Friday Favorites: 11/21/14

Whew. Friday. Yes!!

I have to work this weekend but looking forward to movie night tonight, grocery store shopping to stock up for Thanksgiving dinner and snuggling in front of the fire.

Here are my favs from this week. .. feel free to play along in the comments or by linking up!

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#1. RunEatRepeat IG account  –> OMG hilarious-ness.

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And are we friends on Instagram?? Smile 

#2. The newest Advo product. 

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White Chocolate Peppermint Meal Replacement Shake. I know, right? Drool.

#3. Spark!!

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I have been drinking spark on a regular basis for 6+ months now and I LOVE it. I couldn’t imagine my day without it. I start pretty much every day with one. I will drink a second one in the afternoon at work sometimes if I need some extra energy to get through my afternoon or to help avoid all the treats in the break room.

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I will otherwise have a second one before/during/after my workouts. Usually with teaching bodypump after work, I mix up a full blender bottle (24 ounces) and drink about 1/3 before my workout, 1/3 while teaching and the last 1/3 afterwards. It gives me the perfect amount of energy and hydration to get through my afternoon, teach and get home! 

#4. Les Mills Good Protein Energy Balls.

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OMG love. Like so so so good. The chocolate ones are like a chocolate dream and the vanilla has a great flavor and pairs so great with the peanut butter. I have been eating them for breakfast and afternoon snacks. Delicious. Super glad I made a double batch last weekend. Winking smile 

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And the wonderful people at Les Mills have offered an amazing giveaway. One lucky R4C reader will win two pouches (1 of each flavor) of LES MILLS™ Good Protein, valued at $140 USD! 

Awesome, right?

**Just leave a comment below telling me how you would use this amazing protein powder. To fuel before a workout? Energy balls? Saturday morning protein pancakes? 

The contest closes at midnight on November 25, 2014 and I’ll announce the winner shortly after. If I don’t hear from the winner within 48 hours, I’ll pick someone new.

Good luck!

If you don’t want to wait to see if you’ve won the giveaway, you can buy Les Mills Good Protein here. For more nutritional information and resources, check out this page.

Linking up with Heather and Claire this week!

Have a great weekend! What are you up to??

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I mustache you some questions

Hi guys! Happy Thursday!!

There’s this fun little survey circulating the blog world right now, and since Kim nominated me, I thought it’d be fun.

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Four names that people call me, other than my real name:
KT – my initials – but also my name. Smile
Boo – Scott
Momma – Lukie

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Dr. Thompson – my patients

Four jobs I have had:
Physician

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McDonald’s employee – I did it all but really liked working the drive thru.
Lifeguard and Water Swim Instructor
Babysitter

Four movies I’ve watched more than once:
A Few Good Men <—huge early Tom Cruise fan. Smile
The Firm
Pretty Woman
The Fugitive

Four books I’d recommend:
Check out my most recent Reading Recommendations Post

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Four places I have lived:
St. Paul, MN
Maplewood, MN
Eau Claire, WI – for undergrad at UWEC
Des Moines, IA – medical school

Four places I have been:
St. Lucia – honeymoon

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Maui, HI

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Las Vegas

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Cuernavaca, Mexico – study abroad in College

Four places I’d rather be right now:
At the beach
Hanging out at my best friend’s house in Colorado
Taking a nap in my bed
Anywhere that it’s warmer than 50 degrees – it is just too cold in MN right now!

Four things I don’t eat:
Mushrooms
Beans
Peas
Veal

Four of my favorite foods:
Pizza
These chocolate chip cookies
Special K bars
Blueberries

Four TV shows that I watch:
Survivor
Amazing Race –> yup, reality show junkie
Top Chef
The Blacklist

Four things I am looking forward to this year:
The Holidays
Celebrating Christmas with Lukie

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Winter vacation – not sure where yet – just someplace warm!
New BODYPUMP music coming out – 92!!

Four things I’m always saying:
Seriously. . .
Go Pack Go

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Lukie. . . in my “you better stop doing that right now” voice
I love you bud. (to Lukie)

Four people I tag:
Becky
Kelly
Ashley
Kate

Linking up with Amanda today for Thinking Out Loud!!

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Les Mills good protein powder {review}

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Good Protein is low carbohydrate, dairy-based protein powder, sweetened with stevia leaf extract. It contains the same ratio and types of proteins found in real milk, whey and casein. Whey gives a fast release of amino acids, and casein provides a slower release over several hours. Together, they provide optimum muscle recovery. Les Mills Good Protein is protein as nature intended.

So, I am pretty much a protein powder newbie. Yup, you all know how much I love AdvoCare’s post-workout recovery – but honestly, I just usually use that for energy balls (either this recipe or this one.) And I have never really drank protein powder or used it in anything else. Also, as you guys know, protein powder is spendy! Unfortunately, this protein powder is too – each pouch costs $69, and there are 30 servings in each. . . but honestly, I am willing to spend the money for a great product. And this one only has 6 ingredients. How amazing is that?

Just opening the bag, you can tell this powder is GOOD. The smell is wonderful. The chocolate smells like a chocolate bar and the powder looks nice and fluffy. Same with vanilla. Pure vanilla flavor. No artificial or fake anything.

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Of course I tried them first in my favorite energy balls.

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–> OMG great flavor. The chocolate made the balls really chocolaty and helped when I was craving leftover Halloween candy. And the vanilla was the perfect complement to the peanut butter –  it almost made me think that I had made these with vanilla almond butter!

and then in my favorite smoothie  concoction –> almond milk + banana + chocolate protein powder

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–> LOVED this one. The chocolate was super yummy. The powder made my smoothie super thick so it was like drinking a chocolate banana milk shake.

I really want to try protein pancakes next. I have this recipe to check out:

3 eggs whites
scoop of powder
almond milk

The highlights of Les Mills Good Protein

  • 26 grams of protein and 120 calories per serving.

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  • There are only six simple ingredients, nothing artificial

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  • Milk protein concentrate (whey and casein proteins from the milk of grass-fed cows)
  • Stevia leaf extract
  • Natural flavors
  • Guar gum
  • Salt
  • and the last ingredient depends on your flavor of choice – chocolate protein contains cocoa powder and vanilla protein contains natural vanilla flavor with real vanilla.

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What’s your favorite protein powder? Favorite way to use protein powder??

*This post was sponsored by Les Mills. But as usual, all opinions are my own.

I am linking up with Peas & Crayons for What I Ate Wednesday this week!!

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TYT#16 – Garth Brooks!

Last Friday, I had the day off work and so I used it to have a great treat yourself day. . .

started with a 5k run.

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Then (after my post-run spark), picked up Caribou for the drive up to the cities.

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I dropped Luke and Abby off with my Mom.

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And hit up Chipotle. Picked up lunch for Melanie and I. And then I got my new baby fix. Her little boy is the most precious baby. And it was so wonderful to see and catch up with Melanie – she is doing amazing as a new Mom!!

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Then off to the Mall of America. Being alone was wonderful.

Browsing at Sephora.

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Having time to try things on. . . and finding new pink! lulu shorts.

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And a little afternoon shopping treat. The cupcakes looked yummy, but I was in a turtle cookie mood. Totally hit the spot. . .

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Then, it was off to meet with my friends (actually Scott’s group of friends from high school, that I feel lucky to call my friends now too), for dinner – Hell’s Kitchen. The juicy Lucifer with tater tots. For the locals – not as good as the juicy Lucy at the 5-8 club, but still yummy.

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And then time for the main attraction. . . GARTH BROOKS!!

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He puts on a great concert! So many amazing songs. And with SO many people at the Target Center, you could pretty much sing at the top of your lungs and no one could hear you.

So, it was basically like Garth and I were singing together. Winking smile 

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Such a fun day!! Thanks again to my Mom and Dad for chasing after Luke all day. Smile 

Linking up with Becky for TYT  – thanks for hosting!!

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Weekend Update: 11/16/14

First things first, happy birthday to my big sister, Jenny! Hope you have a great day!

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We had a great weekend. . . lots of hanging out and family time.

Ice cream cones at lunch.. . and Luke’s idea for ice cream cone cheers.

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Post-nap couch snuggles.  . . which turned into more napping.

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Movie night. Scott picked Despicable Me. Such a cute movie. Plus the obligatory popcorn – skinny pop for the win. That stuff is the best!

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Plus Special K bars. Smile 

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Pancakes for breakfast on Sunday morning. My first attempt at a free form Mickey Mouse pancake.

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Plus learning the skill of cutting with a knife and fork.

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Then, time to shovel/play in the snow. .  in 5 degrees. I think Luke was wearing 4 layers!

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6 miles on the treadmill. Checking out a new show – Royal Pains. It’s cute. Winking smile 

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Awesome afternoon of football. go Pack go!!

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And an even more awesome crockpot meal for dinner – maple dijon chicken drumsticks.

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And then couch time with season 3 of Once on Netflix + leftover Halloween Oreos for dessert. btw – have you tried the cookie dough Oreos??  whoa yum!

Hope you had a great one! What were you up to?

And because it was pretty marvelous, I am linking up with Katie for Marvelous in my Monday!

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Friday Favorites: 11/14/14

Whew. Friday. Thank goodness.

I have the day off from work and I am super excited to have a lunch date with Melanie and her new beautiful baby boy! Of course I am going to bring her one of her favorite treats – Special K bars. Smile And then tonight – the GARTH BROOKS concert! Yup. Super excited.

Here are the things that made me smile this week. . .

–> teaching BODYPUMP + new workout shirt from Reebok (bonus points because it’s a Les Mills tank!)

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–> Smoothies + helpers. Luke loves to help me make smoothies in the morning. We make one for Mom, Dad and Lukie. This week I’ve been adding in the new Les Mills Good Protein powder. Full review coming next week – but spoiler alert – everything you’ve heard so far is true, it’s awesome!

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–> Girl talk time. Peggy (who lives in Colorado) was randomly in town this week for a convention. Thankfully she had a few hours on Wednesday night for us to sit and chat. SO nice to see her!

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–> AdvoCare Meal Replacement Shake mug cake. Have you tried this? So good and so simple. Easy, quick, complete breakfast.

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Step 1: put shake mix into mug. add 1/4 cup water.  Step 2: mix.

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Step 3: put in microwave for about 75 seconds.

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Step 4: serve with a spoonful of almond butter.

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–> puppy kisses.

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–> long runs on the treadmill.

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–> cool down buddy. Seriously he thought the treadmill on the slowest setting was the most fun. And his giggling was hilarious.

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*no toddlers were harmed in the taking of these pictures. Winking smile 

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–> these posts:

The natural sugar halo from Kim
Transformation Tuesday: I’m calling bullshit from Carly
Help! What do I do? I’m a runner/BODYPUMP-er/sorer than I’ve ever been… from Becky   (psst – I have the same bundles on my AdvoCare site too)

Alright, off to get ready to go. . .

Have a great weekend!!

Linking up with Heather and Claire this week!

Fri_Favs

What are your favorites from this week? What are you up to this weekend?

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BODYPUMP 91 review

So, as you all know, I am a Les Mills BODYPUMP instructor and I teach at least twice per week at the local Mankato YMCA. If you aren’t familiar with BODYPUMP, check out my “what is bodypump? post.” And find a class near you.

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Every quarter, Les Mills puts together new moves and music for the latest release.I think that it almost always takes me a few times of doing a new release before I really love it. Now, there is usually a song or two that just aren’t my favorite for whatever reason. . . but overall, I really have enjoyed all the releases so far.

I took my training on BODYPUMP 84. Since then, I have learned the releases since then – 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, 90, and now 91. (Other reviews here) I also have learned 80, 82 and 83, since some other instructors at the YMCA had those training DVDs.
 
So, here are my thoughts on the very latest release. . .
 
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#1: Warm up  - “Ten Feet Tall”

This song is more low key than most warm up songs but I love it. Great message and it really builds to the end. We use the bar + plates which changes it up from just the standard bar. Love it.

#2: Squats. Song – “Somebody Told Me”

LOVE this one!! Tons of singles, which are a total killer but kick butt (literally). The song is catchy and the timing is spot-on. Transitions from one set to the next are QUICK – so very little rest throughout the whole track which keeps your quads on fire. One of my favorites.

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# 3: Chest – “Goodness Gracious”

You use plates in this track for the A-press. Two breaks for pushups. The combo of both are a real burner. I don’t love A-press, so I miss the bar but it is a great chest workout. The song is a bit mellow for my taste, a little harder to get into the beat and really kill it.

#4: Back – “Beautiful Life (Mikkas Remix)”

Standard back track – deadlifts, deadrows and clean & presses. It’s nice to have a bit of a change up with 3 clean & presses with 1 deadrow for recovery. It makes the heart rate skyrocket and then stay high throughout the song.

#5: Triceps – “Hey Brother”

I want to love this one. But I don’t. I really like the song. But the timing is just a bit off for me to really get into it. Transitions are quick. It’s a great triceps workout without using the bar – overhead presses, pushups, triceps kickbacks, triceps dips. I like to have my class focus on the elbows to really get the isolation into the triceps. Elbows straight back during triceps dips. Elbows in narrow during overhead presses. Elbows in close to the body during pushups and elbow high and parallel to the floor with kickbacks. Feel the burn!

#6: Biceps – “Bad Company

Super challenging bicep track. You use the bar and it’s deceiving at first because it starts off slow with lots of shoulder rolls, but then it builds into singles with mid-range pulses and those arms are burning by the end. I don’t love the song – a little too rock for me.  But whatever makes the guns bigger, right?

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#7: Lunges – “Find You”

The lunge track is interesting because you only use one plate to do plated front squats, plated squat with press, and plated lunges. While I like using plates, it’s hard to increase your weight, compared with using the barbell. The song is a bit mellow and slow, but it makes you think about the moves and really feel the burn. Also, the timing is a bit tricky, but once you get it, it’s good.

#8: Shoulders – “Eat Sleep Rave Repeat (Calvin Harris Remix)”

LOVE LOVE LOVE. The song, the moves, this track is awesome. The timing is spot on. The song is fun and the lyrics make me laugh. There is dancing (“I’m just dancing”). Smile The shoulders are on fire right from the beginning with upright rows and top halves. Then, adding in the plates for the second half with side raises, rotator raises, and pec dec presses.

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#9: Core – “Trumpets”

I really like this song. It’s catchy and fun. Standard core work with crunches, oblique twists and side hover. There is a great side hover pulse that really hits the obliques = awesome targeted training.

#10: Cool down – “Burning Bridges”

I don’t love this song but by this time of the workout, I am just happy to be done and to have a chance to stretch out and check in with my class. I use this time to remind them about hydrating, taking care of their bodies, and thinking about prepping for next class and how to take BP to the next level.

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This release had some hits and misses for me, but overall, I liked it and think that it is a GREAT full body workout.

Looking for another BP91 review? Check out Annette’s!

Have you done BP91? What did YOU think??

Linking up with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud!

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TYT#15–Madison!

Last weekend, Scott and I took a quick overnight trip to Madison, WI.

And thanks to some amazing suggestions from Kate and Kim, we had a great time.

For dinner we headed to The Old Fashioned.

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And enjoyed some amazing (yet cold) views of the capital.

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But the hour long wait was 100% worth it for these amazing, life changing cheese curds. Probably the best ones I have ever had. #truth

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And then thanks to an Instagram suggestion from SuzLyfe, we ended up at The Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream. Probably the best ice cream ever. No pictures, because let’s be real, it was shared and devoured in seconds. Winking smile But if you are ever in town, get this flavor.

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Treadmill buddies.

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And then Bassett Street Brunch Club.

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The doughnuts are yummy. But the lemon blueberry ricotta pancakes are amazing.

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It had been years since I’ve been to Madison. My sister graduated from there, so when I was younger, we made quite a few trips. It was fun to check it out and do some exploring with Scott. And with quite a few yummy treats too. Smile 

Linking up with Becky for TYT. Thanks for hosting!!

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Weekend Update: 11/9/14

Whew. What a weekend!!

A trip to Eau Claire. Luke loved extra time with Aunt Jenny, Aunt Laura and their puppies – Sadie and Ellie.

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Dinner at Red Robin with my sister, Laura – yum! The bonzai burger is the best.

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The Lake. The view is much better from my room in the fall. Smile 

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Panera!

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Tacos and the best cheese sauce and chips ever at Burrachos.

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When you are in Chippewa Falls, you have to stop at Leine’s –> it’s like a rule. . .

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Snow! Craziness.

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Luke saying “cheese and crackers” for a car selfie on the ride home.

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Flurries = first fire.

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5 miles on the treadmill.

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Dinner at China Buffet to celebrate Matt’s birthday and learning how to do the “turkey.” Perks of being friends with a 4th grade teacher. Winking smile 

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What were you up to this weekend??

And because it was pretty marvelous, I am linking up with Katie for Marvelous in my Monday!

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Friday Favorites: 11/7/14

Friday. Yes. Finally, right? 

Oh man, we are headed to the Lake this weekend, and I am super excited. We don’t get there in the fall or winter too much so it is kinda special to be up there. My parents better have the fire blazing (hint hint) by the time we get there because it is always chilly up there this time of year. 

here are some of the things making me smile this week.  .. enjoy! 

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–> Thanksgiving decor.

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It makes it a bit easier to put away my cute Halloween decor to be able to pull out my turkey candles, my DIY fall craft, and Luke’s footprint craft from his 1st Thanksgiving.  

–> Old Factory candles 

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The nice people at Old Factory candles sent me their fall harvest collection. 3 two ounce candles – Pumpkin spice, cranberry, and autumn leaves. They smell amazing. And last forever (20+ hours). . . I might have a candle problem, I want one burning all. the. time. especially now that the weather is getting colder and it’s dark all. the. time. 

–> Lunch dates at work.

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Luke and Scott visited me at work on Monday so that we could all get out flu shots (err flu mist). And they were nice enough to bring lunch too. Perfect treat for a Monday! 

–> Running in the rain.

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Scott and I had talked about running after work, so I was super bummed when it was sprinkling out on my way home from work. Scott has two running rules – no rain and warmer than 50 degrees. But to my surprise, Scott said that he was willing to go if it was just sprinkling. So, we got Luke into the stroller and put a blanket over the top of him to protect from the rain and wind. And of course, right in the middle of our run, total downpour. It only lasted for about 5 minutes, thankfully. Enough to get pretty wet. Scott survived and even said “it wasn’t that bad.” and Luke was a lucky duck and stayed dry and enjoyed playing with his flashlight and enjoying a Halloween treat! 

–> Laugh for the day.

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I taught BODYPUMP on Tuesday night and wore my “Get Sparked” shirt. Well, one of the girls came up to me after class and told me that during the warm up song she was trying to figure out what my shirt said because she thought it said “Get Spanked.” LOL. I was dying. 50 shades of pump, anyone? 

and did you hear? AdvoBar gingerbread holiday bars!!

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heck yes. 170 calories. 11 grams of protein. . . . get yours now before they sell out! Smile 

Have a great weekend!! Whatcha up to??

Linking up with Heather and Claire this week!

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