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Friday's Letters


Friday, February 28, 2014

Dear Husband, We have 9 days until we head to Mexico.  I can't wait to get away with you for some sun, cocktails and adventure.  But that also means we must start getting everything in order...like buying me a new bikini.  Dear Car, I am so sad that I have finally listed you for sale after 8 years.  And maybe I should have priced you higher since you seem to be quite in demand.  Dear Walter, get ready for your life to be turned upside down with your mom and dad traveling way too much in March.  I am going to miss your cute little face.  At least I have a week to myself with you.  Get ready for lots of walks and time at the doggie park.  Dear Snow, please send even more our way so I can have some fresh powder turns this weekend.

Have a great weekend ALL!
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Run This Butt Off!


Thursday, February 27, 2014

Anyone who knows me, knows I love going to the gym.  When I was planning my wedding, the gym kept me sane, less stressed and fit for the wedding.  I wanted to look and feel my best, and I did.
 
But ever since I got married, I have had a love-hate relationship with the gym.  I want to go all the time, but my doctor suggests that I might want to still go as often, but tone down how hard I work out since I want to get pregnant and you need some body fat.
 
Here is what a typical workout week was for me:
 
Monday: Run for 30 mins, Stairs for 30 mins, Arms for 30 mins
Tuesday: Spin Class (1 hour)
Wednesday: Run for 30 mins, Elliptical/Walk/Stairs for 30 mins, Legs for 30 mins
Thursday: Spin/Total Body Class or Run 30 mins, Core 30 mins
 
I know that it isn't that crazy, but it got me in the best shape of my life.  I had muscles, tone and felt great about myself.
 
I still go to the gym at least three times a week plus snowboarding, hikes and walks mixed in there, but I am not as motivated as I was when I was planning my wedding.  But yesterday, I was on Ashley's blog, Married to the Game and she posted a couple new hellish treadmill workouts.
via Beat of My Own Run

 Since I NEVER do interval runs, I chose the second run.  It was the perfect balance.  It still made me sweat, feel like I was dying at the higher paces, but love it.  I then proceeded to do the stairs and some weights.  Now onto spin class tonight which is by far my favorite workout at the gym.

Any other workouts you suggest?  Any other interval training?
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Let's Talk Cake


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

I know this is pretty random, but I have been dying for some cake.  More specifically my wedding cake or Cake on Sunday's vanilla bean cupcakes.  Yes I am talking to you Stacey.  I want some cake and/or cupcakes!!!
 
This craving has been going on for weeks, and it usually hits me at work.  Go figure.  But by the time I get home, I don't want to bake, I am not sure if my old oven will bake said cupcakes really well and I don't want to eat a dozen if I do bake them at home.
 
You would think I was pregnant by my insane cake craving, but alas I am not.  I just read way too many bride blogs (still) and surf Pinterest too often to not see cakes ALL.THE.TIME.
 
This is how much I love cake...
Vanilla Bean Cupcakes via


My bridal shower cake made by Cake on Sunday.  This was vanilla cake with strawberries and I think strawberry cake with champagne.  I can't remember.  I do remember it tasting amazing!  And those vanilla bean cupcakes were from Stacey's bridal shower.  She baked them for her OWN shower and I am so happy she did.

My wedding cake.  I can't wait for my anniversary to have another top tier made by the lovely Sarah from Flour Girl Wedding Cakes plus the other flavors in cupcakes.  My bottom tier was vanilla bean cake with bavarian cream and strawberries.  Best decision ever.
Can you tell I love vanilla cake?  I would say it is a tie between vanilla (bean or regular) and funfetti as my favorite cakes.  Can someone please get me some cake?

But I don't just love cake, I love most desserts.  During wedding prep, I limited my desserts to once a week which was hard, but now that I am married, I may partake in dessert more often.  Especially when it comes to these babies.  MACARONS.
Macaron favors at my bridal shower.  I must have had 10 at my shower and took another 5 boxes home.  Don't judge.  I always look for macarons while traveling as Reno doesn't have the best selection.  If you make macarons, please feel free to send me some.  Please and thank you.

Basically, this post is very random and about my love of all things desserts...especially cake and macarons.  Now I must hit the gym for 5 hours, so I can eat all the cake and macarons I want tonight.
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My 1st Valentine's Day


Monday, February 24, 2014

This is a bit late, but better late than never, right?  I had an amazing Valentine's Day.  I got my hair done as I mentioned before (To Cut or Not to Cut).  I didn't cut it at all (next time I will get the micro-trim), but I added even more blonde highlights for Mexico.
 
That night we had reservations at Sodo.  It was really amazing.  I am going to bore you with the details, so skip ahead if you want to see the gifts.  We brought a bottle of wine since we had one set aside for a special occasion.  We shared the tempura tiger prawns with the most amazing wasabi sauce and their soup of the day which was a pumpkin soup with roasted poblanos and creme fraiche.  For entree's, I had one of their specials...dark chocolate and espresso short ribs with a parsnip puree and veggies.  My mouth is watering thinging about it.  I wanted to lick the plate clean.  It was that good!  My husband had the hanger steak with a balsamic soy marinate and chimichurri sauce and a poblano potato hash.  His was very good, but not as good as mine.  Since it was Valentine's Day, why not splurge and get two desserts?!  I had the cheesecake and it reminded me of the real deal New York style, not the west coast style that we often get here.  And let me tell you, I love cheesecake and eat it everyday while in New York, so I know a good cheesecake when I taste one.  Hubby got the creme brulee of the day.  Equally as good.
 
Dinner was a success and I was beyond stuffed when we finished.  My husband bought me flowers the day before Valentine's Day, so I could enjoy them a day more since I left to LA on the Tuesday after.
If you look towards the bottom, you can see my other gift.  These still smell and look great a week and a half later.  Well the roses and lilies do.

My husband also got me a ring from Coach.  Sadly, it was too small (the only size they had left), but I went to another Coach and got the bigger size.  He was super bummed because it was only 1/4 inch smaller than my engagement/wedding rings and the saleslady said it would still fit since they don't have half sizes.  I think he did a great job.
Rose gold with crystals.  Very unique style and I have been wearing it daily since.

I got my husband a new wallet with money clip since his was falling apart and he rarely uses his Ferragamo one (only special occasions).  He thought it may be too small, but I told him that it is the normal size and he doesn't need to carry around every gift card and punch card he has.  He can leave them in his car.  He has used it every since and loves it.

I think Valentine's Day was perfect for our first as husband and wife.  I can't wait for the next 70 plus years (yes we will live to be over 100).

How was your Valentine's Day?
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The Lost Week and Virginia City


It seems like I haven't posted in a long time.  I figured out that I am really bad at posting while I am traveling for work.  That is probably because after working in a foreign office all day, the last thing I want to do is get on another computer and blog.  I would rather go out and explore the new city I am in (sorry guys).

So I apologize for the lack of presence.  Last week I was in LA for work.  It was in the 70s all week and mostly sunny.  I call that a win.

I only managed to take two photos the entire trip and they were both similar.  After work, we walked from our hotel (in Marina del Rey) to Santa Monica.  While passing Venice Beach, I saw this artist painting and I loved his work.
The other photo is of his other paintings.  It is kind of hard to see, but there are a bunch of pieces of wood placed at different angles with murals on them.

I also managed to pick up a cheapo pair of sunglasses ($4), a super soft skirt and over sized sweater for Mexico.  Now I only need a new bathing suit or two, a few more sundresses and shorts to complete my Mexico wardrobe.  You can't go on vacation without new summer things.  That is what I keep telling my husband.  I am not so sure he is buying it.  But 13 days until Mexico!

After being gone all week for work, the last thing I want to do is anything other than sit on the couch and catch up on my TV shows.  But when the husband is cooped up all week, he wants to go out.  So I suggested we go to Virginia City for the day, and so we did.

Yesterday it was around 60 degrees there, but it felt like 70.  It was sunny, gorgeous and barely any wind.  We had breakfast at this little cafe (delicious chicken salad for me, an enchilada stack for my husband), bought beef jerky at a local shop, walked around the cute shops and went to the cemetery.  I swear it wasn't creepy.

Virginia City is one of Nevada's oldest towns.  It is an old silver mining town who at its boom had 15,000 residents.  Now its closer to 900ish.  I haven't been here since I was in high school for a field trip.  I remember going to the cemetery and rubbing gravestones.  That isn't allowed anymore, but still interesting to look around at how old the grave sites are, the history and the beauty out there.
It is hard to tell in this photo, but the cemetery is on a hill, so graves are located in random spots.
Virginia City

Some of the sights you will see while walking through are local gambling saloons, former "red light" districts, suicide tables (tables where people committed suicide over large gambling losses), shops, bars, churches and breweries.
 Old brick firehouse that is still in use
 Saloon (bar) with the "Red Light" museum
 Former bar/brewery (such a clever name for a bar)
Famous Bucket of Blood Saloon

We did hit up the local fudge shop and may have bought several goodies (fudge, caramels and bark).  It was a really fun and relaxing day.  We plan to go back up soon to take the old style vintage photos.  I have always wanted to do them and now I have someone to do them with.

How was your weekend?
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Happy Valentine's Day


Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!
 
I never shared my Valentine's Day nails.  I did share a glimpse on my Instagram, but now I want to share them in whole with you.  I was inspired off of Pinterest, and then let Lauren do her thang.  I love them.
Holding a delicious almond milk tea boba.
 
What do you think?  Did you get special Valentine's Day nails?

Venus Trapped in Mars
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To Cut or Not to Cut


As I mentioned before, I am getting my hair done on today. It is one of my favorite things to do for myself.  I always tell Marie that I wish she could blow dry and style my hair everyday.  No matter how hard I try, she always makes it feel smoother, softer, smell better and perfectly styled.  Aww if only I was rich.
 
I am in a hair dilemma (sort of).  I have been trying to grow my hair out since way before my wedding.  I want to have really long hair, but either I fry the ends or get tired of waiting it out.  I know you can use extensions and I have, but I can't use them everyday.  I have thin, easily breakable hair.
 
So while I want my long lucious locks like these...
  I also would love to change my hair up and get a long bob like these...
But alas, it is not in the cards for me just yet.  I will just play with the color (varying styles of blonde) for now.  Maybe after I have my first child, I will go for the shorter, easier to manage hair.  Until then, I will just dream because I know I will regret it if I chop my hair.  It is finally getting long, but it still has another 4 inches or so to go.

Have you made any dramatic hair changes lately?  Did you grow your hair out more after your wedding or go for the post-wedding chop?
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Happy Birthday Ashley!


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Today is a very special day.  It is my baby sisters 25th birthday.  Happy Birthday Ashley!
I wish I could bake you this cake in delicious funfetti as we both LOVE it so much.  But I am not that talented, so we can just imagine that I did.

I love you so much and hope you have an amazing day.  It has been my pleasure being an awesome big sister to you for the past 25 years.  Thank you for being my pain in the butt, my best friend, my shoulder, my partner in crime and the person who I could blame everything on when we were kids.  You have grown up to become a beautiful, independent and strong woman who I greatly admire.

I cherish all the memories we have made being sisters and I can't wait to share the next 80 years together.  Yes, we will both live to be well over 100!
My beautiful sister and I on my wedding day
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Valentine's Day


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

First off, an update...We have 25 days left until we leave on our Mexican vacation!  I CAN NOT wait!  But that also means, I must not slack on the gym.  Gotta have a bikini ready body in March.  That is the only not fair part.
 
Second, Valentine's Day is Friday.  What are you doing for your significant other?  What does Valentine's Day mean for you and your special someone?
 
I have never been the girl who gets excited about Valentine's Day.  Sure I have had my fair share of V-days with and without boyfriends.  But I always thought, why do you have to have one certain day made up by the industry to express your love for someone?  Why do you have to spend enormous amounts of money, time and effort on this one day because society says so?  Why can't you just tell your loved ones that you love them each day and pick random days to shower them with love, flowers and chocolate?
 
Now I am sure some might think I don't want to be a conformist.  And you are right to some degree.  But I just never cared about the day that much until I met my husband.  Now I love to celebrate the day.  It doesn't matter if you cook a delicious meal at home, go to a fancy restaurant or make a new tradition yourself.  Just make it your own.

My husband always does something special for me on Valentine's Day and he has definitely turned this cold, black Valentine's heart to a big red kissy heart.

This year we opted for a special "fancy" (but not too fancy) dinner out followed by an evening at a wine bar.  I love wine, so it's a total win for me.  I also got my husband a little gift (something he really needs).

It also happens that it is my "get my hair did" day, so I can't wait for her to spice it up and beautify me for the evening.

What are your Valentine's Day plans?  What are your expectation for Valentine's Day?
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Randomness Recap


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

This is my first day back in the office as we took a little impromptu Monday off.  We went snowboarding and I can say that my neck feels like a semi hit it.  But I think it was probably due to the lack of snowboarding this season (it was my second time due to no snow until this weekend), 39"-51" of fresh new powder and a little skier dude running into the back of me.
 
Before you get all up on me, I was wearing a helmet, but still smacked my head on the powder.  My head is fine, my neck hurts.  Boo me.  I know.  But it was an amazingly awesome day with powder to my thighs and the best workout ever.
 
Last night we wanted to make a delicious snowboarding recovery meal and we decided to make Eat, Live, Run's Simple Chicken and Sausage Paella.  She doesn't claim it is authentic, but super good, fast and easy to make.  Especially for a weeknight meal.  Well we made it yesterday and I can say both my husband and I approve.  So good and healthy.  He even requested me to make it again next week.  So do yourself a favor, and go to her blog and make it.
Simple Chicken and Sausage Paella via Eat, Live, Run
Other than that, I am just going to rest, try not to move too much and pin new Valentine's nails for this evening.  So expect a post on that later this week.

In other news, my husband and I made Poor Man's Turtles to bring into our office today.  It took every ounce of willpower to not eat these all up before bringing them in.  They have been a hit.

My husband made us several fires over the weekend and this was by far my favorite time this weekend.
Cuddling by the fire drinking Scribe Wine (their 2012 Pinot Noir is amazing!)

And last night we figured out our Halloween costumes about 8 months in advance.  This is huge since we never dress up or go out for Halloween anymore.  I have never gone out with my husband for Halloween.  I USED to go out all the time with my friends for it, but the hubby isn't much into Halloween.  Basically, I can't wait until Halloween this year!

Anything super exciting in your future?  Have you had Poor Man's Turtles before?
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Happy Birthday Miss April


Friday, February 7, 2014

Today is my best friend April's birthday.  So I must give her a little shout out...Happy Birthday April!  Thank you for being an absolutely amazing friend for more years than I can count.   Thank you for standing by my side at my wedding.   You are a life saver, and my wedding wouldn't have come together so seamlessly if you were not there to help.   You are beautiful, intelligent, kind and funny. I wouldn't be who I am today without you.
 
I love you more than words can say.  And even though you live so far away (ok only an hour and a half plane ride), a day doesn't go by that I don't think about all the amazingly fun times we have had over the years.
Cheers to your 31st (still crazy to think we are in our EARLY thirties) birthday!  I love you!
 
See you in just over a week!
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What A Day


Thursday, February 6, 2014

 This sums up how I feel today.  Please can it be 5 pm so I can go home and enjoy a fish bowl sized glass of wine?
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My Super Bowl Weekend


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

I think I am finally over the Super Bowl loss, even though my team wasn't even in it.  It was a boring game to say the least and I want to congratulate the Seahawks on their victory.  That being said, can we please bring on baseball season?
 
I had an amazing time at my families annual Super Bowl party.  I ate way too much food, watched all the cute commercials, watched the boring game and played with my almost two year old cousin's son.  He was just too darn cute.  Oh and I won some money from playing squares, so I call it a win for the weekend.
 
If you know me, then you know that I do love Peyton Manning.  I have been a fan of his since he played at Tennessee.  No I am not a bandwagoner.  No I don't care if his team wins all the time.  I just like to watch him play, so in honor of Peyton playing in the Super Bowl, I wore my old Colts jersey (don't hate, I have more Niner gear than you can imagine. I only have this one Manning jersey).  But I will say that I took it off before half time even started.
This was before the game even started.  See how happy I was then.

We had an amazing food spread.  This is only part of it.  Missing were the salmon, tri-tip, turkey, some desserts and other yummy stuff.  I got too busy eating to take anymore photos.  So just imagine what was there.
 This was only one table. We had a kitchen island full, the stove and counters were also full.  Now you can see why I was in a food coma ALL.DAY.LONG.
 The best spicy chili ever.  I may have had two bowls.
Delicious brownies.  I may have took two home and ate them for breakfast yesterday.

I did manage to go snowboarding this weekend.  It was my first time on the mountain all year long.  It was a lot of fun, but way over crowded.  Only half of the mountain is open due to the lack of snow, so it was a fight to not hit any beginners on the way down.  But I got 10 runs in, and it felt so good to be back on my board again.  Here is to hoping more snow is in our future.

The rest of my weekend was a blur.  How was your Super Bowl party?  Did your team win?
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Super Bowl Sunday and Oreo Fluff


Sunday, February 2, 2014

If you live under a rock, then you may not know that it is Super Bowl Sunday.  It is one of the best days of the year, and I can't wait to celebrate.
 
Soon enough, I will be elbow deep up in chips and dip, wings, little smokies, chili, meat and cheese trays and desserts galore.  I can not wait.  I will probably feel like a fat kid at the end of the day, but it will be worth it.
 
Almost every Super Bowl, I spend it at my parents house.  They have their annual party with more food and alcohol than one can imagine.  They are some friendly betting games and raffles to partake in.  Plus some awesome rivalries between friends and family.  This year, my dad's beloved Seahawks are playing against Peyton Manning's Broncos.  Not sure who to root for?  I will you a hint.  
 I will be cheering you on Mr. Manning.  Please oh please, let the Broncos win.  I hate the Seahawks, I hate Pete Carroll, and I hate Richard Sherman.  But I do like Russell Wilson (the only classy one). Shh don't tell anyone.

This year, I decided to bring Oreo Fluff to the Super Bowl party.  I have been bringing it to a lot of parties since I was introduced to it by Nikki at Chef In Training.  I changed mine up a bit since I couldn't find the exact pudding used.  Feel free to do the same. 
 
Oreo Fluff
 adapted from Chef in Training
Course: Dessert    Skill Level: Easy
 
INGREDIENTS
  • 1 (3.4 oz) box vanilla instant pudding (just the mix)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 (8 0z) container cool whip (thawed to room temperature)
  • 1 package Double Stuffed Oreos crushed
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
INSTRUCTIONS 
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together pudding mix and milk together for 2 minutes.
  2. Stir in Cool Whip, crushed Oreos and mini marshmallows.
  3. Store in the frig until ready to eat and serve. I store it for at least an hour to thicken up, but the longer the better.
  4. Serve and enjoy! I serve my fluff with Nilla Wafers (the best), but feel free to serve with additional Oreos, fruit or graham crackers.
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Closet Eating


Saturday, February 1, 2014

Today I thought I would talk about something that has been happening at work and it has kind of become a game for us (please don't judge us).  What am I talking about?  Closet eating.
 
I have a co-worker who is a closet eater.  I never noticed it before until I traveled with her.  When she eats and I am talking even at normal meals, she justifies her reasoning behind eating.  She makes it sound like it isn't ordinary to eat.
 
She makes up excuses saying she never has wine, but then proceeds to drink several glasses and says she ordered only one and that this isn't normal for her.  She proceeds to order a small entree after hemming and hawing over what to eat, only to eat something more later or when no one is looking. 
 
On Fridays, people will bring in donuts, cakes and other goodies.  She arrives later than others and sneakily comes to get something to eat.  That is never a problem.  The food is for everyone.  But less than 30 minutes later, she is back getting seconds.  Then a few minutes after that, thirds, forths and so on.  But she hides it.  You can go into her office and she sneaks it off the desk to make it seem like she never ate at all.
 
She tells everyone without anyone asking about how she is so fit, healthy and only eats small portions three times a day.  But then she eats like a crazy woman behind closed doors.  Nobody cares how much you eat, nobody cares how often or what you eat.  But to hide it and blatantly going around saying you never had a donut or goodie is too funny to pass up.  So some of my co-workers film her eating extravaganzas just to show and prove how much she eats.  The good thing is, they never showed it to her.  They probably will never even use it other than for entertainment.
 
It really is a problem for her and might even be an eating disorder of some sort.  Why would someone hide their closet eating?  Were they bullied about being too fat, too skinny or too fast of an eater when they were younger?
 
I find it odd to be a closet eater.  I am a very proud eater.  It just reminds me of the girl who eats a salad on a date and starves herself just to "look good".  Chances are if the guy likes you and you two become an item, he is going to see how much you eat, how often you eat and what you eat.  No sense on hiding your eating at all.  My guy friends always say they like when a girl eats.  Instead of getting a salad on your first date, get a steak or burger.
Please oh please, don't be a closet eater.  Everyone knows the truth.
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