Non-Baby Topics (No Lie…Not Even One Picture)

Let’s chat about something other than sleep, breastmilk, and all other baby-related topics.

First up, TV! Now that I’m home full-time, I’ve been watching more TV (should I be ashamed?), or at least having it on in the background. Brody and I also continue to watch our shows at night.

My daytime TV starts with The Today Show. I was embarrassingly excited when they announced that Carson Daly is joining the team!!!!
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I always defend Carson when Brody pokes fun of him on The Voice and thought he was fantastic when he was a guest host for The Today Show a month ago.

I also regularly watch What Not To Wear and The Chew, both of which I DVR. Sometimes I’ll see an episode of Long Island Medium or The Dr. Oz Show.

At night, Brody and I have a handful of shows we’re into. This section demands a list:

1) Have you seen The Newsroom? If not, you have to watch it.
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It’s in its second season and is SO well done. The writer and producer, Aaron Sorkin, also created Sports Night and The West Wing. The show gives a (fictional) behind the scenes look at producing a nightly news program. The characters are well-developed, and the plot is just smart.

2) Sons of Anarchy started up again, and we watched the first episode the other night. I forgot how violent that show is: anal rape, torture porn, drowning in a tub of urine. Oy! And I’m sure all of the S.O.A. and Fifty Shades of Grey fans out there heard that Charlie Hunnam will be Christian Grey in the film version of the very popular trilogy (which I never read).
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3) The Food Truck Road Race is another one we keep up with. Quite a 180 from S.O.A., right? Tyler Florence hosts this show, and I’m guessing the title gives away the premise.

4) Brody started watched Revolution on Netflix on his own, and I got sucked in a couple weekends ago about ten episodes into the first season. We enjoyed Lost, and this is by the same writer, JJ Abrams. It’s a slightly futuristic setting in which the “lights went out.” No power, no electricity…well, sort of. This is the perfect lazy weekend show.

Second non-baby discussion point, FOOD!

Last weekend, Brody was gone, and a kind friend brought over soup for me. One less meal to figure out? Awesome! The soup (with kale, ground turkey, and carrots) was delicious, and with the cooler temps, I’m ready to start making more comfort foods. I found the recipe my friend used (link above) and made myself a batch. Instead of rice, I added some potatoes that were on their last legs. It was the perfect quick and healthy lunch for me last week.

I was craving something sweet (no surprise) I found this protein powder peanut butter cookies. They were what you’d expect from a healthy cookie, but I actually prefer this protein powder cookie dough. Brody came home, saw the cookies thinking they were “real”, and got excited. I quickly intercepted his reaching hand – he would’ve spit the cookie out and given me that “I can’t believe you eat this” look. Because I’m an awesome wife, I made “real” cookies for him this morning…with peanut butter, and butter, and sugar. Smitten Kitchen has the best cookie recipes, so I followed hers. Peanut butter cookies for the win! I broke my rule (more of a guideline) of not eating chocolate before noon and had two. Then I had two after lunch. I’ll probably have more before the day is done.

This is kind of food related: a commercial was shot at my house on Wednesday. Like a legit commercial that will air on TV (only on the east coast, though). How did this come to be? A neighbor of mine knows the woman who was responsible for finding locations for breakfast sausage company’s commercial. My neighbor suggested my house since they were looking for a kitchen space with a breakfast bar. Out of a handful of houses, mine was one of three selected! A crew of thirty some people arrived at 7:30am and occupied the entire first floor of my house. Lots of cars and an RV lined the streets around my house, camera and lighting equipment was set up inside and outside, and there was a food buffet outside…cause that’s when you know it’s the real deal.
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They left at 8:00pm (after doing a very good job of cleaning my house) and handed over a nice check. Plus, they left a package of breakfast sausage in the freezer for us! It was a very cool and unique experience.

Third and final topic, exercise. I’m kind of back on that horse; this past week I went to kickboxing on Tuesday, Zumba on Wednesday, and ran three miles on Friday. My body feels good, but I can definitely tell something is different with my knees. They ache when I crouch down and stand up, even if I hadn’t recently worked out. Also, I don’t notice it’s any worse after running. Pregnancy can affect ligaments, and I’m guessing that’s what is going on. I also need new shoes. It could be that.

I didn’t even mention “she who will not be named” once. Bet you didn’t think I could do it? It was hard.

Questions:
What show(s) are you into?
What’s the best thing you’ve made recently?
What’s been your go-to way to exercise recently?

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Life is Busy Again

Hey! I got a random bit for you. Thanks for sticking around as I readjust to life as a working adult again. I promise I am not as scatterbrained as this post makes me seem.

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Even though Moose loves human food, he is often too lazy to move to get it. Maybe this popcorn wasn’t tempting enough.

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Aren’t Real Simple recipes amazing? This one was great, but Brody and I decided it needed a little something extra. Red pepper flakes? Garlic? Crumbled bacon? Cream? All four?

This week I also made Cuban pork sandwiches and enchiladas, AND I baked these (but with plain Chobani instead of oil). Love Jenna’s recipes.

I think that because I have been such an amazing cook/wife this week, Brody felt I deserved a few presents:
1) A giant oatmeal chocolate chip cookie from Potbelly’s
2) A gift card to Starbucks (It was a gift to him but he’s super anti-Starbucks. He’s actually never set foot in a Starbucks in his life.)
3) A women’s Keep Calm and Chive On shirt

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I can’t wait to be twinsies with Brody and send in a picture of us to The Chive.

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I found the bar section at Woodman’s. It is a thing of beauty. So many bars. I went for a handful of “lady bars” as JP calls them. This new-to-me bar was kind of blah; it almost crumbled as I ate it. Brody had a better experience; he accidentally grabbed the chocolate coconut and liked it. He thought it tasted like a Samoas Girl Scout cookie.

Sons of Anarchy. Whoa. That was some intense s***. Some of my thoughts (numbered of course):
1) Poor Tigey (sp?). That scene with his daughter was so horrible.
2) I know Clay is up to something – there is no way he came clean about Piney because it was the right thing to do.
3) Please don’t let Jacks (or is it Jax?) turn in to a version of Clay.
4) Tara seems like more of a badass now: smoking, agreeing to carry, the bangs and darker eyeliner.

On the exercise/running front, I am running a leg of a marathon relay this weekend. The North Face Endurance Challenge is up in the Kettle Morraine area, and two friends of ours are running the 50K. I cannot imagine running that far. I’m nervous about my 6.5 miles of trail running.

In case you’re wondering, WordPress still sucks big time! I am soooo annoyed. Grrr…

Questions:
What shows are you excited to start watching again?
What’s your favorite lady bar?
What’d you cook or bake this week?

S-S-Saturday and S-S-Sunday

Hey! How was your weekend? Good? Mine too!

Bloggers seem to love alliteration as much as they love pumpkin in the fall (which I do not mention in this post). At least I can blame my alliterative tendencies on my profession. However, when thinking over my weekend, most of which was spent in the Minocqua area for Brody’s firm’s annual get-together, everything seemed to start with an S.

Sweat
When my alarm went off at 7am Saturday morning, I did not have a good feeling about my six mile run. With a few glasses of red wine in me from the night before and less than eight hours of sleep, I was nervous. But, my sixty minute sweat session ended up being amazing. The weather and scenery were perfect. I love fall running!

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Snooze
After the run, breakfast, relaxing, and lunch, I couldn’t stop yawning. Expecting to take a little forty-minute cat nap, I crawled into the giant king size bed. Two and a half hours later, I groggily crawled out of bed. Oops. I had no idea I was that tired. Sadly, I missed out on playing euchre, but the snooze was pretty incredible.

Salmon
The food this weekend was delicious! Saturday night is the more formal night of the two with a nice sit-down dinner. The two dinner entrees were beef tenderloin and salmon – I obviously chose the salmon. It had a sweeter, ginger glaze and was cooked perfectly. No food pictures were taken because it wasn’t appropriate, but trust me – I ate well (and a lot)…including dessert.

Sons of Anarchy
When we arrived back home, Brody made a beeline for the couch. I got the laundry started and then joined him. We had very important business to take care of: finish watching season four of Sons of Anarchy.

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Season five starts tomorrow on FX – wahoo! I’ve said it before but who would’ve thought I’d like a show about bikers who run guns? Apparently there are LOTS of Sons fans out there! We’ll have to chat Wednesday or Thursday about the season premiere.

Sister
Moose and Frankie had a weekend at home with Aunt Laura (my sister).

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Due to some storms, there was some cuddle time on the couch, but they also made it to the park. It was so nice to not have to board them or bring them to a friend’s house for the weekend. Thanks again Laura!

Questions:
Do you watch Sons of Anarchy? Predictions?
How long is a nap for you normally? How often do you nap?
What’s something you did this weekend that starts with S?

WIAW Summer Staples #4

This morning, I went on to Jenn’s blog to see what the new theme was for September…but guess what? It’s still August! That means it is still summer staples. Good times.

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Breakfast @ 7:00am
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This meal, which was definitely a summer staple for me, was eaten in the car on my way to work. I need to buy supplies for overnight oats because this was difficult to eat while driving. Yup – not safe.

Snack @ 12:00pm
At our first in-service day of school, we had a long meeting that started at 10:00am. I failed to eat a little something before and was starving by noon and had to pee like nobody’s business. Looks like I’ve got to train my bladder again. Anyways, I grabbed a handful of mixed nuts from an emergency stash I keep in my gym bag.

Lunch @ 1:30pm
Over what would’ve been a lunch break, I ran a few miles with two coworkers. We’re going to try to run one day a week, probably three miles, after school. While it was fun to run with new people, running at noon on a hot, sunny day was not very fun.
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I came back sweaty and hungry. So hungry, in fact, that I didn’t even think to take a picture of the massive salad, yogurt, and handful of Starburst candies I ate. Whoops.

Snack @ 4:45pm
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This snack bag was consumed before a trip to the dog park with my friend Jena and her pup Ruger. These have become a staple in our house because every box has a coupon on the inside: $1.50 off two boxes. I wait until they’re on sale and then only spend $2.25 per box. Feel free to call Extreme Couponing to nominate me to be on the show.

Dinner @ 7:00pm
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I cut up a chicken breast into small chunks, bathed them in an egg bath, and dunked them in a pool of garlic breadcrumbs (P.S. Do you like all of the water imagery I used there? My brain is back in school mode.) They baked for fifteen minutes. On the side were packaged Alfredo noodles, sautéed Swiss chard (from my garden!), and a side of BBQ sauce. I did pretty good with my greens today!

Dessert @ 8:15pm

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So this happened, but it was basically meant to happen. You see, after dinner Brody and I were about to watch an episode of Sons of Anarchy when I was thinking how we hadn’t had Dairy Queen for a while. No joke, ten seconds later, Brody proposed going for a treat after the episode. He was reading my mind! Or, most likely, he just knows me really well and recognized there wasn’t much to eat for dessert in our house. I had a medium hot fudge sundae and loved every bite of it. Brody had an Oreo cheesequake Blizzard.

Questions:
Do you eat in your car? What is the most difficult (i.e. unsafe) food you’ve ever eaten while driving?
How often do you get Dairy Queen, ice cream, or froyo?

Productive Morning

After a super lazy Sunday which included three episodes of Game of Thrones (season one), two episodes of Sons of Anarchy (season four), and a forty minute nap, I was feeling the need to be productive this Monday morning. As much as I enjoy being a piece, it brings me lots of joy to get stuff done in the morning.

We made it to the dog park, met up with my dog park friends (all of whom are over 60 years old – ha) and walked three laps. The dogs were ridiculously happy and got soaked from all of the dew.

Due to the wet and dirty dogs, I bathed both dogs! Moose is easier in that he somewhat willingly walks up the stairs I to the guest bathroom tub.
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Frankie, on the other hand, fights the bath with everything he’s got. Weighing in at 90 pounds, I cannot carry him, so I dragged, pushed, and half carried him across the house and up the stairs.
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But now they are clean and will be so much nicer to pet once they’re dry.

Speaking of clean dogs, yesterday’s Groupon was for something I have been wanting to get done for months: dog grooming. For $49, I got two grooming sessions for dogs over 30 pounds. I bought the Groupon, called immediately, and got them in for Friday. Moose and Frankie will be clean and pretty for our trip to Toledo this weekend.

A load of laundry got done (from said dirty dog baths).

Our new tv console from Pottery Barn was delivered – I love it!
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It fits our new tv perfectly and looks great against our bamboo floors.

To prepare for the next three days of in-service, I brewed a pot of coffee for iced coffee. That old juice bottle now holds my iced coffee – it is a more manageable size for the fridge.
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Because I work out in the morning before school (or at least I did last year and am hoping I have the motivation to continue it this year), I can’t make coffee every morning, and buying coffee every day is not worth it to me. Long story short, I made coffee.

I watered plants around the house. Don’t you love how peace lilies basically TELL you when they need water? They get all droopy, but once you get a little water in them, they come back within minutes. It is pretty much impossible to kill them.

I made a delicious and protein-filled breakfast. No picture was taken but I’ll give you the details: two eggs and spinach nuked in the microwave, in a Flatout light wrap with goat cheese and TJ’s fig jam. This will definitely hold me over until lunch.

All of this happened between 6:30am and 10:00am. On my schedule for the rest of the day? Work out, babysit, write a one-page research paper (assignment for curriculum project), and read Bodega Dreams (also for school).

Questions:
Are you more productive in the morning or at night?
What’d you get done (or not done) this morning?