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Category: Animals

What We’ve Been Up To

Hi guys!

It’s been a while! That’s completely my fault. Andrew and I have definitely been busy, but during this holiday time I just wanted to take some time to slow down, relax with my family, and consider where I want to go with the blog.

Now of course, fitness, health, and weight loss have all been extremely important parts of my life and will continue to be, in addition to eating disorder recovery. But my life is also much more than that, and I started the blog to be a lifestyle blog, not just a fitness blog. So I think I want to branch out and do a wider variety of posts. I tried to step out a bit with my top 5 winter skincare products, and I liked the way that post turned out, so I will continue to write what feels good and right at the time. Hopefully you will enjoy reading it!

Because it’s been a while since I posted, I figured I would catch you up on what’s been happening in Andrew’s and my life recently.

[gratuitous and adorable cat and dachshund snuggle shot]

Last week was a busy and hard week before Christmas. I had a couple of difficult situations at work that I was dealing with, so a night out with two of my bridesmaids was much needed! We went Wednesday night to a local place called Grapes and Crepes, which I highly recommend! I had a couple of glasses of Riesling, which is one of my favorite kinds of wine!

We talked and talked and ended up closing the place down at 9:00 after catching up for three hours! My sweet maids gave me a fun bachelorette dice game and I was able to give them their bridesmaid “proposal” boxes. Here’s a pic of the outside of one, but I don’t want to post the inside since two of my bridesmaids haven’t received theirs yet:

I can’t wait to get everyone together before the wedding! I have such wonderful, awesome people as bridesmaids.

Then on Friday, Andrew, my mother, my brothers, and I drove to Yakima to eat lunch together at Applebee’s. I have to say that the food was not great, but it was nice to eat lunch with my family. After lunch my mom took me to Ulta and I shopped my little heart out, snagging two Peter Thomas Roth face masks that I’ve been coveting for a while: the Irish moor mud mask and the pumpkin enzyme mask.  PS: the pumpkin mask smells like straight up pumpkin pie and worked wonders on my skin, helping clear some of the dry patches and texture after just one use! Love!

Then my mom and I drove to a place called JS Nails to get our nails done, which I was super excited about. My nails have been very fragile and splitty lately, so getting them done was a treat. I chose purple and gold for the playoff game on December 31st between Alabama and UW. Go Huskies!!

Sunday was Christmas of course, and it was a nice, relaxing holiday with the family. We ate homemade breakfast casserole and opened presents. My mom gave me some fun things including a Betty Crocker original reproduction cookbook with favorite recipes highlighted and kitchen chopping shears!

My fitness was so-so this week. I only ended up going to the gym three times, but I made sure to get a nice sweaty half-hour on the bike on Christmas Eve before the indulgence of the next day!

Last week ended up being wonderful, although the slightest bit stressful. Aren’t the holidays always a bit stressful?

Things I’m looking forward to this week: the playoff game, New Years Eve, seeing my other two bridesmaids, and just hanging out with my fiancé! I’ll be sure to pop in for a few more posts. Have a great day!

He’s Here!

Our baby is home! Meet Alabama:

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He’s a real cutie, isn’t he? His personality has been emerging more and more over the past couple of days. When we first picked him up, it was right after his neuter surgery, and that night, he was a little subdued and wobbly from the anesthesia. But now that he’s had some recovery time, Bama is showing himself to be a very curious and playful kitty.

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Introductions to the rest of the crew were… interesting to say the least. Vylette was the easiest introduction, as was to be expected. Before she was adopted, she had a litter of puppies and is always in the mothering mindset. So with Bama, she immediately decided he was her new baby. She follows him around, whines when he climbs too high, incessantly licks his face and ears, and stares at him constantly.

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Yeah. Basically like that.

Presley is acting like Presley. In case you don’t know anything about my toy poodle, he is a HUGE mama’s boy. He’s jealous and neurotic. He mostly leaves Bama alone, except if he hears the kitty jumping off something or crashing into something, and then he runs towards him barking like he’s there to save the day. But honestly, he wouldn’t know what to do with a kitty even if he caught him. So even though he acts like a big tough guy, I never worry about him hurting another animal. However, the most annoying part of introducing a new animal to Presley is that, due to his ridiculous neuroticism, we will be finding some kind of bodily fluid on the floor of our kitchen for approximately three weeks (use your imagination).

Willow, our miniature dachshund, was the most nerve-wracking introduction, to say the least. She’s still a pretty young dog, around 2 1/2, so she’s very energetic. Hyper would be a better word for it. So initially, she was chasing Bama around the house (while we screamed and ran after her), grabbing his back fur in her mouth and pulling, and barking every time he moved. Over the past two days, she has calmed down a lot, and it gives me very high hopes for normal interactions as the kitty grows.

Chipper, Andrew’s cat, is acting like his normal, anti-social, weird self. And I say that in the most loving way possible. Having the two cats together at night has been an interesting transition, with lots of noises that have us waking up, saying “what was that?” and turning on our iPhone lights. A few of the things that have interrupted our sleep: Bama chewing on the filter on his litter box; Chipper using Bama’s litter box instead of his own; Chipper eating Bama’s expensive kitten food; Bama and Chipper hissing and messing around with the door to our room; Bama knocking things off our side table; and on and on. I have a feeling that it won’t take too long for things to improve, but for now, I foresee some sleepy mornings for us.

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Overall, I really can’t complain. I have gone through quite a few new animal introductions and I am used to the transition period. As long as there is no blood, I know that we will get through it all ok. And I’m just trying to soak in this very short time while Bama is small, because it’s fun to have a new kitty around the house.

Well, Andrew and I are headed off to the gym for lower body strength day. Wishing you a wonderful Saturday from our ever-expanding family to yours!

What I Ate Wednesday

Andrew and I are on a roll lately with delicious dinners.

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This was cilantro lime chicken thighs with avocado salsa and a side salad. You can find the recipe here: http://www.joyfulhealthyeats.com/cilantro-lime-chicken-with-avocado-salsa/

For once, I actually didn’t change anything about this recipe! It was great as is. The creamy avocado was a great contrast to the bite of the lime, and the red pepper flakes added just enough spice to leave a pleasant heat in your mouth. I have leftovers for lunch today!

I am working on the last post in my health and fitness journey. It’s definitely the hardest part to talk about, especially since I am struggling with my weight and disordered urges right now. I hope to have it up within the next few days. For right now, I’m really trying to go even more hardcore with my eating healthy. No processed foods, cut out any chocolate and ice cream treats (except for one a week), and no drinking my calories! Only water and tea for now. Hopefully with this plan and some kicked up fitness, I’ll be able to drop a few pounds before my first wedding dress fitting in February!

On to WIAW!

Breakfast: One fried egg (fried with olive oil) on a piece of wheat toast (no butter) and a cup of pineapple, plus a mug of green tea in my new engagement mug!

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Lunch: Two leftover cilantro lime chicken thighs, a cup of grapes, and a quarter of a cup of cocoa roasted almonds

Dinner: Six ounces of thin-cut steak, a cup of golden rice, and steamed veggies (a mix of cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots)

I am trying to cut my calories a bit, but not by too much, since I want to have plenty of energy to do my workout, which tonight will be running a few miles and our upper body strength routine. It may take a bit of tinkering, but I’m hoping that eventually I will figure out my relationship with food and my body.

I will leave you with a picture of our cat, Chipper on his (soon to be shared!) kitty play gym. Can’t wait until there are two sleepy kitties!
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Tomato Soup and Exciting News

So Andrew’s dental procedure went well yesterday. Before I knew it, he was texting me to say he was ready to go. The sad thing is, he’s back in the dentist’s chair today. Granted, only for a cleaning this time. But last night, I knew that he would not want anything super chewy for dinner, so I made creamy tomato soup.

I based my soup off of this recipe, changing a few things, as always: http://cookingwithruthie.com/2013/03/19/tomato-basil-soup/

I omitted the celery since neither Andrew nor I like it, substituted olive oil for butter, and added some red pepper flakes and ground red pepper to make it a bit spicy.

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This was very good! Creamy but still healthy, a little spicy, and very flavorful! We ate it with grilled cheese sandwiches on wheat bread.

Tonight we are planning on making this delicious looking lime and cilantro chicken with avocado salsa: http://www.joyfulhealthyeats.com/cilantro-lime-chicken-with-avocado-salsa/

I also got the ingredients for a side salad. I was really craving something fresh and healthy tonight!

Now for some exciting news! Andrew and I are adding to our little family! No, there’s no bun in the oven! But we’ve been checking the shelters for a playmate for Andrew’s cat, Chipper. And yesterday we found the perfect candidate, filled out an application, and will be picking up our new kitten on Thursday!

We are both so very excited, and I’ll do a post on Thursday introducing him! For now, I’ll leave you with a little sneak peek!

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Yummy dinner and Yoga Truancy

Looking for a delicious, easy dinner idea? I’ve got just the thing.

Andrew and I love cooking together, but we tend to lean toward less-complicated dinners. I work full time and Andrew is plugging away on his thesis, so just like most working folks, we’re a little fatigued by the end of the day. This is one of our favorite simple dinners.

You start with some packaged ravioli. We’ve had a wide variety of types and they’ve all worked well in this “recipe.” Spinach and artichoke, mushroom, basil and tomato, etc.

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Tonight’s choices were a mix of five cheese, tomato-basil, and pesto.

While you’re heating up the water for the ravioli, chop up your desired veggies. I highly recommend yellow squash, zucchini, onions, and mushrooms. They just work together. Get them in a pan with some olive oil and make sure to season the veggies while or before sautéing them.

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Add whatever type of marinara sauce you like. You could probably use other varieties of sauce, but marinara is VERY good with this mix. We used four-cheese. It kind of tasted like spaghetti0-s, which is great in my book!

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(Look at my handsome man!)

Once the sauce is in and everything is heated, mix in your ravioli. Oh it’s sooooo good. And my personal favorite step: add parmesan cheese. The best part is you’re not at a restaurant and no one will judge you or limit you.

Before:

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After:

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DELICIOUS. And so easy!

(By the way, check out this picture of one of our cats on top of the hay pile. Doesn’t he look like a ferocious lion?)

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We really needed this dinner after our strength workout last night. Last night was lower body. Let me tell you, my thighs, hips, and butt are hurting right now. Which explains the second half of this post’s title.

Andrew and I are trying to go to the twice-a-week six AM yoga class. This morning, I woke up at 5:25 and just thought, not this morning. Needless to say, we went back to sleep. We will be going to yoga tonight, though, so I don’t feel too badly!

I’ll leave you today with this, which perfectly sums up how I feel.

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Dreary Day and DOMS

We are having a run of nasty weather here.

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This kind of weather is what prevents me from ever living on the West side. At least here, weather like this only lasts a few days rather than weeks or months. Doesn’t that gray sky just make you want to get back in bed and curl up under the covers?

Too bad. For me anyway.

The job calls. And a long, busy Wednesday calls for just one thing.

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This is especially needed after how I felt waking up today.

Here’s a little snippet of background in my fitness story: I’ve always been the cardio queen. Running, biking, even that dreaded hamster wheel for humans.

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(Ok. No one looks that happy on the elliptical. NO ONE)

I have attempted to start some sort of strength training routine for years. And usually, I succeed for a while. But soon enough, I go running (HA) back to my sweaty cardio ways. Well, now I have a fiancé. A fiancé who loves strength training and a looming wedding. So the idea of toning up is very attractive. Andrew devises a plan for us. At least three days of strength training a week (upper body day, lower body day, full body day). Well, Monday was upper body day. And I went from absolutely zero strength training to this:

(Two sets of ten reps each)

  • Bench press
  • Shoulder press
  • Tricep extension
  • Hammer curl
  • Bent over row

And then if that wasn’t bad enough, we did approximately 500 planks. Okay, more like five. But still.

Anyway, Tuesday morning I woke up and was a little sore. Just a little. And then.

Tuesday night, my 14 pound poodle put his pointy little stiletto paws on my chest. Right on the muscles that are worked by the bench press.

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OWWWWWWWWWW.

Definitely have some Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) going on.

Just in case the name doesn’t explain it well enough for you, here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delayed_onset_muscle_soreness

You’re welcome.