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Friday, August 31, 2012

Sunshines/Dark Clouds

It's FRIDAY and it's time for Sunshines and Dark Clouds! YAY!

Dark Clouds (to get them out of the way!):
  • I'm at work now. Booo! Come on, weekend!
  • Fiance and I have been feeling a little under the weather, but we are PACKED with plans this weekend. No time for relaxing around the house!
  • We have been trying to hang out with my friend Blairre and her husband John (and her adorable son Carson!) foreverrrrr but our schedules never work out! :o(
  • The early, early mornings are starting to get cold... boo! Don't leave, summer!

Sunshines!:
  • It's FRIDAY!
  • We get our engagement photos done tomorrow! I'm so excited!
  • I'm FINALLY getting my hair cut. I haven't had my hair cut since... January? So almost 9 months? Yikes. Fiance's aunt (who used to work at the best salon in town) is doing it for me and I'm so happy about it! I know she will do a great job!
  • My sister is in town for the weekend!
  • Fiance's mom is in town for the weekend!
  • We're having a BBQ at my mom's on Sunday for Labor Day and my dad is making his famous grilled chicken. It's DELICIOUS!
  • I'm off MONDAY! YAY!
  • Not only am I off on Monday, I only work Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, then I'm off for another three days! Woo!

Have a great day!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Engagement Photos!

Since we are having a destination wedding, wedding photos have been kind of a pain in my rear.

FOR EXAMPLE. Our photographer is wonderful, but of course, she lives in Phoenix. We will be going in November to visit Fiance's mom, and to see our favorite comedian Kevin Hart again. Will she be in town and available that weekend?

Nope.

She suggested doing our engagement photos over the holidays. Fiance works for a large shipping company and guess what? Late November/December are their BUSIEST time ever, so we canNOT go out of town.

And we want our Save the Dates sooner than that so we can send them out before the holidays.

Blah.

But my wonderful friend Melissa offered her services for a wonderful price, and I'm super excited to get our photos done! We scheduled our engagement photos for this weekend and we are going to just relax and have fun. We really want our Save the Dates to be pretty low-key and fun, since our actual wedding and our invitations will be pretty formal.

Check her out here!


And best of all, we get to take pictures with our favorite creature in the world, my little Shadow!

 
Look at that little face. He is SO cute.
 
 
Although, Fiance and I are now locked in a battle about Shadow's attire. I, personally, think a little bowtie would be SO CUTE on him. Fiance thinks cheesy. What do you guys think?
 


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Fantasy Success!

My fantasy drafts were successes! WOO!

And now, for more sleep. I had to go into work at 6:00 am today, after a half hour drive, so I was up EAAAAARRRRLLLYYYYYY.

Time for mas sleep.

I'll update later!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Fantasy Football Season Returns

Fantasy Football. A chance for all local football fans to pretend to be general managers/coaches and create super teams based on their favorite players in real life.

I even wrote a column on it her.

Needless to say, it's a big deal for me.

I really got into it last year. It started a little bit as a challenge. I work in an EXTREMELY male-dominated field (department of defense engineering) and one day, at lunch, my boss's boss (a really nice guy, overall) asked my coworker Louie if he would be interested in joining their fantasy football league.

Now, here's the scene. We were at a table with five or six other men. All of them were in the league except Louie and me. So when he asked Louie to be in the league, I was very distinctly ignored.

Which burned me. Louie is a great guy and a good friend, so he quickly replied that I was the bigger football fan between the two of us (he's a baseball guy). My boss quickly extended the invitation to me as well, and even apologized later for assuming that I wasn't interested in football before. But I still remember sitting there, the only person not invited, and being the bigger fan between the two of us.

That motivation carried me throughout the season and I made it all the way to the championship match, beating out 10 of the 11 other teams. I lost to our company's VPO, who is also a great guy and very kind, but to make it to the championship match when I wasn't even included at the beginning was so, so sweet.

I'm in two leagues this year and I'm the only girl in both. I'm excited to see what this season holds! Wish me luck!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Sunshines/Dark Clouds

It's FRIDAY! Time for Sunshines and Dark Clouds! WOO!

Dark Clouds:
  • I had the biggest gym fail (read about it here) yesterday. I just wanted to run a mile! But the universe conspired against me.
  • I'm tired, tired, tired, but I got some good overtime, so I guess that helps!
  • The weather has been cooler (50s in the morning) and I've been COOOOLD. It's just another reminder of what I'll experience in a few months when the weather REALLY drops. Can we live in Phoenix now?
  • We've had some rain (yay!), but that means the mosquitoes are coming out in DROVES. Booooooo!

Sunshines:
  • It's FRIDAY and I'm off!
  • Fiance and I are getting passports today! YAY!
  • The rain has been sooooo nice, Look at these beautiful clouds!
 
  • With Fiance's new job, we can pay off some little things we've been putting off and I'm SO happy. I'm a worrier (especially about money), so this is a wonderful thing for us.
  • We have a weekend planned of just eating, hanging out, working out, and watching movies. I can't wait!
  • I sold some of my books to a store in town and got some extra cash. It's SO hard for me to part with books, but I finally did. It's time for some fall cleaning.
  • Fiance took me to get a wrap and some green chile wonton soup. YUMMY! 
 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Gym Fail

So normally, when I get on the treadmill, this is my routine.

Walk for five minutes at 4.0, with a 4.0 incline.

Run for 7-8 minutes (or until I can't breathe).

Walk for 5.

Run for 3.

Walk for 2.

Run for 2.

Walk for 2.

Run for 3.

Cool down for 5.

Then I get onto the elliptical.

But then, a few days ago, I realized that I run for eight minutes at a 11 minute pace. Which means if I ran for just THREE MORE MINUTES, I would run a mile straight. It pretty much blew my mind and at that moment, I started thinking about running a mile.

I'm going to be honest. It should be abundantly clear that I am NOT a good runner. I hate running. Also, I have boobs, which makes running difficult. Or maybe that's just another excuse. Either way, running is the WORST. Even at my best shape (in high school), I wasn't a good runner. C'est la vie.

So the thought of running a mile straight was SUPER exciting. I was ready to make that move in my workout routine. I was ready to run a mile.

But then I had the WORST workout luck ever. I woke up with really sore thighs after a grueling workout last night (with so many lunges. Oh, the lunges). I stretched as best as I could and then got started.

About three minutes into my running, my had hit my headphones and send my ipod flying from the ledge onto the treadmill and then- whoosh! right behind me. I paused, hopped off to get the ipod, then got back on and pumped it up.

At about five minutes in, I did it AGAIN. Another pause, another rush to grab the ipod, then another few seconds of getting back to my running pace (at this point, I abandoned my ipod and just zoned out). At eight minutes, my shoe came untied. Another pause and quick tie.

I ran the mile in 11 minutes without walking, BUT I had those three stupid breaks in between. I didn't ever walk, but I stopped my pace to grab the ipod and then pump my pace back up because the treadmill would take me back down to 1.0 when I paused. I probably lost at least a minute in it.

I was so frustrated! Bah. But at least I did it, and I know I can do it again, and I'm excited to do it without the stupid distractions. Fiance is joining my gym with me tomorrow, so maybe I'll try again tomorrow.

Wish me luck! And enjoy this beautiful photo of a famous New Mexico sunset. My favorite part of living here.

Monday, August 20, 2012

A Mexican Food Weekend

This weekend was filled with...




A birthday party for my handsome fiance, complete with brisket, enchiladas, and a gigantic cake (see above). It was delicious, even if the frosting was that thick blue sugar frosting that turns your whole mouth blue. I felt caught red-handed (blue-toothed?) when Fiance caught me sneaking a piece!

But hey, I worked out six times last week, so I'm okay with it.

Yesterday, our meals included green chile cheeseburgers and guacamole.

Today, I've eaten half a burrito for breakfast, then a truly DELICIOUS torta with steak, green chile and asadero cheese for lunch, followed by enchiladas for dinner.

Am I Mexican or what? I'm clearly tapping into the "Candelaria" side of my heritage with all this food and I couldn't be happier. I LOVE Mexican food (especially southern NM food, which is WAY DIFFERENT than northern NM or Arizona or Texas Mexican food), but I can't have it that often because there are about a million things to eat, but all with about 1000 calories for each dish, which is approximately how much I eat in an entire day.

Do I regret my food, though? Not a chance.

Happy Monday!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Eats


Today, instead of a Sunshines and Dark Clouds (because I've just been a boring worker bee), I thought I would do a little Recipe Friday for you!

So in losing weight, Fiance and I have found a few true and tried recipes that we basically recycle every week. Here are a few of our favorite recipes!


via

Rotisserie Chicken Stir Fry

This is one of my FAVORITES. Fiance is less obsessed, but I could have this every week. It's SO good.

Ingredients:

Rotisserie chicken
Low sodium soy sauce
Teriyaki sauce
Vegetables (varied, but we use broccoli, carrots, snap peas, mushrooms, onion and zucchini)
Quinoa or rice

Dump all of your vegetables into a pan or a wok. Add some soy sauce and some teriyaki sauce. While that is simmering over medium heat, tear the meat off the chicken and add it to the pan (I make fiance do this). Add more teriyaki and more soy sauce. Cover and let sit until vegetables are soft (stirring occassionally).

While all this is going on, make your quinoa according to box. Then put the quinoa on a plate and pour the stir fry over the top.

It's SO EASY and soooo delicious. Plus, it's a sneaky way of getting a TON of vegetables into your meal. Sometimes I forget about the quinoa, but I'm usually fine with just the chicken and vegetables. Fiance, however, has a very physical job and needs the extra calories. I try not to forget for him :o)


Another one of my favorites?



Turkey tacos!

You'll need:

A pound of ground turkey (we use the lean, 93/7)
A packet of taco seasoning (if you make your own, you are more awesome than I)
Tomato
Lite sour cream
Salsa
Corn tortillas

Make your turkey on a pan (like ground beef). When it's done, add the taco seasoning and let simmer over low. Cut up your tomato. Warm up the corn tortillas. You can fry them, but I don't usually, because of the extra calories. Then put the salsa, tomato, turkey, and sour cream onto the tortillas. THE END.

Again, SUPER easy. With our varied schedules, Fiance and I have about an hour between our work shifts in which to make and eat dinner. I like to cook, but if it takes longer than 30 minutes from start to finish, we're usually cutting it pretty close for Fiance to have enough time to eat and digest before work.

With Fiance's new schedule, however, we can take our time and make enchiladas, fish tacos on the grill, pizza, chicken and rice casseroles, things that we love but that take time to make.

But in the meantime, I could literally eat those two dishes every week. If you're looking for something quick, these are AWESOME. However, warning, there are always leftovers. Fiance likes to add refried beans to his turkey taco leftovers and then eat it like a dip with chips, if you like that idea.

Anyone have any quick and easy recipes to share?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Birthday!

Today... is my love's birthday. Today, he turns 23 and (for a few months) I'm only a year older than he is!

GET ME SOME!

Anyway, Fiance, I love you so much and I hope you have the BEST birthday ever! It's your last single birthday, so make it count!





















Happy birthday, best friend, I love you!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Great Things

Tomorrow, Fiance begins his new job and I couldn't be more proud of him!

A little background if you're an online reader and not one of my friends. I'm two years older than Fiance (yeah, yeah, cougar, I know!) and being incredibly organized (and in one of the few degree programs that can be completed in four years), I graduated on time in 2010 at 22. At that time, we had been dating almost a year. I went straight into my full time salaried job, and have been in the Real World ever since.

Fiance had another couple of years to finish his degree (which he just did in May! YAY!), but it felt so much longer to both of us because I had been out in the real world for two years already, even though he's 22 now and finished college relatively early in life.

However, I know he was uncomfortable about marrying me and not having a full time job. Not because we weren't doing fine: I make great money (for a job in journalism! lol!) and we are in a great living situation with Thomas, wherein we pay peanuts for rent and can save all kinds of money for our wedding and a big down payment for a house.

But tomorrow, Fiance starts his big, impressive job. A "I can take care of my family" job (his words). A big, real world job. And he is so, so ready.

And so am I! It's such a great thing for our little family and it will get us to our dreams (a house of our own, our beautiful wedding, living in Phoenix) SO much faster. I'm so proud of him! Yay!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Sunshines and Dark Clouds!

Time for some more sunshines and dark clouds! WOO!

Dark Clouds
  • I'm so tired, which means either I'm working out too hard, not getting enough sleep, getting sick, or a combination of the above. Here's to sleeping all weekend, right?
  • My good friend Kaitlyn headed off to Michigan for graduate school, and my sister headed back to law school. SAD FACE! I miss them!
  • I haven't cooked at home like, at all this week. Fiance did. Twice. I'm a fail of a future wife.

Sunshines
  • Fiance gets his promotion starting MONDAY! So excited for him (and for our life together... better pay, better hours, evenings with me! SO HAPPY!)
  • Tomorrow is my good friend Blairre's baby shower for her baby girl, Kennedy! I'm so excited to meet her new baby. Her son, Carson, is just about a year and he single handedly gave me baby fever because he is SO DARN CUTE and SO good!
  • The Olympics are still on! My favorite!
  • Fiance cleaned the house for me. I'm the luckiest girl ever.
  • I'm down another two pounds... one small step at a time, my friends!
  • It's FRIDAY! YAY!

Have a good week, all!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Squats

Oh my God I think my legs are going to FALL OFF.

So in working out these past couple of months, some of the main areas I work out are my legs/thighs. Not because I choose to work these out nonstop, but because Jillian does.

Oh, Jillian? She's my trainer.



And by "trainer", I mean I bought her 30 Day Shred and do it religiously two or three times a week while she yells at me to work harder.

Anyway, she REALLY likes squats, lunges, butt kicks, squat jumps, plie jumps, etc., all of which work your thighs like crazy. I have pretty strong legs, but I didn't realize how much I've been working them until I went dancing on Friday with Fiance and his cousins who are like his siblings.




It was a lot of hip hop (my FAVORITE) style dancing, but it was seriously like another leg workout. My legs were sore all weekend and then kicking in another couple of leg workouts this week have made my thighs SO SORE.

But it's a good sore! I told Fiance we should go out dancing every weekend and count it as a workout! What do you think?

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Jetsetters

I realized this morning that I had triple booked my evening.

I told my sister (who JUST got back from London/Barcelona/Paris after studying law abroad) that I would hang out with her this evening, since she heads back to law school tomorrow.

I made plans with my friends Kaitlyn, Val, and Adriana MONTHS ago when Kaitlyn informed us she would be in town for two days to pack up her life before she heads to her new life in Michigan (she just got back from an intense and impressive summer studying in Boston).

And I told my friend Ellie on Friday that we could raincheck our Friday date to Tuesday.

So that was fun.

However, it all got worked out. I rainchecked (again) with Ellie, who lives in town and is awesome. I made earlier plans with my sister for coffee, and I kept my original plans with my friends!

It was a bittersweet evening. I'm so happy I got to spend time with my favorite people, but it's crazy to think I won't see them again anytime soon. Kaitlyn and I have been friends forever. I asked her to be the reader at our wedding, so yeah, we're clearly very close (and by being the reader, she doesn't have to worry about flying back into Cruces for all the other wedding stuff that can be taxing for a grad school student!). My sister is my Maid of Honor and one of my best friends. And soon they'll be off being all impressive and whatever.

Sad face.

HOWEVER, seeing my girls tonight made me excited for my wedding! We MIGHT have the chance to all celebrate Kaitlyn's birthday for the first time in... maybe forever lol. And we'll all be at the same resort all together for my big day. I'm so thankful that I have great friends that will travel to be with me on my wedding day. I'm so lucky to have such good friends in my life.

No matter where they are :o)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

BBQ

One of my favorite things about summer is the beautiful evening weather, which is just screaming for a BBQ. Which is exactly our plan tonight!

We bought some steaks and some corn to pop on the grill. I think I'll make some more of these delicious things, too:



They're mini pineapple upside down cakes. I made them for my coworker Louie for his birthday. He loves pineapple upside down cakes, so I tried it as cupcakes. They were delicious! Here's the recipe:

Ingredients:
White or pineapple cake mix
Eggs
Oil
Can or two of pineapple rings (with juice saved)
Butter
Brown sugar

Directions:
Mix cake mix as directed, but use the pineapple juice instead of your water. At the bottom of your cupcake pan, mix a tablespoon of melted butter with about a tablespoon of brown sugar. Then put a pineapple ring in. (I had to break my pineapple ring into pieces, since it was too big for my cake pan.)

Then pour in some batter. DON'T overfill: this was my mistake. If you overfill, it will puff up over the top of the pan too much and make it harder for you later. I ended up having to slice off the top of the cupcake so that they will flip appropriately without toppling over.

Once your cupcakes are cooled, run a knife around the sides of the cakes, to prepare for the flip. Then, quickly and easily, flip the cupcake pan over to release the cupcakes (I flipped them onto a baking sheet because they aren't in liners or anything, so you probably don't want them just on your counter). They should pop right out. Mine stood fine, because I had sliced off any of the rounded tops (or bottoms, by the end). If any brown sugar/butter topping is left in the pan, just scoop it out and put it on top of the cake.

That's it! You can add a cherry to the middle at the end, if you want, but I don't like those fake sugar cherries, so I didn't.

They're super good, and Louie gave them two thumbs up. As a pineapple upside down cake lover, I take that as a huge compliment! :o)

Friday, August 3, 2012

Sunshines and Dark Clouds!

Friday, time for sunshines and dark clouds! Hooray!

Dark Clouds:
  • It's an on Friday, so I'm at work. I know, cry me a river, right? But I'm already on 40+ hours this week, so I'll end with 50 hours at work, 55 away from home with my commute. Yuck.
  • I'm working while the US OLYMPICS are on! Good luck, US Women's National Soccer Team, do work today!
  • I haven't done any cleaning this week... which means I'm due for a nice big clean this weekend. Yuck.

Sunshines:
  • It's almost the WEEKEND! Get me some!
  • I had a great run last night... my friend Kaitlyn runs often, and it always sounds awful to me, but I think I'm starting to enjoy zoning out while running. Makes the time go by faster, right? Lol.
  • I'm hanging out with my awesome friend Danielle tonight! I love her- especially because she is exactly where I am in life. Great job (she's a nurse and super good at her job), recently engaged, out of the partying stage. We like to get together and validate each other on being mature/old instead of partying. As in... even though some of our friends party like crazy, it's okay that we would rather stay home and watch Breaking Bad with our pets. :o)
  • I learned how to French braid. I've never actually done it before. I mean, I knew the concept, I just never tried it. I'm pretty simple when it comes to my hair: blow dried, curled, pulled back in a bun/ponytail/flip. So the French braid, especially when I just get out of the shower and don't want to blow dry my hair, works perfect! Plus, it gives my hair a break from the heat of the iron/dryer.
  • My sister comes home from Paris this weekend! She took a summer law school course in London, and then spent some time in Paris with Kylie. I'm excited to see her!

Have a good night!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Long Week

Sorry to be out of touch this week... it's been a really LONG week, but it's almost over! Hooray!

It started on Saturday, really, when I had to go into work at 5:00 in the morning. In the MORNING. Which means I was awake by 4:00. In the MORNING!

It was a long morning. But then I was wide awake for the day, and had plenty of time to watch US soccer (go USA!) and then get ready for dinner that night at Double Eagle. :o)



I had scallops in a garlic wine butter sauce with truffle mashed potatoes (YUM) and Fiance had a New York strip. It was super yummy.

And this week was a crazy mess, too. We had some issues at work and as the PR person, I was in the middle of the media part. But everything is happily resolved now: crisis averted!

Tuesday, I had coffee with my lovely little, Dianna. We talked for about three hours because we always go way too long without talking, then we have SO much to catch up on! But it was super fun and I'm so glad I got to see her.

Tonight, my big plans are the gym and then sleeping, sleeping sleeping. I think I'm getting sick because I've been super exhausted, so maybe a nice quiet night is just what the doctor ordered.

My big plans for the weekend? MORE sleep. If I can stave off this cold, that would be awesome.