Chocolate and Spice

When the alarm went off at 4:50 yesterday, I really didn’t want to get up but I told myself I would feel better if I worked out before work. So, I got up and walked for 30 minutes on my treadmill followed by yoga.  I was craving guidance with my practice so I decided to do a yoga download instead of a free flow. I did yoga download 25 minute morning flow. I enjoyed this flow as it included lots of my favorites including warrior II, cresent lunge and, of course, shoulder stand. The most exciting part of the practice was doing my very first full wheel! I used blocks but I did it. I have been trying for a couple of weeks now and the feeling of getting into it was amazing! It really started my day off of the right foot!

By the time I was doing moving my body, I was hungry. I mean stomach rip roaring growling hungry! I heated up a bowl of overnight oat bran, in the bowl was 1/3 cup oat bran, 1 cup milk, 1 tbsp ground flax seed, 1 mashed banana, 1 tsp of brown sugar and a pinch of salt. I added some water to thin it out and then topped it with cashew macadamia nut butter and a few chocolate chips. We are calling this bowl overnight elvis oat bran 🙂

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Work was productive and lunch time came fast. We didn’t do our usual Monday routine and instead, T and I packed lunch. I brough whole wheat couscous, a texas veggie burger, ripeavocado chunks, colorful pepper chunks and bbq sauce. It all seemed like a weird combination but it turned out wonderful! I loved it!

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For lunch dessert # 1, I had this juicy orange

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and for lunch dessert # 2, I had a reese’s heart.

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In the late afternoon, I dove into my snack so fast I almost forgot to photograph it. I had my usual greek yogurt with berries.

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For dinner, the dear husband and I met at Ukrop’s since I was meeting with my new therapist at 6. I had crab salad on a whole wheat pita,

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three bean salad

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and a ghiradelli chocolate caramel square.

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Therapy went well though she was heavy on the perfume. My regular therapist is out of maternity leave so I have a temporary one for three months. I connected with her right away which I was really thankful for. Her approach is very different that my regular therapist but I think I will take well to it. It is essential for me to have a solid treatment team while I go through my group therapy and I think this new therapist will be a strong foundation.

When I arrived home, there was a package waiting for me! Mara at I Made Dinner sent me an array of Penzy’s spices for winning the BSI a couple of weeks ago. In the package was my beloved florida seasoning, cake spice, zatar seasoning, greed goddess dressing mix and sicilian salad topper. I can’t wait to dig into all of them!

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After chatting with Mara for a bit, I was feeling hungry. I had a small bowl of cocoa pebbles with milk that really hit the spot. Shortly after, I was in bed with my book.

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Question: What have you accomplished lately that makes you feel proud? For me, it is getting into wheel pose, for sure!

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I’m Sending Bob Your Way…

I was up at 5 ,yesterday, and on my treadmill by 5:10; I walked 30 minutes and then did 30 minutes of vinyasa. I flowed through a few sun salutation and spent A LOT of time in pigeon. I also worked on crow, dolphin, side plank and shoulder stand. I felt strong and proud in side plank because I was actually able to hold it longer than a couple of seconds. That is the one thing I love so much about yoga, what once seems impossible one day becomes the norm.

After my workout and yoga, I got ready for work and then made breakfast. I wanted to change up my weekday routine so I decided to make grits and eggs. I never have grits and eggs during the week, boy, I am really liking my new work schedule!

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Work was much calmer, thankfully. Around 10:30, I was a little hungry so I had some grapes. I didn’t photograph them because I have been eating so many of them these days. For lunch, I started with a small salad made by the chef

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and then had a variation on the BBQ tempeh from Monday night. I had it with whole wheat couscous and more of Kath’s slaw. Yum! I liked this version better than the sando version!!

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For lunch dessert, I had a fruit plate from the staff lunch. I really enjoyed the melon the most!

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I was in the office alone most of the afternoon and worked hard to fight off hunger. I guess it had been a hungry day but I held out until 3:30. I had greek yogurt with mixed berries but I still felt hungry after 😦

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Once I got home from work, I made pecan and cornmeal crusted wild flounder

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with a quick tartar sauce on the side. I used mayo, mustard, garlic, onion, dill pickle, pickle juice, cayenne and lemon. All to taste, of course

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For some good green veg, I made roasted Brussels sprouts. All together, this was a lovely meal.

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For dessert we had bowls of warm chocolate pudding…mmmm

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First thing this morning, I rounded up all the comments for my Country Bob’s conest, used random.org to generate a number and came up with Lee from For the Love of Peanut Butter! Congratulations, Lee, I will email you today!

Don’t forget to submit your BSI recipes to me by Sunday!

This Week’s BSI Ingredient IS…

I recently switched work schedules in order to accommodate my life a little better. I have always enjoyed AM workouts and with my desire to practice yoga daily, I wanted to be able to fit those things in before work. So, yesterday, I began and it felt great! I was up at 5 for a 30 minute treadmill session followed by 30 minutes of yoga. I flowed through sun salutations, a number of standing poses, balances and twists before finally settling into pigeon and then shoulder stand. I ended with a short meditation; I really don’t think there is a better way to begin the day than this! It was fabulous!

My new schedule also allows me to eat breakfast at home which I truly missed. Yesterday, I made microwave banana oats with flax seed and a PB spoon.

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After breakfast, I headed into work for what would prove to be a challenging day. Monday’s are normally pretty productive because the club is closed and the only people at work are The Pro, T and myself. And even so, it still seemed that if it could go wrong, it was. Lunch ended up being much later than I expected so I snacked on a few grapes to get me through.

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Lunch finally came around 1, this week, we chose Red Robin. The menu isn’t very pescatarian friendly is you are looking for healthy, too. I settled on a salmon sandwich on whole grain bun without any of the spicy mayo sauce.

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On the side, I had a small salad with oil and vinegar. Overall, it was a good lunch but it wouldn’t be my first choice of eating establishments.

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Things sort of settled down in the afternoon just in time for a pre-gym snack; I had greek yogurt with mixed berries.

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With my new schedule, it is more convienent for the dear husband and I to meet at the gym after work, so that is just what we did. I had to wait about 10 minutes for him so I walked on the treadmill until he arrived. Once he was there, we headed upstairs to lift weights. We both did the full STRIVE circuit and the resistance machine circuit for a full body workout. By the end, my whole body felt like jelly so I knew I got in a good workout.

Once we were home, I munched on some grapes while I prepared dinner. I didn’t photograph them because they were the leftovers of the grapes I had before lunch. For dinner, I made BBQ tempeh sandwiches with Kath’s BBQ slaw minus the pecans.

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On the side, I made skillet sweet potatoes.

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This dinner was fantastic! I ended up taking the bread off of mine because it was super messy and pretty impossible to eat without a fork. Thank goodness we weren’t on a first date 😉 For dessert, I had a Reese’s heart that we scored on clearance at Target.

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After some reading and TV, I realized I had checked my email in a long while so I went upstairs only to discover that I had won last week’s BSI contest! I was so thrilled! My entry for Orange Miso Tofu Stir Fry won the prize but I did feel a twinge of guilt since I just took my favorite parts of a couple of recipes I found online and made my own. That is how some recipes are born, I suppose. Anyway, to top off my win, she also chose me as this weeks host of the BSI contest!

After some thought, I decided that I wanted this week’s ingredient to be kale!  This is for selfish purposes, of course, since kale is my favorite green! It is also versatile, accessible and of course, veg*n friendly. Here is what The World’s Healthiest Foods has to say:

Kale is a leafy green vegetable that belongs to the Brassicafamily, a group of vegetables including cabbage, collards and Brussels sprouts that have gained recent widespread attention due to their health-promoting, sulfur-containing phytonutrients. There are several varieties of kale known commonly as curly kale, ornamental kale and dinosaur kale, all of which differ in taste, texture and appearance. The scientific name for kale is Brassica oleracea.

Curly kale has ruffled leaves and a fibrous stalk and is usually deep green in color. It has a lively pungent flavor with delicious bitter peppery qualities.

Ornamental kale is a more recently cultivated species that is oftentimes referred to as salad savoy. Its leaves may either be green, white or purple and its stalks coalesce to form a loosely knit head. Ornamental kale has a more mellow flavor and tender texture.

Dinosaur kale is the common name for the kale variety known as Lacinato. It features dark blue-green leaves that have an embossed texture. It has a slightly sweeter and more delicate taste than curly kale.

Pretty good stats, I’d say! You can enter two ways:

  • Email the photo and recipe to whatiateyesterday [at] gmail.com
  • or email me the link to the recipe in your blog.

I will update this page with the links/recipes as I get them. The deadline to enter is midnight, Sunday February 22nd! The prize will be a pair of handmade earrings in your choice of colors using glass beads and/or semi precious stones and sterling silver, you can see a few examples of my work on my Beading Page.

And don’t forget, today is the last day to enter my Country Bob’s Giveaway, comment and link back before midnight tonight for your chance to win some of this fabulous sauce and a secret prize!

The following are entries for BSI: Kale!

Truffle Love

Ah. Valentine’s Day. What a lovely day it was. Neither the dear husband or I are terribly romantic people but we had a really nice chocolate filled day, none the less. It all started with a bowl of greek yogurt topped with peaches, Trader Joe’s High Fiber Cereal and a creamed honey spoon.

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After breakfast and blogging, I realized I was late for yoga. I literally went to yoga with my hair sticking up in every direction imaginable. The dear husband even mentioned that I should at least brush it. Oh well, my fellow yogi’s love me just the way I am 😉 Since it was V-Day, we focused on opening the Heart Chakra. I decided to give myself a break and use props, do less hopping and jumping and to just take it easy in general. I also left my yoga towel at home by accident. Both of these things resulted in a not so great class. I felt frustrated all around.

I did find one particular part of the class enlightening, though. I mentally struggled throughout the whole class because one, I was slipping, sliding and squeaking the whole time and two, I kept telling myself to go easy on my self yet I seemed to be craving challenge. So, as we flowed from side angle to half moon, my back was to the rest of the class. I leaned into half moon feeling strong and stable. The rest of the class was chittering about it being hard and one girl said “oh, god we are rockin and rollin’ aren’t we”. I thought to myself that no, I wasn’t, I felt strong and balanced. It was then that  I realized that maybe it wasn’t the day for taking it easy.

I do think that sometimes, we have to go easy on ourselves and I had just come out of a tough week of poor eating, challenging therapy and stressful work. I thought it was the time to take it easy but maybe that is when I should really push myself. Not doing the best I could for most of the class left me feeling weak and unable to really open my heart. I was happy to be able to talk it all through with Candy, she reassured me that finding our own yoga is so personal and that each of the things that we discover just enable us to take our yoga higher. 

After class, I hurried home to spend the rest of the day with the dear husband. I had some grapes to tide me over until our V-Day lunch.

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And just as I was telling the dear husband that I was really hungry and not sure that I wanted to keep waiting for lunch, we got a knock on the door. Ashely, from Daily Goods had sent me the tiger butter I won in Meghann’s  Bake sale. 

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What better way to hold me over than a fantastic piece of fudge! This fudge was everything my heart and the dear husbands heart desires, in fudge, at least.

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And look, we have tons of it!!

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We stuck it in the freezer because otherwise, it would all be gone by now. Out of sight, out of mind. Lately, I have been trying to have tiny amounts of sweets at the end of a meal to control my night time snacking and this will be perfect for that. Yum!

We finally made our way down to Carytown for our V-day afternoon of fun. We stopped into a few shops for some window shopping, got my engagement ring/wedding band cleaned and then went for lunch. We went to Thai Diner Too which is probably my favorite. When we arrived, they brought us crispy vegetable spring rolls and said they “came with our lunch” and since we aren’t the type to pass of free thai food, we dove right in. It was yummy.

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Next up was vegetarian pot stickers. The were in a sweet coconut curry sauce and despite some heat, they were a little on the bland side.

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That was OK, because my entree more than made up for it. I got my favorite, Noodles of the Drunk with tofu. It was spicy, sweet and sour, just the way I like it.

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After lunch, we went to For the Love of Chocolate for truffles.

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And that is where the truffle love began. We still had truffles leftover from meeting Brandi, but that didn’t stop us 🙂 I had a little bite of each one, I enjoyed the hazelnut on the most.

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After our truffle fest, we did a little more window shopping and finally food shopping. I wrote out a meal plan for the week and we stocked up on everything we needed. It felt good to fill my cart with loads of veggies and whole foods. Once we got home and put away the groceries, I did a little blog reading and then made dinner. I heated up butter bean burgers from the freezer

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and made pan roasted kale on the side.

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After dinner, we decided to sent out Valentines day with a bang. So we shared the rest of the truffles from Brandi.

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And once again, the hazelnut one was my favorite but I did enjoy the “hunka hunka burning love” one, it tasted like a chocolate cinnamon roll! We then, of course, watched a romantic comedy to round out the day. We watched Something New which I can’t really tell you much about because I fell asleep 😦

All in all, it was a great day spent with the dear husband,  besides all of the truffle love, it wasn’t that different than a normal Saturday. But, I don’t really see that as a good thing. It reassures me that our love in strong, constant and stable which is exactly what I want.

On a Sushi Roll

Yesterday, I woke up in time to spend about 30 minutes doing a walk/run on my treadmill followed by about 15 minutes of vinyasa yoga. I flowed through a few sun salutation a followed by my own version of sun salutation b. I included warrior I, warrior II and side angle. I also worked on wheel and then did a short meditation. What a terrific way to start the day.

I got to work feeling ready to take on my day but first, I had breakfast. I made overnight banana oats which had 1/3 cup oats, 2/3 cups milk, a dash of salt and a mashed banana. When I got to work, I heated them in the microwave for 3 minutes and then topped them with ground flax seed and a PB spoon. Yum! As long as you know that you want oats the following day, I see no reason to use any other method!

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Again, T suggested that we pick up sushi from Kenji for lunch. Being the sushi lover that I am, I happily obliged. This time, we decided to order 3 rolls and share them. On my plate was half of each of the following: green spiral roll, volcano roll and red passion roll.

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On the side, I also had a ginger salad.

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OK, this was THE BEST SUSHI I have ever had. Ever, in my whole career of eating sushi. The part that makes me sad is that since I work so far away from home, the dear husband and I can’t pop over there and eat sushi anytime we want 😦

After lunch, G brought up frozen reeses cup for T and I to share. It was a perfect compliment to the spicy sushi.

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The afternoon wizzed by and when I got home from work, I was  a little hungry so I munched on an orange.

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We once again consulted the blue jar for dinner because neither of us knew what we wanted. We pulled out a couple of meal ideas before finding one that we had all of the ingredients for. We settled on whole wheat ravioli in marinara sauce

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with pan roasted broccoli.

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After dinner, I had a few chocolate covered almonds and then started baking for a special event happening this afternoon. You’ll have to tune in tomorrow to find out what it is!

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Shortly before bed, there was a knock on the door and right away, I knew it must be my secret cupid gift. Maggie at Say Yes to Salad sent me a jar of my beloved lemon curd

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a couple of honey sticks

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and a cute pair of handmade earings.

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Thanks, Maggie, such thoughtful gifts you sent!

And don’t forget to sign up for my country bob’s giveaway! All you have to do is comment on that post, link back to the contest and you are all set. If you don’t have a blog, comment and send me an email confirming that you don’t have a blog. I will also be including a very special surprise so be sure to sign up! The contest ends Tuesday, good luck!

Exciting Things in Blogland

I started the day, yesterday, with a few sun salutations and a cup of coffee as I got ready for work. Once I was at work, I had a bowl of TJ’s high fiber cereal mixed with Quaker oat squares, ground flax seed and dried blueberries.

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Work was really busy so it was a great relief to break for lunch to meet my friend. We met at Ukrop’s since it has something for everyone’s lunch time palate. I got a brown rice spicy tuna roll

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and a veggie summer roll.

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We shared some easy conversation and good food, I was sad to go back to work 😦 Once I made it back, the afternoon flew by. I worked on my pile o’ paperwork and before I knew it, it was go time. I went home and pondered what to make for dinner. I didn’t write a menu plan for the week which always leaves me a little clueless mid-week. I fumbled around the kitchen and finally came up with this:

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Buffalo tempeh sandwiches with gorgonzola dressing and pickles. It turned out OK and I think I will make this again but I would do one thing different. I like I would cut the tempeh in half so that it could really soak up the sauce. On the side, we had steamed broccoli with an olive oil drizzle and garlic.

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For dessert, we shared a big bowl of grapes.

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I spent the rest of the evening reading and resting my sore hamstrings. I’m starting to wonder if I pulled them. I noticed they were still sore during my sun salutations, I had to even keep my knees bent in forward fold and down dog. I guess I should give them a couple days rest 😦

A couple of reminders about the happenings of blog land:

Mara is hosting the BSI this week and I am SO excited about the ingredient she picked! Zesty is hosting a grill charms giveaway and I am hosting a Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce giveaway!!

Yoga, Yoga, Yoga, Walk, Pump Iron

Yesterday was a glorious day.  To fuel me up for the day ahead, I had a piece of leftover crabcake quiche with a rooster sauce drizzle. I think the quiche was even better leftover!! This recipe is going in the blue jar, for sure. The blue jar is a little jar that the dear husband and I write our favorite meals on little slips of paper and when we are stuck for what to make, we pull something out of the jar.

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Breakfast was followed by a quick clean up because I was having my ever anticipated private yoga lesson with Candy. Candy is one of my all time favorite yoga teachers and I was so excited to have her at my home to teach me. She arrived around 10 and we started by just talking about what it is that I am looking for in an at home yoga practice. My ultimate goal was to have an at home practice that doesn’t require the use of an audio or dvd class. I believe that this is when the real yoga happens. When we can explore our minds and go where our body takes us rather than where a teacher takes us. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t trade my Saturday AM class for the world but a consistent, mind, body and soul searching home practice is what I really crave.

We talked for a short while and then made our way to my back deck. It was a gorgeous 72* degrees and we couldn’t resist it. We swept away the acorns and pine needles and laid our mats down for a glorious 2 hours of yoga in the sun. We broke down sun salutation and explored each pose as an individual and as a flow. She taught me about creating new sun salutations and how to piece together pracitices that will give me what I need at the time. She encouraged me to explore poses rather than focus on getting them “right”. She taught me how to focus on the right muscles for making jumping and lunging more graceful. We worked on crow, wheel and shoulder stand, some of my favorite poses.

I learned so much about yoga, more than I have ever learned in one space of time before. Once we rolled up our mats, I felt empowered about what my body can do and encouraged to spend time with my mat and my mat alone. I feel ready to take my yoga practice to the next level and really explore who I am through yoga. This private lesson changed my yoga practice and I can’t wait to explore it through my own eyes.

Once Candy left, I was starving. All of the sun salutations, down dogs and warriors made my appetite ready for food. I had a long drawn out lunch planned but at that point, my stomach didn’t want to wait. I looked around in the kitchen and came up with an ultra fast lunch. I sauteed Trader Joe’s Vegetarian Italian Sausages in olive oil and then topped them off with marinara sauce. Once the sauce was warm, I served it with leftover brown rice and parmesan shavings.

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Though I felt really hungry, I was only able to finish about half of what I served myself. I think I was actually hyper aware of my hunger signals which is a good thing. I did, however, save room for a few chocolate covered almonds.

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After lunch, the dear husband and I got the laundry started and then headed out for a 4 mile trek. It was such a beautiful day, we both just wanted to be in the sun. Once we returned home, we did the Get Ripped dvd. We only did the upper body tracks because my lower body was already sore from all of the yoga and the long, hilly walk. It took us about an hour and once we were done, my appetite was in full force again.

I had a small bowl of greek yogurt with mixed fruit and creamed honey. Yum. Yum. Yum.

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We spent the remainder of the day finishing up laundry, catching up on the DVR and reading. I was completely wiped out so we made frozen pizza for dinner. This time, we chose the Mediterranean veggie

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and I made sauteed spinach for the side.

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For dinner dessert, we split a Reese’s egg. I could have eaten the whole thing but I wanted to play nice and share 🙂

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Don’t forget to visit Meghann’s blog today at 11:00am. She is hosting the bloggers bake sale where my Best Fudge Brownies, along with many other blogger goodies, will be for sale. Meghannis training to run the Rock n Roll San Diego Marathon in an effort to raise money for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. So get on over there and buy something delicious for a super cause!