, tired, sick, not yourself? Yeah, I've been feeling that way for about a week now. Granted I did have a small procedure last Friday that didn't help (no worries, I'm totally fine). And then I had an allergic reaction that's made it ten times worse. Oh and migraines, which never are a happy thing. But I just don't feel like myself right now. I made the mistake of getting on the scale the other day which certainly didn't encourage me and only confirmed the way I'm feeling.

All that to say, I cannot wait until I'm back to whatever my version of normal is! Hoping it's very soon!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Catching Up

This has been a good week. Today has been a truly amazing and awesome day. I hope soon to let you know why but in the meantime, I feel a photo dump coming on...

Hubby and I make the 'I love you' sign to each other all the time. Last week Carly got in on it with me.

Cutest girl
This macaron business is not for the faint of heart. CC whipped up (get it? haha!) a macaron template for me since my sizing was all kinds of off. This thing is fantastic!
Ghetto lamination at its finest! (aka clear packing tape)
Last weekend we made three batches of macarons again: lemon, orange creamsicle, and mocha. The lemon are hands-down one of our favorites. We've actually been rationing them since we've got too much going on to bake this weekend. Next up, we're thinking more lemon, mint chocolate, possibly cherry chocolate, and on and on it goes... seriously, we have a real macaron problem on our hands.
My fave!
And then we hit up BJ's and found this. For real?!
I know without trying I am not strong enough to use this!
Wandering around Target and we found the cutest little book!
Scout's just chillaxin' with us these days but I found this hilarious.
Literally resting on Daddy's foot

I've been trying to be good this week since it looks like my weekends are shot (macarons, I'm tellin' ya!) in terms of sticking to MFP. To that end, I've been doing the 7-Minute Workout, which sounds easy until you do it. It's like cramming all of Jillian's workouts into seven minutes. Ugh. But it's working. Scout's not so sure what's going on, but she's overseeing my training.
What're you doing, Mama?!
Continuing the working out/training theme in our house, Scout's 5k training is coming along quite well... at least if she plans to hitchhike!
No shame. Absolutely no shame.
This week has been Camp Adventure at church/work, which is our version of Vacation Bible School (VBS). Picture over 500(!) children running and screaming and causing general mayhem all throughout the building and you've got VBS!

Yesterday was Wacky Hair Day, which I absolutely loved. Today Captain America (complete with shield) was in attendance in the second grade class. I love this week!
Jessie and Raquel
During VBS every year, the kids compete to see who can bring the most PB&J for the local food bank. This year it's the girls vs the boys, and I can only imagine the poor boy who got the message mixed up!
So cute!
So that's all for now. It's almost my weekend! Woohoo! What're you up to?

Friday, July 12, 2013

Electric Run Recap

I know, I owed you this recap a little while ago. But really, when you're so depressed to not be with your friends anymore it takes a while to get it all down. I've seriously worn and reworn my Electric Run tshirt over and over and over again. In fact, I'm seriously thinking about signing up for another Electric Run just so I can get another tshirt. This one will be threadbare before I know it.

As you may or may not know, we headed to Columbus and met up with our good friends who wanted to do the run with us. The unfortunate thing is that there were so many folks there, we felt it was misnamed. It should be the Electric Experience, or the Electric Walk/Run, or something that isn't just a run. Because we weren't able to really run at all. We sauntered. We strolled. We sort of jogged a couple times, but at no point would I say we were able to full on run.
The before
We had a blast though. We were able to pick up our packets without paying for it (see earlier complaints about how they were trying to take us for all the $ we had). They suggested arriving two to three hours before the run began to avoid traffic headaches. We went an hour or so before the run began and had no problems at all getting right on in and getting a prime parking spot by the start line. We hung out in the car for a bit putting together our glow-in-the-dark gear and enjoying being together since it was our first night with all of us together.
Getting darker... Happy Viking!
The bummer about a night run is that you have to wait until it's REALLY dark out. The race was supposed to begin at 9:20 but we didn't get to start until well after 10pm. So that was a bit awkward. They more than made up for it though.

So basically the gist of the Electric Run is similar to the Color Run in that you do a 5k (they don't time you so you can take as long as you want- absolutely no pressure) run/walk/skip/etc, but along the route there are five or so different 'lands.' During the Color Run, each thing is a different color you get pelted with and you end up all one big brown mess of color.

It's a lot of fun but the drawback is you end up finding color up your nose for about three weeks after. Not that I'd know anything about that. I've just heard that. Anyway...

For the Electric Run instead of color stations, they have different light 'lands' set up. There were colored umbrellas stuck in the trees, some funky swirly lights, fake snow falling in a barn with more fun lights... etcetera.
Tunnel of lights!
It was a bunch of fun!
CC & me
I will say one thing I didn't like was the water stations. There was a station halfway through the route and one at the end of the run. It was a fantastic concept- different colored cups lit up with the water in them and then the trashed cups made a really cool display in these big clear tubey things. The problem was execution- they literally used a rubber hose to fill the cups, so the water was disgusting and tasted like the hose. Gross.
Lit up lanterns throughout the trees- this was really pretty!
The swirly lights on the trees at the end were one of my favorite things
I didn't like at the end how they were selling alcohol to hungry, empty-stomached runners who still had to drive home (that part doesn't seem very smart to me), but we were starving and didn't stay around for that part. We got some late-night grub and went back to the hotel once we were done.
The barn full of falling 'snow'
If I had to choose, I'd do the Electric Run again versus the Color Run, just because at the end of the Electric Run, you're still pretty clean. And they have a way cooler tshirt, but that might just be my opinion.
Endorphin high at the end!
Glow-in-the-dark friends!
The after-party- pretty cool-looking, isn't it?
This picture is my favorite. It's still the wallpaper on my phone. I think I've shared it with you before, but I miss this chick and can't wait to be with her in person again, hopefully soon.
Meredith and me

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Nashville! (Part 2)

Nashville was so fun. The best part was getting to hang out so much with Dave (CC's little brother) and his wife, Merrill, who I adore. Every time we see them I wish we had even more time together.

Bear and I had a bonding moment one night and he let me go crazy taking photos of his dignified self.
Dave is obsessed with Cheerwine, the southern cherry soda (if you've never had it). They give out samples at the fair here every year. I'm not a big fan of it, but Dave had to have some Cheerwine buttercream one night. No, I didn't make macarons to go with it, but it's very yummy spread over a graham cracker.
Bubble, bubble! Toil and trouble!
Merrill introduced us to our first Paleo pancakes, blueberry edition. Since I despise bananas (the primary ingredient), I was pretty skeptical. They actually didn't taste bad! They were very sweet on their own without syrup, but the bananas did make the centers extremely mushy and that's about all I didn't like about them.
After our disastrous macaron experience, we found a second place that had them. Apparently only the 'good' places offer samples, so if you're not offered a sample, DON'T BUY THEM.
Try # 2
This place's macarons were better. The texture was better but not near what Pistacia Vera made. The flavor of mine are still hands-down the winner over Nashville's macarons. Still thinking the macaron shop could actually work out.

And then Dave mentioned how we HAD to try hot chicken. 'Hot' chicken is Nashville code for 'Extremely detrimental to your health spicy' chicken. Like he warned us not to touch our eyes or faces while we ate it. And we washed our hands after about four or five times to be sure.

Merrill's kale juice at the fried chicken place
Let's just say it was HOT.
Not tears of joy, but it was delicious!
So of course after that fun experience, we needed to walk it off and took all the puppies to the park for a walk.
Puppies everywhere
Later I found this in the bathroom at a restaurant and tried to figure out how to smuggle it out in my bag. I never did come up with a solution, but aren't you drooling?!
Come to Mama!
On the way home, I had to have my coffee so I asked Siri where the closest Starbucks was. This was her response...
Um... I guess I'll have my coffee hot today, Siri.
We had a blast in Nashville and loved being with family again. I don't know when our next trip will be, or to where, but I'm totally digging the freedom and flexibility we have with our weekends again.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Nashville! (Part 1)

Ever since our first time visiting Dave & Merrill in Nashville, we've LOVED that town. The shopping, the restaurants, the charming homes-music industry offices, and on and on it goes. We haven't gotten there but a few times over the last ten years since they moved there, but it's always on our minds to go back and see them and enjoy Nashville.

We finally got to go this past weekend- we left Thursday and came home Sunday... AND Scout got to go too! We drugged her up good both going and coming and she got to visit with her doggy cousins, which made for an interesting time. Scout  just wants to play but Bear and Panda don't really know what to do with Scout, so pretty much they just end up staring at each other the whole time. It was kinda funny, actually.

We ate Mexican food of course (since we're obsessed and eat it almost every day. Every day, if we can manage it.)
I had their Mexican chopped salad TWICE.
Poor Scout tried to play with Bear a lot. Poor Bear wasn't sure what to do.
I just met you and this is crazy, so chase me maybe?
One thing I was most excited about was that Scout would get to enjoy Merrill's gorgeous back yard. Fenced in, off leash, lots of pretty grass- just go for it, Scouty! Poor thing just could not figure out what to do. She eventually got it, I think, but it was so wet most of the time that she couldn't really play back there. It was seriously monsoony while we were driving there and driving home. Stressful.

Gorgeous. Just gorgeous.
And of course, we scoped out places that sold macarons. You'd think a French bakery would know how to rock some macarons. Apparently, you thought wrong. So very, very wrong. These were NASTY and we ended up throwing half of them away. These were chalky and flavorless and should NEVER have been sold, especially for so much money. I'm mad just thinking about it. What a rip-off. If this is what sells, I can totally go into the macaron business!

So very, very wrong.
This was a retail store, people. Praise Jesus that Merrill warned me before we walked inside. I had to leave once I started breaking out in hives. Too much clutter. TOO. MUCH. CLUTTER!

No. Just no.
Merrill has fantastic fashion-sense and has a fantastic boot collection. I REALLY want a good pair of boots, so she helped me look. I didn't find any yet, but I got some great advice to follow. The poor guys weren't as into it as we were. Good sports, though.
You don't want to look for boots?
We had lunch at ML Rose, which is fantastic! I got the chicken jalapeno quesadilla, which was divine. I wish we'd been able to go back again. Next time!
So good!
Our very personable and friendly waiter helped us take some photos. I'm glad we have these. There aren't many photos of us four together, and especially not many of CC and me now that we've lost so much weight.

Oh, Dave!

A little better

Our trip to Nashville continues tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

A Non-weirdo and the Continuing Macaron Saga

Last Thursday I met up with Laura and if you remember, I was a tad nervous. Mostly that she'd think I was a weirdo and regret wanting to meet up with me. I took macarons to make up for it- haha! I had a lot of fun and Laura was a pro at meeting 'fake friends' as my SIL puts it. She was super fun to talk to and it was neat to see her in real life and not just in photos. She wasn't crazy at all and if she thought I was nuts, she hid it pretty well. Haha!
Laura & me
Chicken tacos at Gonza and a fun time made for a great night! Especially afterwards when Laura texted me that the macarons were yummy. That really made my day!

Poor hubby can NOT manage to keep two socks on at once. I do not comprehend such a phenomenon and it drives me bonkers. I asked him where his other sock went and he had no clue.
How do you DO that?!
The macaron saga continued as we made three batches last week before heading to Nashville (more to come on that)... we ended up with Chocolate Peanut Butter, Maple Pecan (one of my favorites so far), and get this- Maple Bacon! That was really yummy too- it tasted like Breakfast in Vermont, or so we're assuming.

These last three batches ended up being too big and the humidity made them flatter than they're supposed to be. Actually it could've been that the almond flour was refrigerated beforehand- supposedly that keeps it fresher longer, but I did let it sit out on the counter for over an hour before actually using it. I probably won't be doing that again, just in case that was the issue.
Maple Bacon!
And then we headed to Nashville for the long weekend....

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

A Good Good Day

Today WILL be a better day than yesterday. It will be a fantastic day and here's why:

1. I'm wearing my Electric Run shirt today. Only wonderful and happy memories are associated with this shirt and it helps when I'm missing my particular friends that were with me when I 'ran' this race. I am hoping to wash it and wear it again and again and again...
As long as I wash it, I can wear it every day, right?
Also, it's a fitted girl t-shirt, which I've never in my life been able to rock, and I finally am able to. A big accomplishment for sure, seeing as how those fitted girl sizes are made for two-year-old girls, apparently. (Seriously, who are they supposed to fit?!)

2. It's my last day of work before I'm gone until Monday. We're going out of town to see my super cool BIL and SIL and we're really excited. Even Scout gets to go on this road trip!
Say cheese!
3. Tonight I get to meet a virtual friend in real life. I think I'm mostly over my nerves and now I'm just really, really excited! Mexican food, a fun friend, and macarons- who needs anything more?! Seriously, six o'clock can NOT come fast enough.

4. I got to talk with a good friend on the phone this morning which helps her not seem so far away.
My new favorite photo. It's currently my iPhone wallpaper, even.

Why on earth do I forget that talking on the phone is good for the soul?! Seriously. We facetimed CC's parents last night and it was wonderful. It felt after a few minutes like we were all together in the same room. I hope to get better about this going forward.

5. I am slowly but surely crafting a goals list that I hope to share with you soon. There's a lot in my head that I'd love to do, or at least try. The fact that I can say I've made macarons (somewhat successfully)? That's pretty crazy! I never in a million years thought I'd be doing that. Desperate measures, I guess.

And THAT's why it's going to be an amazing day!