“Take a Breather” Treadmill Workout

Happy Friday!

Last night, after work (yes I’m getting better at after work workouts!) I completed a quick 4 mile run on the treadmill. Instead of running straight through, I took a 2 walking breaks in between. I find that sometimes taking a short walking break during my runs can actually enhance my performance, plus sometimes you just need to take a breather!

I covered just over 4 miles and felt great!  I’m not seriously training for any races yet, so I’m kind of just doing whatever I want with my runs. A run is a run, that’s how I look at it!

Breakfast Update

I don’t regularly share my breakfast’s on the blog on a regular basis because:

A) I bet you can guess what I almost always have!

B) I don’t eat my breakfast at home 5 out of 7 days a week.

I usually eat my breakfast around 9:00 at my desk, while I plow through my work. I wake up around 6:45 every morning, get ready, leave the house by 7:30 (stop for coffee) and arrive at work between 8:15-8:30.

I don’t like to rush through my breakfast, nor do I like to eat too early in the morning. I make sure to leave a few yogurts in the fridge at work, so that I can prepare my breakfast in the comfort of my own cube.

I make sure to have all of my fix-in’s on hand, so that I create my delicious yogurt masterpiece of a breakfast!

Not fancy, not necessarily pretty, but it gets the job done and allows me to enjoy my breakfast at my own time without being rushed.

Have a great weekend!

 

***********

What time do you typically eat breakfast?

Where do you eat your breakfast?

 

signature

Dinner Party Extravaganza & A Strange Oatmeal Combo

Happy Mooooonday Everyone!

How’s daylight savings treating all of you? I can’t say that I like the fact that it’s going to be dark out before I get out of work tonight, but at least it was light out this morning when I woke up.<—-Trying to see the “bright” side of things! ;-)

Breakfast

Yesterday’s breakfast was a nice bowl of hot oatmeal. I usually have oatmeal on the weekends, and yogurt during the week because during the week I eat breakfast at my desk, hence the lack of weekday breakfast posts.

One of my favorite oatmeal combinations is maple spice oatmeal with flax-seed, half a banana and peanut butter mixed in. Yesterday I realized that I had run out of bananas, so that combo really wasn’t an option anymore. I remembered that I had some figs in my fridge, so I figured I’d throw some of those in there and see where it got me.

I was a little skeptic. Figs, oatmeal and peanut butter sounds kind of strange, but much to my surprise it was DELICIOUS! This is definitely a winning combo in book, and to think that this never would have happened if I hadn’t run out of bananas. It’s funny the way things work out sometimes isn’t it?

Fun fact: I love almost every fruit (except cantaloupe, yuck!) but figs hold a special place in my heart. I’ve always said that I want a fig tree so that I could enjoy figs all year round. Too bad the New England weather won’t allow that, sigh.

Dinner Party extravaganza

Over the weekend my mom had a dinner party for some family and friends. Not because she is my mom, but the woman is an amazing cook! So when she asked me to help her prep a few dishes, I gladly said yes because I knew that I’d be able to pick up some tips and tricks of my own.

Her menu for this get together involved several tastes of miniature portioned foods, instead of one big meal. I like this idea because I typically tend to get full off one dish, and never get around to tasting everything that I wanted to!<—-Huge bummer!

For this dinner party the menu involved small tastes of:

Ricotta Stuffed Veal Meatballs

Baby Stuffed Peppers

Mini Seafood Pies

Oysters

Arugula Salad with Figs

And my favorite little tasting of them all were the mini arancini. Almost too cute to eat!

For those of you who may not know, arancini are fried rice balls coated with breadcrumbs. They are primarily a Sicilian food, (where my family is from) but can be found all over Italy. They are usually filled with meat sauce, but you can fill them with anything you want! The arancini that we made over the weekend were filled with ham and cheese, and they were much smaller than the usual size.

Some typical fillings are: Any kind of sauce, vegetables, cheese or even chocolate! Yes chocolate…..Basically they are amazing, and I suggest you try them at least once in your life.

Aside from the amazing food, check out this extensive table setup.

I can’t say I inherited the creative gene from my mom, but maybe I can learn?  Or I’ll just have to call her when I want to have a grownup fancy dinner party of my own! ;-)

*********

Have you ever thrown a fancy smancy dinner party of your own? 

What is your favorite oatmeal combination?

Quote of the Day

“Happiness doesn’t depend on any external conditions, it is governed by our mental attitude.”

-Dale Carnegie

P.S: Don’t forget to check out my very first fashion post!

signature

Quick Treadmill Interval Workout

Hello Hello!

I can’t wait to fill you guys in on the incredible experience I had at the U.S Open this weekend, but first things first!

Workout

This morning I completed this quick, but very sweaty interval workout on the treadmill.

I wanted to do something that would fit into my half-marathon training, but not kill me considering I ran ten miles on Sunday! :-o More on that later this week!  Anyways, this workout had me sweating in no time! I completed just under 3 miles and felt great! I also finished a few rounds of ab and upper body exercises before going home. Bam!

P.S: I am newly obsessed with PicMonkey, which is the website I used to create the above graphic.

Breakfast

Today I continued with the oatmeal kick I have been on, by whipping up some hot oats with half a banana, almonds and a tsp of peanut butter mixed in. Delicious!

U.S Open Recap (1)

This weekend was my first ever time visiting the U.S Open. I was very excited and didn’t know what to expect, but am glad to report that I had a blast! Whether you play or do not play tennis, it is truly a memorable experience that I would recommend to anyone! If you are able to take a few days off at the end of the summer, I would totally suggest heading to NYC to watch the U.S Open. You won’t regret it!

We took the 5:35 Amtrak from South station to Penn Station. Quick side note: If you are debating on how to travel to NYC from Boston I would highly recommend using the train for transportation. It only takes about 4.5 hours (3.5 if you take the Acela), it’s rarely late, free WIFI is available, there is a cafeteria cart with several options and you have cell phone service most of the time! To me this beats flying and driving, since there is no need to go through tons of security, as well as no chance at getting lost or catching traffic. It’s a win-win my friends! Ok moving on….

We arrived in New York at 10 p.m sharp (told you the train is never late!). Once we exited the train, we stepped outside and took in the beautiful New York air. Oh NYC how I’ve missed you!

We walked over to the Affnia Hotel, which is conveniently located across the street from Penn Station. I did not want to have to deal with taking cabs from the train station to the hotel, when I knew that we would probably have to hop right back on a train the next morning to get to the actual event. I am really glad I decided on staying at the Affinia because not only was is close to Penn Station, the rooms were clean and large (for New York) and it was affordable too (considering the holiday weekend and the U.S Open). 10 points for me for choosing the hotel! Yay :)

After checking into the hotel, we realized that we hadn’t eaten since 4 p.m. Although it was already 11 p.m and we had to wake up early to get to the U.S Open, we figured we would go out and grab a quick bite/drink. I mean we were in the city that never sleeps after all! 

We checked the Iphone for nearby restaurants,  and ended up walking to Ayza Wine & Chocolate Bar, only a few blocks down. Wine & Chocolate in the same sentence?  Sign me up! Once we arrived, we were quickly seated at a quaint outdoor table.

I ended up ordering a glass of Pino Grigio, along with some apps to share and a smoked salmon salad for my main meal. Everything tasted fantastic and really hit the spot. I didn’t want to have anything too heavy, so these light dishes were perfect.

Although, we definitely could have gone for a chocolate dessert or another glass of wine, we opted for sleep instead. I knew this was the right decision considering the next days events.The last thing I wanted to be was tired and cranky while watching tennis in the heat!

Recap #2 about the actual tournament coming your way soon!

********

Could you ever see yourself living in a big city like NYC?

What is your favorite sporting event to watch live?

signature

Oatmeal Kick

Hello all!

How is everyone doing on this beautiful Friday morning? Good? Great! In case you were wondering I am doing fantasticccccccccc, not only because it’s Friday, but because tonight I am off to NYC. Why you ask? For the U.S Open! :)

Source 

I have been wanting to attend the U.S Open for as long as I can remember, but never had the opportunity to go until now. To say that I am ecstatic is an understatement. I am so excited that I could barely sleep! If you’ve read my bio, then you know that I have been a tennis player for my whole life, so naturally this is a huge event for me!

Since this is my first time attending the U.S Open, I guess you could say I am kind of “winging it”. I mean I’ve got the train tickets, ground admission tournament tickets and hotel stay, so I guess you could say in theory I have everything figured out. But in reality, I have no idea what to expect! I’m planning on asking the concierge how to get from the hotel to the tournament (train I’m guessing?), as well as suggestions on where to eat and nearby sites to see.

Source

The tournament is in Flushing Meadows, but I am staying in Manhattan.  I will only be there for 2 days, so I want to try to get in as much as possible, but with a city that big I know I won’t get to see as much as I want! I would also LOVE to try to visit the new Chobani cafe in Soho, but like I said the U.S Open is my main priority for this trip. I can’t wait!!!

Breakfast

This morning’s breakfast was a hot bowl of maple brown sugar oatmeal with half a banana, ground flax-seed and a scoop of peanut butter mixed in.

I’ve been on quite an oatmeal kick lately, and I’m not going to lie I kind of like it! Nothing will ever replace yogurt as my #1 breakfast choice (obvi), but since I’ve been having a few digestion issues lately, I’ve decided to cut back on the amount of dairy that I am having to see if that may be the culprit?

Alright, I’m off to pack! Have a great holiday weekend :)

**********

If you have been to the U.S Open, do you have any suggestions/tips for me?

What are your favorite oatmeal fix-ins? 

signature

Sugar Magnolia

Hi all! I’ve got a fabulous restaurant review coming your way, but first here is a photo of me and my nut job, best friend of a dog! :)

I know I’am biased, but isn’t he just so freaking adorable?! Just look at that head tilt!  Anyways, onto some mouthwatering breakfast talk!

Sugar Magnolia

Yesterday my mom, my brother and I decided to checkout this (new to us) breakfast restaurant called Sugar Magnolia. Let me just say that I am very particular when I go out for breakfast. I rarely do it because A) I am too attached to yogurt to not have it almost every morning and B) The thought of a greasy, or somewhat greasy meal first thing in the morning grosses me out.

When ordering breakfast at a restaurant I am quite predictable. I typically get an egg white omelette with spinach, feta cheese and dry wheat toast, or 3 scrambled egg whites with the same fix-ins.  I’m not sure why, but I’ve never really been much of a pancake or waffle person in the morning. I think it is because my mom close to never prepared breakfast for us when we were younger. She was and still is a fabulous cook, but the last thing she ever wanted to do was pick up a frying pan first thing in the morning (can’t say I blame her too much!) We always either had cereal, yogurt, toast or something similar that did not include much time or effort.

I was a little skeptic about dining here because I recently had a bad breakfast dining experience somewhere else. The other restaurant prepared my omelette with as much grease as humanly possible which left me feeling sick, and vowing to just stick to yogurt for breakfast for the rest of my life! Well, I got convinced to tag along for the ride to Sugar Magnolia, and let’s just say I’m glad I did!

It was probably one of the best, if not the best breakfast I have EVER had at a restaurant. Not only was my omelette light, airy, non-greasy and cooked to perfection, but everyone else’s dishes were fantastic too!

What’s nice about Sugar Magnolia is that they offer typical breakfast options with their own flare. For example my brother ordered a veggie omelette, but also ordered an Almond Joy pancake on the side. Holy YUM! An Almond Joy pancake? Why didn’t I think of that?!

The pancakes are HUGE, meaning one was definitely enough for one person. My mom also ordered a Buttermilk pancake and commented on how light, airy and tasty it was. She said she felt like it tasted baked, which would explain the airiness. Not sure if that’s true or not, but the bottom line is that everything was top-notch.

As we were patiently waiting for our food to arrive, I also took a glance at what other people had ordered. I was in awe when I saw the graham cracker coated, marshmallow and chocolate filled french toast. It looks more like a dessert than anything else, but hey it’s worth a bite or two! Wish I had gotten a picture, but I think the girl that ordered it might have felt awkward if I just randomly took a photo of her mouthwatering breakfast!

I would highly recommend Sugar Magnolia to anyone who is visiting the Gloucester, MA area. Even if you are not visiting, it’s definitely worth the drive and the wait, trust me!

***********

What do you usually order when you go out for breakfast?

What is the most orignal breakfast you have ever had or made?

signature

Maia Yogurt Review

A few weeks ago the lovely people over at Maia Yogurt asked if I would like to try out their new yogurt. Free yogurt? Sign me up! I had never heard of Maia Yogurt before, so I was eager to find out how it compared to the usual yogurts that I have.

Source

Maia Yogurt is named after the Greek Goddess of “Spring and Rebirth”. It was created with the thought of women’s health in mind, specifically for moms-to-be, (no worries guys, I am not expecting!) but is now enjoyed by moms and their families.

The nutritional value of Maia is really impressive. It is 100% all natural, low in fat and comes in a variety of flavors.

It also contains:

  • 10-12grams of protein per cup
  • Only 2 grams of added all natural cane sugar
  • 3-4 grams of dietary fiber
  • 350mg of potassium
  • Riboflavin
  • Vitamin B12
  • Essential probiotics

I sampled the plain, vanilla and strawberry flavors, all of which were fantastic! I especially loved the slight sweetness in the plain flavor (probably from the 2 grams of cane sugar). I usually add a packet of stevia to my plain yogurt, but didn’t have too with Maia, because it was already sweet enough. Maia yogurt can be bought at Roche Bros. in Massachusetts, check out their website to find out where you can get some near you!

*************

What is your favorite yogurt flavor? 

 

I was not compensated in any way to write a review for Maia Yogurt. All thoughts and opinions are completely my own. 

signature

One thing you could change….

Good Morning friends

I had this nice little beach day all planned out for my friend and I, but that quickly got canceled due to this gross rainy weather outside! Boo :(

I’m really hoping that the weather on Sunday is nice because we are having a Beach, Euro Cup Finals (Yaaa ITALY!!), Summer party! I love Boston, and I would probably never move, but I really do wish that the weather was more predictable and corporative at times! It would make planning a lot easier!

Breakfast

This morning I had the usual Chobani 0% plain yogurt with some ground flax-seed and almonds.

I also had a decaf coffee with skim milk from Dunkin’ Donuts! Both were fabulous :)

***************

Off to the gym! Late start today, I’m blaming it on the weather! Or the fact that I’m still kind of sore from my intense workout on Wednesday!

Have a GREAT weekend! :)

What is one thing that you wish you could change about where you live?

Mine is definitely the weather! But then again, it’s really not that bad in the grand scheme of things….

signature

We Won!

Good morning everyone!

How was everyone’s weekend? Mine was GREAT, even though it involved way too much over-indulging! Woopsies.

Friday night was pretty low-key. I just stayed in, watched a movie and ate a light dinner. Nothing out of the ordinary, but it was just what I wanted! On Saturday, Matteo and I went to one of his old friends wedding up in Charlestown RI. The weather was fantastic, and it was a good thing because both the ceremony and the reception were outdoors.

It’s crazy what a difference a 2 hour drive can make on the weather. Apparently back at home it was pouring rain, but where we were there was nothing but sunshine and blue skies! That’s New England for ya ;-)

On Sunday morning we woke up early and drove back home in record time. We wanted to get back early enough to prepare for the Italy vs. England Euro Cup semi-finals game. We had a nice family BBQ first, and then all gathered around to watch the game. It wasn’t the prettiest game I’ve ever watched, but Italy won, and that’s all that matters! The game ended up going to shoot outs, which was really fun to watch, but also nerve-wracking! Finally Italy won the game (thank God!) and we celebrated by indulging yet again in another birthday cake! Yes my birthday was over 3 weeks ago, and I’m still getting cakes! I know you are jealous!

The truth is that it was actually my brother’s birthday on Thursday, so we had a little combined shing-ding of a b-day party, BBQ, and cake for him and I.

Breakfast

This mornings breakfast was a nice bowl of plain Chobani with almonds, ground flax and pumpkin seeds mixed in. It was just what I needed to get back on track!

Hope you all have a great start to your week! :)

**********

How do you recover from a weekend of over-indulging? 

 

signature

Second Breakfast Option

Happy Friday Everyone!

Is it just me, or did this week go by super fast? I’m not complaining, because I have a fun girls weekend planned, and I am really excited about it :)

Breakfast

I was so busy this week, that I didn’t even have time to food shopping! I awoke this morning, opened the fridge and realized that there was no more yogurt left! The horror! After brainstorming a few second options, I decided to go with a classic bowl of cereal.

I don’t even remember the last time I had a bowl of cereal, so it was a nice change up. I mixed some Special K Protein Plus, with half a banana and some almonds. It was quite tasty! The only problem with cereal is it usually does not keep me full until lunch. Anybody else feel like this?

********

Ok, gotta run! Have a GREAT weekend everyone!

What do you usually have when you ran out of your first breakfast option?

 

signature

Thank You Notes, Long Walks & Fridays

Happy Friday Everyone!

I am so glad that it’s finally the weekend! I’m not sure why, but this week felt super long for some reason. Maybe it’s because all last week I was on vacation?

Lake Walk

Last night before dinner, Matteo and I had the urge to get outside and do something. I’ll admit that I haven’t been all that active this week, so I had the itch to get out there, and get moving. I was feeling slightly tired, so a run was not in order, but a nice 3.1 mile walk around the local lake sounded like a nice alternative.

It took us about 45 minutes, and despite all of the pesky bugs, we did feel refreshed after.

I felt bad for not taking Santo with us, but I had literally just fed him, and considering his tendency to get car sick, I was not about to upset the poor little guys digestion. Anyone else’s dog hate the car?

Breakfast

This morning’s breakfast was a cup of plan Chobani yogurt, with some ground flax-seed, almond halves, and pumpkin seeds mixed in.

It hit the spot as it always does! ;-)

Thank You Notes 

Last night I was thrilled when I found this little envelope in my mailbox.

The people at Orange Leaf are so sweet and sent me a giftcard for some free fro-yo at my favorite place! Thank you notes are such small acts of kindness, that I think are often looked over too much. It takes about 5 seconds to write a nice little note expressing your gratitude for something, and it can make someone feel appreciated!

I try to remember to write thank you notes, but I’ll admit that sometimes it slips my mind. A lot of the times its just easier to send and e-mail, Facebook or Twitter message, but to me there is just something special about an old fashioned hand written thank you note! Thanks Orange Leaf for the giftcard and the thank you note! :)

******************

Have a GREAT weekend!

How often do you write thank you notes?

signature