Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Quelf!

Because I'm so good at commitment, I bailed on my workout and hung out with the roommate, her boyfriend Brandon and his buddy Aaron.

I was introduced to Quelf. If you haven't heard of it, I actually suggest checking it out. It's a board game, that ranges from trivia questions to 'dares'. Our first round we all landed on trivia questions, then the game got interesting. Aaron came out of the bathroom with his pants on inside out. Brandon could only grunt or use one word to communicate in a Frankenstein voice. Diana had to ask her foot permission to speak, and I had to quack like a duck every time a card was drawn!


Even though I bailed on my workout, I'm excited to git 'r done today. My abs and buttox are sore from the core challenge I did after my run. So that's good...I think.

I totally lol'd when I checked my Match.com emails and saw I had one from a somewhat celeb. He's a local musician who was on The Voice and made it on to Adam Levine's team on the first season. Yes, the one Adam said sounded like a girl!

And, here's a couple random pictures from the day.


Once again, I'm coming down with a cold. Caramel latte from Caribou is helping to sooth the throat, however, the caffeine is making me super jittery.


Rockin the new scarf I got from Ari for being part of her wedding party. Love the colors since every piece of clothing I have is black, grey, or blue. Dontcha love the bathroom pics?!

 
Mirrors. My weakness. There are mirrors all over my complex! It's a love/hate relationship. 


Mmm! Dinner. Taco turkey meat and caesar dressing. Trying to use up the bad dressing I do have. I don't like to have things go to waste. Meanwhile, everyone else was eating pizza. Ugh!


Finally, the perfectly peeled banana! I found this tip on Pinterest and so did not believe that it would work, but it's a-mazing! Pinch the tip and it opens up and takes the stringy things too! So much easier than trying to open from the stem. Half the time I have to use a scissors so my work scissors have banana guts on them. Totally cool.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Weekly Challenge: Core Workout

Here we go. Before pictures. I took a dip in the hot tub, so I figured I'd just take the pictures so in a few months time I can see the change, assuming there will be some.


Not the best, but my goal is to trim down and strengthen my core.

A little while ago I 'stumbled' upon Tribesports website. They have different challenges you can participate in such as this core challenge.
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Once you've completed the challenge you log it in your bio on their website. You can work out with friends, get support from others in the Tribesport community and find a lot of useful information about health, fitness, and eating right.

There have great challenges. This is one that I'm going to do for a week and then go on to another challenge.


I got home from work and immediately changed into my work out gear and headed for the TM. I felt ok during this run. 3 Miles is starting to feel pretty comfortable. More than that is a little bit of a struggle, especially on the TM. I just get bored.

I followed my run with the above core workout and I was surprised at how weak my arms are! The push-ups and planks were the hard part for me. I can feel the crunches and the bridge in my abs today. Six more days of this core workout challenge!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Weekend Review

If you don't know, I have a little girl. Her name is Miley and she'll be 5 at the end of November. Last November my parents got full custody and every once and a while I get to stay at their house and watch her for the weekend. She's the sweetest!


This is what we did majority of the weekend. She loves to cuddle and watch LifeTime movies just like her mama!


 I die. She always finds a pillow to sleep on or a lap and just zonks out, but always has those ears perked up in case anyone is in the kitchen cooking.

As you can see I was really busy dog sitting and being lazy with my favorite little girl so I didn't do before pictures, but since I didn't work out, what's the dif? I did eat ok for not being at my own place for a couple of days. I did manage to stay away from any take out! Food over the weekend basically consisted of salads, soup and wine, lots of wine.

My will power to say no is becoming stronger. I haven't had pop or any caffeine in 5 days. I'm not a coffee drinker, my weakness is pop. I love the carbonation on my throat. Someone said just drink carbonated water. I have a hard time drinking that because the flavors I get are the flavors of vodka that I like to drink and drinking carbonated water makes me feel like I'm having a cocktail.

I walked into work and this is the sunrise we had from our kitchen.


Gorgeous right?


Thursday, October 25, 2012

Vaca Prep

If you know me, then you know I have a weird love for PowerPoint. It's because of my love for PowerPoint that my family has taken warm, sunny, beachy vacations. Guess what? I'm at it again! 

It's currently snowing/sleeting here in the great state of Minnesota which means it's time to plan the next vacation. My parents have a timeshare in Mexico, so it's just a matter of booking the week and finding cheap airfare {ha!}.

Our options are Cabo San Lucas, Puerto/Nuevo Vallarta, or Cancun. Have you been to any of those locations? Which is your favorite? We all went to Cabo a couple years ago, but I feel like I didn't get to experience it the way Cabo should be experienced. I've also been to Puerto Vallarta, but I went with an ex boyfriend and we did AI so we never explored outside of our resort.


Whale watching in Cabo! This was an absolutely amazing experience. We were on a pirate ship booze/sunset cruise but all that stopped once we saw the whales. The captain said he wanted to respect the whales so we just floated at sea as everyone oood and ahhhd.  There were two adult whales and a baby whale jumping out of the water non stop, almost like they were teaching the little one. 


I'm secretly hoping we go back to Puerto/Nuevo Vallarta. I loved the beach there and the water was so warm. I never left the resort when I was there, so it would be fun to explore the city and see what the place is all about.

Since I'll be heading on vacation in the next few months. I figured it's time to really crack down, eat healthy, no pop, more veggies and get in more varied workouts. When I go on vacation this time, I'll (most likely) be single still, and I don't want to look like that whale up above. 

Last night I discovered Tone It Up from a blog I recently started to follow, Keep Calm and Carry On. Love her style! I downloaded their app to my iPhone and will be trying some of their workouts. I also have a ton of wii work out games and workout DVDs I'll be busting out. 

With that said, expect to see a complete before picture coming this weekend, and a lot more updates on healthy recipes I'm trying out and what I'm doing for workouts.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

We are family

I just want to share a family picture with you. We hardly have the opportunity for all six of us to get a photo together so I wrangled up the crew at Ari's wedding to get a couple. This one was my favorite.


For whatever reason we all flexed, except my dad. I think he was going for the "whadda doin?" Italian thing. We have absolutely no Italian in us. Lots of Irish and English. It's his thing so we go with it.

Happy gloomy Wednesday from Minneapolis!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Justin Bieber came to the wedding!

Ok, so Justin Bieber didn't really come to my cousins wedding. But he was in town this weekend for a show and he was staying across the street from the hotel everyone was getting ready in.


Those are his tour buses and somewhere in the small group of teenagers and their poor fathers is little Justin Bieber.

My cousin Ari asked me to be her Personal Attendant and the Program passer-outer. I was very honored that she asked me to be a part of her special day. Ari and O'Brian got married in Jamaica about two years ago. Now that they finally live in Minnesota, they wanted to have a renewal of the vows with family and friends. Unfortunately O'Brians family couldn't come from Jamaica, so it was mostly Ari's family and their friends, but it was such an amazing day with so much love.


Lakewood Memorial Chapel is an old historic chapel in Lakewood Cemetery. Some thought getting married in a chapel in a cemetery is creepy, but it's a stunning venue.


The whole chapel is made up of 10 million mosaic pieces made from marble, colored stone and glass fused with gold and silver.


First dance!


Menu with Rosemary for rememberance.


The food was to. die. for. It was served buffet style and catered from Kafe 421. I had never been to Kafe 421 before, but have always heard great things. After this meal, I will definitely put it on my list of restaurants to go to.




Ari started her own wedding planning business when she lived in Jamaica and has put together some beautiful weddings. This one was no exception. She turned an old hall into a magical place. I got to see the transformation and she did an incredible job.


For breakfast we met up at the Modern Cafe that was right around the corner of the PNA Hall. greasy hashbrowns and a Coca-Cola was just what I needed after that night.


I got home and immediately passed out on the couch watching Lifetime. I couldn't get the strength to get up and cook dinner, or even drive and pick something up. Luckily, I remembered I had a jar of my Aunt Jane's homemade pickles. So good! Almost as good as Gedney!


One last thing. I painted my nails, which I don't usually do, but I went with the solid color with one nail on each hand sparkles.


I saw this all over Pinterest, so I thought I'd break out of my nail shell and go with it. Ya know what? I actually dig it!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

FIRE!

Oh, what? My apartment isn't on fire? Then why the hell is my smoke detector going off!

Of course the battery dies just as I fall asleep. I was so exhausted that I managed to fall back asleep between chirps. The last time I changed a battery on a smoke detector, just taking the old battery out set off the alarms in the whole complex until I got a new battery in so I was hesitant to change it when I got up. Luckily, the alarms in the rest of the complex didn't go off and I just took the battery out since I couldn't get a new one in. Hmph.

I discovered last night that even though we only have basic TV, we still get E!, Lifetime and the Food Network. Say WHAT!

I'm not eating so great these days, so I dragged my sorry but to the treadmill and got in another 3 miles. Well Nike+ said it was 3 miles, the treadmill said it was 3.5 miles.


The 'workout' room at my new place looks out over the pool/hot tub that's been closed for the last two months. My roommate (Diana) said it was supposed to open Oct. 10, but the dead bolts are still locked. There was an association meeting last night, so hopefully the pool will be open soon.


Happy Wednesday!


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Running Pictures

I hate how awful pictures are when you're doing a race. I just got these from the TC 10k I did a week ago.

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That would be me in the black. The genius who at first had her bib under her jacket, then realized it was never going to warm up so put her bib on the back. I guess I was thinking that I was totally going to drop and roll or totally face plant it and this way my future fire fighter husband wouldn't have to flip me over, my bib and emergency info would be visible.

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That darn table was floating ahead of me the whole race, just like the TBS logo floating in Sheldon's food.

I know now why I hate wearing these pants and why you always see girls wearing skirts or shorts over their running tights. My thighs look HUGE! I guess it's not about what you look like, just as long as you're doing it.

I mentioned earlier that my goal was to run the 10k in 60:00. As you can see I didn't do that. However, my chip time was 1:01:21. The next 10k I do I would like to run in 55 min and I think that's a very reasonable goal. I was running a 9:53 mile so if I keep up my running through the winter, I know I can shave off a minute from my mile and run around an 8:30-8:45 mile.

Last night I ran on the TM at my new place. The machine is crap. There are loose pieces that bang together with every step you take, every move you make (I'll be watching you).


This was a mix of running 2 miles at 7 mph and the last mile was inclines and slow miles. Hence the average mile pace of 13:25.

And, just in case you wanted to see what I look like today. Here's a picture.


I bought some new lip color since I lost my old stuff. Not in love with it yet. Maybe because I put it on over chapstick?

I used to have this Mirabella Colour Shine in Reckless (second from the right). For my sisters wedding we all  got our make-up done and they used Mirabella products. I LOVED my make-up and this lip colour. I didn't think bright pink would work, but it totally did. My mom bought us all our lip colours so we could freshen up throughout the day. Unfortunatly I think mine is now in the posession of a MPLS cabby and I can't justify spending $20 on lip colour. Maybe when I win the lottery.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Weekend Review

Why do Monday's come so quickly? I didn't get enough done this weekend, but it was a good one!

I had originally planned to move into my new place on Saturday, but per usual, plans changed and we ended up moving me on Thursday night. My old building doesn't have a parking lot so dad had to find a place to park the truck and trailer until it was time to load up. We moved all of my boxes and furniture onto the sidewalk in front of the building and then in the middle of rush hour traffic, on one of the busiest roads in downtown Minneapolis, we blocked a whole lane for 20 minutes.


People didn't really appreciate it. Lot's of horns and complete jerk wads, but it was our only option. It's very common when people are moving or there are deliveries that a lane gets blocked. I have a few things left at the old apartment and still have to clean. So far though, I'm loving my new place! Once I get everything put away, I'll share some pictures. Oh, and I have a roommate! She's great so far too, so I'm excited to see what this move brings this year.

I now take the bus to work. I only took it once before and that was with my dad. I was so nervous I'd be at the wrong stop or get on the wrong bus, but I managed to get on the right bus and get to work on time!


I couldn't fall asleep because I was so anxious about the bus and possibly missing it. I felt like it was the first day of school. I haven't been to school in about 9 years and it was always so nerve wracking.

Friday during lunch in our break room I was joined by a feathered friend 22 stories up.


Pigeons are pretty funny. Almost as funny as geese.


Whenever I leave my new place, there are always geese playing in the street. When I returned, there was a dozen laying in the street. They obviously have very tiny brains to think that's a good idea.

Saturday I spent the day shopping, trying to find a dress for my cousins wedding this weekend. I found one at LEN and I can't wait to wear it! Then I invited myself to go out with Kari, Tim and Tim's friend Tori. We went to dinner at Brasa in NorthEast. It's so good. We had a bit of a wait, so we grabbed a drink and headed outside to the fire.


We ordered a medium of all the meats, and smalls of 6 different sides which was the perfect amount for four of us.


There was a lot of food still left over, and everyone was totally stuffed. We had plantaines, creamed spinach,  candied yams, yellow rice and beans, mozzarella and romaine salad, rotisserie chicken, slow roasted pork, pulled chicken, smoked beef and cornbread. We each had a drink with dinner and per person the total was only $20.00! So delicious and reasonably priced, the wait is totally worth it.

We also had super hot server with a voice that mad as all swoon, so we all wrote a little message on our tabs with our numbers. Sadly, no one has heard from Adam the hot totty server at Brasa.

Finally, to wrap up my weekend, I grabbed my laundry and my Adrian Peterson jersey, headed to mom and dads to do laundry and watch the game. I will never wear that jersey again! The first game the Vikes lost, I didn't watch. Every other game we won, I wore just a purple shirt. Today I choose to wear my jersey and we lose!


Oh yeah! I also bought my first size 6 jeans this weekend! The last pair of jeans I bought when I lived in Sioux Falls, SD, 2.5 years ago, was a 14! The 14 and 6 were GAP jeans. I know even those jeans the sizing isn't the same across the board, but it feels so good to see more improvement and that I am officially half the size I was when I moved home!

I hope everyone out there had a great weekend!

If you're reading this, please follow me!



Thursday, October 11, 2012

Mansion, food, and open bar, oh my!

I was invited to attend an event at the Van Dusen Mansion for event planners. Since the mansion is just two blocks from my apartment, I thought I'd go and check it out. Besides, who doesn't love a mansion party?

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There are so many beautiful mansions in the area. A lot of them are event spaces, great for weddings, or have turned into apartments. The Van Dusen Mansion is an event space, but it also has rooms you can rent out and spend the night. However, I over heard a conversation last night saying that they are going to stop doing that.

I wandered the mansion and was in complete awe. It is such a spectacular space. If I was getting married in the next millennium, I would totally have my wedding here.

This is one of the guest rooms. They all seemed to have their own themes, but oh so tastefully decorated.


Each room had huge bathrooms with giant soaking tubs and very large walk in closets. This room had it's own parlor. Perfect for getting all your girlfriends together for hair and makeup before an event.

They had this room set up as if you were listening to a speaker, but I saw pictures of it set up for a wedding ceremony and with the large chandelier and the cathedral ceiling, I could only imagine this being a perfect location for a ceremony. Below the mirror, there is a large fireplace.

There are two other buildings and a beautiful courtyard with a stage. There was live music, free valet, open bars, passed orderves, and a chef competition. I didn't stick around too long since I still had a lot of packing/cleaning to tend to, but I'm glad I stopped by and was able to check out one of the local mansions.

Just one of the perks of my job!


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Ein Bier, bitte!

One beer, please!

On Saturday Kayla and Joe hosted an Octoberfest party with lots of beer, food, and good people. Just what I wanted after completing my first 10k earlier that day.

Kari and I showed up an hour too early so we helped play with Porter before more guests arrived. We decided he should probably dress up for the occasion so Kari made him a bow tie.


That bow tie only lasted about an hour until Tucker showed up and the two were jumping in and out of piles of leaves. Those darn dogs.

It was a tad chilly, but really a perfect evening to have a fire outside and have some beers.



Joe is a master beer brewer and chef. He had three home brews on tap and a whole pig worth of brats that smoked all afternoon along with some cabbage, pulled chicken (or pork, can't remember), German potato salad and so much other yummyness.


Kayla fine tuned a Pandora station so we could listen to some Polka while enjoying all the deliciousness around. Someone brought spiked cider and it'll be my next go to Fall/Winter drink. Spiced cider and Myers rum, one jug of cider to one bottle rum, a few cinnamon sticks, heat and boom! You have yourself a fine, fine beverage that'll warm you up from the inside out. I suppose the outside in too if you spill on yourself...anyway, everything was so good!

They even had hammerschlagen!


I was not good. Although someone said that there was a hard spot on the log, and that was the side I was on. Really though, I'm just not good at hammering.