Monday, March 30, 2009


So it's back to the hustle and bustle of Monday morning. Tired and already looking forward to next weekend. Isn't that the way it goes? I think the better the weekend, the more reluctant I am to get out of bed on Monday. It never fails that when the alarm buzzes on the oh so dreaded Monday, Chris and I look at each other and say, "You wanna call in sick?". Of course these have never turned into anything but shallow threats, but one day it may happen:)I just can't quite justify taking a sick day when we will be taking three days off for our Napa vacation in 2 short weeks!! We are SOO looking forward to the break! Besides, I think we are both way too, "play by the rules" to skip work without actually being sick...

I simply must tell you how our weekend began, as we couldn't stop laughing at ourselves. For years now, Friday has been our date night. The deal is, I cook most other nights and Chris treats me to a dinner out on Friday's. It is wonderful! Besides, who wants to cook on Friday's? Given the fact that we have an over abundance of restauraunt in this area, we are never short on choices and can typically make a decision fairly quickly. Starving and ready for dinner on our drive home we start asking each other what the other wanted to eat. We started naming some of our favs, but to no avail. Looong story short, we sat at home for 45 minutes going back and forth, but we were so hungry that nothing was sounding good! Weird, huh? So we decide to jump in the car and drive, assuming we will see something that looked good and could satisfy our hungry tummies. Bad idea. We drove for another 30 minutes and finally Chris says, "This is ridiculous, let's go to Johnny Garlic's!". So we stop and signed up, only to be told there is about a 30 minute wait! Uhhh! I really wasn't feeling it, so as we are standing outside I see Chili's and ask if we can go there. Chris gives me the curled lip, "Seriously?". You have to understand that with all of the places we could choose from, Chili's is NEVER on our list. I think we are jaded from living in Abilene and only eating there because it was the only descent restaurant on our side of town. Needless to say, this was a suprising choice for me to suggest. I will admit that I really wanted a margarita and I happen to know that Chili's makes a good one:) So off we trotted to Chili's and wouldn't you know, we enjoyed ourselves! To cut the wait time, we sat at the bar and sipped a few margaritas and enjoyed each others company:)Whatever it takes, right!

I think I can say with much certainty that Sunday was the best day this weekend. We have been church hunting for a few months now and been a little dissapointed. But finally, this Sunday, we tried a church that I think we loved! Yay!! I am really hoping we can land there. We need to give it a few weeks to know for sure, but based on yesterday, I have a good feeling about this one!

Also, yesterday marked week five of my training and I am pushing through being tired and a little unmotivated last week. Before church I ran a 5 miler, with much ease, I would like to add! I love getting my run in early on the weekends! It gives me the rest of the day to relax! In fact, I took a wonderful Sunday afternoon nap after church. That may be one of my favorite things about Sunday. I love knowing I have no where to be and no worries:)You would think I would be more refreshed today!

Sorry I didn't post the answer to my quiz this weekend. The correct answer is January. Congrats to the majority of you voters who got it right!!

Enjoy your Monday...

Well, I have something to smile about today. I bought the new issue of Clean Eating yesterday! Lunch couldn't come soon enough:)

Much Love

Friday, March 27, 2009


I guess I could be happy that it's Friday, except the only reason I am seeing the wee hours of this glorious day is because I can't sleep! That's right, it is 12:30 and I am WIDE awake!! I know, I know, this is just common practice for most people in their early twenties, but not me. Oh no, I rarely have trouble falling asleep around 10 pm. Just ask my husband. Wait, you can't do that since he is sound asleep! I'm so jealous! I can only blame my alertness on that 2 hour nap I took when we got home from work. Why so tired you ask? Not quite sure, but I regret not fighting that nap now! Bah! Five a.m. is going to come so early...

Peaceful dreams

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

You Know You're Having a Good Week When...

You know you're having a good week when...

1. You thoroughly enjoy a random Tuesday at work.

2. Your mad memorization skills win you a $15 Starbucks card, which you enjoy with your handsome hubby while sitting in the sunshine during your lunch break.

3. In the middle of the week, you rent the movie Bolt and you completely forget you have to work the next day.

Not to brag, but it has been a very good week so far:)

Last night we went to Lowe's to find some pots to plant my orange callas. I am so excited about our little front door arrangement! I must say, we definitely have the cutest entryway in our building:)

We also found a grill we would LOVE to have...

Okay, pop quiz. What is the least popular month to get married? This was the question of the day at Starbucks today and I got it right! Take the quiz to the right. I'll post the correct answer on Saturday, so come back! NO googling...

Enjoy the rest of your week!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Mildly Obsessed

I have found a new reason to love Sunday nights: CSI Miami marathons! It truly is an obsession. I can seriously watch 4 episodes in a row and I'm not even a big tv watcher! It may be that I am trying to savor every last drop of the weekend, but I just can't get enough!

Uh oh, I'm becoming more and more like my husband as the months pass:)And in case you were counting, Saturday marked 9 months. Can you believe it? I can't. We are coming up on a year! Yay, more things to celebrate!! Crazy wonderful!

Also, Sunday was the beggining of my fourth week of training. I am feeling so good and trying to convince my friend, Parris, to train for the marathon with me! It would be awesome to have someone to do this with:)

As I was running on Sunday afternoon I kept thinking of a saying I used to hear from a group fitness instructor I took classes with. He would always say, "Sweat is just calories running scared!". Don't you just love that? It always makes me smile and push just a little bit harder when I picture that:)

Friday, March 20, 2009

The Feel Good Season and the Feel Good Cookie

Well my friends, today is the first official day of Spring!! I just know you are jumping for joy with me right are, aren't you?? Haha! It's okay if you don't quite share my enthusiasm:)

You may, however be excited to know about a little secret I have been keeping:) Oh, it's not a big thing...really. I just realized you might have thought my "secret" was an update on a house. Unfortunately, it's not:( No worries though, in time.

Back to my secret, well, it's a sweet little bite of goodness that you must try!! We have a bakery here in Fair Oaks that makes the most delicious vegan cookies you have ever had! I'm not being sarcastic, they are wonderful! Chris even loves them. They come in the most delicious flavors like Lemony Lemon ( my personal favorite), Mocha Java, Carrot Spice... They are made by The Sunflour Baking Company. You may be thinking, "Kate, I don't live there. How am I going to try these little bites of heaven?". Don't fret, you have a few options. Wouldn't you know, they have a handy little website where you can order them AND they are now selling them at Whole Foods! Clearly, I am happy about the latter option:) Here is their website

Just one thing about these cookies, the regular size packs 600 calories! The thing is, they are so big and dense you can cut them into 3 or 4 pieces like I do and savor them over a few days. Or you could be like my husband and eat a whole one!Whatever your preference:) They actually come in a small size, but our Whole Foods doesn't carry them yet.

Well, I hope you enjoy the first fabulous weekend of Spring! I know I will...

Much Love!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Rainbow Eggs

**Big sigh** We are half way through this busy work week! Can I get an Amen?!

I don't know why, but I have been so ansy all week! It's like I have this giddiness bubbling up inside me. I am pretty sure it has to do with Spring almost being here and the change in weather and oh, I don't know, my birthday coming up!!

The upcoming months make me very happy to live in Northern Cali! The weather is perfect and offers such opportunity for fun rides, long walks at night, picnics in the park, farmers markets, fresh flowers, iced coffees...delightful!

Just two more days and my favorite season will officially be here!

On another note~

I have recently learned about a local farm that sells amazing eggs! My Mom actually works with the man who owns the company. Just wait, it gets better! He has two young kids and they help raise the chickens. It became very important to the kids a few years ago that they find a way to help children who are less fortunate than them. They also have a passion for the environment and raising chickens and decided they could use the majority of the profits they earn from selling the eggs and give it to childrens charities. Pretty awesome, right? The company is called Rainbow Eggs and they raise chickens from all over the world, which means each chicken produces uniquely colored eggs! (hence the name) I am so excited about buying our eggs from them! I love that we can support our local farmer and get a quality product:)

This is my egg basket filled with my "rainbow" eggs!

Sunday, March 15, 2009


I don't think I realized how roomy our living room was until we had an extra couch smack dab in the middle of it..for a MONTH! We finally sold it on Friday and now feel like we have a HUGE apartment:) What a relief!! We also sold Chris' video game rocker, which is completely useless to us since he no longer has any video games! Man, I love Craig's List:)

Speaking of relief, we bought new pillows yesterday. I made a big mistake when I bought cheap pillows last summer. Little did I know how quickly they would wear out or how painful no neck support could be! After a week of waking up with a stiff neck, Chris told me to buy new ones. Well, it was a splurge I highly recommend!! I can not believe how amazing I feel today thanks to my new alternative microfiber pillow:)

In fact, I felt so good this morning, I decided to surprise Chris with a yummy little treat...

Pretty cute, huh?

Okay, now for an update on my training. I am officially in my 3rd week and loving it! Seriously, I ran five miles today and felt amazing. I must say, I am ridiculously impressed with the body's ability to adapt so quickly! My only complaint would be that one of my toenails was a bit too long and I finished my run with a completely bloody sock and shoe:( Huge bummer! Otherwise, I am feeling great!

I hope you too had a fabulous weekend!

P.S. ~ Don't forget St. Patty's Day is this Tuesday:)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Thought Of The Day

As I was enjoying my piece of Dove dark chocolate this afternoon, I came across this great quote on the inside wrapper.

"Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently."

Don't you just love getting a little wisdom while feeding your sweet tooth?!

I would also like to admit something to you...I am officially a subscriber to Good Houskeeping:) I just got my first issue and I feel like such a little house wife! In a good way, of course:)

And finally, I was so thrilled this morning when my Mom brought over the most beautiful burnt orange callas!! They are probably my all time fav and now I get to enjoy them at home:)

Here is a teeny glimpse at my lovely flowers:)

Okay, it's time for me to join Christopher on the couch and watch Hell's Kitchen while I savor some coffee flavored frozen yogurt, yum!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Almond-Stuffed Chicken

I am always trying new recipes and a lot of times they are absolute hits. The trouble is, Chris doesn't get nearly as excited about them as I do! I decided that this Cooking Light recipe is definitely blog-worthy and I would like to pass it on:)

You would not believe how incredibly easy and quick this chicken was to make. It is a keeper for sure!!

So, without further ado...

Almond-Stuffed Chicken
1/3 cup light garlic-and-herbs spreadable cheese (such as Boursin light)
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped, and divided
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, divided
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons butter
1. Combine spreadable cheese, 3 tablespoons almonds, and 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley in a small bowl. Set aside.

2. Cut a horizontal slit through thickest portion of each breast half to form a pocket. Stuff 1 1/2 tablespoons almond mixture into each pocket; secure each pocket with a wooden pick. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper.

3. Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add chicken to pan; cook 6 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan; cover and let stand 2 minutes. Top chicken with remaining 1 tablespoon almonds and remaining 1 tablespoon parsley.

Cooking Light is one of my favorite magazines. I encourage you to grab a magazine or check out their website for other fantastic recipes! One thing they are really good at is taking great, popular and often times unhealthy recipes and making them over. Love it!

Enjoy and let me know if you make this. I'd love to know what you think !


Monday, March 9, 2009

On Weekends...

Weekends truly are the necessary boost to get you through another week. While they are all marked with varying themes, each holds a possibility of rest and rejuvination.

This weekend was filled with some of my favorite components:) After an early run Saturday morning, my Mom and I were off for a half-day of coffee, shopping and catching up! Can it get better than that? After lunch at Pita Pit (mmm...) I met up with my Hunny.

We got a call from Emily's Mom earlier in the week asking if we would like to help with the wedding invites because Em and Mark were flying in from Chicago for the weekend! So the rest of the day was spent doing just that. We had so much fun and I was so happy to spend the afternoon catching up on wedding details with her. I must give kuddos to the guys because they were pros at the invites. In fact, they may have contributed more than we did! What can I say, we were busy chatting, though we did make a sandwich run for them:)

Sunday morning was brutal for us, as we got home late and lost an hour of sleep thanks to daylight savings! This is, in my opinion, the one and only negative thing about this season. Although I was pretty pleased when the sun was still shining in my kitchen at 7pm:)

Cleaning and laundry (7 loads to be exact!) took up most of the afternoon, but I am always relieved to have a few hours to catch up on these things. As a reward, we got frozen yogurt with Brad and Laura after dinner:)

I am now ready to begin a new week with a clean house and renewed energy!

I am trying to spread my enthusiasm at work today, so I brought some homemade apple spice muffins:) So far, it's working!

Happy Monday!

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Fish Tank has arrived

Okay, 5 hour trip later, I finally have the tank in my possession. It was a steal.

However, I get home about 11:30 and realize there is no one to help me carry it in the house. So Kate wakes up and tries to help, but I'm not sure if you have ever realized just how heavy a 125 gallon glass tank can be empty.

So long story short, my nice new tank sits in the back of the truck all night.

The hope is Bill (Kate's stepdad) can help me get it in the house this morning before work.

Did I mention I am exhausted? If it wasn't for the encouragement from my lovely wife, I'm not sure I would have gotten out of bed.

Pictures of this thing WILL be posted, just as soon as I take some time to set it up right.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

What's A Girl To Do?

Currently, I am sitting in our little apartment...alone. Well, as alone as you can be when you have a dog who requires the attention of 2 three year olds! Chris is on his way to Santa Rosa to pick up his new fish tank! Yes, this is the same fish tank he oh so slyly hinted at in his last blog post:) He is excited and that makes me smile. Now the question is, what the heck are we going to do with it since he still has his fish in the 75 gallon PLUS the old couch we have yet to list on Craig's List!! I'm pretty sure we will be walking ON our furniture just to maneuver in here! I am laughing at myself as I write this and you probably are too if you have lived with me and know just how crazy I can be about the house being in utter chaos:) Oh well, such is life.

I must say, marriage has changed me in little ways. When I was in college, I welcomed alone time because it felt like I never really had personal space. I loved going for a long drive or just an hour at home ALONE. This wasn't because I didn't like my roommates. On the contrary, I loved my roommates, I just needed a little time to myself, you know? Tonight, I will most likely be asleep when Chris gets home and I am quite sad about it! It's weird how that's changed. I can honestly say that I love being with my husband!

So what's a girl to do with a free night? Honestly, it's been pretty uneventful thus far. I went for my run, made oatmeal (see how boring meals get when I'm alone!), and packed our lunches. Hmm, maybe I'll start a book or take a bath...and most likely fall asleep by 10:) Sounds good to me!

Oh, guess what?? The first day of Spring is officially two weeks from tomorrow!! Yippee:)

PS~ pictures of the monstrosity of a tank to come!

Much Love!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Art of Being Disciplined

I have had this silly little thing on my mind lately. In a few words: discipline and hard work. I must admit, these thing are not neccessarily my idea of fun and they are definitely not easy, but I do believe that without them, life just wouldn't, nay couldn't, be as enjoyable. Allow me to divulge my thought process.

It is amazing to me how everything in life that has been worth having, has come with a price. I'm not talking money, but rather good old fashioned hard work.

The main reason this is on my mind is that Sunday was the first day of my "pre-marathon" training. This is the 19 week mileage build-up before I begin my 17 week training in July. The game is on and it's time to buck up! All day I have been anticipating my four mile run. I know it might not seem like much, but it's rainy and dreary outside. You know, the perfect kind of weather to stay cuddled up inside and NOT work out:) The thing is, that's not an option if I am going to be serious about training, right? Grr! So here I am, talking myself through the fact that I have made a physical commitment to run a marathon this year and by golly, I will do what it takes!

As I am giving myself this pep talk, I am amazed at just how many of the wonderful and enjoyable things in my life are a product of choosing to be disciplined.

*Keeping my body healthy
*Growing in my walk with the Lord
*Building a strong marriage
*Maintaining long distance friendships (such a hard one)

The four things I listed are, for me, the most difficult and rewarding challenges I face each day.

If training for a marathon was easy, it wouldn't be such a desireable goal, would it? So, just as with every other thing in my life that is worth working for, I am going to push through the possible (read, likely) pain and keep my eyes on the goal. My reward will come at the end of the race when I can honestly say that I trained diligently and my body was prepared for that day.

Okay, so here's the game plan: I am going to run my 4 miles complaints, I promise.


"I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Phillipians 3:14

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The 17 Products Of Our Date Night

Have you ever gone on an adventure only to find that it wasn't so adventurous? Now, have you ever gone out and done something more routine that turned into an adventure?

The later was our situation. We went out on a bit less routine date night than usual. We decided to drive to the city and get a cupcake. Apparently, cupcakes are all the rage right now. We decided on a little place called Babycakes. It turns out it is two doors down from Peet's Coffee and Tea, so we grabbed a coffee also. These cupcakes are pretty good and we are excited to try the Nutella one. We are both suckers for Nutella.

We had some time to kill before dinner, so I went to my favorite LFS. That is Local Fish Store, for the laymen. This fish store is called O Street Aquarium. I bought a MagFloat for my tank. I was dreaming of having a larger tank, and the kinds of new fish that I could add, etc. My wife didn't pull me back to reality too much. In fact, I found the tank I really want to have on craigslist. Tell Kate to let me buy this.

So after that, it was off to Jazzyblues Cafe. We had a $25 gift certificate, but as it turns out, we didn't use it. This is where the story really starts to get interesting. We sit down, order a beer (Fat Tire), look over the menu. We learning it isn't so much of a Cafe as it is a BBQ pit. No matter, we decided on our meal. The waitress came over to take our order and said, "So let me tell you what we don't have." She went on to say, "TriTip, RibTips, Chicken, Hotlinks, and Ribs."

Of course, there wasn't much left on the menu. "So what do you have?" we both asked. Red Snapper and a burger was the answer. So much for choice, right? They didn't have anything else on the menu but your typical BBQ sides, such as baked beans, fries, and potato salad.

It turns out they had a decent reason for the food not being ready, the cook had a death in the family, but we didn't much feel like eating those two options. We scooted off from Jazzyblues trying to determine where to go, now less $25 in gift certificates and still in need of a good meal. Kate was tipsy from the single beer she had. We thought maybe we would go to one of our favorite places, called Serritella's. We highly recommend.

However, both of us were super hungry by this point, so we decided to go to Brew It Up. It was closer to where we were. This place was much better than Jazzyblues because it had a nice atmosphere and we could have an appetizer at the bar while we waited. I also had a beer (Brown Ale), you can't go to a brewery and not have a couple beers.

We devoured a stack of panko-crusted onion rings, before being seated. I had gotten a taste for meat, after being at the meat heavy menu of Jazzyblues cafe. Kate decided upon pizza, I got ribs.

The ribs were sweet, but fantastic. I loved my entree. Kate was being nice when she said the chicken pizza she had was mediocre. It was bad, dry chicken, zero flavor, etc. Normally, we don't send things back, but we wanted the restaurant to know that this particular menu item was subpar. After all we like Brew It Up, they should know they have a crappy menu item. The waiter asked us if we wanted to have it removed. We told him, only if he wanted too, we don't want to force you to do it (we weren't looking for a free bite or two of pizza).

We decided to share the cheesecake for dessert, because Kate hardly had any pizza and I can't pass up cheesecake. We joked about the Berry Coulis. "Coulis not a monkey?" Just watch the Friends episode "The one where Joey doesn't share food" and you will understand.

This cheesecake arrives at our table, unimpressive. Wait let me back up a step. I am a huge Cheesecake Fan and Critic. I can tell you how good or bad the cheesecake is at various chains and local food places from San Francisco to Abilene. My favorite all around, Claim Jumper. Best Crust, Tahoe Joe's. Best filling, Claim Jumper. Mash the two together and you will have the perfect cheesecake. Oh, btw, compare apples to apples. Cheesecake Factory's original cheesecake is mediocre at best. I would be interested in trying the cheesecake in the Friends episode, "The one with all the cheesecakes." I've seen way too much Friends for any guy, but at least I haven't seen that much Sex and the City.

Okay, so this sliver of cheesecake shows up at our table. The thing is like 1/100 the size of the piece you get at Claim Jumper. We dive into the cheesecake less the "red crap" (Again watch the friend episode). I didn't even swallow this first bite of this crappy cheesecake. I poured the red crap on the cheesecake and signaled the waiter. This thing was about as dry as death valley sand. Oh, that reminds me, every needs to try Death Valley Chipotle Kettle Chips. GREAT CHIPS! They even have a Facebook application for these things. I plan to add it, they are that good.

So back to this crappy cheesecake. Bone dry and tastes like I was putting my tongue on the back of a dirty freezer. Kate thought is was terrible too. I would easily say a SaraLee frozen cheesecake would own this cheesecake one-on-one. I am pretty sure Pedigree dog food might as well.

Anyways, we still like Brew It Up, we just think the kitchen was having a rough night. We left Brew It Up, only having paid for my third beer (Vanilla Stout) and the ribs. I tipped the waiter based on the full bill and we headed home to "finish" the date.

A normal Saturday date night, turned adventure, turned product pushing blog. I hope you all enjoyed.

Merry March!

Well, we survived February! It seems like February is always the busiest month of the year and it always creeps by slowly! I happen to have 5 friends/family with birthdays during the month and not to mention Valentine's Day and I always seem to get sick somewhere in there! I am relieved that March is finally here and Spring is well on it's way:) Hello sunshine!

In other news, I am getting really excited about our trip to Napa next month. We are staying at the Villagio and doing a hot air balloon ride! My Mom and I did a similar trip two years ago for my 21st birthday and her 40th birthday. I can't wait to share it with My Love!

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