Monthly Archives: January 2016

Friday Favorites: Key West Moments

Happy Friday from Key West. . . yup, still here. Smile

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Soaking in a little bit more of the Florida warmth and sunshine before heading back to MN tomorrow and back to snow and cold. . .

But here are a few of my favorite moments from this week. . .

Hot tub time. . . because even though it’s been in the 70s, the regular pool is still chilly. . . but the hot tub is perfect to hang and play.

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Sleeping snuggles. Luke’s been playing SO hard during the day that by the time we get to dinner, he is done and has been falling asleep on the way to dinner. And since my busy boy almost never sits still for snuggling anymore, I have been taking full advantage.

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Running! Even though it is “c0ld” here by Florida standards, I’ve still been sweating my face off. . . and loving it. Smile

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And I cannot get enough of this view of the ocean from the master bath shower.

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Beach time. #perfection

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Luke having time with Grandma Mary. . .

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And Grandpa Lee and Grandma Way. So wonderful that he can build some memories with them.

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Off to the beach. Enjoy your Friday and the weekend! Smile

Have a great one! Whatcha up to??

Linking up with Friday fun with Heather![ And sending virtual hugs to her. XOXO. inlinkz_linkup id=602950 mode=1]

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Filed under Friday, Recap, vacation

Weekending in Key West

Hello from Key West . . . well technically, Stock Island, we rented a condo right on the ocean and it is fabulous. We are down here for 9 days <—longest vacation I’ve ever taken! And my family came down for the first few days.

Started off with coffee. The almond joy latte was excellent!

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And doughnuts!

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Exploring.

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It was cold (60s), rainy and windy.  . . but better than 10 degrees back in MN!

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Saturday + more coffee. Usually I hate going to Starbucks when we are on vacation and there are tons of local places to check out, but this was just easier. And the barista wrote a nice message on my cup. Smile And we got to hear some locals talking and that was fun.

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Running. With my favorite boy. Next to the ocean. Perfection.

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Luke and Jenny went on the Conch train tour.

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Scott continues to try to catch a rooster. . .

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Laura and my Mom.

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Mallory Square.

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Sunset.

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Amazing dinner at a little hole in the wall Cuban place.

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Sunday was beach day. The sun came out and it was a beautiful day.

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I had to apologize for the beach nudity . .

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And then since the beach was a little over 4 miles from the condo, my sisters took Luke back and Scott and I ran back. . .

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And then last night we ate at Santiago’s Bodega which I would highly recommend. . . tapas style dining. I think we got 16 dishes total and shared them all between the 5 of us.

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And now my sisters and Mom just hit the road back to the airport and we are enjoying the sunrise over the ocean. We have a few days alone, before Scott’s family joins us for our last few days here. Hoping for some good runs, beach time and a few more good meals.

Hope you had a great one. . . what were you up to?

I am linking up with Katie (and Erin) for Marvelous in my Monday!

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Filed under Recap, Running, vacation, weekend update

Friday Favorites: Florida

Hey! Happy Friday!!

Yesterday, we got up super early (like super super early – 2:15am)

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and caught a flight to Miami

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and then drove down to Key West.

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We didn’t waste any time soaking in the views from our condo and hitting the pool.

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Cheers (with my Mom) to vacation.

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Back on Monday with some highlights. Smile

Now, off to the weekend. . .

Have a great one! Whatcha up to??

Linking up with Friday fun with Heather!

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Filed under Friday, vacation

Weekending. . . surviving the cold

Hello there. Happy Monday. Smile 

I really really hope that it’s warmer there than it is in MN this morning. –11 when I headed to BODYPUMP and currently –6 as I drink my smoothie in front of the fire. . . .

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This weekend was short and sweet. I had to work on Saturday and Sunday, but was able to sneak in a few treadmill runs and some fun in between.

Luke and I checked out a new juice place in town – WYSIWYG Juice Co.

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OMG it was amazing. And this almond milk. the best I’ve ever had!

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And I came home to this beautiful sight. . . I am super excited to start checking out some new to me performance elite products – starting with mass impact and arginine extreme. Spoiler alert – used them both this morning with pump and I definitely noticed a difference. . . full report after I’ve been using them for a few weeks.

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Getting pictures at work of Scott and Luke running errands. . . seriously, who’s kid is that?!

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And then rest of the weekend was spent like this. . . hot chocolate + Scandal <—newest obsession. SO good!!

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And Sunday night was dinner with friends. . . no pictures, just a great time catching up, laughing and eating dessert pizza.

And that was my weekend. . .

I’m spending the day hanging out with this guy. . .

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And getting ready for Florida! Thankfully, Luke packed himself and is ready to go! Winking smile 

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Hope you had a great one. . . what were you up to? Please tell me it’s warmer where you are!

I am linking up with Katie (and Erin) for Marvelous in my Monday!

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Filed under advocare, body pump, Recap, weekend update

Friday Favorites: Life update

Happy Friday!! Anybody else so looking forward to the weekend?? I have to work on Saturday and Sunday, but I am looking forward to watching the Packers play on Saturday night and dinner with friends on Sunday.

I thought I would share a little life lately update today.. . 

After eating my weight in sugar cookies over the Christmas holiday, I am working to get back to healthy balanced eating.

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More veggies, less dessert. And I’m trying out some new to me AdvoCare supplements. . . I’ll keep you posted on how they work for me! We are still using Hello Fresh. Meals this last week were amazing. I love that they are balanced meals and that we try new things. And we haven’t ever had a bad meal.  Use this code: QTHC5N to get $40 OFF your first box

Man, life after Dad died is tough. My heart is so sad. It’s the worst when I forget for a minute that I can’t just text or call when I think “oh, I need to call Dad about that.” and then it hits me all over again. I am so sad that he was taken away from us so quickly and we didn’t have a chance to say good bye. My heart hurts because I would have loved to hear the things he would have said to us and I can’t believe I’ll never hear them. I am so thankful for my family and the fact that this has brought us closer together.

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I talk/text with my sisters and Mom way more now than I used to and I know we will be spending more time together. Hug your loved ones and never let an opportunity to say I love you pass you by. 

The one thing that keeps me from completely losing it is running. That’s when I feel the closest to him.

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We had our best times pounding the pavement together. So, I’ve been running and running and running. And I love it. 

And I don’t know what I would do without BODYPUMP and my favorite people at the YMCA.

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I’ve still been going about 2 times per week and teaching once per week. It just makes me happy. Smile 

And GRIT. Have you ever tried a Les Mills GRIT class? Whoa. It is the most intense thing I have done in a while. It’s only a 30 minute class which is nice, but your heart rate is sky rocketed the entire time. I need to start wearing a heart rate monitor during class and see how high it gets and how many calories I burn. Awesome cross training class. And just a warning – there are always burpees! 

I am still loving Le Tote. This sweater had the cutest ruching detail on the sleeves. 

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And I loved this pink striped wrap top with pink stella pendant necklace.

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Anyway. . . that’s life around here. . . oh yeah, AND we are headed to Key West in a week! To say that I’m excited would be an understatement. Smile Looking forward to getting this boy back to the beach + sand.

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What’s new with you? Plans for the weekend??

Have a great one!

Linking up with Friday fun with Heather!

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Filed under body pump, Friday, Recap, Running

Meal Inspiration via Pinterest–recent winners

I don’t know about you, but I have a TON of recipes on my Pinterest board and honestly, I get a little overwhelmed when I try to meal plan because they all look SO good. #pinterestproblems

Over the past few weeks, I’ve tried some new recipes and come away with some winners. . . and I thought I’d share them with you. Smile 

Pasta with Butternut Sauce, Spicy Sausage and Baby Spinach | Skinnytaste:

Pasta with Butternut Squash, spicy sausage and baby spinach.

This was SO good! I was concerned that the squash wouldn’t provide enough of a “sauce” for the pasta, but it was thick, rich and delicious. Perfect with Jennie-O spicy turkey sausage. Also, it made a ton of food. So, we had lunches for work for a few days = winning!

French Onion Soup au Gratin Stuffed Meatloaf - caramelized onions and cheese turn this traditional recipe into the ultimate comfort food | cupcakesandkalechips.com | gluten free:  

French onion meatloaf

This one took a bit longer than I would usually spend on a weeknight meal but it was a perfect Sunday night dinner. I didn’t make the sauce, but I thought the onions and cheese middle was amazing. Leftovers were great too. 

Taco Spaghetti Skillet: A Pot-Sized Pasta recipe with the flavor of tacos made in one pan using ground beef, zesty tomatoes and spaghetti, topped with sour cream:

Taco spaghetti skillet

I swapped out the spaghetti for some penne pasta and traded the sour cream for avocado. This one was a whole family dinner winner. It wasn’t too spicy, so Luke ate it up but it had great flavor with the taco seasoning and rotel so the adults loved it too. 

Honey Balsamic Chicken Breasts and Veggies - All cooked on one single pan. Easy peasy with zero clean up, and packed with so much flavor. Done and done.:

One pan honey balsamic chicken + roasted potatoes

This one gets the award for easiest to make. I prepped the chicken in the marinade the night before and diced potatoes. Then, my husband put it all in the oven 30 minutes before I got home from work. The chicken had great flavor and I don’t think you can get any easier than one pan clean up! Smile 

Your turn. . . any recipe winners lately? Links please!

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Filed under Recap, Recipes

Weekending. . . AdvoNation + freezing

Hey!

Happy Monday. Smile 

I am writing this during the Packer/Redskins game and it’s currently 24-18 and I just hope they can hold on to their lead. . .

Laura and I headed to Des Moines on Friday afternoon. . . dinner, pedicures, shopping and the hot tub was the perfect evening.

Then, on Saturday, we headed to downtown Des Moines to attend AdvoNation. It is basically a meeting with stories of people’s success with AdvoCare, training on how to be successful and learning more about products and the company.

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I shared my thoughts about the event on Facebook:

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And while I was gone. . . the boys had a fun day together. . .

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I was hopeful that Drew Brees would be there talking about his love for the AdvoCare products, but no luck. . . maybe at Success School. Winking smile 

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We had dinner and then hit the road back to Mankato. . .

And back to this:

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Yup, wind chill of –22 = staying inside all day in sweat pants watching football.

And the score is still 24-18 in the fourth quarter. . . I’m off to do bath time and bedtime. And an early bedtime for myself – up at 4:40am tomorrow to get to the YMCA for BODYPUMP 96!!

TOUCHDOWN! + 2 point conversion!! 32-18. Smile GO PACK GO.

Hope you have a great Monday!

What were you up to this weekend??

I am linking up with Katie (and Erin) for Marvelous in my Monday!

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Filed under advocare, body pump, Laura, Recap, weekend update

Friday Favorites: Headed to Des Moines!

Happy Friday!!

I’m headed to Des Moines this weekend for an AdvoCare event. I’m excited to hear more about AdvoCare. .. I’ve been involved with the company for about 2 years now and still love them. Hello SPARK. . . And if it’s anything like success school was, then I’m in for a good event. AND Laura is coming with me! She’s building her business too and I’m so excited for her. Plus we are going for the whole weekend – pedicures, shopping + hanging out. I. can’t. wait. 

Speaking of my little sister. . . she did this to her dog’s tail last week. I know, right?

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Apparently, she was trying to cut out some matting and then all of the sudden, her tail was basically gone. Pretty sure any girl who has tried to cut their own bangs can understand how you are just cutting a little hair and then the next thing you know, they are all gone. Totally happened to me in 6th grade. It was awful!

Anyway. . . here are a few of my recent favs. . .

I’m super excited about my new running calendar. Pink + chevron = winning.

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Afternoon lunch date with my boys.

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Cookie baking buddy.

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BODYPUMP + pink everything. Smile 

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Seeing my top 10 clean eating recipes getting shared with the newest group of AdvoCare challengers. . . and psst – you don’t need to be doing any sort of challenge to make and love these recipes!

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A haircut. Finally. It had seriously been a year. It was just a trim, but it feels so much better!

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And this. I just had to laugh. Yup, that’s a container of play d’oh in my coffee. And yes, I took it out and still drank it! Winking smile #reallife #momlife

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Extra time with this guy. Fun at the Children’s museum.

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A good visit to the vet for Abby. She’s had this weird lump on her neck for a while and it started to get bigger, so I took her in to get it checked out and feared the worst, but thankfully, it’s nothing to be worried about. Thank goodness!!

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Now, off to the weekend. . .

Have a great one! Whatcha up to??

Linking up with Friday fun with Heather!

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Filed under Abby, advocare, baking, body pump, Friday, Laura, Luke

2016 . . . goals.

Let’s face it, 2015, just wasn’t my year.

Trying a new job and living apart from Scott for 6 months = terrible. *that being said, I’m SO glad I did it because you never know until you try!

Lost my Dad to leukemia = heartbreaking. Life will never be the same.

But, I am ready for 2016. And I have some big goals for myself. . . 

1. Have a baby. Ha! If only you could plan these things. I have no idea what God’s plan is for our family, but I would love to add another little one. Luke needs a sibling, he is going to be a great big brother some day. And hey, if a baby doesn’t work out, maybe I can convince Scott that we need to get a puppy instead. Winking smile

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2. Stay in the same house all year long.

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No. more. moving. Thankfully, I am really loving our new little house. Scott has done an amazing job with the remodel. We are still unpacking the last of the boxes and then I’ll share some pictures of the new place with you. But after we unpack those boxes, they are staying unpacked for a good little while. This house isn’t our forever home, so unfortunately, we’ll probably be moving again in a few years, but for now, I am happy to be under one roof and making this house our home. 

3. Help Mom. There are a lot of things to be done around the house and at the Lake since Dad died. It will be a full family effort to help her get everything done over the next few months, and while it is a little overwhelming to think about, I am looking forward to the family time together. 

4. Family meals.

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We already have meals together a few times per week, but they are just so important. I remember all the family meals growing up, the conversations around the table and just spending time together. I want Luke to have the same memories. And it’s just nice to sit down together so I want to make sure it is more of a priority this year. 

5. Run more. Easy, simple, and perfect. 

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6. Get another exercise certification. I’m thinking either the advanced training certification for BODYPUMP or maybe getting certified in another Les Mills class. . . maybe GRIT? 

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7. Eat real food. I know my nutrition could be much better and so this is a big goal for me this year.

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Healthy, balanced eating. Eating more of what I know I should – veggies – and less of what I really shouldn’t be – cookies. But I’m all about moderation and balance, there is always room in life for dessert. 

8. Date night.

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This one usually falls by the way side because Scott and I would much rather sit on the couch and watch our own TV than go out to dinner or go to a movie, but I would like to make an effort, especially with 2 Grandma’s that are more than willing to watch Luke anytime, to go out and have some fun times together. 

What about you? Big goals or plans for 2016?? Linking up with Amanda for Thinking out loud!

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NYE + life these last few days

Tuesday already? Life needs to slow down just a bit. . . 

You guys already heard about my very exciting NYE – sparkling apple cider (that stuff is awesome) cheers with my boys.

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Papa Murphy’s pizza + Asti + Netflix = perfection . ..

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and yes, as Chris pointed out, not a whole lot different than our typical Saturday night, but the Asti was a nice addition. Smile

I was at work on New Year’s Day, but got lots of pictures from home. 

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And this. .. the blanket fell off the back of the couch and onto Abby and she just went with it. 

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Kicked off the weekend teaching BODYPUMP with some of my favorite people.

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Followed by play d’oh and coffee. 

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And a quick treadmill run.

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Afternoon movie time = popcorn + selfies.

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And finished the evening with more of this. So good. 

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Sunday was projects around the house. 

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Plus snuggles + selfies.

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And more fun pictures while I was at work. . . 

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And this ah-mazing Hello Fresh meal.

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Steak au Poivre with cheesy hasselback potatoes, creamed kale and shallot-peppercorn sauce. Seriously, probably the best one yet! And yourself a huge favor and use this code: QTHC5N to get $40 OFF your first box.

Whew. It’s been a busy few days. Looking forward to a little routine over the next few days. . . school, work, laundry, dinner, bodypump, etc. . .

What have you been up to??

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Filed under Abby, body pump, husband, Luke, Recap, Running, weekend update