Tag Archives: life

Big News!

So, I was going to blog a scone recipe I was testing yesterday, but I just don’t love it yet.  The tangy lime glaze is on point, but the scone needs some work.  Anyways, there’s more exciting news to share:

baby Coming November 2015.



I moved to Virginia.  We moved for my husband’s job and even though I knew the move was coming, and I was excited before we left, I don’t love it (yet).  I’m sure I will eventually, but right now, I just want to be home.  As I tell my husband – I don’t have a job (yet), I don’t have any friends (yet), I have no life other than grocery shopping and hanging with our dogs, and I miss my “New England life”.  I love where I’m from and usually, I love moving around, but this time I find myself in a funk, bummed out, and with no real inclination to change that.  I know it will work out and sometime our in our 4-5 tenure here, I will find my niche and I will love it.  We’re going home next weekend for Memorial Day and I’m really excited about that, and my best friend is coming down for most of the summer so that’s good too!

In the meantime, I have been buying a lot of groceries (it’s sort of my happy place), cooking a lot (and eating out a lot), and exercising a little.  Right when I start to feel in my exercise groove here, something shifts and I take 4 days off.  It’s all good though!  So, what I have been cooking?

Yesterday, I made Gruyere Rolls & Raspberry Chia Squares.  They were both delicious.  I ate a roll for lunch and a roll for dinner with a homemade veggie burger.  And, I had a toasted roll for breakfast.  I like to make the rolls much smaller than the recipe suggests, so they are more like sandwich buns or dinner rolls.  The raspberry squares are nice because they’re a little lighter than the average dessert bar (and slightly less sweet), but they do taste delicious with a little ice cream on top!

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Other things I made since we arrived (a month ago, oh goodness!) were cinnamon rolls (for my husband’s 30th birthday), a Bavarian feast, an impossible amount of salads (to combat the heat), vegan stuffed shells, empanadas, foccacia and so many meals on the grills (kabobs, burgers, veggies, shrimp, pork tenderloin).

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We’ve also been making a fence a.k.a doggy prison for the pups.  My skills at using a level are basically unmatched.

unnamed (2) Anyway, I’m hoping now with my incredible amount of free time that I can use this space as a place to unwind and share all of the recipes and food that I always meant to.  I’ll try to keep my whining to a minimum. xo

Lists of 5.

I always have the best intentions to blog more often, but they never come to fruition.  Rather than dwell on that, I’ll just say hello, happy 2015!  I’m a sucker for fun surveys and I liked this one a lot.

5 recipes I’ve tried lately

1. Puffles.  Life changing.  We made sweet (Nutella) and savory (Ham & cheese, and chipotle cheddar) and they were all fantastic. puffle

2. Rosemary Sea Salt Soft Pretzels (I made these for the super bowl and they were a hit)


3. Braised Pork Belly (I added kale at the end, and used cider instead of beer.  I would cut the spice in half, but it was deeelicious)

4. Chicken Tikka Masala (subbed coconut milk for the heavy cream)

5. Moroccan Spiced Quinoa with Broccoli & Chickpeas (I like this better with cous cous, but it’s quick and hearty either way!)

5 things I am looking forward to

1. Our move to Norfolk, VA in April.  The temperature when I woke up this morning was –19, so I’m ready for some warmer temps.

2. Completing my practicum for my M.Ed during the month of March.  I will be working at a large medical center in the employee wellness department leading smoking cessation classes, shadowing for health coaching and assisting with focus groups.

3.  Eating dinner (ok, I look forward to this every night) tonight because I made corn chowder and it smells delicious.

4. My “food tour” of home before we move to Virginia.  On the list – Thai food, Indian food, brunch, and King Arthur Flour so far.

5. D’s command awards banquet at the end of March.

5 of my favorite exercises

1. Running!  #1 love

2. Body Pump.  This is my new “thing” and I am obsessed.

3. Yoga

4. Push-Ups

5. Spin Class

5 things on my wish list

1. A fully furnished house in Virginia (we had an arson incident 2 years ago and everything needed to be replaced).

2. A tortilla press (Darren got me one for Christmas, but it was only a 6” so we returned it.  We like to go big or go home with tortillas.)

3. A female black & white Newfoundland puppy!  Summit needs a girlfriend.

4. An air popper for popcorn to feed my popcorn addiction (and make me feel a little better when I pour melted butter over everything).

5. A day at the spa (complete with a massage, manicure, pedicure, waxing, hot tub, etc).

5 photos from my instagram feed

valentine Valentine’s from my school kiddos

 weather The really awesome weather we’ve had this week.

compass My newest Alex & Ani from work friends.

flashback Flashback – my brother and I in first and second grade.

summit The man and (one of) the dog.


Lately…I’ve been busy.  I have this crazy urge to write and blog and share my life, but at the same time, I picture these wonderfully photographed recipes and life events for blog posts, and I have no time for that.  That being sad, I started this blog over a year ago and I have posted in it exactly 15 times.  Depressing.  I recently started using HabitList though, and one of my goals is to write one blog post a week!  So, what’s been going on since April…

  • Our “puppy” is huge.  Summit is 10 months old and weighs 110 pounds! 
  • I spent the summer working as a 1:1 aide for a little guy with autism, and then started at a new school in September.  I really like my new school so far, even though my commute and hours are longer.
  • When we weren’t working, we spent the summer jet skiing and playing out on the boat, having campfires, enjoying nights out at trivia and
  • I’ve been cooking a TON – I even rendered my own lard from pig fat!
  • I finished my spring classes (4), took summer classes (2) and am almost done with my fall classes (2).  Only 2 more classes & a practicum left – so exciting!
  • My husband got orders for April to his new aircraft carrier.

And probably countless other things.  There’s too much to document between then & now to bother using photos in this post, really, but I promise I’ll be back soon, with something more exciting to share or a delicious recipe!

A Day in my Life: 4/1/14.

I used to write a daily blog.  I wrote about seriously mundane things, especially considering I was a touched too concerned with how much I was eating and exercising.  I have to say though, I enjoyed writing “day in the life” posts, mostly because I enjoyed reading them.  So, last Tuesday, I decided that I wanted to document a current day in my life.

5:35 – Wake up.  I injured my neck the previous Friday and it kept me up most of the night.  I let our dogs out, feed them, and bring them upstairs to my husband to snuggle.  I put in my contacts, put on SPF face lotion & mascara and brush my teeth.  I get dressed and go downstairs, very jealous of the three boys in bed!  I pack our lunches and make breakfast smoothies and tea.  I pull the crockpot dinner I prepped the night before out of the fridge and plug it in.

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6:15 – I leave my house to go to a chiropractor appointment.  He does some adjustments, acupuncture, and manual release of my  neck and shoulder muscles.  As I leave my appointment, I run into my dad heading in, which makes me smile.  Small town life.

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7:18 – I quickly stop at Wal-Mart and raid the toiletry department.  I buy Q-Tips, ibuprofen, deodorant, contact solution, band aids, and gum.

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7:40 – I’m at work and finally drinking my smoothie.  Today’s smoothie was organic milk, microwaved-then-frozen banana (my husband is allergic to raw bananas), almond butter (and he’s allergic to peanuts, which is sad because almond butter sucks), and ice.


8:00 – The kids arrive and I settle into work.  I work as a paraprofessional to a variety of kids, which is challenging, but rather enjoyable and a decent way to make money through graduate school.


10:10 – I eat snack, sliced cucumbers with chipotle hummus from Trader Joe’s.  I drink my 900th cup of tea.

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11:30 – Lunch Break!  I eat apples, pretzel nuggets and peanut butter in the car while driving home to let the puppy out.  My friend and I decide to give up added sugar for two weeks, so my lunch is a result of poor planning on day one.  No added sugar, but pretty lame!

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12:00 – Back at work for recess duty for the young’uns.  So glad spring is finally appearing.

2:45 – My (work)day is over, but after school program is just beginning.  We go outside for afternoon recess after snack and I head to the kitchen to snack on a banana and prep ingredients for the kids to make mini turnovers with pie crust and pie filling.


5:00-5:30 – I snuck out of work a few minutes early and went home.  I feed the dogs and let them out, feed and water our chickens, collect their eggs, start the dishwasher & a load of laundry, stir the crock pot, change and head back out the door with my yoga mat.  One of my very best friends wants to go to her first yoga class, so I take her to a gentle beginner class which was a glorious relaxing stretch.

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7:30 – Yoga is over and I head home.  Dogs go for a walk, laundry gets switched, dishwasher gets emptied, chipped nails get touched-up and I get to eat.  I made a chicken stew with chicken thighs, Guinness (leftover from St. Patrick’s Day), carrots, onion, mushrooms, and peas.  Leftovers are portioned into lunch containers for the fridge, and dishes get washed and put away.

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8:30 – I spend some time working on Summit’s training this week.  He goes to puppy class on Sundays and we get homework for the week.  He’s doing great with stay and leave it, which is this week’s work.


9:15 – I am exhausted and head to bed after one last trip outside with the dogs.  My husband got home around 11:00, but I didn’t even wake up!

Like most people, I don’t have a “typical”day, but this is pretty representative.  Obviously, I don’t have a doctor’s appointment most mornings, and unfortunately, my husband working late is pretty common!

30 Day Photography Challenge.

One of the things on my 26 by 26 list was to complete one of the 30 day photography challenges I’ve seen floating around the web.  I picked a random one I found on Pinterest and set off on January 1st.  Here is my IPhone adaptation. Smile


1. Self Portrait 2. What I Wore (Sorels!) 3. Clouds 4. Something Green

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5. After Dark 6. Obsession 7. Changes to Come 8. Routine

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9. Someone I Love 10. Childhood Memory 11. Something Blue 12. Sunrise

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13. Can’t Live Without 14. Eyes 15. Silohuette 16. A Good Habit

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17. Technology 18. Shoes 19. Something I Want 20. In My Bag

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21. Faceless Self Portrait 22. Inspirational 23. Pattern 24. Animal

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25. Strange 26. Close Up 27. Celebration 28. Flowers

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29. Black & White 30. Self Portrait

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26 by 26 Update–Month 1.

Hey! Just checking in with the one month status update on my 26 by 26 goal!  Five months to go until June 25th, but I made some progress this month for sure.  As a key, the strike out items are completed, the italic items are currently in progress, and the bold items are being planned.  Check out my comments in green!

1. Practice yoga weekly. I bought a 10 class pass and I’ve happily made it to yoga 4 times in the last three weeks.  I am LOVING it, and am so happy to be back on my mat.  I even bought a new, expensive mat (it was on sale!).

2. Travel to 4 countries. We are going on our honeymoon to Germany next month, so I am planning little side trips to Austria and Switzerland. 

3. Make bagels from scratch.

4. Schedule a professional photography session. We are doing this on our honeymoon, too!

5. Donate old clothes, time, and money. I donated 100$ in December to fundraisers for local people –one family’s house burned down and another had a family member diagnosed with cancer.  I have a bag of clothes to donate, but I would like to go through Darren’s clothes and my clothes one more time.

6. Go wine tasting.

7. Take a Ben & Jerry’s factory tour.

8. Get a massage. Booked for our honeymoon for both of us.

9. Order canvas print of Squam Lake from wedding photos.

10. Take Mom, Dad, and Mimi out to dinner.

11. Visit the Veteran’s home with Darren.

12. Host a dinner party.

13. Send 10 letters/cards by mail. I wrote thank you notes for wedding gifts and also some random “hello” notes to friends earlier this month. 

14. Make corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day (3.17.14).

15. Plan a 6 month anniversary surprise (5.9.14).

16. Go to a concert/show.

17. Make a craft.

18. Visit Hilary in Providence.

19. Go on a cupcake date.

20. Try homemade laundry detergent.

21. Make whoopie pies.

22. Complete a 30 day photography challenge. I am doing this for the month of January, so I will post in a few days when it is over!  It was fun!

23. Go to the Sandwich Creamery.

24. Have a technology free day.

25. Go for more walks and hikes with my husband.

26. Secret. Working on this!

I am having SO much fun with this list!  It’s fun to plan ideas and have activities to look forward to.  I am going to keep on planning yearly lists (they serve as goals and things to plan for!).

Do you set goals or make “bucket lists”?