Sunday, January 31, 2010

Another month rolls around...

After the best weekend so far of 2010, another month is rolling around! February will hopefully be another great month... meal planning has been pretty successful in January and I'm having fun! Learning to make some new things, perfecting some old favorites, and of course, expanding my menus to include more veggies are some of my goals for this month.

We had our friends Elizabeth & Mike stay with us this weekend, so we filled ourselves up with lots of restaurant goodies, including the old faithful Starbucks and my new favorite, the Cupcake store! Since we treated ourselves all weekend, we decided to start incorporating a few more healthy things into our menu this week. Here's what we're eating, with links to where you can find a recipe to make it yourself! I don't know how people came up with new recipes before the internet --- I guess that's where cookbooks come in to play!

Sunday - Tomato Tortellini Soup & Creamy Corn Muffins
Monday - Monday – Chicken Croissants with Cream Sauce & Broccoli -- I'm adding a can of Rotel Tomatoes & Green Chilie's to this recipe for a little extra kick
Tuesday – Date Night Out!
Wednesday – Turkey Teriyaki Meatballs, Vegetables & Rice
Thursday – Grilled Pork Chops, Corn & Collard Greens
Friday – Beer Battered *Chicken* Tacos w/ Tomato/Avocado Salsa -- I'm using *Chicken* instead of fish for this recipe
Saturday - TBA

In other news this week....I can hardly believe that this is the beginning of Week#5 of half-marathon training with Jenny. We have both resolved to do better this week! Afterall, there are only 11 weeks left until she runs in the half-marathon! We're scheduled to run a total of 12-14 miles this week, and I am determined to ACTUALLY give it my all and complete at least 12 of them. I'll let you know how it goes!

Hope you're having a great day!


Saturday, January 30, 2010

10 great things to do on a rainy saturday

It's cold & rainy outside... my LEAST favorite weather combination. BUT, there are a few benefits to a day like this

  1. Sleeping in... (well, remember that sleeping in is all relative, so sleeping until 7:30 is great if you normally wake up at 5:30)
  2. Eating HOT breakfast food, drinking HOT chocolate (or coffee if that's your preference), making HOT soup or chili .... anything HOT to warm you up.... and thinking about what to make for dinner this week
  3. Speaking of sleeping... napping is also a great option for a day like today (something about the quiet pitter-patter of the rain on the roof just lulls me away)
  4. A day off from running (well, this has actually turned into a week off)... perhaps I'll head to the gym and do a few miles on the treadmill if I get really motivated
  5. A great time to catch up on hours of DVR'd television
  6. A PERFECT time to snuggle up with a great novel that's been sitting on your bedside table, read the first chapter in our new bible study book for this week, and catch
  7. Time to rejoice that you cleaned the house yesterday so you can relax knowing that it's already been done (something that RARELY happens to me... I'm always cleaning on Saturdays!)
  8. Writing a new blog post, reading everyone else's newest blog posts, resolving to do better and update my blog with something interesting to read... and hopefully soon, some pictures!
  9. Speaking of pictures, it's a great day to go through all my pics from Brooke Turner Photography and start to figure out which ones to pick for our wedding album. (And, speaking of the wedding, perhaps I ought to spend some part of my rainy saturday putting a dent in my thank-you note list!)
  10. Most of all, just finding lots of ways to spend my time on a day when I would normally sit around and complain about the weather.

So, there's lots of great things to do on this rainy Saturday, and I'm really looking forward to it! How do you spend rainy days??


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Just keep running....

So this is week #3 of my training with Jenny. Week #2 was a success, I cut out only half a mile during one of the short runs and made up for it another day that week. This week we have two 3.5 mile runs and one 5-mile run. Of course, our plan includes REST days (love!), strength/stretching, and cross-training. Somehow, I find myself looking forward to the non-running days better than the running days.

But, when I'm out running and I see the REAL runners just breezing by me on their seemingly easy jog, I'm inspired to just keep running. Hopefully, if I just keep running, I'll look more like them in the near future!

Speaking of inspiration, I love running with music playing on my ipod....however, my workout/running playlist hasn't been updated in almost 2 years! If I have a good rhythm to run with, it is so much easier for me to forget everything and just keep running. What tunes are you running to??

Stay tuned this week for the first edition of "The Lady Quote"!

Happy Wednesday :)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

menu un-planning

It seems like the hardest thing about menu planning is the unexpected things that pop up. Really, the hardest part (for me) about planning ANYTHING is the unexpected. My type A personality loves the plan, and hates changing it, but I'm learning when plans fall through, you have to un-plan them!

The great thing about un-planning your menu is it usually involves something fun with family & friends. This week our menu went all off schedule toward the end of the week, but we got to hang out with my family to celebrate dad's birthday and hit the USC vs. Vandy basketball game with Leigh & Gray. The other great thing about un-planning is the food you bought stretches a little farther into the next week (see tonight's meal below).

I think the key to menu planning is to realize that ALL plans are tentative, ALL plans could change in the blink of an eye, depending on how the day goes. So sometimes meals have to be re-arranged, and it's good to have meals in your weekly menu that the ingredients don't go bad if you don't use them right away.

So, what we're planning to eat this week....

Sunday - Red Wine Marinated Steaks & Sweet potatoes (our un-plan from last night)
Monday - Chicken Pasta w/ Tomato Sauce
Tuesday - date night!
Wednesday - Cheese Grits, Bacon & Eggs - Breakfast for Dinner
Thursday - Pot Roast
Friday - Sunday School Karaoke & Pizza Party

My take-away lesson for this week is to be FLEXIBLE! This may seem obvious to everyone else, but us Type A personality's have to hear this lesson over-and-over-and-over again.

Hope you all have had a great weekend and if you have the luck of having the day off tomorrow for MLK, Jr. Day, enjoy that too!


Monday, January 11, 2010

Monday, Monday..

Mondays are hard, aren't they? Luckily, my husband followed through with my plea to make me get out of bed for my morning workout today by leaving my phone alarm on the dresser and letting it ring and ring and ring while he got in the shower. Needless to say, pretty shortly thereafter, I was up and out of the bed to shut that awful noise off! I find that if I get up and get my Monday started with a workout, the whole week gets off to a better start! I'm happy now, that there isn't another Monday for 6 more days :)

So, I guess you're here to hear THE LATEST, right?

Well, first of all, this is the beginning of week #2 of my friend Jenny's half-marathon training. SO, why is that so significant for me? Well, I've decided that I will train with her by following her same training plan (we live in different cities, so we can't actually run together). I've been in and out of running for the last few years, and one of my goals for 2010 was to get back into it again. I joined a little late, so I only ran 6 of the total 12 miles for week #1, but the good news is, I made it through the entire "long run" of 4 miles on Saturday. I'll let you know how week #2 pans out after Saturday. My ultimate goal is to incorporate more long-distance-ish runs into my workouts. Once I've built up some endurance through this 16-week plan, we'll see where it goes from there.

The other new thing in my life is menu planning. I tried menu planning for an entire month in June 2009, before life got crazy with wedding planning, and it was a total success. I saved money and time and had lots of yummy leftovers for lunch (therefore, saved more money!) If you know anything about me, you know I LOVE to save money, so this is one key to my motivation. Another key is to share more meals at home with my husband where we can spend time one-on-one with each other without the distractions that eating out often brings. I'm trying new recipes left and right, and also, cheating a little bit off my friend Leigh, who is an amazing cook, and is also implementing menu planning more this year. Another related goal is to get my kitchen stocked up with staple items so I can whip up meals/snacks/etc on the fly whenever the planning falls through.....What are some of your go-to items in the kitchen??

Our menu this week:
Sunday - Three Cheese Beef Stuffed Shells (from Leigh's recipe blog... yummy)
Monday - Chili (a perfect dish for this CRAZY cold weather) - I was nervous about using half ground beef & half venison this time, but it turned out great!
Tuesday - Date Night!
Wednesday - Girls' night with Leigh!
Thursday - Pork Chops, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Black-Eyed Peas
Friday - Aloha Chicken & Rice
Saturday - TBA

You'll notice my menus are MAJORLY lacking in vegetables. My main go-to vegetable is a salad, because I have always been VERY picky when it comes to cooked veggies. My husband loves vegetables and is the complete opposite of me on the pickiness-spectrum, so I'm looking for suggestions. Can you help me out???


Saturday, January 9, 2010

Hello (Blog) World....

Let's start first and foremost with a confession....

If you asked me a year ago about blogging, I would have said everyone who was obsessed with reading and/or writing on blogs was a little bit crazy! However, since that time, I've become one of those girls who follows MANY blogs on a daily basis, and checks in on others every couple of weeks.

That being said, I often find myself with something to say and no outlet for which to express it! Granted, there is Facebook or even Twitter, but I enjoy reading blogs so much now, I thought it would be pretty cool to have my own. I have absolutely no computer knowledge, so you'll probably notice that my setup remains basic for a LONG time until I get more experienced. Luckily, I have a few friends with pretty successful blogs, so hopefully they'll give me some pointers, advice, and help.(Hint, Hint).

I'm sure you'll learn more about me if you keep coming back, but probably for now it's just friends reading, so you already know who I am and what I'm about, so I'll save all those lovely details for later posts. I hope you'll visit back to hear "the latest" which will probably include a little bit of my experiences as a new wife, what i'm reading/learning/memorizing in scripture, my latest interests (currently running, menu planning, couponing, house decorating), a recurrent post called "The Lady Quote" (more on this soon), and just anything else I determine worthy of sharing with the world at any given time.

Hope to see you back again soon!