Feb 162016

Hi there! Did everyone have a nice Valentine’s Day/President’s Day weekend? We had a wonderful three days off from work, and I took a ton of pictures, so let’s jump into today’s recap with a sentence (or two) per picture!


On Friday evening we met up with my family at the Narrows in Kent Island to celebrate my grandma’s birthday. (When did my little sister get so big?!)


I ordered the crab cakes with a side of mashed potatoes and veggies. Delicious!


My grandma turned 81 years old, and is still looking fabulous.


Happy birthday, Grandma!!



Saturday morning began with cappuccinos, made by barista Fabio.


Then Fabio and I tag-teamed breakfast/lunch; I made a potato and bacon hash and he poached a couple of eggs. So good!


Later in the day, we joined some of Fabio’s coworkers for a birthday party in Herndon, VA. One of Fabio’s coworkers, Wally, turned 50!


(Hi Ash!)

At one point Fabio and his manager, Kyle, took over bartender duties.


Then there was a literal dance party in the living room.


Who knew 50th birthday parties could be so fun? 😉


Sunday – Valentine’s Day – began with another cappuccino, only this time it was extra festive for the holiday!


While Fabio made the drinks, I got working on some festive pink pancakes.


That I then had to snapchat them to all my friends, because these days if you don’t send a snapchat, it didn’t happen. 😉




In the evening, we met up with Rebecca & Richard and Grae & Dan, for a Valentine’s Day triple date at the Liberty Tavern in Arlington. We had been trying to schedule a dinner date with them for months, and after making a Doodle poll we realized that Valentine’s Day was literally the only day we were all available. Oh well!


I wore my heart sweater from J. Crew because you can’t own a sweater like this and not wear it on Valentine’s Day.


For my meal I ordered the prosciutto carbonara, which was delicious. Plus I had plenty for leftovers. 🙂


It was so great catching up with this group!


Monday began with an extra long walk for Jack, who was loving the surprise snow we got!


Somehow he found a gigantic stick tree branch and insisted on running around with it, even though he could barely lift it.


What a goof.


The rest of the day included a trip to the grocery store and some meal prep.


I made a big batch of fresh juice and some hard boiled eggs to snack on during the week. Yum!


Fabio was in charge of dinner (his Valentine’s Day gift to me) so I sat back with a glass of wine while he cooked. How cool is this reflection?


He made us a delicious meal of chicken Parmesan and his famous homemade mozzarella sticks.


Enjoyed while watching the Bachelor. 🙂 Perfection!

Question of the day: How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day?

Fabio and I both are ok with laying low on Valentine’s Day, and usually a quiet dinner at home is just fine for us. This year though it was nice to go out with other couples!

 Posted by on February 16, 2016
Jul 312012

Hey there! Can you believe it’s already the last day of July?! I don’t understand where this month went! August always scares me because I feel like summer is almost over and I feel the heat (get it? lol) of trying to finish everything I wanted to do during the summer.

I think I’ve been lucky enough this summer to get a lot of fun things done like hiking, going to an amusement park, and hanging out by the pool, but I really am hankering for a beach trip. I need some surf, sand, and sun!!

Bootcamp Update

Tina’s Best Body Bootcamp has still been going really well! Yesterday I did a cardio interval on the treadmill and then completed an upper body superset. Man oh man, my arms were feelin’ it. Apparently they are not nearly as strong as I thought they were and today I am feeling pretty tight. I need a stretch!!

I opted to skip today’s morning bootcamp workout in favor of 40 extra minutes of sleep.

The reason? I have an appointment with a personal trainer tonight at 6:00. The appointment is free and is offered by my gym as a promotional tactic to try to get me to sign up for their personal training services. I decided I may as well try it out since it’s free, but I’m feeling a little nervous.

One reason I am nervous is because the trainer is going to do an evaluation ahead of time to see what my fitness abilities are. I’ve heard rumors that they see how many pushups you can do in a minute, how much weight you can lift, etc. Talk about pressure. Another reason I’m apprehensive is because I went to college with this particular trainer and am not looking forward to having him judge me on my fitness skills. Plus there is always the issue of awkward small talk for an hour. Ugh. We will see how it goes!

Either way, I’m planning to catch up on Tina’s bootcamp workout tonight after the session. Tomorrow I’ll be back on schedule with my morning workouts, especially since someone was not happy with me for sleeping in for an extra 40 minutes (cough JACK cough).


As you may have seen from yesterday’s weekend recap, I made some pretty stellar whole wheat pancakes on Sunday. I based the recipe off of one from Gina at Skinny Taste and they came out awesome! They were light, fluffy, and filling! Fabio and I ate every last bight and practically licked our plates. Yum! Plus, when served with a light buttery spread (I used Brummel & Brown which is made from yogurt) and light syrup, they’re not too bad for you since they are whole wheat and don’t use any butter or oil. Win! Here’s how they came together…

First, I set a large skillet to medium heat and allowed it to get nice and hot. Then, I added whole wheat flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, sugar, fat free milk, 1 egg, and vanilla to a large bowl. Then I whisked it all together until it was just incorporated and my batter had little bubbles in it.

Then, I poured the batter onto the hot pan and let the pancakes cook for about 2-3 minutes or until bubbles started rising to the top of the cakes.

Then I flipped the pancakes over and let the other side cook for an additional 2-3 minutes. When the pancakes were lightly brown on both sides, I removed them from the pan and served ’em up!

Check out that plate of yumminess!!

And here’s a picture of Fabio’s plate, in case you wanted more…


Whole Wheat Pancakes
Recipe type: Breakfast
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
These whole wheat pancakes are so good that you'll never guess they are made without oil or butter!
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2¼ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cups + 1 tbsp fat free milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  1. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.
  2. Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and whisk until combined.
  3. Coat skillet with nonstick spray.
  4. Pour batter onto hot skillet in small, pancake-size batches.
  5. Cook pancakes for 2-3 minutes, then flip. Cook the other side for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  6. Remove the pancakes from the skillet and serve.

So there you have it, my new go-to pancake recipe! Although I don’t make pancakes too frequently, I admit that on Sundays they appear on my breakfast table more often than they should. Guilty! But now with this recipe, I don’t have to feel so bad about indulging in them 🙂 Yay!

So, what do you guys indulge in on weekends? And, what do you do to try to make that thing healthier?



 Posted by on July 31, 2012
Jul 302012

Hellooooooo blog world. Are you all having a great Monday? Is there even such a thing as a great Monday? Well, despite the fact that crawling out of bed this morning to work out was probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever done (slight exaggeration, I admit) the rest of my day is going well 🙂 But let’s recap the weekend, shall we?

Friday evening started the weekend off with a bang as I went over to my friend’s apartment in DC for the aforementioned Olympics party. She was a great hostess and provided us all with red and blue drinks, red white and blue pretzel M&M snacks, and popcorn torches.

In addition, she had some fresh cherries and baked challah (sp?) bread and hummus for us to snack on. It was great! Fabio enjoyed the popcorn torches best.

Clearly he is ready for the games!

Then we filled up our drinks and sat around watching the Opening Ceremony and the Walk of Nations. What did you guys think of the ceremony? At first I was a little underwhelmed, and frankly thrown off by the story-telling aspect of it all. Eventually though, I realized that I liked all the choreography with the kids on their beds and enjoyed the dances at the end especially. I think it was definitely one of those things where at first you are like eh I don’t know about this and then later when you see recaps you’re like that was so cool! Haha, what did you guys think?

On Saturday morning Fabio and I woke up bright and early for attempt number 2 at reaching King’s Dominion. The result?


This time we left early enough that the traffic was minimal and we reached King’s Dominion by around 11:00 a.m.

While we were en route to KD, I read some yelp reviews on my phone so we would be prepared for the best rides (it was a long car ride ha). One review suggested buying the Fast Lane passes which, while pretty expensive at $45 a pop, let you bypass all of the lines. On a Saturday in July, we thought this was a pretty crucial luxury and, since Fabio bought the tickets via a Groupon and saved us some money, we decided to go for it. Although we felt a little guilty for spending so much on the passes, we hardly ever go to amusement parks and we decided we might as well live it up! YOLO!

Let me just tell you, it was so worth it. We didn’t wait in line anywhere for more than ten minutes and we were able to ride all the rides we wanted (some even twice). For one popular ride, the Volcano, we overheard the people in line behind us say that they’d been waiting for over an hour. We sheepishly grinned at each other since we’d been in line for only 5 minutes (and were about to get on) and had already ridden the ride once already. Woopsie! Best $45 I ever spent.

So, we spent the day riding all of the rides KD had to offer and had a really great time.

Once we had been there a little while, our stomachs started to rumble and we decided to grab some lunch. We first walked into an air conditioned “grill” hoping to find something good to eat, but after getting one whiff of the oil and fried foods we high-tailed it out of there in search of something a little more figure-friendly (although I do love fried foods on occasion, the smell of this place was GROSS). Suddenly we rounded the corner and saw heaven Subway!! Woohoo!

I chose a 6-inch ham sandwich on whole wheat with tomatoes, lettuce, onions, and mustard. Yum! It was perfect.

After riding around on a few more rides, including some water slides, we eventually called it quits and headed home. We were exhausted from all the walking around in the sun! We had a fun evening watching the Olympics on the couch with Jack, and even indulged in some delivery Chinese food for dinner (beef & broccoli + General Tso’s = the perfect lazy evening).

On Sunday morning I hopped out of bed and took Jack on a quick two-mile run. When I returned, I whipped up some whole wheat pancakes for breakfast.

They were delicious! Recipe to come soon!

Then Fabio and I headed over to some tennis courts near us to practice our game (I counted the run and the tennis as part of my cardio of choice for Tina’s best body bootcamp).

After hitting the ball around for a while, it became apparent that we are not very good at tennis. In fact, I was snapping some pictures of Fabio when he accidentally hit the ball over the fence and hit a lady in the neighboring court!!


Tough guy


Sheepish guy

Lol! Obviously he apologized to the lady for hitting her and retrieved the ball. I think we need some more practice haha!

Later on Sunday afternoon we did some cleaning & chores around the apartment, before eventually going for a two-mile walk up to Trader Joe’s for some groceries. Naturally we stopped on the way home for froyo.


Then a few hours later for dinner I made us some skinny buffalo chicken wraps and crispy baked french fries. They were awesome!

Then we spent the rest of the evening relaxing and watching the Olympics! They were pretty much playing 24-7 the entire weekend, which was nice. The gymnasts are definitely my favorite, and I could live without the basketball games thankyouverymuch. Seems to me like I have to sit through enough basketball games without the Olympics lol.

Anyway, how was your weekend? Did you go anywhere fun? Flip upside down on any roller coasters? Or maybe you found an excuse to turn an errand into a stop for froyo 😉 Do tell!

 Posted by on July 30, 2012
Apr 152012

I recently won a Giveaway from Daily Bites and I tried out the product yesterday morning. I can’t wait to tell you guys about it, but first things first!


Yesterday’s workout was an interesting one. On the weekends my workouts can be kind of random and I don’t usually stick to a routine. One day I might jog up to the dog park and other day I might hike up some mountain trails. I never know how it’s going to turn out.

Anyway, yesterday’s workout was interesting indeed, and unplanned! I went with my boyfriend, Fabio, to the golf course so he could hit some balls at the driving range. We had some car trouble (I’ll leave it at that…the details are unpleasant) and we wound up having to call a tow truck! We had just come from the dog park so Jack was with us. I realized we weren’t going to be able to metro home or take a cab since we had Jack, therefore we were going to have to walk! We could have called a friend to pick us up, but we were only four miles away and it was a nice day so we walked.

It wound up being pretty fun! Despite our sad mood because we had no car, we had a good time stopping to see the D.C. monuments. We walked around the tidal basin and saw the Lincoln Memorial and all the cherry blossom trees (which sadly stopped blooming about a week ago). I should have taken more pictures but I wasn’t actually planning to blog about our walk home (I was still a little cranky about the car) so I didn’t bother. I do have this one in front of Arlington Cemetery:


We thought about going in to visit my great grandpa’s grave but then realized it would be impossible to find it without my grandma’s help. We arrived home shortly after we snapped this picture and then I decided a four-mile walk was enough of a workout for one day. We were pooped!


Ok, so now I want to tell you guys about my experience with blog giveaways! As I mentioned in my first post, I follow a bunch of healthy lifestyle blogs every day. When I would see a giveaway on the blogs, sometimes I would enter and sometimes I wouldn’t. It just depended on the product that was being given away and if I really, really wanted it or not. I figured I had no chance of winning so I didn’t think much of it.

Then one day a couple of weeks ago, I got an email from Hallie at Daily Bites saying I won a giveaway from From the Ground Up, a company that offers a line of gluten-free whole grain flours and baking mixes that are free of starches and preservatives. The giveaway had so many entries (I mean like hundreds) and somehow I was randomly selected to win! I was psyched!!

I sent Hallie my shipping address and the package arrived a few days later.


Jack and Fabio were curious.


Here’s what was inside:


Buckwheat flour, Sorghum Flour, Brown Rice Flour, Millet Flour, and…Pancake/Waffle Mix! I have been wanting to experiment with whole wheat and gluten free flours but Fabio never let me to buy them at the grocery store (“You’re going to buy that? You don’t even know if you’ll like it and it’s expensive!”). So I was quite happy with this giveaway. I was most excited for Saturday morning to roll around so I could use that gluten and sugar free pancake mix!

So yesterday morning I sprang out of bed and got everything ready.



  • 1 cup From the Ground Up Pancake/Waffle mix
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup milk (I used skim)
  • 1 tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

I mixed the oil, vanilla, milk, and egg together and then slowly added in the pancake mix.


After stirring it all together I noticed the consistency was much more watery than normal pancakes. I poured them out onto my hot pan and they sort of bled together. They were still pretty liquidy.


While I waited for them to cook I got out my condiments. I served them with Brummel & Brown butter (I love this stuff- it’s made with yogurt and is much healthier than normal butter) and some “lite” syrup.


Soon the pancakes were ready to flip! After I flipped them they looked more normal, but were pretty dark thanks to all those different types of grains. After a few more minutes of cooking they were ready to eat. I was kind of skeptical so I took a test-taste of the first one (I had to!)


They were not very sweet and were not exactly what I was looking for as my Saturday morning breakfast Sad smile I’m pretty sure I can fix them next time by adding some honey to the batter (maybe some cornstarch too?) I will try again and keep you posted.

Since these healthy, whole wheat pancakes didn’t turn out so hot, I quickly whipped up a batch of my regular pancakes. Not nearly as healthy, but they always turn out delicious.


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. white sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups milk (again, I used skim)
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp. butter (I used Brummel & Brown)
  1. Preheat a hot griddle on your stovetop (I used a flat, wide, non-stick pan)
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together dry ingredients
  3. In a separate bowl, mix wet ingredients together
  4. Slowly add dry ingredients into wet, until just combined
  5. Pour batter onto hot griddle and flip when bubbles start to rise to the top
  6. Cook 2-3 minutes each side
  7. Eat and enjoy!


After breakfast we went to the dog park and then went for our four-mile walk, as mentioned above! Now I’m working on a recipe for another yummy breakfast treat that I hope to share with you tomorrow. I will leave you with these pictures of Jack at the dog park. Have a great Sunday!





 Posted by on April 15, 2012