Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Excuse my absence

Ya know how some weeks go by and it's just another ordinary week, well that's kind of how things have been around here. I miss those weeks and I figured you don't really care to hear about how I got caught up on laundry, food prepped like a mofo  and binged five seasons of Veep in less than one month.

But since this is a sort of therapy for my wandering mind, I thought I'd recap just a bit and share any slightly interesting photos I might have taken over the past two weeks.

Mother's Day weekend was spent at the cabin doing normal cabin things. Raking the leaves out of the water, taking boat rides, soaking up as much sun as possible and a little SUPing.

We took an early morning boat ride with spiked coffee and mimosas without OJ that was quite chilly but the day quickly warmed up and the lake was extremely quiet since it was MN fishing opener. Absolute perfection.

This year Mother's Day was spent celebrating Sylvie's FIRST birthday! I can't believe she is already one, but it has been so much fun watching her grow. She still continues to be the smiliest little toe-head around who is walking like a pro!

We celebrated two friends birthday's last weekend with a pub golf bar crawl through UpTown. This year's theme was Stripes.

Miley is still trying to find the most comfortable position to nap in. I think she might have found it. The aftermath of having a crawling, walking one year old around for two days ☺

I have an apartment lined up for when my current lease is up! I'm pretty excited about it. I only looked at one unit, but considering there were two others looking at it at the same time I knew I had to act quickly. It's spacious and loaded with large windows. Since I sold all of my living room furniture I'll have to purchase new items which I'm looking forward to. My old furniture had been with me for nearly ten years and almost just as many moves.
Bonus: There's a market in my new building that sells chicken fingers and mozz sticks!

Welp, that's all the updates I have for you. Have a happy, fun and safe Memorial weekend!
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Thursday, May 11, 2017

Sweaty Beers

This week in health and fitness I've focused on less carbs and sodium and walking to/from my workouts.

Sunday was a big meal prep day. Every day when I get home from the gym, I'm so grateful I put in the time to 'grill' up some chicken with my ol buddy George Foreman, cook a pound of bacon, cut up broccoli, hard boil a dozen eggs, etc. I walk through the door, throw everything in a bowl, toss with dressing and dinner is served. #blessed

I've been struggling to get out of bed early enough to make breakfast before I leave for work so I've been relying on RXBars to get me through breakfast. I love the chocolate sea salt flavor.

For whatever reason I've had a strong hankering for meatballs lately so I made a batch of turkey meatballs with almond flour vs. bread crumbs then tossed them in some Frank's Red Hot after they were cooked.

I paired the buffalo turkey balls with garlic quinoa that was just quinoa cooked with ghee, chicken broth, garlic powder and fresh sauteed garlic.

As described above, my dinners were massive salads. I love a good cobb salad so I make my own version. All the ingredients you can cook and chop ahead of time then throw in a bowl and bing-bang-boom dinner is served and you didn't even have to turn on the oven or dirty a pan.

My gym is adding in some earlier classes at 4:15 which I love since I tend to work through my lunch hour. You know, the one hour in the day that you leave your desk and all hell breaks loose so you decide you better stay put. Yeah...so, 4:15 classes are awesome because the next class time is 5:30 and sometimes that just feels sooo late.

I took a 4:15 warrior sculpt which I enjoyed because there were only four of us in the class and it's condensed down to 45 min.

Some girlfriends and I had a 'sweaty beers' night where we hit up an A20 alchemy class that still has my core and shoulders burning followed by drinks and dinner at Jefe's around the corner.

Since the class was at 5:30 I decided to take advantage of the beautiful weather and walk to the studio.

Walking along the Mississippi River and looking back at Gold Medal Park, and the Mill City Museum will never get old.

I had two 30 minute personal training sessions remaining with my trainer so we found an hour we were both free to wipe those out and talk about goals, etc.

He worked my abs for 45 minutes straight, which I love/hate since I don't do it often on my own, but I love the hurt the next day. Since I didn't get much in for cardio, I walked home through the Kenwood neighborhood that is super hilly and has the most beautiful mansions you've ever seen with some of the best views of the other side of the city.

Ugh! Isn't this city just beautiful!
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Monday, May 8, 2017

Cinco de Derby Fondo

The thing about Minnesota in the Spring and Summer, is that every weekend can be jam packed with block parties, festivals, outdoor concerts, etc. That's exactly what I filled my weekend with.

Friday evening I met a group of girlfriends at 4 Bells who was throwing a Cinco de Derby/rooftop opening party. They had a menu that merged the two events with tequila juleps, chips and salsa, etc. We were able to get a table right inside from the rooftop which worked out perfectly since they were blasting A/C so the outside air helped warm us up, and once the sun went down, they turned down the A/C and shut some of the doors.

I still continue to have very mixed feelings about this restaurant. Service isn't really up to par and it can be quite pricey for the food you get. One thing they do very well is their fried chicken, so if you decide to give them a chance, get the chicken and make sure you get some lavender honey butter to go along with it.

On Saturday a few of us went to brunch at Psycho Suzies and were able to snag a table on the patio. Our server was absolutely great and had no problem cracking a few jokes with us. We took brunch at a leisurely pace as friends trickled in before we settled up and walked over to the Fulton brewery production warehouse for Gran Fondo.

Gran Fondo is a 100 mile bike ride that finishes with a block party/festival. There were food trucks, Fulton beer of course, live music and a few vendors. It was such a great day to spend outside, under the sun, enjoying good beer and hanging out with friends.

When our stomachs started growling, we knew it was time to find some food so we walked to Stanley's NorthEast. They must have been under staffed or something because we waited close to an hour for our appetizers that came out after our entrees, and two of us got our entrees after everyone else ate.

On the bright side, I threw the $3 I had left over from the Gran Fondo towards some pull tabs, two $1 winners, replayed those two for $104! I'm usually a pull tab loser, that brightened my day.

Our last stop of the night was Betty Dangers. It was mostly cleared out from the derby party they had earlier so we ordered drinks and took a spin on the ferris wheel before calling it a night.

Sunday was an extremely lazy morning. I watched three movies in bed before forcing myself in to the shower and out the door. I decided I'd turn on the Uber app and got a request to pick someone up near by and bring them to the airport. As I was leaving one terminal, I got a request to pick someone up at the other terminal and bring them to Woodbury. Those are the best fares because you make more than the shorter distances. $30 an hour? I'll take that!

After my two quick Uber trips I hit up Trader Joe's to pick up some food to prep for the week. This week's menu is pretty tasty, buffalo turkey meatballs, garlic quinoa, cobb salads, fruit, banana protein muffins and RX bars. After food prepping for about three hours, I relaxed on the couch with a frozen pizza and a movie and called it a weekend.
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Monday, May 1, 2017

Productivity for the win

I love having a nice and productive weekend. Usually that means waking up at my usual time and getting the day started, this weekend, I actually slept in and was able to accomplish a lot!

Friday I went to happy hour with the roommates. We walked to Coup d'etat and enjoyed $5 bubbles and a a few appetizers. Friday happy hours usually continue on in to the night so when their happy hour ended at 7:00 PM we continued on with our journey to Nightingale.

Since our mode of transportation was on foot, we made one quick restroom/beer stop at Bryant Lake Bowl before bellying up to the bar at Nightingale. The bar tender we had was great! He was informative, friendly and made sure our glasses were always full. They have a late night happy hour that starts at 11:00 so we decided to stay for another round before calling it a night.

I've only been to Nightingale for their bottomless mimosa brunch, but I will definitely be back for their late night happy hour!

Saturday I slept in which is very rare for me. I took my time waking up before mustering up the strength to battle the crowds at IKEA. I'm sure most IKEA's are total chaos at noon on a Saturday, but since ours is across the street from the Mall Of America, I feel like it's just that much more crazy with all the out-of-towners.

I knew exactly where I needed to go so I briskly walked through living rooms, kitchens and bedrooms before finding the kids section, which I realized while typing this, I could have bypassed all that fun and just cut through the cafe. Oye!

Anywhoo! I picked up a couple items, snapped a picture of the isle to pick up my nieces birthday gift, and proceeded to stand in line for the same amount of time that I was in the store. Gotta love IKEA.

My next stop was Target to pick up a few items. Since Saturday was the nice day of the weekend, Target was empty and I was able to lazily shuffle up and down the aisles, freely backtracking as I remembered different items I had forgot to toss in my cart.

As my champagne and rosé hangover wore off, hunger started to strike. I drove over to my Whole Foods that just so happens to share a parking lot with Chipotle so I ordered a burrito and sat for a bit before continuing on with my day of productivity!

With a full belly I was able to tackle Whole Foods with a clear mind. I picked up some essentials, like deli turkey and 2 for $5 chocolate bars before finally heading home.

Since I was on a role, I decided to assemble the toy kitchen I picked up at IKEA. Three hours and a sore hand later, she was complete! Not without taking her apart at minimum three different times.

I knew that if I sat down I would be stuck to my couch for the remainder of the night so I slid on my flip flops and turned on my Uber app. The evening was a lot more tame than the last time I drove, but it was a lot of back and forth from suburbs which I prefer over shorter downtown/uptown requests.

I shut off the app around 11:30 PM and decided to finally call it a day.

Sunday was another welcomed sleep in morning. Since my Saturday was so productive, my Sunday plans were to not leave the house, and not take off my PJ's except to shower, and that's exactly what I did.

I started by making a ham, broccoli and onion frittata for breakfast that turned out perfect!

While enjoying my breakfast I hunkered down to a couple hours of the Food Network. I love Sunday morning Food Network, it brings me a strange amount of joy in the morning.

Throughout the day I would prep food for my snacks for the week, watch a little tv, wash my sheets, catch up on Dateline, organize my desk and closet, and then finally end the night with the Kardashians and a bowl of chicken with zucchini and red lentil pasta avocado pesto (I like to add one spiralized zucchini with a serving of pasta to add veggies and cut down on my pasta intake).

And that concludes my ultra productive weekend!

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