Tag Archives: slumber party

Sneaky Spinach

For several years now, I’ve read post after post from bloggers who swear by the awesome “green smoothies” that they drink all the time. I’ll be honest, I was skeptical. Partly because these “green smoothies” include SPINACH, which sounded rather disgusting to me. Don’t get me wrong, I love spinach; I eat spinach salads quite often. But, putting ย spinach in a SMOOTHIE? That didn’t sound very tasty to me. Every blogger that wrote about these wonderful green smoothies would always promise, “You can’t even taste the spinach!” and I always thought, “Oh reeeeeally?” ย  ๐Ÿ˜‰

Despite the odd color, this really was delicious!

Well, I finally decided to put my fears aside and give these spinach smoothies a try! I’d read somewhere on a blog (I think it was Julie’s) that the key to “not tasting the spinach” was to include a banana in the concoction. ย With some trepidation, and a whole lot of skepticism, I threw some raw spinach into my blender, added some water, and sliced half a banana on top. After I’d given the blender plenty of time to completelyย liquefyย the mixture, I added some frozen blueberries (just for fun) and some of my favorite vanilla protein powder.

After another minute or two of blending, I poured the green somewhat purple smoothie into a tumbler and dove in for a taste test! And ย  ย  ย it was surprisingly delicious! I truly ย couldn’t taste the spinach at all, and the smoothie basically tasted like banana-blueberry, with a hint of vanilla. Yum! ย The best part of the whole creation was that I ingested about 2 cups of raw spinach, without even tasting it. Not that I mind the taste of spinach, but if I can eat it through a delicious banana-blueberry smoothie, why not? ๐Ÿ™‚

So, there you have it! I’ve officially jumped on-board the green smoothie bandwagon. ย ๐Ÿ˜› ย If you’re looking for a simple and delicious way to sneak some extra greens into your diet, give this a try! I promise, you really can’t taste the spinach. ย ๐Ÿ˜‰

BASIC GREEN SMOOTHIE RECIPE:

ย  ย  ย  – 2 handfuls/cups of raw spinach

ย  ย  ย  – 1/2 banana

ย  ย  ย  – 1/2 cup frozen blueberries (or other frozen fruit)

ย  ย  ย – enough water to liquefyย 

ย  ย  ย – 1 scoop protein powder of your choice

ย  ย  ย  Mix all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Pour into an awesome tumbler of your depressing hometown football team, and enjoy with a straw! ย ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

 

In other news…

– I got my VOTE on today! And I have a sticker to show for it. ย ๐Ÿ˜€ ย I went around 2pm and only had to wait 5 minutes in line! Win, win!

ย  ย – I’m going to knock out a couple more hours of studying and then I’m off to the Neon Night Run with Big River Running Company! A is going to meet me there and then spend the night afterward. Some hot tea and election-results viewing is definitely on tap for tonight!

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Plyometrics and Yoga – the perfect balance

Well, it’s been a few days since I wrote anything on here! I’ve had a busy week, but overall it’s been a good one. ๐Ÿ™‚

Tuesday was a fun day! Last time A was over, she lent me a couple of her P90X DVDs so I decided to try the Plyometrics one on Tuesday afternoon. I used to do a lot more plyometrics and miss them a lot! Plyometrics are high-intensity and include lots of jumping around, explosion-like exercises…just my kind of thing! ๐Ÿ˜› The P90X DVD was an hour long and it was INTENSE. I did a LOT of sweating and may or may not have said some nasty things to Tony Horton while we were doing yet another set of jump squats. It’s a love-hate thing for me. I love being pushed so hard in my workouts but I hate it in the moment. All of that to say, I really loved my first P90X experience! I often get distracted or bored during workout DVDs, but this one was intense and the instructor was funny (corny?) enough to keep me entertained. Win, win!

After sweating bucket-loads in my basement, I came upstairs to shower and get ready for A to come over. Tuesday morning I had been at Schnucks to check out their newly-expanded gluten-free section! It is amazing! I spent over 20 minutes geek-ing out over all the gluten-free pastas, baking mixes, cookies, flours, and other goodies. I came home with a gluten-free chocolate cake mix and decided to make cupcakes for A because she loves chocolate. ๐Ÿ™‚ I never ended up icing the cupcakes because everyone agreed they were plenty sweet without it. So, I guess they’re technically more like chocolate muffins. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Regardless of the name, they got rave reviews from A and my family!

A and I had a fun girls night, complete with facial masks, painting of the nails, and some girly chick-flicks. (of course!) We watched Last Holiday, which was such sweet movie, and an old classic: Roman Holiday! I guess we were in a holiday theme, for some reason…

Wednesday morning, A and I had a date with Bob Harper. Well, via his Yoga for Warriors DVD. ๐Ÿ˜› My calves were TIGHT and sore from the plyometrics on Tuesday so the yoga felt amazing; hurt so good. ๐Ÿ˜‰

After enjoying some delicious oatmeal for an 11am brunch, we decided to do some shopping because I needed black pumps for an interview today and A had some gift cards she was eager to use. I never really wore pumps at my previous job. Because the attire was pretty casual, I stuck to flats and wedges, which are much easier on my feet. But, I figured it was probably time to get some classic black pumps…good thing to have on hand, right?

We did some serious damage at the mall, as well as TJ Maxx! But almost everything I got was on sale or a fall staple that I will wear a lot, so that made me feel better about the $$. I got some cute shirts, leggings, black boots, black pumps, and two classy skirts! Really happy with the purchases. I hadn’t been shopping in so long because once I quit my job I decided to really cut back on spending money to be wise about it all. I haven’t even allowed myself into a mall for several months, haha!

This afternoon I did a bunch of studying for IIN and also skype-d with an out-of-town friend. I’m contemplating heading out for a swim at the gym (this morning I did my usual upper-body strength training routine) and probably relaxing with my family tonight. Rumor has it that my sis and her fiancรฉ are coming over for dinner. ๐Ÿ™‚

Have a great night!

P.S. Cocoa and I played “fetch” for awhile on Tuesday and I couldn’t resist taking some adorable pictures of her, playing with her ball. ย ๐Ÿ˜‰

Slumber Party and My Latest (Old Lady) Hobby…

On Tuesday afternoon, my BFF “A” came over to spend the night. We had such a great time together, as we always do. We’re kindred spirits in a lot of ways: both passionate about health and fitness, runners, fun-loving, similar hobbies, and we laugh A LOT when we’re together. She is an awesome friend and one I treasure dearly.

We enjoyed a delicious dinner on the screened-in porch with my family and then popped two bowls of popcorn (I always eat a whole bowl by myself, haha) and settled in the family room for a good chick-flick. What else would you expect for a slumber party? ๐Ÿ˜‰

First, we watched The Holiday, which I had never seen before. It has Jack Black, Jude Law, Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet in it…such a cute love story and so hilarious too! After that was over, it was about 9:15 and since we knew we didn’t have to wake up early the next morning (yet another thing A and I have in common is that we are both currently unemployed, aside from part-time nannying jobs) so we decided to make it a double feature movie night. Next we watched another new-to-me movie called Bride Wars, with Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson! It was cute; kind of your typical chick-flick, but funny and entertaining nonetheless. Since I’ve been applying for jobs in the Event-Planning field lately, that part of the movie was especially interesting to me! If you’re looking for a funny and cute movie for a girls night, check it out.

We made it to bed around 11:30 and woke up around 8:30 Wednesday morning to do Power Yoga with Bob Harper! A owns the DVD and had raved about it to me before…I was so excited to try it out! I love yoga and wish I made the time to have more of it in my life. The Bob Harper DVD is 60 minutes long and kept me sweating and working hard! It is a good workout! I love his style of yoga, the way he coaches you deeper into the poses but also makes you feel comfortable if you’re a beginner (or just completely inflexible like me, haha!). I was wondering if a 60 minutes yoga DVD would be boring and looooong to me, but it kept me engaged the whole time! Definitely want to buy this one on Amazon so I can do it regularly. ๐Ÿ˜‰

After our power yoga, we decided to walk to the Starbucks that is about 2 miles away from my house. This is one of my favorite walking routes because of the new (paved!) trail that was recently finished and covers almost all of the 2 mile distance. After getting our go-to iced coffees at Starbucks, we decided to check out an adorable little boutique in the same shopping center called J.A. Whitney. Their stuff is really expensive, but ADORABLE. We had a great time perusing the jewelry, monogrammed bags and notepads, Christmas ornaments, and other fun items.

My favorites:

Love it!

By the time we completed our 2 mile walk back to my house, it was almost 1pm and we had yet to get breakfast! Last time A spent the night, I made her my special oatmeal and she fell in love with it just like me. I told you I had a lot in common with this girl! haha. She requested oatmeal again this time so I made a big pot to split between us.

Here’s how I make my special oatmeal:
(for 1 person)

Pour about 1 3/4 cups water into a pan and heat until almost boiling. Add 1/2 cup oats (doesn’t matter what kind, but I think I usually use the quick cooking) but DON’T stir them right away. Let them sit and soak up some water first. While this is happening, add cinnamon and salt as desired. (for me, this means DUMPING generous amounts of both into the pot!) Then, start stirring the oats and reduce the heat to med-low. The oatmeal should start to thicken as you stir. There’s no real science to this, but I alternate between stirring and letting it sit. I often reduce the heat to low and allow it to “bubble” for a little bit. Again, the goal is to get thick, creamy oatmeal and this is how the magic happens! ๐Ÿ˜‰

After the oatmeal is sufficiently creamy and aromatic (someone from my family usually comments on how good the cinnamon smells, and then I know it’s reached perfection. haha) pour it into a bowl and top with frozen blueberries. Then, place little dollops of peanut butter (I used creamy, unsalted, from Trader Joe’s) around the edge of the oatmeal – but again, don’t stir the peanut butter into the oats! Let it sit on the surface while the oatmeal cools; this is key! After the oatmeal has cooled for a minute or two, start slowly stirring the peanut butter and witness the wonderfulness that is taking place! ๐Ÿ˜€ YUMMM…now I am craving oatmeal!

Anyway, Wednesday afternoon, after A left, I spent the afternoon doing some emailing, watching some Netflix, and painting my nails a pretty new color. It’s a smoky grey/blue color that I love! I’m not doing so great at the whole “take pictures of everything I do” part of this blogging thing. Oops.

Wednesday evening I was supposed to go out for coffee with my sis but she got in a car accident on the way home from work so we had to reschedule! She is ok but her car isn’t. It’s going to need some body work done. So thankful she is alright, though! Instead, C (my boyfriend, haha) came over and he did homework while I applied for (event-planning) jobs online! Praying that something comes through in that field! We’ll see!

THEN, my most favorite part of the evening, I mentioned to C that I wanted to start knitting again (call me an old lady – I already love going to bed at 9pm, haha!) and he suggested we go to Michaels right then and there to get yarn and needles! Um, yes?! We took off on our little adventure and came home with a beautiful ball of forest green yarn and shiny, metal size 15 needles! My first project is going to be a scarf for C because I love knitting scarves – they are straight and simple and very difficult to mess up. (Although I have managed to do it before.) One of the main reasons I decided to take up knitting again is because I’ve noticed lately how antsy I get when I’m watching a movie at home or listening to a lecture for IIN (Institute for Integrative Nutrition; I’m studying to be a Certified Health Coach)…I always want to have something to do with my hands while I watch/listen! I’ve tried painting my nails, but one can only do that so many times in a day. ๐Ÿ˜› I think knitting will be the perfect solution to this because it’s relatively mindless (at least when you’re knitting a scarf) and yet somehow theurupetic. I started on my scarf this morning and it’s already about 9 inches long! Woot! (BONUS: so far it is also relatively straight! haha!)

So, that was my Tuesday and Wednesday! Now it’s Thursday afternoon, and I just finished a coffee date with a friend at Kaldis, where I’m sitting now as I type this post. I’m off to see a movie with friends and whatever else the evening holds!