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Archive for June, 2009

Oh such a drama household we have.  Not to go into too much detail, but we just had a “house meeting” which ended up with 2 roommates vs. the other 2 roommates, people mad, defensive and just leaving the room in silence.  Oy vey.

Woke up this morning after a night of burnin’ lack of sleep from my forgotten sunscreen yesterday (whoops!!)

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(attempt at puppy dog pout, but it really just looks like my mouth is full of mouthwash or somethin).  I guess it doesn’t look too bad in the picture, but ouchie! I’m aloe-ing it up!
On to EATS:

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Kashi blueberrie waffles topped with sliced banana, cookie dough PB, more crumbed PB & syrup.  While delicious, I definitely overdid it at breakfast.  For some reason I have in my head that I must eat in “two’s” – 2 pieces of toast, 2 waffles…I always have two and then often times end up uncomfortably full!  I know this doesn’t seem like too much, but keep in mind a lot of people only have 1 banana or something small before workouts.  While I had 1 banana on top of 2 waffles with PB!  And 3 cups of coffee (aka liquid that fills the belly) don’t help!  I need to work on eating until satisfied, or not eating in two’s at breakfast time!!  haha.

I made another burrito to bring to work:

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with a side of plump juicy strawberries

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And I most definitely did not help myself to frozen Costco vanilla cake.  I’m not even a huge cake fan!  But it was good 🙂

After work, I ran to the store to pick up mint for my recipe tonight!  Minty Bulgar Wheat and Peach Salad

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Recipe in the link, but it was pretty much just bulgar, jicama, peach & mint tossed with a dressing.  I was looking forward to making this all week, and it was a major letdown.  Bland, and too minty for my taste!  Guess I’m not a huge fan of mint.  Too bad it made 8 servings!!  Ahh well  at least I got to experience purchasing and cutting up a jicama – first time for that one!

While my salad was “chillin'” (like a villain!) in the fridge, I snacked on carrots, jicama & the cucumber yogurt dip:

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For anyone curious, I didn’t actually make this dip.  I found it at Costco!

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So sorry, no recipe 😦

Dinner:

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Bowl of the minty bulgar salad, garlic chicken patty topped with guac, Annie’s Thousand Island (yuck, tossing this thing pronto!) and BBQ sauce for dipping, and a side spinach salad with goat cheese & Annie’s Goddess dressing.  With a glass of wine pomegranate cranberry juice in a classy Target ($1 section!) margarita glass (all our cups were dirrrrty).  Doesn’t look like tons but I am still full!!

But not full enough for some of this puppy:

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Vegan Maple Spice Cake from the local natural foods store.  Like I said, I’m not much of a cake person at all..but WOW. The cake part of this, while hardly having any flavor, was incredibly moist and the sweet frosting balanced out the mild cake perfectly.  I had about half this slice, and could’ve easily eaten the whole thing.  I honestly don’t usually even like cake much!  I may or may not have also had a few bites of my Starbucks Caramel Macchiato ice cream along with it 😀

Exercise:

I hit up the gym after breakfast this morning for:

  • 20 minutes stairmaster intervals (level 12-14)
  • 10 minutes treadmill incline 15%, 4 mph
  • 20 minutes upper body strength
  • 15 minute ab work

That treadmill segment was hard and I was panting!  I’m sure to the pleasure of the girl next to me 😉 I didn’t read, but I did watch a rerun of Charmed on TV (guilty pleasure).  What do you all do when working on out machines?  Music, read, TV, zone…? I can read on the stairmaster (which I often do), but there’s no way on the treadmill!

Time to call it a night!  Long work day tomorrow.  Was going to do a “run” in the AM, but I think I’ll put that off until Thursday since my knee twinged today.  Any pain whatsoever = no run for me!

And just a little last reminder of:

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Yes it was THAT good.

Sorry I can’t send you some but…

Check out this yum yum cookie giveaway!

And here is one veggieful giveaway!

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Of course I stopped for a froyo treat this afternoon.  Who am I to deny myself the right to delicious cake batter frozen yogurt when they have it in stock?!

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Yes – that is the 16 oz container I filled up there.  But I only ate about 2/3 and froze the rest for later.  Crushed oreoes & brownie chunks found their way to the middle layer, and I added chunks of peanut butter at home.

I also ran a few grocery shop errands (specifically to pick up ingredients for a bulgar salad I want to make), but unfortunately they don’t sell mint at TJ’s!!  Rather than go back to Vons (I went there first), I’ll just pick up some mint tomorrow after work and make the salad then.  But I did grab these Just Flattened Bananas I’ve seen on other blogs and am excited to try out!!

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Dinner was burrito-style! Sauteed onions, mushrooms & a chopped up garlic chicken patty wrapped in a WW tortilla with wholly guac, FF sour cream, garlic salsa & lettuce.

IMG_3817-1The burrito looks a bit shiny because I tried to pan-fry it afterwards…didn’t work out too well.  With a side spinach salad with goat cheese & Annie’s Goddess dressing.

While I was actually satisfied a little more than halfway through the burrito, I still finished it.  But I’m proud that I didn’t go back and finish off my leftover chicken/onion mixture (which is what I planned to do).  I put it in a container for leftovers.  Smaller dinner than I was anticipating, but I had that huge froyo at 5:00, so I’m sure that’s why!

And for those of you who were asking for the lasagna recipe from last night?  There really was no recipe involved!  I just followed the directions on the back of the lasagna noodle box.  (Except I used ground turkey, cottage cheese instead of ricotta, and added spinach to the mixture).  Basic steps I followed:

  • Mix the cottage cheese with 2 cups of mozzarella cheese & 1 cup parmesan cheese.  Add to cooked ground turkey & mix in frozen spinach.
  • Layer pasta sauce on the bottom of the pan, followed by noodles, a layer of turkey/cheese mixture.  Repeat with a 2nd layer.  Sprinkle 1 cup mozzarella cheese on 2nd layer.  Repeat a 3rd layer.
  • For the top layer – noodles + sauce + 1 cup mozzarella + sprinkling of parmesan.

Sorry it wasn’t complete step by step – but I’m sure it’s on the back of most noodle boxes!

Still feelin’ the burn (literally – I completely forgot to put sunscreen on this morning ) from my hike, I found this picture from when I hiked it in June of freshman year (exactly 4 years ago!):
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We had no idea the type of hike it was – heading out in jeans!  Sheesh…what amateurs we were! 😉 This was a sunset hike – which I’ll have to do on another occasion!

What with cross-training more now, I’m trying to find other enjoyable activities, and not just necessarily maximum-calorie burning vigorous exercises.  So I’ve decided to make a weekly “hiking date” with myself!  I live in such  a beautiful area, with so many trails, hikes, and places to go.  I’m only here for another year (or less!) so I really need to take advantage of it.  So my goal will be a new hike every week (at least for the summer), and then we’ll go from there.  I’m excited!! 😀

Click here for a chance to win coconut mango persimmon butter AND almond butter!!  Or don’t click because I want to win!  😉

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You know what a day off of work is great for?  Hiking!!! Basically, I live at the very bottom of this:

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Ashamed here…I admit I’ve only hiked it once.  I ran up halfway and along a side trail another time, but I just have not taken advantage!  So today was the day!  I reached the very tip top in 47 minutes where I relaxed, enjoyed the view:

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View of my house from about 3/4 up to the top!

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And left an Operation Beautiful note!

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Close up:

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You are Beautiful.  Your body is awesome and strong.

I didn’t think to bring paper/pen with me up there, but when I reached the top, I asked a group of friends that were there if they had any pen & scrap of paper.  She had a tissue!!  Perfect!  I pinned the note under a rock and left it on a bench up there.  Any body that enables someone to hike 2 miles straight up a mountain is beautiful!

Megan even inspired me to do part of the hike in just a sports bra!  While not completely comfortable about it, I embraced my inner strength & beauty and maybe got a good tan in the process 😉

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Show off your empowering strength!!

On the way down, I stil had energy so I took a side trail that added on another 2+ miles to my hike.

Total: 6.5 miles, 2 hours 15 minutes

I sure had worked up an appetite, and came home to a big bowl of strawberries & a cut up peach.  Plus a dollap of cottage cheese.

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My daddy also sent me a Father’s Day thank you note – he’s so cute 🙂

I am one dirty hiker!

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So I’m off to shower and then do a few grocery errands.  And I am strongly considering grabbing some froyo this afternoon.  We’ll see!!

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Phew, it was finally gettin’ warmer today! 😀 First, I headed to the pool where I got in a 25 minute (1300 yard) swim.  I planned to go at least 45 minutes-1 hour, but I got a raging headache, and felt nauseous for parts, so I cut it way short.  Then I just lounged/read/got my burn tan on for a good 1 1/2 hours or so.  I love the warm sun 🙂

Followed by an evening of work, where we made scrumptious lasagna. I whipped out my cam-cam to take a pic of the final product, when “No memory card” flashed on the screen.  Drats! I had left my memory card in my computer!  So you all get pictures of my leftovers in classy tupperware I got to take home:

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Made with ground turkey, spinach, & cottage cheese.

And since I got off work an hour later than expected (and was a hungry hippo by then!), a trip to the self-serve yogurt shop was in order, where they had one of the best flavors on the face of the earth: Yellow cake batter.  Oh yes.  Uh-huh.  I did a little dance in the store when I saw that one.  And loaded up 3 cartons to take home and freeze.

Girls – I gotta give you a quick shoe rave.  I recently bought these shoes at the holy land (aka Tarjay) and I am obsessed.

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They are cute, comfortable (I wore them on a short walk and no blisters!), and can be dressed up or down!  I have such a love affair with them that I went out and bought myself a pair in white!

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They’re complete copies of the Steve Madden brand, but at only $17.99 (or $14 like I got them on sale!), these are a steal that you should snatch up quickly!!  Okay, rave over…but for real!  And yes…I am a size 10.  I’m actually closer to size 11 in most shoes.  I have monster feet (or better known as Bigfoot).

Guess what the locos dropped off on my doorstep yesterday afternoon?!

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THAT’S RIGHT!!! PB Loco chocolate chip cookie dough peanut butter!!!  Eeeee *insert squeal of excitement here*.  Two of my favorite foods ever – peanut butter AND cookie dough combined?  Noooooo way.  I have been wanting to try their unique nut butters for ages, but have just never splurged on the expense & shipping costs.

Last night I dug right in and topped off a rice cake with some cookie dough delight.  Naturally, I tried a couple licks straight off the knife as well.  Thoughts?  Sweet!! Very very sweet.  (But honestly, what was I expecting from cookie dough PB?).  And I don’t know if I wasn’t supposed to stir it up (the chocolate chips seemed to all be on one side of the jar), but the chocolate all blended in and melted once I did- so it reminded me of chocolate PB.  And in all honesty?  It really tasted mostly like chocolate PB or nutella.  Very similar to nutella with a few PB chunks mixed in.  Today, I tested it out on some waffles (and again straight out of the jar), and again…nutella, but it also reminded me of eating the inside of a Reese’s Cup.  Now, I love me some nutella (obvi!), but I was really looking forward to cookie dough!  But it was still amazingly tasty (I’m sure it would be heavenly in oatmeal!), and I still want to try out their other flavors (such as caramel apple, cocoa banana, jungle banana…).

Pros: Tasty & sweet, no refrigeration needed, no hydrogenated oils, great healthy way to make anything a dessert!

Cons: Not a strong cookie-dough taste per-say, added whole milk = more saturated fats, expensive, dangerously yum (aka – my finger will be often times found in the jar and it will be gone soon!)

All in all, this PB is great for a sweet treat, but I still love my more natural nut butters as well!

And if you want to try out their unique flavors as well, the crazy PB Loco folks asked me to remind you guys of a coupon you can use:

Purchase 5 or more jars of P.B.Loco’s flavored peanut butters and your 6th jar is free.  To redeem this coupon, place 6 or more jars of P.B.Loco’s peanut butters in your shopping cart and use coupon code BLOG709 when you checkout.  Offer expires July 10, 2009.

So feel free to check it out!

As for a giveaway, I know we’re all budgeting these days (especially as a college student), so check out this giveaway for some pretty sweet coupons!!

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Well the beach was a bust!  10 minutes into our drive on the freeway we entered a sucked in warp of pure fog!!  What’s the point of living 15 minutes away from a beautiful scenic tanning spot when it’s foggy all summer long?  We turned around and tanned in our own backyard 🙂 Where I caught up on some reading:

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Nothing like trashy Cosmo on a hot sunny day!

I’m just starting the book Certain Girls by Jennifer Weiner (author of the book In Her Shoes – ever seen the movie with Cameron Diaz??).  I recently finished the book Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult.  WOW this book was good.  I highly recommend it.  It’s about a guy who murders a lady’s husband and daughter and gets sentenced to death.  11 years later, the lady’s daughter needs a heart transplant, and the murderer wants to give his heart to her when he dies.  While on death row, he also starts performing miracles similar to Jesus, and it starts a whole faith/spiritual questioning conflict thing to arise as well.  Was really good, I’m tellin’ ya!

Speaking of Jodi Picoult, anyone going to see My Sister’s Keeper in theaters?  I read that book as well, and my roommate and I are seeing the movie tonight!

Soaking up the rays while lying on a towel really took it out of me, and I got haaangry. Green Smoothie time!!

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In the mix:

  • Unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • Frozen mango chunks
  • Stuffed full of kale/chard mix
  • Ground flaxseed
  • Scoop of PB

Topped off with some granola.  It was my first time trying it out with kale/chard rather than spinach (TJ’s was out yo) and with PB rather than almond butter.  It tasted a lot more “grassy” than with spinach (but not in a bad way!) and I couldn’t taste the PB at all, while I could always taste the almond butter.  But it was still refreshingly tasty!

I also had a little munchy snack a little later on:

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Dipped into this garlic & spice cucumber yogurt dip.  It reminded me of a thicker tzatziki.

Dinner was a major fail. I started to make a quesadilla, which became a pizza quesadilla, which became a huge flop when it wouldn’t flip in the pan, which became an open faced mess of sauce, cheese, sauteed onions, chopped up chicken burger, & guacamole on a soggy tortilla.  It was still good though – but left me stuffed to the brim!  I finished over an hour ago and I’m still stuffed!

Well I better get ready for our night on the town.  Okay…just the movie, and then we might head to a few bars afterwards just to make an appearance (and say hi to a couple friends!).

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Hello my dears!  Sorry it has been a few days, but you know how it is…work work work! I’m actually not working quite as much as I wanted to this summer.  Since I’m not taking summer classes, I might as well work all I can, right?  I probably have about 25-30 hours of nannying per week, but it’s all squeezed into the weekdays.  Guess it’s good that my weekends are free for beach, pool & road trips, ehh?

Yesterday the 14 year old girl and I spent part of the day at the bookstore where I caught up on some necessary reading (aka tabloid & recipe magazines).  It was so sad to read a couple articles that talked about Farrah Fawcett planning to marry her boyfriend before her death.  Obviously these magazines were printed earlier this week…so depressing.  And about M.J.  Man oh man….

In the latest Shape magazine, this simple list caught my eye…

8 reasons to love your body:

  1. It’s unique – no one else has the same one.
  2. It’s capable of extraordinary feats, enabling you to jump, climb, run, snuggle, life, squat and spoon.
  3. No matter how badly you treat it, it’s willing to give you another chance.
  4. It’s expressive, telling you how it feels (so listen!), and telling others how you feel.
  5. Confidence is sexy.
  6. Your daughter must learn to love hers.
  7. Somebody out there (more or than one!) admires, covets, and adores it.
  8. You’ll regret not loving it more later.

With all the Operation Beautiful stuff going on (which I absolutely positively find amazing, by the way), this list seemed perfect!  And so true.  I know the saying “your body is a temple” is so cliche…but seriously, guys.  It’s true!  How amazing are our bodies?  C’mon!  I admit I struggle with more body image issues than I care to go into detail about (especially with a past of low self-esteem and weight struggles), but I’m working on it.  So let’s all work on it together! As for some recent EATS… Dinner the other night – Cheese quesadillas (with a teeny bit of vegetarian refried beans) + wholly guacamole, and sour cream (I probably had 3x this amount of sour cream…love). IMG_3726-1

Plus many sides of sauteed kale & swiss chard. Drizzled with Annie’s Goddess dressing: IMG_3730-1 Anyone tried the new Starbucks ice creams?? IMG_3731-1

OH SWEET MOSES!!! Coffee & vanilla with thick, gooey swirls of caramel?  Sign me up!  The caramel tastes exactly like the caramel they drizzle on top of their drinks.  My absolute favorite part! Topped with a crumbled Oreo Cupcake (with chocolate frosting): IMG_3732-1

IMG_3737-1 Yes, you are free to drool over the completely heavenly bite of caramel + coffee + chocolate spoonful.  I don’t blame you.

Exercise:

I planned to go straight to the gym after work yesterday, except (surprise, surprise) I remembered everything except my running shoes at home.  I came home at 5:00, sat at my computer for 10 minutes, and said to myself “Just go, Taylor.  Just get dressed, and GO!”  And I did.  Yay, I was so proud of myself.  Normally, once evening rolls around, you will not find me at the gym.  I just get too lazy!  I did:

  • 25 minutes stair intervals (level 11/level 15)
  • 35 minutes treadmill:
    • 1 mile (10 min run),
    • 5 min (4.2 mph at 15% incline) – repeated this run/walk twice.
    • Plus a 5 minute cool down.

So it included 2 miles (20 minutes) total of running.  My knee did not hurt me at all during the running.  But as soon as I stopped the treadmill, it had a sharp pain to it.  Nothing like I usually have.  But that went away within 30 seconds or so.  At first, I was extremely worried I way overdid it with the stairs on top of the run (which I admit I probably should have just chosen 1 or the other).

Today I believe will be upper body weights and ab work (hopefully 30 minutes of each).  Rest that knee up!

Oh, and about that maple almond cream cheese…guys, I feel so bad and deceiving.  It was actually HONEY almond cream cheese!  Raaahhh I’m so sorry to get your hopes up, but it was still BOMB delicious.  Einstein’s brand for anyone that’s curious.  But you know, now that I think about it, maple cream cheese wouldn’t be to hard to make yourself….kinda like Mighty Maple PB?? Yummmmm.

I think we’re heading to the beach today where I shall strut that body confidence!! 😀

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Yesterday was quite the looonnngggg day.

It started with getting up before work to embark on a new journey:   Jillian’s 30 Day Shred workout. There has been so much hype about it all over and I’ve heard such great things!  Honestly?  I wasn’t a huge fan.  Maybe it was because I was only using 2 lb weights (32 oz water bottles!  I had no actual small enough weights to use!).  And the cardio portions were too “jumpy” for my knee.  So I ended up scratching it halfway through and just continued with my own upper body strength moves (with heavier dumbells I have).  I usually love circuit strength/cardio classes like at the gym – I just need heavier dumbells and be careful about my knee!

Breakfast was mad delish though:

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Nature’s Path Maple waffles topped with maple almond cream cheese, chunks of PB, & maple syrup.  With a side of cottage cheese & raspberries.

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These waffles were amazing. Soooo much better than the Kashi waffles I’ve been eating for a while.  You could really taste the maple flavor coming through, and they were much more crisp and dense!  Too bad they took 10 minutes to cook in our toaster oven (since my old roommate took our normal toaster when she moved out).  It’s all good since I stopped at Wal-Mart and got a handy dandy gourmet toaster for 6 bucks(!!) last night.

It was just a long day at work filled with (extremely) dirty diapers and a stubborn 2 years old choosing to rip up herDora the Explorer books rather than take a nap.

But my day got much better when I came home to these lovelies:

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Thank you roommate!! 😀

As for the knee/running update – my knee yesterday felt no worse than it did before my Tuesday’s treadmill workout (knock on wood!!).  My hips, on the other hand, were soooo sore all day long!  I remember when I used to occasionally run my leg muscles wouldn’t get so sore, but my hips would!  Anyone have any hip strengthening moves they recommend?

I woke up hungry this morning (weird because I haven’t been waking up hungry lately at all) and knew what I wanted right away!  Oatmeal!!

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  • Oats
  • Egg
  • Soymilk
  • Cinnamon & maple syrup
  • TONS of PB mixed in & on top
  • Kashi Golean cereal & Cocoa Beach granola

I popped open my Naturally More PB to try out this morning.  Umm…can you say Y-U-M yummmmmm??  This stuff was good.  Different tasting (a little sweeter) than most peanut butters out there.  What’s also so unique about this PB, is that is has added egg whites, flaxseed oil, and flaxseeds to give it more protein and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.  It also has more fiber than most peanut butters!

Here’s the nutrition facts, if interested:

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Definite goodness! 🙂 You should check out places they carry it by you – I recommend it!

I devoured that oatmeal puppy and caught the bus to head to the gym/pool where I did: 20 minutes stairstepper (is that thing called the stairmaster, or is the revolving one called the stairmaster?  I never know which is which!).  Unfortunately, hormones (aka That Time of the Month – ladies???) played a role and my tum tum wasn’t feelin’ too hot.  So I scratched swimming and decided to walk the 30 minutes home instead of wait for the bus.  I know that exercise is recommended to help relieve cramps, but I’ve honestly always found exercise makes mine worse!  Strange?

And just to remind everyone, it’s….THURSDAY!!! You know what that means right?  Tomorrow is Friday!  Yay get excited 😀

Interested in some giveaways (Obvi…who isn’t?!)

Get green with this Super Green giveaway!

Or check out what Ms. Hangry Pants is giving away!

And Iowa Girl Eats is having one as well!

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