Month: September 2014

Adventures in the Kitchen

It’s been a whirlwind of a weekend! I’m not sure how I always manage to be busier when school is out.

I didn’t get home until after 11 Thursday night and was right back in the office first thing Friday morning. I don’t feel like I’ve stopped since I got home. The weekend was filled with errands and chores around the house and Sunday was filled with football and band practice (Cliff’s obviously, I have 0 musical talent). While he and Ben were practicing I decided to do a little fall shopping. I had absolutely no jeans that fit and I was tired of people poking fun at my “saggy bottom” pants.

Plus, I was pretty excited about trying on new clothes, because this happened at my official weigh in Friday morning.  160 pounds down!

Weight loss

It’s still crazy to walk into a store and go to Misses (sometimes even juniors!) and pick an outfit to try on. I even had to take a sweater back and get a large instead of an extra-large! The last time I tried on pants I could just barely button a size 16, so I decided to stay in the 18’s, but they were baggy. This time the 16’s slipped right on and they look great! I’ve been in a size 16 dress, but not pants until now, so I was really, really, REALLY excited.

I’ve decided to try a new recipe once a week so that we can add a bit of variety to our pretty uneventful menu. This weekend I made Chicken Parmesan Meatballs and served it with Barilla Whole Wheat pasta. I am happy to report that it was a big hit, even with the pasta! They were a little more time consuming than I would have time for through the week, but it would be super easy to prep on the weekend.

weight loss

I also tried a little snack I found on Pinterest that’s made out of ground nuts and instant oats. They are WAY better than any No Bake cookie I’ve ever had and they’re made with agave nectar instead of sugar! They’re the perfect little snack for before or after workouts (or if you just happen to be passing the fridge for no specific reason…)

Speaking of healthy snacks, I was watching Cliff make his lunch over the weekend and looked down and saw this setup on my counter.  It’s a huge change from a year and a half ago!

weight loss

Thankfully, I have a pretty relaxing week ahead of me (so far) and I’m really looking forward to it. I have a hair appointment Thursday and that’s it. My parents are coming in this weekend and that’s always fun. Normally we would go get sushi, but since Cliff and I are still doing our no restaurant challenge (Worst. Month. Ever. for this challenge) we’re going to make the world famous Bailey Fried Tacos.

I’m contemplating not weighing in next week…


Farewell Philadelphia (for now)

I did it!

Not just one “it” but so many “its”!

    • I took my first flight alone
    • This was my first business trip
    • I didn’t eat at a single restaurant (including the Philly pretzels that they had delivered to the office yesterday)
    • I killed it in the training sessions
    • I didn’t check any luggage (yes, I know I was only gone for two days, but you should seriously see how much stuff I “need”  for two days…it’s really absurd)

I’m a grown up now!


I was seriously born for this world, I just know it.  I’m sitting here in the Philly airport with three hours until my flight starts boarding and I can’t wipe this goofy grin off my face.  There are very few times in my life (that didn’t involve my husband) that made me happier than this moment.  Sitting here in an airport terminal, returning from a business trip where I got to train people (one of my favorite things to do!), writing a post on a blog that has chronicled one of the best years of my life is an absolute dream come true.

*Confession Time*

I almost didn’t come on this trip.

When Cliff took me to the airport Tuesday afternoon, it took everything I had not to go into a full blown panic attack.  It wasn’t the flight that I was scared of (although, I admit that I was a little nervous) it was the fear of making a complete fool out of myself in front of the “big wigs.”  What if I sounded like an idiot?  What if they took one look at my training documents and started laughing?  What if I fell flat on my face, in the middle of the street, crossing the four lane from the car rental facility to the airport for my return flight?  (Yes, that last one happened)

My heart started pounding, I was dizzy, and I shook all the way to my terminal.  I won’t tell you about silently sobbing until the plane was in the air.

I even went so far as to tell him that I had changed my mind and I didn’t want to go. Obviously, being the amazing person that he is, he didn’t let that happen.  Instead, he told me for the millionth time that he knew I could do this.  Then he hugged me, kissed me, and shoved my ass onto the escalator.

Ok, that’s a little dramatic, he didn’t’ shove me, but he mentally forced me up the escalator.

I’m very fortunate to have been able to marry my best friend who knows just how to get me to put my big girl panties on and do what needs to be done no matter how terrified I am.  “I can’t” just isn’t in his vocabulary and I feel like I am very, very close to removing it from my own.

So, thanks Clifford, because I am so, so, so very happy that I went through with it.

I’ve never had more faith in myself than right at this moment.  I’ve lost almost 160 pounds, I finally have a college degree, and I have a job where my work ethic is really starting to pay off.  Instead of dwelling on how long it took to get here, I’m starting to truly enjoy the place I’m in.

Thanks for the picture Katie!

Ok, enough sappy crap.  There were some pretty terrible things that happened on the trip.

No Philly cheesesteak.


No long run (I’ll see you again Valley Forge!)


This is the closest I got to downtown.


I picked the wrong week to swear off coffee forever.


See?  Terrible.

Travel Tip Tuesday

Well, I made it.  I’m in Philadelphia and I’m all stocked up with goodies from Whole Foods.  The first night was a success, even though I thought I might lose it for a second at the airport.

I’m talking about the plethora of restaurants when I landed, not the near panic attack I had about getting on a plane alone.

Moving on…

The flight was uneventful, except for the book that I’m reading, but more on that later this week once I finish it.  I didn’t check any luggage (SCORE!) so I went straight to the shuttle for the rental car company and into my Elantra (not impressed, btw).  The hotel is pretty ho hum, but it’s a Springhill so that means Marriott points which means I’m happy.  The Whole Foods is about three quarters of a mile away so I just walked there and back and now I’m settled in and ready for bed.

I’m pretty exhausted because I:

  • worked half a day
  • flew to Philly
  • walked a mile and a half to and from WF (with a 12 pack of water strapped to my back on the return trip
  • worked out on the elliptical when I got back to the hotel

I had this whole big plan of writing about great ways to stay away from dining out while traveling, but that turned into “Stay near a grocery and get a room with a fridge and microwave.”



Not really rocket science there.

I don’t really have a tip for today, but I can finally confirm that only traveling with a carry on is amazing.  I’m going to do my absolute best to never check luggage again.  It was so awesome to walk straight to the gate and board the plane and then straight to the shuttle without having to deal with baggage claim.  I wasn’t too thrilled with my new bag and my carry on has a broken handle so it was still minorly annoying, but nothing like when we have to check luggage.  The next time I fly, I’m definitely trying out my Terra pack.  I didn’t think it was really cut out for a business trip though.

Overall, not too much to report.  Tomorrow I plan on riding over to Valley Forge Park so I can get a run in while I’m here.  I’ll try to remember to take lots of pictures!