Five Word Friday: Life Lately

I’ve been MIA. Here’s why: IMG_5158 You already know my Sundays. IMG_5539 My weekdays are fun too! IMG_5206 Wednesday morning weights. The usual. IMG_5362 COURTSIDE seats: Kings versus OKC newdesk Moved up front at work. IMG_5555 Food Should Taste Good RULES! IMG_5478 West Sacramento Caturday Bike Gang IMG_5415 Spring weather + spring clothes = Love. IMG_5628 Easter church selfies with Mom IMG_5662 Feed fish, check. Next: abs.

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My job has its perks 😀

(for non-Californians, that’s Gov. Jerry Brown)

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Describe your life lately in 5 words!

Weekend in Photos

Hello everyone and happy Thanksgiving week!

Sorry for the brief hiatus…suffice it to say, there have been a lot of changes in my life lately. Luckily for me, said changes have actually resulted in a huge weight being lifted off my shoulders. Thanksgiving is coming at a perfect time for me – I feel very fortunate for everything I have right now. And I’ve only got good things coming! How’s that for vague? 😉

We are hosting Thanksgiving this year because Thursday is my dad’s 60th birthday! My mom and I are cooking Thanksgiving dinner for {almost} my dad’s whole side of the family. That’s 14 people… BRING IT! I’m so excited to cook for and be with the family on Thursday! Not to mention I’m doing Run To Feed the Hungry (my second 10K) that morning. Am I overachieving? Maybe… 😉

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On to the weekend! It started early for me when I went to Jamie’s Broadway Grille for lunch on Friday with Dave. I had never even heard of this neighborhood gem, which has been on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. We had amaaaaazing French Onion Soup (See above, the photo doesn’t do it justice! It was SOOOO good!) and split a steak sandwich, which was cooked perfectly. I would definitely recommend this to anyone wanting to check out a classic Sacramento spot!

Jamie's Broadway Grille on Urbanspoon

That evening, I watched Catching Fire with Yvette, Lisa & Kristin. No pictures of that…because we were so ENTHRALLED by the movie! It was seriously good! I read all three books and don’t remember being as satisfied and impressed with the first movie. I thought it was excellent all around. Definitely recommend!

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After the movie, we met up with friends to grab drinks. At one point Yvette and I were super awkward and decided to hide beneath our jackets/scarves to avoid being seen by people we knew. Haha. Is anyone else there really weird about running into people they know in public? No? Just me? Ok.

The night ended with the most glorious piece of pizza from Luigi’s. Just look at how adoringly I’m gazing at that thing. Glad Kristin insisted on pizza, because it soaked up the IPA’s I drank and allowed me to wake up the next morning feeling well enough to….

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…run 6 miles! Who am I?! I wanted to get one last really long run in before my 10K on Thursday, and that I did. I have been switching it up lately with my route and running to McKinley Park (~1.5 miles away) instead of Capitol Park (.5 miles away), which has forced me to increase my distance. I’m feeling great going into my 10K, and really hoping I can break 1:00:00!

I’m also only 9.8 miles away from my 40 mile running goal this month, so with a 4 mile run tomorrow and my race, I’ll achieve that goal!

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On Saturday night I stayed in and cuddled up with Love Actually and a cup of tea. It was a much needed relaxation night…just to be met with an epic brunch at Limelight on Sunday morning! You can’t beat $7 bottomless mimosas… Especially when you and your 4 friends are apparently thirsty enough to require the server to just leave the carafe at your table 😉

Also, can I just point out that I finished that entire plate of food? Both habanero-chicken sausages, both eggs, both pieces of toast, and all the potatoes. I pretty much wiped it all clean with the toast. I must have still been hungry after my long run the morning before?! I felt like a bottomless pit!

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The weekend ended with a dodgeball tie (waaah!) and more TV on my iPad. Consider this picture this week’s installment of “reasons why you should be glad you’re not my friend on Snapchat”….

Enjoy your Monday!

What are you contributing to Thanksgiving dinner?

Are you running a Thanksgiving/Turkey Trot race?

4th of July Weekend in Photos

Hello and welcome back to reality. I remember the 4th of July sucking last year because it was in the middle of the week and I didn’t get any extra days off…However, I think it might be even worse to have a 4 day weekend and then be thrown back into the reality of work! Luckily the whole legislature will be on recess soon, so my days won’t be too strenuous 🙂

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I made the best decision ever and chose to escape the 109 degree heat of Sacramento on the 4th of July by taking Megabus to San Francisco. For those of you keeping score at home, we had 7 days of 100+ degree temps, and of those 7 days, 5 were above 105. Worst week ever. The weather in San Francisco on 4th of July? 75 degrees and sunny. Can I get an amen?

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I stayed with my old college roommate, So-Ky, and for the daytime festivities we met our friend Meghan and her USF law school buddies in Golden Gate Park by the Conservatory of Flowers to BBQ and celebrate. That would be me sporting Meghan’s authentic 1996 Team USA Olympic warm up jacket and doing my best Kerri Strug. With a beer in my hand, of course.

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Daisy chain, patriotic hat, and a Reagan-Bush beer koozie. Amurrica.

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After the BBQ, our other former roomie Tyler arrived with our former neighbor Monique and we went out for drinks. We saw a Hello Kitty car (only in SF…) and the boys made friends with a very friendly Brit, who was also very inebriated. I made sure to Snapchat photo evidence to our other roomies (there were 6 of us in a tiny apartment!) and college friends. I had a great time reminiscing and remembering old stories of the pranks the boys pulled on us senior year 🙂

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The next day, the 4 of us had brunch at Howard’s Cafe in the Inner Sunset…I got the breakfast special (2 eggs, 2 pieces of bacon, 2 slices of toast, & potatoes for $4.99!) and So-Ky and I went on a 4 mile walk to SF State. Then it was back to Sac for me!

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When I came home, it looked like my basil plant had died in the 109 degree heat, but fortunately I was able to revive it! I spent the night finally finishing the last season of The Office and ugly-crying at some amazing Jim-Pam moments. So good!

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I dubbed Saturday my own personal #TREATYOSELF day, a la Parks and Rec. I was a little sore from walking so I decided to forgo my Saturday morning run, but I made my weekly farmer’s market trip and bought myself sunflowers and ginger-berry kombucha. Then I cleaned up the apartment and treated myself to a movie – The Heat! Not gonna lie, I was kinda nervous to go watch a movie alone, but I actually kinda liked it! Funny movie too.. I love Melissa McCarthy!

In a kinda off-theme move, I then crashed guys night and watched the UFC fight with 4 guy friends. Although I guess copious amounts of beer and shirtless guys fighting isn’t too far off the theme 🙂 #treatyoself day lives on!

20130708-104000.jpgWithout intending to, I kinda extended my pampering to Sunday. I DIY’ed an awesome Kings shirt (cut off the sleeves, made it a racerback, and I took in the sides to make it less baggy), got pedicures with my mom (and chose the most obnoxiously neon pink polish I could find- the picture doesn’t do it justice!), and cooked my parents a delicious dinner.

I’m already ready for the next holiday- luckily I don’t have to wait too long, since Becky is coming out to California for a girls weekend with Carly and I in just a week and a half! Can’t wait!

How did you celebrate the 4th of July?

Have you ever gone to the movies alone?

How do you Treat Yo Self?

Weekend in Photos

Yes, another Weekend in Photos post… it seems like forever since I’ve posted a Meatless Monday recipe! A full THREE months (my last was these Red Pepper & Chickpea Veggie Burgers)…sorry guys. I actually have photos and a recipe for an easy weekend breakfast hash that I’ve been meaning to share, but I forgot to upload the pictures from my home computer last night so you’ll have to wait till next week! I’ve got an even better recipe later this week that will surely tide you over ’till then, which leads me to my first picture of the weekend…

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I came home from work on Friday with a can of garbanzo beans and one goal: to recreate the avocado-cilantro hummus I bought at the Farmer’s Market a couple weekends back. I’m happy to report it was a smashing success! I almost finished the entire batch by Saturday evening…. 🙂

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On Friday night, I had plans to check out a new spot with my friend Shannon, whose cousin from Spain was visiting. We went to Vanguard, which is actually located on the ground floor of the building where I work! It felt kinda weird to be sitting outside enjoying a drink within eye-shot of the lobby I sleepily walk through every day at 8:30am and 5:30pm. But it was a gorgeous venue, super classy and pretty chill since it was more of a lounge than a club.

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As I told you all on Friday, all I wanted to do on Saturday morning was go for a nice long run and hit up the Farmer’s Market. My mom called and made plans for early in the afternoon, so I decided to combine the two- what was going to be a 3 mile run followed by a ride to the Farmer’s Market ended up as a 3.25 mile run ending AT the market. Once there, I finally went for it and tried the Kombucha Truck! I had Synergy Gingerade, which was awesome since I love ginger. Would it be weird to put kombucha in my Whiskey Gingers from now on? Is that kind of defeating the purpose of kombucha being healthy?? Haha.

I also picked up summer squash (every week I get assorted summer squash from the same stand – next week they said they might have cherry tomatoes WAHOO!), a purple cauliflower, and some shiitake mushrooms!

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We have a family wedding in New York in August, and my mom and I had been procrastinating our dress shopping. East Coast weddings require something a bit more formal than my go-to ‘California Casual’ wedding outfits. We left for the mall at 12:30pm and didn’t leave until nearly 5 PM!!! Oh, except around 3:30 we drove to ANOTHER mall. It was an intense day, people. I found a dress I liked right off the bat (see that little red number above), but red doesn’t do much for my complexion and hair color.

My mom found a nice navy blue number that she loved (and was comfortable in! SUPER important for what’s sure to be a hot and humid wedding), and I kept looking. I came home empty handed, but looked on the Macy’s website and found the dress I loved in yellow. It’s hard to judge from a picture, but I’m gonna give it a shot and see how it looks! Yellow has worked on me before (see this picture from my About Me)…I may require input from you all, so stay tuned 🙂

That night, we went to Napa to spend some time with T-Man’s mom before she moves…she’s moving to DENVER this week! It will be strange not having her an hour away anymore. She has treated us to some amazing dinners and wine tastings during our visits over the last couple of years. Sad! But excited for her to start a new chapter of her life.

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After saying goodbye, we joined T-Man’s dad, step mom, step siblings, and a few friends for a fantastic meal for his step brother’s 30th birthday. Since the last time I visited, they had built an addition to their dining room that is amaazing. It’s a sun room, complete with a full dining table, kitty apartment, and lush plants. The meal involved some Filipino favorites and two “semi homemade” Angels Food cakes 🙂

We got home in time to catch the Mad Men season finale right as it was airing on the West Coast (though it was DVR’ed earlier so we still got to fly through the commercials!)…very interesting episode. Such a strange season of Mad Men this was. It felt so cerebral…After each episode I just needed to sit and think and analyze!

That’s it for now! Didn’t take too many pictures this weekend so unfortunately for you guys, if you follow me on Instagram you likely saw most of these. Either way, it was a good weekend. It’s raining outside right now, but next weekend is expected to be in the triple digits. It’s a real mixed bag over here!

What did you do this weekend?

Are you a Mad Men fan?

Sweltering Hot Weekend in Photos

Is it just me, or does Monday always feel like one giant hangover? Like, not an alcohol hangover…but a weekend hangover. I had too much weekend this weekend, and now I’m going through weekend withdrawals.

That’s totally a thing, right?

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On Friday evening, it got up to a sweltering 105 degrees. I went out to dinner with my parents, my great aunt Emmy visiting from New Jersey, and Emmy’s friend Karen to celebrate my mom’s birthday (which was the day before) and Emmy’s birthday (which was that day!)…we went to Ten22 in Old Sacramento. I had been there before about a year ago and was a little shocked because the menu had changed quite a bit and had a lot of super strange sounding stuff: lamb, elk, duck, you name it! Not one to order the “safe” item on the menu, I chose the Osso Bucco (lamb) with chorizo, dates & roasted tomatoes. My mom, however, scored the winning dish, which was housemade gnocchi with spring vegetables. And of course no birthday dinner is complete without cake! Chocolate mousse, ohhh my god.

Everyone found something that they liked and our dinner definitely solidified my love for this place!

Ten 22 on Urbanspoon

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It had cooled down to a modest 98 degrees by the time we finished, so walked around Old Sac and had a little family photo op by the river.

Karen’s daughter, who lives in SF, had visited Dive Bar on a trip to Sacramento and told Karen and Emmy they had to see the mermaids. Dive Bar has an aquarium above the bar and every hour or so, a mermaid plops into the tank and entertains the crowd. This was my first time ever frequenting a bar with my parents, and I had a great time watching them people watch and react to the scenery!

On Saturday morning, I found myself awake at 9am because my apartment was already so. damn. hot! I figured since I was already awake I might as well finally check out the Saturday morning Midtown Farmers Market. I picked up some mushrooms, beets, summer squash, amaaazing avocado-cilantro hummus, and this green juice from Peel’d. I actually have a friend who just did their 5-day juice cleanse, sounds interesting! Juice cleanses…so in right now…

After my little outing, I promptly sat in my apartment in the A/C the rest of the day, checking various things off my To-Do list (and watching sappy TV shows and crying my face off). The high on Saturday was 108 degrees. I eventually had to leave because:

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I had a surprise dinner to attend! My friend Alex is in town from New York and his birthday is tomorrow, so we strung together an elaborate chain of lies to get him to show up at his favorite restaurant, Chicago Fire, where we were all waiting for him with a cake. Good pizza and old friends…lovely!

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On Sunday, part of that same group of friends caravanned to Berkeley for another high school friend Ian’s birthday BBQ. We taught his 10 year old brother how to play flip cup with Pepsi…he was totally a pro. I arrived back to my apartment in the evening to find that my roomie had already planned an impromptu Wine & Snacks night with a couple of girlfriends! There was chips, dip, and girl-talk galore.

We get one day of respite before it jumps back into the 90s: the high temp is only 75 today. That’s a 30 degree difference, people!

Enjoy your week! I have something very cool to share with you all later this week, which I am very excited about!

PS. Don’t forget to RE-PIN my Muesli Protein Bars! I totally had one for breakfast this morning…mmm, chocolatey.

Hows the weather in your part of the world?

Have you ever been surprised or planned a surprise party? I think I prefer being the one who’s surprised…planning is not nearly as fun 😛

Mother’s Day Weekend in Photos

Happy Monday! Hope you all enjoyed your weekend, and to all you mothers out there, I hope you had a special Mother’s Day yesterday. We kept it pretty low key for my mom this year, but I hope she knows how loved and appreciated she is!

My goal for this week is to get back on track with my workouts. I was having tummy issues last week so I went easy on the workouts {A quick jog home and dodgeball on Thursday, an easy elliptical workout on Friday, kickball on Sunday}. I want to be in fighting shape for Blend next weekend…there are a couple of Boot Camps and a hike planned and I anticipate that I’ll probably get knocked out quickly by the elevation in Park City!

Because of the aforementioned stomachache, the doc has ordered me to eliminate a few things from my diet for a few weeks: spicy food, acidic food {tear! my beloved lemons!}, dairy, caffeine and alcohol…I have mostly been good, but as you’ll see in the photos below, I definitely needed some liquid courage to get me through Saturday night, and then I had a few indulgences on Sunday… 🙂 Definitely worth the belly ache!

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Weirdest workday ever on Friday: neither of my bosses were in, and my big task for the day was to pack up our 30lb postage machine and send it down to our Santa Barbara office. Half a roll of bubble wrap later, I got it 🙂 {oh, the small victories of an administrative assistant!} To celebrate the weekend, I made a really random, but delicious! dinner: Coconut quinoa, roasted brussels sprouts & broccoli, Italian sausage, and T-Man brought some “Gorgonzola gems”, which are basically glorified Jalapeno Poppers. Yum.

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We then proceeded to our friend Danny’s housewarming pub crawl, which was themed Bros vs Hipsters. Landai & I were definitely hipster’ed out; Cedric’s shirt was a bit of an anomaly…memes are pretty hipster, but the outfit was pretty broish; and T-Man had to get in on the fun by stealing my {lens-free} glasses for a bit 🙂

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On Saturday night, I did solo karaoke for the first time ever at Danielle’s birthday party. After submitting my 2 song requests, I was surprisingly really nervous, even despite the fact that I am always singing. If I know the words to a song that is playing, you bet your ass I’ll be singing! After the first singers took their turns and everyone was singing along, I was much more at ease!

Top photo: Richard and I singing “A Whole New World”.. except that the roles were reversed and he sang Jasmine’s part 😉 Left: Danielle the birthday girl! Right: my song selection {kind of a lame song to choose cause it is slow and no one knows it, but I still rocked it!} and Reggie being serenaded by our whole group to “My Heart Will Go On. Don’t you see all the hands emotionally thrusting towards him?

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Sunday was rough. It was forecast to be 94 degrees around the time my kickball game was scheduled. So I hacked off the sleeves of my shirt, packed up my water bottle in a bag of ice {that I later poured over my head, haha}, and slathered on the sunscreen. I only missed one spot on the back of my neck! Pale person victory.

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While I was playing kickball, my family was off seeing the Jackie Robinson movie as part 1 of Mother’s Day festivities. Part 2 was my contribution: homemade pizza! I made the dough in the morning and told my mom to pick all her favorite toppings. She chose bacon, mushrooms, onions, and olives. I used some of her homemade tomato sauce and lots of mozzarella, and it turned out awesome! My brother bought the ice cream cake. We all clearly loved it.

{side note: that mother’s day card is the most perfect card of all cards that I could have given my mom. Fits our relationship to a T!}

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I also made a side salad using a few of my dad’s fresh garden veggies! He has lots of beets and chard at the moment, so they both made an appearance. But now I’m pretty sure my insides are dyed/stained red. It’s okay…all in the name of healthy eating right? Can’t wait to steal corn, tomatoes, and bell peppers from him this summer.

Have you ever done karaoke? What is your go-to song?

What did you do for Mother’s Day?

Cinco de Mayo Weekend in Photos

So I apparently missed my one-year blogiversary, because this weekend as we celebrated Cinco de Mayo I remembered back to last year when I put up one of my first “recipe” posts. Really, I just made dinner using other people’s recipes and then took pictures of it…but it was an epic meal nonetheless.

This year, there was less cooking and more drinking. As there should be.

As you probably could have surmised from all my complaining on here, work has been pretty rough lately. So rough, in fact, that the only thing I wanted to do upon arriving home on Friday and was to enjoy a glass of wine on my balcony…….while taking pictures of myself.

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My boyfriend is sooo lucky you guys. {more like I’m lucky that he sticks with me after receiving series of texts like this!}

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The original plan was to make some dinner together, but we were much too hungry so we just went to our go-to spot (and T-Man’s favorite) Burgers & Brew. I don’t know if I’ve ever gone into too much detail about B&B, but it’s awesome. They have 40+ beers on tap (plus they get limited release beers like Pliny the Younger and Stone’s EnjoyBy IPA!) and a solid list of burgers. T-Man loves their Bacon & Jalapeno burger, while my favorite is their Spicy Guacamole Burger…though I’ve started ordering their Turkey & Avocado Melt. Basically I love avocado, can you tell? I also love that you can sub their veggie patty on any of the normal burgers. A+!

Burgers and Brew on Urbanspoon

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On Saturday, I did some grocery shopping for Cinco de Mayo eats. My basket included tequila and Elmo Mac n’ Cheese. Totally normal, right?

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Pineapple-coconut-tequila “ice pops” (they never really froze so they were more like slushies) on top; pineapple salsa & guacamole-making station on the bottom.

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We arrived at our friend’s party just in time to bet on the Kentucky Derby. I wrote all the horses names on slips of paper and people paid $1 a horse. I bought 2 horses, and one of them got in last place……of course. {We later did another pool for the Mayweather fight, and I didn’t win that one either! Ha)

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The rest of the party involved “Guess how many items are in this bowl full of pregnancy tests and condoms” — beer pong. LOTS of beer pong. — Nick & Laura’s daughter making an appearance…and wearing a mustache — This adorable dog!

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The next morning, T-Man took me home and I found my accessories hilarious: a bottle of tequila {mostly full, mind you!} and my empty salsa container — Then, I sat out in the sun and played kickball. Lots of fun and definitely more of a workout than dodgeball!

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Woke up to grey skies and a wet bike this morning. It was sooo hard to get out of bed. There are thunderstorms on the horizon today, which is probably a good thing considering we were in the mid-90’s last week!

How did you celebrate this weekend? (if at all)

Did you watch the race or the fight? And more importantly, were you more successful than I was in making some money off of them!?