I’m still here, I promise!

Hi friends!

Gosh, it feels like a year has gone by since I’ve had time to drop in. There is so much to update you on!

I’ll start with the obvious: school. It sucks up all my time, but I suppose that is always expected. I had my first calculus exam on Thursday and then this next week is going to be the week from hell because I have 4 exams. So all I ever do is study. Forget having a social life. I don’t even know what having a social life is. I don’t know what sleep is either. So it sounds like I’m just complaining so let me end this paragraph by saying despite all the stress and lack of free time, I am still enjoying being a student again!

The Bull’s season is officially over. We played up until game 5 of the last round of playoffs, so we were so close to making it back to the National Championship game! Now that I don’t have to work as much (I might still work every now and then if I’m needed) I can use tha time to study more! Yippee! That’s not true, I use that time to go see Vinnie. And Madelyne’s horse, Saint, is down here now which is super exciting! Of course Vinnie is a jerk to him, but still it’s great to have Saint there because it increases the chances that I get to see Madelyne! Both of our lives are crazy busy so I rarely get to see her. 1

My half marathon training has been going well! During the week I try and utilize my beginning jogging class as much as possible so that I don’t have to spend that much extra time running. So I will just stay on the track after to finish my runs on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I have been swimming at the Y on Saturdays as my cross training because I have fallen in love with it. My long runs on Sundays have actually been happening early Monday mornings at the Y… I need to change that because soon since i won’t have enough time to fit it in on Mondays due to the runs getting longer! I also have a really bad shin splint in my right leg. It hurts all the time. So I have been trying to ice it a lot.

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Some big news: I turned twenty one on Tuesday! I didn’t do anything special. I had class all day and then cooked dinner for my parents and I. I made tostadas which were delicious. Thursday night I ended up going to this place called City Beverage, which was totally awesome and I am definitely going back, with Bryan, Casey, and Justin (her husband). It was a lot of fun and it was a good way to relax after having my calculus test earlier that day! I ordered a Sea Dog Wild Blueberry beer and it was delicious. But… I didn’t get carded! What in the world, right!?

My meals have been really repetitive. I have overnight oatmeal pretty much every morning for breakfast. For lunch I typically have a turkey sandwich or chicken salad and pretzels, usually with an apple and carrots. My snacks are usually Greek yogurt and a KIND bar. Then for dinner it varies a little, but most nights it’s meat, roasted veggies and then I have a potato. We have been trying to add more variety by getting back to meal planning though! About a week and a half ago my parents went up to PA to help out my grandma, Baba, since she had a procedure done on one of her eyes, and while they were gone I got a little creative for my lunch and dinner one day. I used leftover pork tenderloin and made Asian pork and broccoli! So good! I had it for lunch and dinner that day, just because it was convenient for taking to work. And maybe also because it was just that darn good! So I knew in advance I would want to share this recipe so here it is friends! Apologies in advance for lack of quality of the pictures- lighting wasn’t the best. And I don’t have fancy plating to display the final product haha.

Simple Asian Pork and Broccoli 

Over medium high heat, add sesame oil to a large skillet. Once warmed, add the garlic, ground ginger and the red pepper flakes.

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Once the garlic is heated through and all the flavors look pretty well blended, add the leftover pork tenderloin to the skillet. Of course, you could add uncooked or leftover meat of any kind, such as chicken or beef. I’ve used my recipe for this before with chicken and it was delicious! Add about half of the sauce mixture to the skillet along with the pork. Let this cook down a little, until the meat is warmed through.

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Next, throw in all of your veggies and give them a stir. Pour in the remainder of the sauce and stir again.

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Cover with a lid and let the steaming action work its magic.

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Stir occasionally and cook until the veggies are at your desired tenderness!

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Serve over rice or quinoa. I went with quinoa this time since it cooks faster! Makes two kick-ass servings.

Ingredients:

  • 45g carrots, thinly sliced lengthwise (about half a serving/small handful)
  • 3 servings of broccoli (it is called pork and broccoli after all)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 70g onion, chopped/sliced/diced/carved into a scary face
  • 6oz leftover pork tenderloin, sliced into thin pieces (mine was grilled and then I trimmed the crispy edges off-but you might want to keep em’)
  • dash of ground ginger
  • few shakes of red pepper flakes (shake n’ flake. Yeah? Anybody?)

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce (still more than enough sodium)
  • 1/2 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

Whisk this sauce like crazy! Get that cornstarch mixed in there.

So that’s it for this update! I am off to make my breakfast before I go to the barn with Madelyne. I am in for a busy day today! Maybe I will stop in tomorrow to post about my Saturday because I am sure I will need a break from studying, but I know I am not reliable so no promises haha!

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Quick catch up!

Hello all! So I keep doing this… I promise to write more (remember when I used to post daily?) and then I totally break my promise! I have just had so many things on my mind and whenever I get the free time to write, I end up going to the barn or just being too exhausted to do anything that requires brain power haha.

A few physical activity updates:
-I completed my first week of training for the Raleigh City of Oaks Half Marathon! 11 Weeks to go! I am using Hal Higdon’s Novice 1 half marathon training plan and I love it so far. I enjoy having a cross training day and specific distances for the runs instead of a time run. My pace varies so much that if I was told to go run 45 minutes, I might get the workout that was intended, or I could be going slow and not go the proper distance to have an impact on my training. So I love this plan.
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-I am doing a mini triathlon with Casey and Bryan this Sunday. It is a 200m swim, 5 mile bike and 1.5 mile run. It’s just a baby one but it will still be a really good challenge! I have been practicing my swimming and I have to say, I really do enjoy swimming even though I am AWFUL! Casey and I have been trash talking each other non stop lately. She wants to beat me so badly! I am really excited for it. This little challenge should be a blast. I am probably going to catch the triathlon bug.
-I think I am going to tryout for club volleyball at UNC. I have been missing volleyball like crazy and I think it would be a great way to meet new people and make new friends. Tryouts begin a week from Wednesday!

I have been working at the Bulls a decent amount the past few weeks. It is sad that some of the people have left to go back to school, but there are still a few that will be there till the end of the season since they go to school in the area.

I took care of the horses for a few days while Renee, Marty and William were at the beach. I also got to pug sit Frisco! She was so adorable! 14

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Let’s see… What else is there to share… I went to Fall Fest last night and got information on club volleyball and FLO Foods. I saw a few people I knew so that was nice to talk to familiar faces and not be a loner! I wanted information on the club equestrian team, but their booth was already packed up. Today I drove over to Chapel Hill and found my parking area. I park off campus and use the Park and Ride system. The bus wasn’t awful. I got to where I needed to be. I bought my books and went to find where my first two classes are located. I have four classes tomorrow: organic chemistry, beginning jogging, intro to rock music and calculus. It is going to be a long day of class followed by a night of work at the Bulls!

A few of my eats from the last few days:1

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Here are some SUPER TASTY quinoa recipes that I have tried. Sharing upon request 🙂
http://damndelicious.net/2014/06/23/quinoa-chicken-parmesan/
http://www.fusionmedstaff.com/fusion-news/healthy-eats-monday-chicken-enchilada-quinoa-bake/

Well, I am off to get everything prepared for my long day tomorrow! Hope you all have been doing well!

Ready for the weekend!

Hello everyone! How has your week been? Mine has been busy, busy, busy. Ok, maybe it hasn’t been that busy, but I feel like it has been just because in my free time I have been doing chemistry work as preparation for my organic chemistry class in the fall.

On Tuesday night I did have a girl’s night with Madelyne! We had a very low key evening and went to bed early, but it was still nice to spend time with her. We made a delectable dinner! Quinoa topped with chicken, red peppers, onion, mushrooms and spinach in a Thai red curry sauce. Yumm! Is it just me or do white plates make food look fancier?1

The next day I spent a good bit of time at my mom’s school working on my chemistry assignments. I went to Whole Foods to pick up a quick lunch.2

For dinner I wanted to cook my parents a wonderful dinner because they took me to the car dealership and I test drove a new Jeep Patriot (which is now mine! YAYAYAYAY!) so it was the least I could do. I made quinoa crusted baked chicken parmesan. It was incredible. I was so pleased that it formed a nice crisp outside. The fresh basil really tied it all together as well! So good!3

Thursday morning I woke up early and went for a quick run. It’s hard to tell in this picture but the sun rise was beautiful!4 5 My mom and I carpooled since I didn’t have my Jeep yet, so I dropped her off at her school and went to Raleigh to meet Liz at The Flying Biscuit. She was in the area just for the day so we took the opportunity to have breakfast together since I don’t know when we will be able to see each other again. They bring you these amazing biscuits with apple butter as you wait for your meal to come. I ordered the Hollywood omelet with fresh fruit and it was so good! 6 7

I had to be at work at 1 yesterday and then there was a double header. I got off work at midnight and then came home and had a little snack before going to sleep. 

Today I worked 9-5 so I had another long day. But, today is my sister’s 23rd birthday! I really wish I could celebrate with her but instead I got nostalgic by looking at old pictures of us haha. 8 9 10

 

Hope everyone has a good weekend! I am working both days so I am going to be relishing those moments of free time! 

I’m baaaaacccckkkk

Hi everyone! So I’m guilty… i don’t even remember the last time I posted an update! I’m so sorry that I fell off the face of the planet. But I am back now! 

So I have been having a pretty low key life lately. I had my weekend trip to Boone and I had a great time! It was so nice to see people I haven’t seen in ages. The last time I saw some of them I was really sick and unhealthy, so it was nice to see them when I was back in my true body. I just felt so much better! It was a little strange being in Boone, but it still felt familiar. A few pictures from my trip:8 7 4 3 2 1 5 6

After I got back from Boone I spent the week alone at home since my parents went back to Baltimore. I got to relax a lot and I took care of the horses for a few days while Renee took G to a show. A few pictures from the week:9 10 11 12 13

It’s official! Madelyne now lives down here! I am so excited to have her down here. She came down on friday with my aunt and uncle and then we all helped her move into her apartment on Saturday. Before we met at her apartment my mom ran her first ever 5k! We did the I Am Too Sexy 5k in Durham and we had a blast! My dad even went to support us. I beat my goal of finishing under 28 minutes at about 27:32 and I also just happened to be the second woman to finish! My mom also beat her goal and came in at around 42 minutes. I was so happy for her!14 15 16 17 18

We spent the rest of the day with the family. On Sunday I made a delicious breakfast featuring the jalapeno bread my parents brought back from the amish market. Yumm! I fed the horses and then came home and then my dad helped me to work on my bed frame. We worked on it for a longgg time and I was so glad to have it done! We had to take a trip to Lowe’s but then we finished it up. The frame ended up being a little bit big for the mattress and we noticed a few small mistakes that we made, but I still think it looks great and I am so happy with it!19 20 21 22

Today I went back to work for the first day since before Boone! I had been in briefly in the mornings last week, but not to actually work. So today was my first scheduled day and it felt good to be back. My mom and I went to the gym after I was done with work and we had a great workout. My dad cooked up a great dinner and now we are all just hanging out enjoying our night. Hope you all have been doing well! I will definitely do a better job of doing my blog posts in the days to come! 

Weekend Recap!

Hi guys! This weekend has kind of been a lazy one. It probably wasn’t wise of me but I tried to take a break from studying my head off so I can really bunker down for these last few days of Biology. I feel like I meant to do a lot of things this weekend, but my mind just needed a time out haha.

Saturday:

I had granola with almond milk and berries for my breakfast and then went on a little hike at the Waterfall Trail! IMG_3533

I walked through countless spider webs but it was worth it. I enjoyed the peaceful time outdoors by myself.1 2 3 4 5

For lunch I had another meatball panini with a few other things. IMG_3536

I pretty much did nothing the rest of the afternoon. Well, that’s a lie. I did do a little bit of homework. I finished all my online assignments, but I didn’t do much studying other than that. I had mini pitas and trail mix for my snack and then I headed out to the barn. IMG_3538

I had a great time with Vinnie. He was really antsy standing in the aisle, but once I started riding him he was fine. He was actually nice to Cookie when she was in the arena. Murdock was sleeping in a funny spot. I guess I just felt like taking pictures of the barn cats haha.6 7

For dinner I made chicken with green beans and potatoes, seasoned with a mixture of spices so they were super yummy.IMG_3541

I didn’t do anything else. No wild saturday night for this girl haha. I had my snack and went to bed around midnight.

Today:

I slept in again and it was amazing! I did my crossword puzzle before having a repeat for breakfast.IMG_3543

After my breakfast settled I went on a much needed run! I just went slow and steady today. It was humid out! 8

I was actually good about having my post-run chocolate milk 🙂IMG_3544

I did a few chores around the house before having yet another repeat meal. I made the same thing for lunch that I made for dinner on Saturday. Plus some juicy grapes! IMG_3545

The rest of the day I was honestly really lazy. I watched a lot of TV and played a lot of sudoku. I had mini pitas and trail mix again for my snack. 

Madelyne made it from PA this evening! She got here a little after 6 and I am so happy that she’s here! 

I watched more TV until it was time to make dinner. I got super creative and made chicken and broccoli. It turned out really well and tasted like it came from an actual chinese restaurant! I didn’t even follow a recipe so I was pretty stoked. I served it over brown rice and it was delicious. IMG_3546

Well, that was pretty much my weekend! I am going to have a super busy week finishing up with class and then working, so I don’t know when I will be back to do my updates! Hope you had a good weekend! And have a wonderful week! 

ONE MORE WEEK!

After today I have one more week of Biology left! I am so glad to be finishing it up. I had my test this morning and I think it went really well. I was worried because last night was the All Star Game (the store did amazing!) and so I had very little time to study. I managed to get some done yesterday before going in to work and then this morning when I got to campus. This week was just super stressful. But I survived! I made a 92 on my Bio Lab final so I was very pleased with that. Now I only have one week separating me from the end of the summer session. My lecture final is next Thursday. Bring it on!

I desperately wish that the final was today because then I could go to the Outer Banks with my parents tomorrow. They are going to be there for 10 days! Not fair 😦

Back to today though. After my test this morning I went to my mom’s school. She wasn’t back from her meeting yet so I decided to go run the Duke Wall. I feel so weird now… I’m going to UNC and I’m spending time at Duke… Anyways, it was a good run. I did two laps around the wall for a total of 3.3 miles.

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My mom was back from her meeting when I returned so I talked to her, Amber, Dave and Matt for a few minutes before heading home.

I relaxed for a bit before making black bean and cheese “chimis” for lunch. Complete with a side of veggies with guacamole and some grapes.

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After lunch I headed out to the barn to see Vinnie! It was a beautiful day out so I wanted to take advantage of that and my free time. I gave him a good brushing before taking him up to the arena.

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We had a long, slow and easy ride. I didn’t want to push him too hard and make him super sweaty because I only wanted to lightly hose him off. Yes, I care about Vinnie’s coat. I feel like I have been hosing him off thoroughly too much and I think it was stripping the natural oils away making it appear a little dry. Nothing wrong with wanting him to stay super shiny haha. I still worked him a decent amount! Then he was putting his best poses out there, hoping it would make me give him more treats. Such a show off.

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Now I am going to go fix myself a little snack! I still can’t believe I only have one more week of class left! It is making me more and more excited for the fall semester!

Hope your week has been going well!

Challenge: LaPlace

Hello, hello! I figured I would drop in quickly before I kick start my all day study session.

Yesterday I had to work at the Bulls from 9-5 because it was Fan Fest for the All Star Game. Tons of people came to the park to take tours and do batting practice. We weren’t super busy in the store but we did a decent amount of business. After work I came home and was shocked by how much work my parents did around the house. My mom fixed up my bedroom and the guest bedroom and they look incredible now! My dad worked on the front porch and got a lot done as well. So to thank them I drove them out to dinner. It was my choice, but you know me, I can’t make a decision to save my life. We let the flip of a coin decided if we were going to go in to Durham or Hillsborough. The coin decided on Hillsborough. I was glad that the coin decided Hillsborough. There aren’t any chain restaurants in the downtown area, meaning I can’t look up the nutritional data of the food so I can make a safe choice. Before we left the house my dad mentioned going to Brier Creek so we could go to Dicks Sporting Goods and then we could just go to dinner somewhere over there. I knew there was an Applebee’s over there so I looked at the menu online and then looked at the nutritional content to make sure what I wanted was acceptable. In doing that I realized that I am only concerned about one thing when eating out. I was only looking at the amount of fat in each dish. I didn’t care about the amount of protein or carbs that were in a certain meal. So I found that very interesting. So I was glad that we went to Hillsborough. It was a true challenge and I tried hard not to let myself worry about the nutritional value of the food!

Once we got to Hillsborough (they have the cutest downtown, FYI) we walked around a little to explore the options. Again, it was totally up to me where we went. I narrowed it down to two places and then deiced on LaPlace because it would be something completely new and different for all of us. It was also going to be a reallyyy good challenge for me! I decided to order something on the menu that actually sounded really good to me. But let me back up a minute. This place was freaking adorable.1

2 To start we had boudin balls (I think that’s what they were called?) made with rice, pork and andouille and then fried. They were served with a spicy mustard and pickled onions and HOLY BOUDIN BALLS they were good.4 My mom ordered a new beer and she raved about it, so if you are a beer drinker, try this:3
For my entree I ordered crawfish etouffee. I remember Mary telling me about crawfish etouffee from her trip to New Orleans, so I decided to give it a try! Plus I was really in the mood for shrimp, and crawfish was close enough! I was in heaven… crawfish etouffee is pure deliciousness.5 It was so filling and satisfying. I succeeded in not ruling out certain things on the menu and I ordered something I really wanted to try! Yippee!
We had such a fun time at this restaurant. If that is what food is like in Louisiana I wouldn’t mind taking a trip there haha! It seemed to be very authentic: they made all of their sausages and they had a good variety! We decided we would go back there.

This morning I tried to sleep in a little but was rather unsuccessful. I migrated out to the living room and just relaxed and did the crossword puzzle until my mom was awake. Then we got ready and went outside for a run! We both worked up a good sweat. I went 4 miles and I think my mom went about 2.6. I am so proud of her! Close to the end I jogged beside her for a little bit to give her support, but I don’t think she needed it! 6

After our run we came inside and I made myself a quick breakfast. I made a pico egg and spinach bagel-wich with a side of berries and a chai latte. Yum! IMG_3518

Well, I guess I have put off studying long enough… I figured I would reward myself this evening with a break from studying so I can go see Vinnie! Hope you are having a wonderful weekend! Enjoy the rest of it 🙂