Monday, March 26, 2012

Meal Planning

Our weekend was busy (like spending a Saturday house hunting...and coming up empty) and then on Sunday running 10 miles and spending 6 hours working on school work (have I mentioned how happy I am that there are only 4 FOUR 4 FOUR classes remaining in my MBA?!) so none of my normal weekly preparations happened.  No cleaning, no grocery shopping, no meal here's what I threw together this morning to get us through the week:

(Meatless) Monday-Potato/Leek Soup with Bread (this has been on the meal plan for a few weeks but something else always comes up!  Luckily, I've got the ingredients on hand)
Tuesday-Chorizo and Black Bean Chili (from the freezer)
Wednesday-Grilled Steaks (we buy our beef from the farmer so we have plenty on hand) and a frozen veggie
Thursday-Left overs (we're both in class)
Friday- Traveling to DC to see Alicia and Cait!  I'm so excited!

I'm sure I'll have to make a quick trip to pick up the essentials (eggs, fresh fruit) but we'll be eating out of the freezer and pantry as much as possible.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Pizza night

By the time Friday comes around, I'm usually ready for a night at home and one of my favorite plans lately have been making some pizza and hanging out on the couch. I've been making my own bread since New Year's so we usually have some dough in the fridge, which makes it even easier to whip up a pizza in less than the time it takes to get one delivered. Because we're in the Lenten season, I've been making lots of veggie pizzas. Tonight we made a kale pizza, an asparagus pizza and a margarita pizza (for the husband). I used pesto for the sauce to up the green veggie content (and because I had it in the freezer). I always make enough to have left overs because C likes to put eggs on the left overs for breakfast.

 What are some of your quick go to meals???

Kale Pizza
Margarita Pizza-Ready for the oven
Left overs

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Meal Planning

After our fun weekend, we've got a fridge full of left-overs so our meal plan for this week is light (C loves left-overs and I don't like wasting food).

Sunday-we enjoyed bacon wrapped shrimp, chicken, steak, broccoli and asparagus all on the grill to celebrate Ryan's college graduation.  Add some of my Mom's cheesy potatoes, home-made "Buckeye State" ice cream (for the graduating Buckeye, of course!), home-made lemon yogurt with chocolate sauce and salted caramel chocolate chip bars and it was a delicious meal.  The "Buckeye State" ice cream, lemon yogurt and chocolate sauce all came from my Jeni's cookbook.  (Thankfully, I ran 8 miles this morning so I could eat my yogurt and chocolate sauce without guilt)
Monday-left overs
Tuesday-Lemon Pepper Chicken (we never got around to it last week) and broccoli
Wednesday-Burgers and grilled zucchini, squash and peppers
Thursday-left overs
(Meatless) Friday-Homemade pizzas-Margarita for C and Kale/Pesto for me

We've had a beautiful, warm spring here so lots of grilling on the menu.  What are some of your favorite grill meals?

Fun family weekend

We've had such a fun, fun family weekend (and the weather has been just beautiful in Columbus, OH).  

Yesterday, after a nice morning run and running errands C and I joined his parents, sister and brother in law and our nephews for a cookout.  Here are the guys (Chris and his dad, Steve with Luke and Logan).  The boys are really liking to stand and bounce around now:

Today, we went to THE Ohio State University to watch my brother graduate :)  He's leaving in a few weeks to start his first "real" job in Minneapolis, MN.  I'm excited to visit the "Land of 1,000 Lakes" once he gets settled there.  And of course, to celebrate we grilled again (enjoying the out doors until the storms rolled through).  

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Meal Planning

Here's our meal plan for the week, designed by Mr. Chris (as our 3 year old neighbor Zella calls him...and yes, I'm Miss Sonya):

(Meatless) Monday-cheese tortellini with Brussels sprouts (we used extra Brussels sprouts and 1/2 the butter)
Tuesday-beef Burgundy in the crock pot
Wednesday-lemon pepper chicken and roasted potatoes
Thursday-chorizo and black bean chili (this is really yummy, I recommend!)
Friday-??? something for Lent

It's finals week for C and he's had lots of papers due before Wednesday.  We are looking forward to his LAST quarter starting in a few weeks :) The past few months have been challenging because C was going to class Monday and Wednesday nights and I was in class on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  We are looking forward to being able to spend evenings together again, especially with the weather being nice.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Why I run

2007, Columbus Marathon Finisher

2011, Columbus Marathon (C) and  1/2 Marathon (S)
This morning I put in 4 miles before 8am on a Saturday and some would say that's crazy :)  So, I thought I would take a few minutes and discuss why I run (and workout, for that matter).

1. Stress relief.  Nothing like a great run/bike ride/swim or workout class to bust some stress!  My schedule can get pretty busy and that makes me stressed.  When that happens, I try to make sure I'm getting at least 4 workouts a week to keep me balanced and sane.  Those endorphin's always make me feel better afterwards.

2. Time to think.  Most of the time, I run alone.  Sometimes C or a friend join me but it's hard to find people who want to get up and be running before 6am.  I spend my running time thinking, praying, meditating, being thankful and planning my day.  Needless to say, I don't get bored even though I usually run the same routes.

3. Being unplugged.  Working out is one of the few times that I don't have my phone and am not accessible...and I love it!   I check my emails first thing in the morning and the last thing before I climb into bed.   Don't get me wrong, I love my iPhone/computer/iPad and my job but sometimes it's nice to not be available.

4. Being able to eat.  If you read this blog, then you know we love food and I love to cook.  Working out allows me to do more of both!  I try to cook healthy, nutritious meals but I've inherited a deep love of chocolate from my mother (must have it every day) and working out allows me to enjoy dessert without feeling guilty.

5. Health benefits.  I've got great cholesterol, blood pressure and energy levels from consistently working out (I'm aware that genetics play a part as well).  And I rarely have issues sleeping, like I'm out the minute my head hits the pillow...ask my husband.

I believe in a balanced approach to working out and keep my workouts mixed up so I don't get bored.  When I feel like I'm in a rut, I try something new or sign up for a race so I have a goal.  Here are few of my current favorites:

Spinning-1 time per week
Running (obviously)-4 times per week
Body Pump class (I need someone to force me to lift weights)-2 times per week
Hot Yoga-1 time per week
Walking the dogs-daily
Bike rides with C-weekends when the weather is nice

What are some of your favorite workouts?  What motivates you to lace up the sneakers?  

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Urban or suburban?

Well the house hunt has started… And Chris and I are having a hard time deciding on whether we want to continue to be urban or move to the suburbs. We enjoyed being close to things which is why we've like being in Urban for the past three years but the suburban have some appeal as well, like we can afford a bigger house!

Does anyone have any advice to offer? We would love to hear what you think!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Sweet potato chips and meal planning

Now that I'm back to feeling better and classes, meal planning is on!  

Sunday-Chicken/black bean quesadillas and sweet potato chips
Monday-Orange roughy filets and butternut squash risotto (I have butternut puree in the freezer I'm trying to use up)
Tuesday-Crock pot roasted chicken
(Meatless) Wednesday-Potato and leek soup
Thursday-Left overs
Friday-Local Catholic church fish fry

Have you ever made sweet potato chips?  They are easy and delicious!  

Sweet potatoes
Olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350.  Peel and slice sweet potatoes (very thin slices, I use my food processor so they are nice and even).  Toss in bowl with a touch of oil and salt and pepper.  Layout in a single layer on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Place in oven and bake until crisp (varies depending on thickness).  I like to flip mine at the halfway point, 20 minutes or so.  Chips will shrivel and start to brown. 

Sweet potatoes ready for the oven!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Spring break

This past week was my spring break from classes and boy did it go fast! I kicked off break with a glass of wine with my classmates after class last Thursday. We had a full weekend of cleaning and organizing the house because we now have it listed! It looks great but I took down most of our photos so it looks like people live there, not us :). We were able to squeeze in a few fun things like dinner with my family at Barrel 44 (a new whiskey bar) for my brothers birthday and casino night.

I've been MIA because on Monday night I was hit with a stomach virus that knocked me flat for 24 thankful for C as he did a great job taking care of me while I was on the mend and my puppies for keeping me company. Due to my illness, there was no meal planning or cooking (my meals consisted of gatorade, animal crackers or dry waffles for a couple of days).

Today, we've got a showing and an open house tomorrow for our house (fingers crossed that someone will love it like we do).

We're on our way to house hunt as's a house-filled weekend.

C, drinking coffee and driving us to Cleveland this morning, wish us luck!