Saturday, March 8, 2014

Pretty Nice Little Saturday

We’ve had cold rainy days most of this week, so I’m definitely glad to be sitting here enjoying a warm day and a cool breeze blowing through our open windows.  I’m so ready for spring!  This morning we went to the park with the dog and I logged my 2nd activity on my new heart rate monitor Jason and his dad and stepmom got me for my birthday: 

Polar FT60I’m still learning how to use it and have yet to actually run with it, but I’ve wanted one for awhile.  When I engage in strenuous exercises, I tend to wuss out and stop pushing myself as hard as I could, so I’ve reasoned that if I have the feedback of a monitor, I’ll know my heart isn’t about to explode and I should keep going!


Earlier this week we made an AMAZING shepherd’s pie recipe:


turkey shepherd's pie turkey shepherd's pie

…and I also attempted a layered baked ratatouille based on this recipe:



My mission was to use up ALLL the veggies, not make it look pretty.  Success!


Later this evening we’re headed to a friend’s birthday celebration, so I attempted to make a variation of my Irish Car Bomb cookies last night, but the ganache just ain’t working out.

car bomb cookies

So I’m attempting this recipe instead.  Got the dough logs chilling in the fridge (leftover ratatouille in the background!) while I roast some cauliflower for a snack.

car bomb cookie dough logs  cauliflower

My weight has been steady this week, but we’ve celebrated my 30th birthday a few times and thus I’ve been a little loose with my diet plan.  At least I haven’t gained!

We also got our engagement pictures back this week (done by the fabulous Joshua and Aaron Moore – I’m obsessed with their work and can’t wait for them to capture our wedding!!), and while I’m quite pleased with them, I’m frustrated with how I still look.  It was definitely eye-opening to realize how much farther I have to go, especially when seeing my ass/hip/thigh area front and center of a wide-angle shot like this:

engagement photos

My arms are my most embarrassing part, and the one I’m most focused on toning right now.  It’s easier to hide chunky thighs, but flabby arms are harder to camouflage, in my opinion.

engagement photos 

Right now I’m doing this dumbbell circuit from Fitsugar but need to step up the efforts to drop weight all over.  It’s happened before and will happen again – I know my arms will shrink when the rest of me does.

Cauliflower is done, drizzled with some Bolthouse Farms yogurt ranch (the cauliflower is spicy), and I’m off to finish baking my cookies!!

roasted cauliflower

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sunday Grocery Stock-Up

After a nice walk at the park with the dude and dog…

Sunday stroll at the park

…we went and bought ALL THE THINGS at the grocery store.  It helps so much with both budget and diet when we make a big grocery trip at the beginning of the week.


And that was probably half of it.  For dinner tonight, I sautéed some onions and garlic with some yellow cherry tomatoes (they explode in then pan!) and added steam-in-bag green beans and balsamic vinegar.

tomatoes in the pan  green beans and tomatoes

We had that alongside some leftover broccoli, some collards I cooked all afternoon, and steak with horseradish sauce while we watched We Are the Millers – pretty funny albeit predictable.


I didn’t quite get everything done today that I’d hoped, but I still feel pretty accomplished.  I got a giant pile of clothes put away and some arm-strengthening exercises done.  Nothing brag-worthy though, so I’m going to write up an actual to-do list for this week so I can cross things off.  I do so much better when I have a plan to stick to!

Engaged and Recommitted

Haven’t blogged since August…is anyone surprised?  I’m not.  I’m not even going to try to make excuses and apologies anymore!  Now that 2014 is in full swing and the holidays are over, I’m busy mostly with wedding planning!  Jason proposed at the end of December, and we’ve had to make the big vendor decisions now even though the wedding isn’t for quite a few more months. 

Jason proposing Engaged! Engaged!

The first few weeks of January were crazy since I had no idea who we wanted to hire in the way of vendors, but now that we have a great team picked out and locked down, I’m much more calm about things now.  I’ve even got a dress (that fits, but I need to work a little more on some trouble areas!) and am now happy to focus on smaller, fun details for our big day!

Totally unrelated, but I wanted to share a recipe we tried last night from The Redefined Chef, Red Snapper Veracruzo:


Horrible picture because I used the cell phone.  Who wants to get up to get their camera once they’re seated in front of this delicious dish?  We had some red snapper in the freezer left over from a giant Valentine’s Day cut.  I didn’t have any jalapenos so I used a chipotle in adobo which gave it a smoky spiciness.  Also I didn’t have raisins, but dried cranberries worked just fine.  I like these “all-in-one” dishes that yield a protein and a side all in one.

I’ve been maintaining my weight for about 2 years now, gaining and losing the same 5-10 pounds or so.  On the one hand I’m frustrated that it’s not as easy to lose as it was when I was bigger, but on the other hand I totally expect to stay the same with the “effort” I’ve been putting in to lose lately.  Jason and I are beginning to try to increase our activity levels after our winter/holiday slump.  We’ve been doing an arm-strengthening routine with our barbell set, and now that the weather should be warming up, we intend to pick up running again.  I hope to stay more accountable this time because blogging was such a huge help before.  I’ve gotten away from the culture of healthy living – which isn’t to say I’ve been “unhealthy,” I just haven’t been 100% committed to improving myself – and would like to get back to that mindset of making better decisions and doing all I can to get healthier.

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