Thursday Thoughts {day 11}

Hi there!

It’s Thursday and only one more week until Thanksgiving!  Last night, I realized we didn’t even think about doing a friendsgiving this year like we have done for the past several years.  It just didn’t cross my mind.  I was bummed when I realized that but I’m really looking forward to spending time with my family and seeing some friends in my home town next week.

I spoke with my mom yesterday making some plans and we are going to the Christmas parade and Festival of Trees next Friday (after Thanksgiving) so don’t say it’s too soon!  I love going to the Festival of Trees and seeing all of the beautifully decorated trees and soaking in all of the holiday spirit.

Speaking of holiday spirit, we put up our Christmas lights last night.  Unfortuntely one of the strings is not lighting up so it looks like we need to replace that one.  We wanted to get them up but won’t start turning them on until after Thanksgiving.  I feel like I’m apologizing for loving Christmas and wanting to celebrate it now.  What are your thoughts on it?  Too soon?

The morning started off with a light snow which turned into pouring rain.  The snow was pretty but the rain meant no walk for dogs and they got bored real quick.  Kenda started off by bringing me her rope then Noah brought me his ball and soon we had throwing party in the house.



Day 11

Treadmill and Upper Fix






Breakfast – 1/2 whole wheat bagel with peanut butter (1 yellow, 1 tsp)



Lunch– Burger patty and salmon (2 red)



Dinner –  Mahi Mahi with Sauteed Spinach and Mushroom Risotto  (1 green, 1 red, 1 yellow)


When do you put up your Christmas lights?

Why it join me in the 21 Day Fix Extreme?  Get it HERE!


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Something New Saturday 2/22

Hi there!

We actually can finally see most of the ground now that most of the snow has melted in the last few days.  As I was driving to work yesterday, it seemed like everyone was out walking their dog.  OhI miss Noah and Kenda!  I know they are having a great time at Steve’s parents this past week but the house is so lonely without them.  I love taking them on walks or runs because they are always up for it.

Soaking up the sun at Steve’s parentsDogs 2 - USE

Playing ball in the snow at his parents
Dogs 1 - USE

Steve will be home Monday and the dogs will be back Tuesday.  Can’t wait for my little family to be back together!  Now the weather better stay nice so I can actually walk them.

Last night I am did something very new but have always wanted to try….a dinner club party with friends.  My friend Sarah hosted and she picked a Japanese theme.  Everyone going will brought a dish themed for the occasion to share.

Harriett made the appetizer, Osaka-Style Okonomiyaki  osaka - USE Osaka 1 - USE

Sarah, the hostess, made the entree.  Momofuku ramenpork belly - USE noodles - USE ramen - USEI made matcha green tea ice green green tea ice cream - USEEverything turned out very good and it was so much fun to try new foods and hang out with friends.  We had a great night chatting away and I went to bed later than I should but it was worth it.

Luke (Sarah’s lab) enjoying a bone.  Fun to play with him last night.

Luke - USE

Question of the Day:

Do you participate in a dinner club?

What theme would you choose if you hosted a dinner party?

Thanks for reading!


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Back to the grind…

Well it was back to work today for me and we had a wonderful Christmas in Wisconsin.  A big thank you to our wonderful hosts (Steve’s parents)!!  We were all sad to go, we even had to call Noah a couple times to get him out the door but we made some fun memories and took lots of pictures.

I even forgot to mention we went to see Saving Mr. Banks on Christmas Eve.  It was a great movie and would definitely recommend it although I do not recommend it for children.  I had the pleasure of sitting near a mother with her two young children and the little boy talked through out the entire movie.  He then got bored so he started kicking the chair in front of him…please parents do not interrupt others movies by bringing children to an adult show.  He was clearly unhappy and so was I with his distraction.  Besides that the movie was good.   And of course my favorite POPCORN!!!Popcorn

After going to bed rather late on Christmas Eve…about 12:30am I still woke up around 6:30am and was ready to open presents of course oh and coffee!!!  Not in this household, even the dogs went back to bed after eating breakfast and going out for a potty break. Oh well.  I enjoyed coffee, oatmeal and the news while I blogged and waited for the sleepyheads to roll out of bed.  Oatmeal - USE

Steve got up and we he started making a strata.  We had planned to make it the night before but we all forgot.  After that was in the oven it was time for presents!   Every girl wants more GU for Christmas!GelsPurple workout headbandHeadbands

I received some great “runner” approved gifts from the family and Steve and am excited to go shopping this weekend to use my giftcards.  Thanks everyone!

For the strata he used chicken sausage, sourdough, eggs and cheddar cheese.  It was tasty!  We watched some of the Disney Parade while eating breakfast and of course now I want to go to Disneyland.  Has anyone ran any of the Disney half marathons?  I have been eying those lately as I work on my race list for next year.


Anyways the dogs had a blast yesterday!  We wrapped their new toys in tissue wrap so that they could tear into them.  *Note to self*  this has probably ruined them for keeping out of the presents but hey it was sure entertaining to watch them. Noah and toy Noah sneaking away Noah

We tried to find a new squirrel since that is Kenda’s favorite but the store didn’t have one so I picked out a cute camel…..huuummmp day!  Ha Ha!  Well let’s just say the poor camel lost a leg.   That happened within the first 15 minutes.Poor camel

After presents and breakfast it was time to find all the new toys and pack up to drive home (we did not get snowed in like I had hoped).  We had a four hour drive home and I wanted to have time to unpack and start laundry before work tomorrow so Christmas day had to be cut short.  Good news, the dogs were exhausted from all their playing so it was a VERY quiet drive home.  The roads were also very clear and dry too.  Back home in Champaign there was almost no snow left, I’m glad we got a white Christmas in Wisconsin!

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My little helpers

Happy Sunday!

So due to the snow yesterday I did not go do spin class and Body Pump.  I just double checked my calendar and the last Body Pump class I took was last Tuesday, no wonder my arms feel like they are going to fall off.

This morning I ran 12 miles on the treadmill.  My overall pace (9:39) was slower than last week’s long run (9:24) which surprised me since I didn’t feel like I was taking it easier but the numbers don’t lie.  The time on this treadmill only goes to 99:59 and it took me an hour and 55 minutes to do the 12 miles so it had to restart the time which is why is shows only 15 minutes on the machine.  That or I ran really really fast. Not this time….maybe next  😉

I used a note app in my phone to record my starting MPH (pace) for each mile so that next week I can make sure I increase each mile and the overall pace is higher as well.  They are decent negative splits but I am still starting too slow which is really bringing down my overall pace.  For my long runs on the treadmill, I am sticking with a run/walk (run .9/walk .1) for each mile and increasing the MPH by .1 each quarter of a mile.  This strategy really helps me stay focused while doing long runs on the treadmill because I am pushing a button every few minutes and have a quick walk break to break up the monotony.

After my run I came home and had some leftovers for lunch and then did some cleaning.  Of course my best helpers were hard at work too….NOT!  Doing what they do best – sleeping.

Since I work a 8-5 job Monday through Friday, I am somewhat of a weekend warrior which means I need to make the most of my extra time on the weekends.  I went to an hour cycle class followed by Body Pump this afternoon as well.  My favorite teacher was subbing the class today.  It was good because I really enjoy his class BUT after a 12 mile run my legs were tired so I knew I would be hurting after his class.  Body Pump was great too and I’m pretty sure I will be sore tomorrow.  Working hard!My Knee is still a bit sore from running on the hard treadmill so I iced it this evening after the gym classes.  Noah decided that I needed help with my icing….he’s such a sweet boy!

Thanks Noah it’s already feeling better!  Doesn’t he look cute in his bandanna? I found it while cleaning so the dogs got to sport them today.  All we did was tell them to sit so we could take a picture and they gave us a look like we just told them they would never have another bone…such silly dogs!  


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Snow day!

It started snowing yesterday around 4pm and the weatherman said we were going to be getting around 4 inches.  They were sorta right….but we got even more than that!  Noah and Kenda love the snow and believe me they were stoked when we let them out this morning for a quick potty break.  After some coffee, Steve and I suited up in our snowpants and other warm gear to take the dogs to the park.  This is what we woke up too…..

As soon as we started getting ready and telling the dogs that we were going outside for a walk they started freaking out!  Jumping around and whining because they were so excited.

Let’s go play!!!  We are always going to slow when they are ready to go outside for a walk.Playing in a snow pile.We walked to a park just down the street from our apartment and let the dogs off leash to chase the ball.  They lost it a couple of times in the snow!

It was actually pretty warm (33 degrees) out and the snow was perfect for packing so I decided to build a Kenda inspired snowpuppy.  I even added her collar for some color.He couldn’t be outdone so Steve started building one of his own.  Since mine was about a foot tall he had to of course make his 4 feet tall to out-do me.

I helped him with the head and Kenda came over to check out our work (yeah right she just wants us to throw her green ball).It’s so rough being a puppy playing in the snow!  After we came home and dried off the dogs the best we could, guess where they ended up?  The couch cuddling up in a blanket and passing out.  She was snoring when I took this picture too.  She is such a sweetheart (when she is sleeping).


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Cuddle time

Another chilly day here so the dogs and I only went for a short walk during my lunch break.  Tomorrow is going to be even colder but I will driving to Peoria, Illinois for an All Hands Tax Department meeting for all of the Central Illinois offices.  It will take up most of the day including the hour and a half drive each way.

Dinner was a classic comfort food in our house, chicken parmesan.  I make a dipping station of bread crumbs in one bowl and egg whites and a little almond milk in another.

Then dip the chicken in the egg mixture then bread crumbs then repeat (for a thicker crust).  Place the chicken in a greased baking pan and bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees.  Then remove from the oven and top each piece of chicken with pasta sauce and some mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese and bake for another 10 minutes.

Played some indoor fetch with the dogs since it was so cold out and we couldn’t go for a walk like I had hoped.  Days like these it’s really hard to not have a yard for the dogs to play in….someday puppies we will have a yard again.  I promise!

I also prepared some Salsa Chicken Soup for tomorrow’s dinner.  Since I will be out of town for work tomorrow, it will be nice to come home to dinner that’s done already.

I have not tried this recipe yet so I am excited to see how it turns out.  I could literally eat Mexican food everyday of my life if given the choice.  I just love all the foods and flavors of avocado, tomatoes, olives, pico de gallo, black beans, corn and of course margaritas!  Not making those to go along with my soup but maybe next time 😉  I wish we would have bought another bag of those Trader Joe’s Quinoa chips because they would have gone perfectly with the soup.

For my workout this morning I overslept a bit but I needed it so I ended up with 3 miles on the treadmill.  I ran 1 mile to warm up then 2 miles (1/2 @ 8:00 pace followed by some abs and bicep work)  I repeated that 4 times and headed home to get ready for the day.

We decided to end the evening with all of us (yes me, Steve, Noah and Kenda all on our couch) watching Home Alone II: Lost in New York while I wrote out Christmas cards and wrote my blog.    Only got a picture of Kenda….if I moved I would have disrupted their sleeping.  Such a sweet face!


Have you sent out Christmas cards yet if you do?

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