Weekend Warriors

“If it wasn’t on the NY bucket list, add it, and then cross it off.” – Kenny¬†

Memorial Day Weekend brought beautiful weather to the North Pole. ūüôā

The hubby and I spent the long weekend playing catch, biking, and kayaking.

The baseball mitts and baseball that we bought this weekend were a bit of an impulse purchase, but a huge hit. What can i say? When it comes to my family, walking through a sporting goods store is asking for trouble.

Luckily, there isn’t an REI anywhere near us.

Or unluckily? Hmmmmm.

Anyways, Apollo loves when Kenny and I pull out the mitts and baseball. He thinks the whole point of the game is Monkey in the Middle. He runs back and forth, waiting for one of us to miss the ball. And then he steals it, running around the yard victoriously.

It’s adorable‚Ķ until he won’t give it back.

#puppyownerproblems

The most scenic portion of the weekend was definitely kayaking in¬†Lake Ontario.¬†It was also¬†the quote reference at the beginning of the blog post‚Ķ who would’ve thought one day we would be¬†kayaking in a Great Lake?!

IMG_6424

IMG_6431

IMG_6460

It was GORGEOUS. And the whole endeavor made me feel like I was a world renown outdoors woman, until I found out I holding the paddle the wrong way the entire time I was kayaking….

Whoops.

There has to be some sort of learning curve implemented in this situation. Either way, I wear my blistered hands and aching back with pride.

IMG_6453

I haven’t stepped foot in the gym this weekend, and with good reason. If the sun is shining and you are surrounded with activities that keep you active, why waste a single second stuck indoors?

I made sure to sneak in my¬†yoga practice first thing each morning and went¬†on a couple runs, but this weekend was all about enjoying the weather and great company ūüôā

IMG_6408

Advertisement

Snack Attack

Everyone seems to harp and harp and harp on how important breakfast is, so I find no reason to revisit the subject. You know you should eat breakfast. And if you don’t know why‚Ķ ask Google.

Instead, I want to¬†talk about another very important meal of the day, snack time. ūüôā

My quick bite to eat around 3pm everyday is what ties me over until dinner, and gives me a much needed energy boost! Without it, I would never have the energy to get myself to run, head to zumba or a yoga class, or join my hubby in the weight room after a long day at work.

The days I forget to pack a snack or don’t have time to make one, my work out¬†suffers. It’s hard to get your body to move when it’s running on empty.

… and grabbing something quick to eat keeps me from attacking the entire contents of my kitchen when dinner time finally rolls around.

In an effort to share some of my favorites with you, I made a list of my top nine midday snacks!


1. Fruit

Fruit is one of the easiest snacks to grab on the go and always satisfies my sweet tooth. I keep apples, bananas, sliced pineapple, grapes, and berries well-stocked in the kitchen.

IMG_6103

2. Handful of Nuts and/or Dried Fruit

Have you ever tried dried apricots? Or dates? Or figs? Or banana chips? Dried fruit is nature’s version of fruit snacks. I love pulling out a handful of dried apricots from the fridge or munchin’ on a couple of banana chips. Now pair some almonds, cashews, or pecans with dried fruit and¬†to make¬†your own homemade trail mix!

IMG_5281

3. Veggies with Hummus

In order to make veggies with hummus an on Рthe Рgo snack, I chop up my veggies right after I buy them. This means I already have sliced cucumbers, peppers, and carrots ready to pack for midday snacks, salads, or to use in dinner recipes.

Roasted garlic hummus is my FAVORITE hummus flavor to pair with veggies.

4. Rice Cake topped with Peanut or Almond Butter

I’m pretty much in love with¬†anything that involves nut butter, but I’m especially in love with rice cakes topped with nut butter. The crunch, salty, sweet flavor combination is addictive. Trust me. If you haven’t tried it, DO IT.

I always have apple cinnamon, caramel, and plain rice cakes in my pantry, along with an assortment of nut butters. More recently, I had the chance to try out Barney Butter. almond butter spreads. The company sent me a sample pack of every single one of their delicious flavors of almond butter.

It’s safe to say I went rice cake and almond¬†butter crazy. I had some combo of the two for snack every single day for weeks.¬†This photo¬†features my favorite nut¬†butter¬†spread that Barney Butter makes, Cocoa + Coconut Almond¬†Butter.

IMG_5140

5. Hard Boiled Eggs

Just like veggies, I prep hard boiled eggs right after I go grocery shopping. It’s a life saver having hard boiled eggs in the fridge during the week. I can grab a couple for a quick bite to eat or use them to add a little extra protein to a salad.

6. Smoothie

As the weather heats up, I crave smoothies more and more! Refreshing. Simple, Nutritious.

The smoothie pictured below is just frozen watermelon and frozen banana slices blended together with water.

IMG_6153

7. Lara Bars

I’m obsessed with Larabars. Obviously, my favorite is a nut butter flavor! Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip is¬†iiiincrediiiibbbllllleeeeeee. I also love Cashew Cookie, Coconut Cream Pie, and Carrot Cake.¬†The best¬†thing about grabbing a Larabar is that I know that¬†no matter what flavor I choose it’s gluten free AND dairy free. The less label reading I have to do in a day, the better.

IMG_4957

8.  Toast 

Step One: Toast two pieces of Udi’s Gluten Free¬†Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Step Two: Spread avocado on top of one piece

Step Three: Sprinkle with crushed red pepper

Step Four: Spread peanut butter on top of the second piece

Step Five: Top with banana slices

… and then decided which one to eat first!

IMG_6161

9. Homemade Popcorn 

Homemade popcorn is a household favorite.¬†All you need is some olive oil and kernels! Once the popcorn is done popping, you can dress it up however you like. I go back and forth between seasoning my popcorn with salt and italian seasoning or¬†cinnamon and sugar. Yum ūüôā


Now that you’ve had a chance to read through my favorite snacks, what are some of yours? I’d love to hear them and try something new!

main_logo

10390216_889359407760682_1271078197777830134_n

LogoUdis

A very special¬†THANK YOU to¬†Barney Butter,¬†Udi’s Gluten Free, and¬†Larabar¬†for sending me so many fantastic gluten free, dairy free products to try. I’ve had a blast experimenting and incorporating my¬†favorites¬†into my diet!!

My Simple Joys

Today was one of the lucky days that I was able to work close to home.

Instead of my normal commute,  I just slipped out my front door and strolled the single mile that lays between my house and work.

It may seem trivial to everyone else, but I am grateful for the early morning stroll.

It’s a simple joy.¬†

There is nothing that can really explain why I love the walk so much, but it doesn’t really need explaining. It just makes me happy.

As I made my way to work, I started to wonder what other things I consider to be simple joys in my life. I ended up thinking about the list throughout the work day.

Honestly, spending my day thinking about all of the small parts of life that bring a smile to my face made my Monday that much better.

I really like Mondays…


IMG_6015


And, in hopes that this list¬†inspires you to brainstorm some of your own, I thought I’d share my list of simple joys¬†with you. ūüôā

My Simple Joys:

1. Finding Apollo and Kenny curled up together asleep on the couch.

2. Checking the mail.

3. The smell of ground coffee beans in the coffee aisle at the supermarket.

4. Mondays.

5. The Farmer’s Market.

6. This huge, historic library nearby that makes me feel like Bella from Beauty in the Beast.

7.  Scratch-Off lottery tickets.

8.¬†Britney Spear’s Baby One More Time album.

9. Living in a neighborhood full of little ones riding bikes, having squirt gun fights, and playing hide – and – seek (It makes summer feel like it truly is right around the corner).

10. Early mornings runs by the water.

The list could go on forever…¬†Cold watermelon. The smell of sunscreen. Catching fireflies. Licking the bowl clean. Blasting music in the car. ¬†Sleeping in on the weekends. Laying by the pool. Snow days. Brunch with friends. Calla lilies. Netflix marathons. Bonfires in the summer. Dancing the night away‚Ķ

And the more I think about those things that effortlessly¬†make me happy, the more I wonder why we don’t all stop to recognize them a little bit more often.

Go ahead, slow down and count all of your simple joys.

Why shouldn’t you¬†take the time to smell the roses?

I mean they are blooming ūüôā

Embrace the Unexpected

April was quite… the whirlwind to say the least.

And even though ranting can be quite therapeutic, I’d rather brush it off. It’s time to embrace May and everything this month has in store.

The first weekend of May was sunny, adventurous, and unpredictable. Although things didn’t go as planned, and I spent the weekend in NY, I still had a blast.

The warm weather and oversized watermelon sitting on the kitchen counter inspired my husband and I to have our first cookout of the season! We grilled burgers, barbecue chicken, and veggie kabobs.

IMG_5821

IMG_5824

It was so heart warming to have our pup running around the backyard, country music playing, and a family dinner together full of healthy, delicious food.

After¬†a big meal and a good night’s sleep, we were well energized for a mountain bike adventure the next day. We took the Jeep to one of our favorite spots in New York with the bikes ready to go.

IMG_5833

As you can tell, we ran into some wildlife…

IMG_5837

IMG_5838

Not all of it was as cute as the turtle.

#iHATEsnakes 

Luckily, my better half was there to rescue me from the man eating serpent.

Now as¬†many of you know, I was excitedly registered to run the Dirty Girl Mud Run, which would mean I should’ve been in Scranton, PA this weekend (don’t remember my blog post about signing up‚Ķ click¬†HERE¬†to refresh your memory).

If you follow me on Instagram, you saw me training, running, and counting down until what was suppose to be race day for the past couple of weeks.

IMG_5358

IMG_5871

IMG_5802

IMG_5445

Unfortunately, life happened, as it sometimes does,¬†and I wasn’t able to be in Scranton.

Thankfully, the Dirty Girl Mud Run team was extremely understanding. They are letting me move my registration to a different location this season!! And I have to say, having the generous support of a race with such an incredible reputation only makes me THAT much more excited to run this dirty, muddy, obstacle-filled race 5K later in the season.

DG

Be sure to keep your eyes and ears peeled for when my new location is finalized. I’ll be sure to fill you in on everything Dirty Girl related. ūüôā

In the meantime… let the May shenanigans continue.