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Monthly Archives: February 2012

Pretzel Crisp Additions!

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Lately, I cannot get enough salt!  I don’t know what’s up with me, because I’m infamous for having an insatiable sweet tooth, but recently, the saltier, the better!  One snack that has been a saving grace for me, has been Pretzel Crisps!  Which, you can find a $1 off coupon for here.

A big thanks to the company & Jessica for sending me some of their newest flavors to try! Along with the originals, there are three newborns in the family (:  Each of these, like the others, has about 110 calories per serving and range from 1-2g of fat.

Jalapeño Jack

These guys are the perfect accompanyment for salsa, black bean dip, & guacamole.  It’s got a bit of heat added to the crunch with Spicy jalapeño combined with smooth jack cheese flavor sprinkled right on top of each crisp!  Any spicy food lovers out there will adore this flavor.  It reminded me of Mexican food!  In fact, they would be delicious crumbled over a “mexican themed” salad instead of croutons…I can see it now…shredded lettuce, warm seasoned black beans, chopped onion, pico de gallo, pretzel crisps, and topped off with plain greek yogurt instead of sour cream!  Mmm. 

Ingredients: Wheat Flour, Seasoning (Salt, Whey, Buttermilk [Cream], Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Monterey Jack Cheese Powder [Cultured Pasteurized Milk, Salt, Enzyme], Jalapeño Powder, Spices, Natural & Artificial Flavors, Citric Acid, Parsley, Lactic Acid, Disodium Inosinate & Guanylate, and less than 2% Silicon Dioxide Added to prevent Caking), Soybean Oil, Sugar, Salt, Malt Syrup.

Buffalo Wing, ladies (and gentleman?) was my personal favorite.

UGH.  So yummy.  I can’t tell you the last time I ate hot wings, or that I’m really a huge fan, but I can tell you, that these will knock your socks off.  They’re not burn-your-mouth-off hot.  They’ve got a kick, though, and taste amazing with Laughing Cow Cheese Light Blue Cheese wedges!  Try it!  Another winner as a topper for this flavor, was plain greek yogurt mixed with a Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning packet…hellooooo, creamy (HEALTHY) Ranch dip.

Annnnd, we’ve got baby #3 in the Pretzle Crisp household, Chipotle Cheddar.

It’s hard to put my finger on exactly what these reminded me of…I want to say, the SPICY version of cheetos?  The best part is, none of these pretzels really NEED a pairing.  They’re delicious all on their own, but it’s fun to mix & match pretzels and toppings.  I made little sandwiches with turkey lunch meat using this version…It was like the cheese slice was built right into the bun! 😉


Thanks again, Jessica!  Make sure all of you snackers out there take advantage of the $1.00 off coupon I mentioned earlier!  The Pretzel Crisp Facebook page always has perks 😉



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Last year’s college basketball team that I was apart of left some pretty big shoes to fill.  We were State runners-up, 1st place EPCC champions, and 1st seed in the tournament.

There were some trying times for me this season, but ultimately, I was praying a lot that God would help me be patient and TRUST Him.  He had it all under control all along.

The team we were playing on Sunday was a team that had beat us once, during the season, and we had beat once…both very close games.  Since we were first seed, we were able to host the tournament, which was nice so that more family members & fans could be there.

The game was physically and mentally rough.  The kind where you feel as if your team is playing against not only the other team, but the referees as well.  It was truly a test of what kind of people our team was made of.  We had nothing in our favor, except one another.  We endured everything from one of our starters fouling out,  to one of our other post players practically breaking her already weak ankle…She finished the game, unable to walk. Literally.

In the end, we prevailed and had a glorious time celebrating.

From the HACC website:

Congratulations to the HACC Women’s Basketball Team who captured the EPCC Tournament Championship by defeating Lehigh Carbon in a 69-64 down to the wire victory. Coach Michele Kieff was named EPCC Coach of the Year. Catherine “CC” Webster and Kira Jaroszewski were named to the All Tournament Team, and Sami Cox was named Conference MVP for the second year in a row. The Hawks also picked up the honor of finishing first in the EPCC this year.”

I couldn’t imagine my college basketball career ending any more wonderfully.  I’m so thankful that I got to be a part of something so special and I can’t express enough appreciation to the coaches and the girls enough for their support and friendships.  In high school, my junior & senior year, we won our league championships & senior year I was named League MVP.  Now, in my freshman & sophomore college years, we won back-to-back Conference championships and I was named EPCC MVP both years.  God is so good to me…I owe every talent, ability, victory, and success to Him. 

Along with my parents, Jarid, family & friends, I’d like to thank each and every person who has encouraged me along the way.  Your confidence in my abilities has meant the world to me, and I couldn’t have gathered the courage to maintain a college courseload, pursuing my dietetic degree, played college basketball, and kept up with my full-time job in human resources.

Naked Hands.

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First off, thank you all for the incredible amount of congratulations on Jarid & my engagement! 🙂

We are eccstatic and cannot wait to start the rest of our lives together.  For now, my hands are feeling naked, though.

Not only have I neglected to paint my nails for the past week, but I had to send my ring back to be resized. It was a 7 and I need a 5, unfortunately.  Hopefully, I’ll have it back before I know it!

In other news, we are proud to announce that we have officially named Bowman as our ring bearer.  Check out those baby blues!  They get me everytime.  His Momma, Bran, and my childhood BFF (cousin) & matron of honor, has already been a great deal of help with wedding planning.  We are totally going to pump this event out in six months.

I got an awesome email the other day from Kashi, and I really wanted to share it.

I love it when companies make it SO easy to help out people in need.  Seriously, please go “like” their page.  Starving kids will be benefitting from something SO simple that you can do in less than 30 seconds.

Speaking of starving…you’d think I was when I downed this plate of salad topped with roasted vegetables.

Butterleaf lettuce, cucumber, tomato, red peppers, roasted kale, roasted parsnips, with light ragu for dippage.

I offered some to my fiance, but he was busy with his noodles & grilled cheese, courtesy of Momma FF.

To play a little catch up, I’ll show you these beautiful flowers that Jarid sent to my workplace for Valentine’s Day. 

He ALSO gave me a Freckled Foodie customized apron, a memory book that he made, & energy truffles! 🙂  That guy is amazing, I’ll tell ya.

For HIS Valentine’s gift, I made him a scrapbook, too, and had ordered him a pair of awesome looking Sperry’s that he picked out while we were shopping together one time.

Mens Sperry Top-Sider Bahama Casual Shoe - Black


along with baking him this No Sugar Added Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake Mix, which Sans Sucre sent me for review.  For the record, when it was done baking, I totally sampled it…DELICIOUS! (Official review coming soon!)

The directions say that you need water & oil, but I subbed 2 tbsp. of canned pumpkin for the oil and added red food dye to turn it a nice hot pink color…much more festive.

I wish I had taken a picture, but I actually baked it in cake form and then used a heart shaped cookie cutter to make individual little cakes 🙂  They were pretty cute if I say so myself.

Oh yeah, and he LOVES Nebraska (college football), so I snagged him this tee from American Eagle online.

Valentine’s Day was on a Tuesday, but that didn’t stop us from celebrating…after my basketball practice from 3:30-5:30pm, he met me at school (I used the locker room showers – yuck!), we went to the Pita Pit, got dinner for $7 (it was $3 pita Tuesday!), and he took me to see The Vow.


I have wanted to see it since the first time I saw a preview.  Nicholas Sparks is a genius, amen?  I think I almost cried approximately 5 different times throughout the movie.  LOVE Rachel McAdams.


There’s another NS movie in the works that we saw a preview for, too, which I’m excited about called “The Lucky One” with Zac Efron, who is also growing on me as an actor.

Anywho, how was your Valentine’s Day?


Love & Basketball.

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Yesterday was the last regular-season home basketball game… 2.7.12…it was also a day that I’ll remember for the rest of my life.

A bunch of family members & friends (My Aunt Teena, Momma FF, Momma Snyder, Uncles on my Dad’s side of the family, the surrogates, & co-workers) were in attendance at the game, since they didn’t know if they’d ever get to see me play again.

After coming back into the gym from our half-time locker room talk, the team started shooting around to warm up for the second half of the game.  I headed for the bench, where my water bottle was, to get a quick drink when Jarid made his way to the floor from the bleachers.

He had flowers in his hand, which I assumed were in recognition of my last game…I was wrong.  When he finally got to me, He got down on one knee.  At this point, everything around me completely disappeared and I forgot where I was.  Honestly, the only thing that mattered was he & I.  Not the score, not the team, not the fans.  He said, “Sami Alyssa Cox, you are my best friend and soulmate.  I met you on a basketball court and fell in love with you, now I’m asking you to marry me on a basketball court“… 

I, of course, said YES!

It all happened SO quickly.  But don’t worry, we reinacted it when the game was over.

When we got home from the game, we got some dinner & Poppa FF brought home some bubbly to celebrate!

I can’t wait to start our life together!  We are thinking about aiming for September 15th, 2012 as a wedding date.  What do you think?  Can we pull it off in 6 months? 🙂 

I can’t wait to be Mrs. Snyder ❤


All About The Chocolate…or Energy Truffles, Rather.

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Officially t-minus 7 days until the most romantic holiday of the year.  Along with flowers, everyone knows, Valentine’s Day = Chocolate…even National Geographic.

An estimated 47 percent of U.S. consumers will exchange Valentine’s Day candy, according to the retail federation survey—adding up to a sweet billion dollars in sales, the National Confectioners Association says.

About 75 percent of that billion is from sales of chocolate, which has been associated with romance at least since Mexico’s 15th- and 16th-century Aztec Empire, according to Susan Fussell, a spokesperson with the association.

As a healthy living blogger, I used to think that clean eating meant absolutely no indulgences.  For the record, I was very wrong.   Unless you’re allergic or inhuman, I think it’s safe to say that EVERY girl loves chocolate…especially on this festive holiday 😉  So, you want to know my choices?  Some are healthier than others, but all-in-all, they can each be part of a balanced, healthy diet.

My favorite forms of chocolate in no particular order:

1 – Doctor’s CarbRite Diet Protein Bars.  The chocolate varieties, of course. 


Each bar has somewhere from 190-200 calories, 20-21g of whey/soy protein, and a total of 3-5g of fat.  The best flavors, in my humble opinion, are Cookie Dough, Chocolate Brownie, Chocolate Mint, and Chocolate Coconut!  I usually order them from or buy them at Wegman’s.

2 – New Tree Belgian Biscuit Chocolate Bar

It’s 65% cocoa, Dark Chocolate encrusted with little golden flax seeds to give you 3x the fiber, -30% sugar, and is a great source of Omega-3’s.  Huge, HUGE fan.  The nutrition facts aren’t bad either!  It’s 170 calories per serving with 3g protein and 6g fiberBuy it here.  I used to be able to find them at Target, but I think they stopped selling them.  Boooo.

3 – No Sugar Added Dutch Chocolate Turkey Hill Ice Cream


The boy & I just ate this last night.  It is so delicious.  Creamy, milky, and you’d never know there’s no sugar added.  Sweetened with Splenda, it’s got great stats, too.  70 calories per 1/2 C. serving, 3g protein, and 6g of dietary fibermmmm.

4 – Adora Calcium Discs


Just ONE disk at 30 calories, provides you with 62% of your DV Vitamin D, 50% of your DV Calcium, & 10% DV Magnesium.  These are great if you have issues with portion control, because they’re individually wrapped little pieces.  They come in milk or dark chocolate.  Typically, I’m a dark chocolate kinda girl, but I think I prefer the milk chocolate version of these.  You can buy these online, but they also have them at Wegman’s!

5 – Chocolove Almonds & Sea Salt in Dark Chocolate

I think I’d enjoy some of the other Chocolove varieties as well, but this one in particular was a hit.  The 55% cocoa content was a great salty/sweet combo with the almonds & sea salt. 

6 – Sjaak’s Individual Organic Fair Trade Vegan Almond Butter Bites



Organic Dark Chocolate (organic cocoa butter, organic sugar, organic cocoa paste, organic vanilla, organic soya lecithin) organic almonds, organic powdered sugar, organic almond oil, sea salt.  Do you see those ingredients? Holy yum.  Best part?  They’re only 65¢ a piece and you can order them here.

7 – Coco-Zen Truffles-To-Go


Each tin contains 8 bite-sized truffle cups.  All of their chocolates are made from organic & Fair Trade Certified ingredients.  You can see on their website that they come in a several varieties, but this trio would be my pick:

Chocolate Chai Spice
-Chocolate Latte
-Peanut Butter

$8.00 isn’t bad either, for these little specialty treats!  If you order by 9pm tonight & choose priority mail shipping, you can still get them by 2/6 for the big day!

I saved the BEST for last.  Yes, they’re the most expensive, but they are absolutely fabulous…hand-made, too!

8 – Energy Truffles

Energy Truffles

Our truffles are made from a unique combination of nuts, seeds and superfoods. Energy Truffles were inspired by ancient civilizations that used these foods for thousands of years due to their tremendous dietary value and healing power. These unique truffles are a delicious way to introduce amazing, nutrient dense foods into our diets.

Superfoods contain natural concentrated levels of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, enzymes, good fats and oils, essential amino and fatty acids and other nutrients. Thus, Superfoods help us to embrace our wellbeing, providing health benefits far beyond their recognized nutritional value.

Our product is vegan, gluten free and made with 100% organic or wild crafted ingredients. We are a family owned business located in Southern California and greatly appreciate your support.

 Carla, from the company, kindly sent me one of these indescribably delectable box of 9 different truffles – one mint, one orange, one cayanne pepper, one cinnamon, one salted fudge, one peanut butter, one berry, one vanilla and one coconut truffle.

What did I think?  Phenomonal.  Check out the fabulous ingredients:

Chocolate Coating Our Chocolate coating comes from an amazing company on the island of Grenada called the Grenada Chocolate Company. Please visit this link for more information.
raw organic walnuts Walnuts contain high levels of antioxidants and are an excellent source of manganese, copper, and omega 3’s. They are also high in magnesium, phosphorous, zinc, iron, calcium and selenium. Walnuts contain excellent levels of vitamin B6, thiamin (B1), pantothenic acid, very good levels of vitamin E, niacin (b3) and riboflavin (b2).
raw organic almonds Almonds are incredibly rich in minerals like Manganese, Magnesium, Copper, Phosphorus, Iron, Zinc, Potassium and Selenium. Almonds are a powerhouse of Vitamin E, Riboflavin, Thiamin, Niacin and Folate. Good amounts of Vitamin B6 and Pantothenic Acid are also found.
raw organic pecans Pecans are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids like oleic acid and an excellent source of antioxidants. They are rich source of many phyto-chemical substances that may contribute to their overall antioxidant activity, including polyphenolic antioxidant ellagic acid, vitamin E, beta-carotenes, lutein and zeaxanthin. Pecans are also an excellent source of vitamin-E, especially rich in gama tocopherol.
raw organic brazil nuts Brazil nuts are especially rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) like palmitoleic acid and oleic acid. They also contain exceptionally high levels of selenium.  They also contain very good levels of other minerals such as copper, magnesium, manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, phosphorus and zinc.
raw organic hazelnuts Hazelnuts contain magnesium, phosphorous, zinc, copper, iron, manganese, calcium and selenium. They also contain vitamin K in the form of phylloquinone, ascorbic acid, folates, thiamin, alpha-tocopherol and niacin. Furthermore, hazelnuts contain the amino and fatty acids leucine, arginine, aspartic acid, alanine and glutamic acid.
raw organic cashews Cashews are packed with soluble dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals and packed with numerous health promoting phyto-chemicals. They are very rich source of minerals like manganese, potassium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc and selenium. Cashews are also rich in many essential vitamins such as pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6), riboflavin and thiamin (vitamin B-1).
raw organic chia seeds For such a little seed, Chia is a powerhouse in nutrition. Chia seeds contain 8 essential amino acids. They are high in vitamin A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B15, B17, C, D, E, K, choline, folic acid, inositol, PABA. Minerals found in Chia are boron, calcium, copper, iodine, iron, magnesium, manganese, molybdenum, phosphorous, potassium, silicon, sodium, strontium, sulphur, zinc, amylose and electrolytes. Chia has a very good ratio of omega-3 oil to omega-6 oil; with 20-30% protein, 35% oil, 25% fiber.
raw organic pumpkin seeds Pumpkin seeds are a very good source of phosphorus, magnesium and manganese. They are also a good source of other minerals including zinc, iron and copper. In addition, pumpkin seeds are a good source of protein and vitamin K.
raw organic hemp seeds Hemp is a high protein seed containing all 20 amino acids, including the 9 essential amino acids (EAAs) our bodies cannot produce. Hemp is nature’s highest botanical source of essential fatty acid. Also, contains vitamin E , trace minerals and is an excellent source of fiber. A perfect 3:1 ratio of Omega-6 and Omega-3. Hemp is the richest known source of polyunsaturated essential fatty acids.
raw organic cacao powder To the Aztecs, the cacao bean was the food of the gods. Cacao is extremely high in antioxidants (oligomeric procynanidins, resveratrol and the polyphenols) as well as magnesium. Cacao also contains high levels of potassium, phosphorus, copper, iron, zinc, vitamin C and omega 6 fatty acids.
raw organic cacao nibs Out of all the whole foods that contain antioxidants, raw chocolate is the highest in the world.
raw organic buckwheat groats Buckwheat Groats (a seed) contain vitamin E, several B-vitamins, calcium, magnesium and potassium. These groats also have some of the trace minerals selenium, copper, zinc, iron and manganese. They’re full of good-for-you phytochemicals and have both soluble and insoluble fiber. Because they are in the raw state, they have the highest nutritional value of all forms of groats. They are digested very slowly, which reduces the glycemic load and makes them quite filling.
raw organic dates Dates are valuable as medicine for their tonic effect. Being easily digested, they are very useful for supplying energy and repairing waste. Dates are a laxative food and are highly beneficial in the treatment of constipation by stimulating sluggish bowels.
raw organic coconut oil Coconut oil includes antioxidant, antifungal, antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that stem from the existence of capric, caprylic and lauric acids. Coconut oil improves calcium and magnesium absorption in the body, which in turn is greatly beneficial to dental an bone health.
raw organic coconut Shredded coconut contains a rich amount of vitamins and minerals, iron, vitamin C, thiamin, niacin and vitamin B6. It also contains folate and pantothenic acid. Other trace minerals include manganese, copper, potassium, selenium and zinc.
raw organic agave One of the most favorable aspects of agave is its glycemic profile. Its sweetness comes primarily from a complex form of fructose called inulin. The carbohydrate in agave nectar has a low glycemic index, which provides sweetness without the unpleasant “sugar rush”.
raw organic golden Berries Goldenberries contain many nutrients like vitamin P (bioflavinoids-anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-carcinogenic, antihistamine and anti-viral properties), pectin, phosphorous, protein and vitamins A, C, B1, B2, and B6.
raw organic goji Berries Goji berries are stuffed full of many beneficial properties. A few known benefits are that this berry is very high in antioxidants, full of essential minerals and amino acids, some of which the body is unable to produce on its own. It also contains 4 unique polysaccharides.
raw organic mulberries Mulberries are an excellent source of vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin K and iron. They are also a good source of dietary fiber, riboflavin, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium. Resveratrol, an antioxidant found in red grapes and red wine, has been heavily publicized for its positive health benefits.
raw organic acai Acai is a rich source of anthocyanins and other phenolics and phyto-nutrients. Acai berries are amongst the most nutritious foods of the Amazon, rich in B vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Acai also contains oleic acid (omega-9). Potassium is the mineral most abundant in this berry. Acai is also rich in copper, and unusually high in manganese. Only a small portion supplies far more than the body needs of this ultra-trace mineral.
raw organic camu camu Camu-Camu contain nutrients such as calcium, Vitamin C, niacin, phosphorous, leucine, serine, iron, flavanols, riboflavin, valene, thiamin and amino acids. Camu-camu is highest known source of Vitamin C on the planet, more than 50 times the Vitamin C found in oranges.
raw organic macadamia nuts The fat contained in macadamia nuts is monounsaturated fat and one of the healthier and more beneficial forms of fat. They are high in selenium (a natural antioxidant), they are a great source of fiber, rich in calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium.
organic peanut butter Peanuts are a legume, not a nut. Peanut butter has a high level of monosaturated fats and resveratrol. Peanut butter (and peanuts) provide protein, vitamins B3 and E, magnesium, folate, dietary fiber, arginine, and high levels of the antioxidant p-coumaric acid.
pink himalayan salt Himalayan salt is millions of years old. It is a pure form of salt, untouched by many of the toxins and pollutants that pervade other forms of salt. Known in the Himalayas as “white gold,” Himalayan Crystal Salt contains the same 84 natural minerals and elements found in the human body.

Here’s a bit about my favorites.  Yes, that’s plural.  You can’t tell me you actually expected some decisiveness on my part when you give me a BOX full of nine different truffles, did you?

Salted Fudge – need I say more?


This guy will literally melt in your mouth.  The creamy, fudgy middle is totally indulgent.  I’ve come to the conclusion that sweets are BEST accompanied by salt.  Plus, did you know that sea salt contains more than 100 minerals?!

Ingredients: *Dates, *Macadamia Nuts, *Agave, *Cacao Powder, Sea Salt, Organic Vanilla Extract. Chocolate Coating: Organic Cacao Beans, Organic Cane Sugar, Fresh Organic Cacao Butter, Organic Soy Lecithin, Organic Vanilla Beans.

* denotes raw and organic

Coconut Chocolate – puts an Almond Joy to shame

Coconut & chocolate are one of those power duos.  You know, like peanut butter & jelly…Coconut contains a rich amount of vitamins and minerals, iron, vitamin C, thiamin, niacin and vitamin B6.  It also contains folate and pantothenic acid. Other trace minerals include manganese, copper, potassium, selenium and zinc.

Ingredients: *Almonds, *Coconut Oil, *Shredded Coconut, *Dates, *Brazilian Nuts, *Agave, *Cacao Powder, *Pumpkin Seeds, *Hemp Seeds, *Chia Seeds. Chocolate Coating: Organic Cacao Beans, Organic Cane Sugar, Fresh Organic Cacao Butter, Organic Soy Lecithin, Organic Vanilla Beans.

There aren’t any nutrition facts for these truffles, but honestly, I’m not worried.  They’re made of all healthy, wholesome ingredients, so there’s nothing to be scared of.  Sure, they’re a TREAT, so don’t go ahead and eat the whole box at once, but logically, Carla said each would have probably about 180 calories.  I’d venture to bet that there’s a little bit less, depending on the variety. 

You can order some Energy Truffles through the websiteSome Whole Foods Stores carry them, too. 

So there you have it.  My picks for Valentine’s Day 2012 chocolates.

Indulge & enjoyIn moderation, of course 😉 


Day Two in Ph[ill]y♥

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SO, where were we?

Oh, yes.  After the excitement from the Sixers game, we went back home to our hotel & passed out.

In my dreams, I could still see the glittery confetti and hear the chants from the crowd for Big Macs, since the Sixers were only a few points away from breaking 100 points.

I woke up around 8am and had already declared it a “rest day” from exercise, regardless of the fact that there was an awesome fitness center at the hotel.  Jarid & I opted for the pool & hot tub instead.


It worked wonders for my sore back & neck muscles due to a physical game of basketball the day before. 

Once back at our room, I jumped in the shower to rid myself of the chlorine scent, while Jarid ordered room service and went downstairs to grab me a yogurt & banana from the Starbie’s.  I brought my own to-go pack of Coach’s Oats, which ended up coming in handy. 

I made a raw oats, Dannon Oikos (not near as good as Stonyfield or Chobani), and banana parfait (total $3.11) while Jarid enjoyed his room service omelette, roasted potatoes, and toast (total$19.00) each with a side of coffee.  I mixed my room Starbie’s with some diet hot chocolate for a cafe mocha.  Mmm.

Then, we were off!

First stop: The Liberty Bell

Second stop: Independance Hall



Third Stop:  The Constitution Center

Next stop: WHOLE FOODS for lunch.  Isn’t he the best?  Patronizing me with trips to WF…  Any other guy would think I’m totally silly for getting excited to go to a grocery store for lunch.  That’s just another reason why he’s not just any other guy 😉

Honest to goodness, it’s probably a great thing that I don’t live closer to one of these…Probably half of my paycheck would end up going to this place.

There’s so much to choose from in the healthy, nutritious department!  I got roasted greenbeans, broccoli, cauliflower, tofu, cucumbers, chickpea salad, more seafood paella, spinach, vegetarian chicken salad, etc.  A little bit of everything was the best option for me 🙂 

Jarid loved their mac n’ cheese & baked goodies!  He also thinks it’s hysterical to act goofy when I’m taking pictures for the blog 😉

It was his brilliant idea to take pictures of my favorites so I could recreate the recipe at home!

Szechwan Noodles ingredients: organic durum whole wheat noodles, carrots, onion, zucchini, red peppers, mushrooms, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, sesame oil, sea salt, & spices.

Paella ingredients: rice, blac beans, tomatoes, grilled chicken, salmon, shrimp, roasted garlic, parsley, saffron, green onions, red onions, salt, pepper, paprika 

 After lunch, we stopped over at the Magic Garden, something we had passed the night before, but it was dark and wouldn’t have had time to stop before the game.

They asked for a donation to enter, but we could see a lotof the artwork from the outside, so we checked it out briefly and kept moving. 

The Magic Garden is a folk art environment, gallery space, and nonprofit organization that showcases the work of mosaicist Isaiah Zagar, a man who dedicated most of his life to beautifying the city.

The rest of the afternoon was spent wandering around random shops in the city.  I found a cute Coach wristlet, but I decided I would spend more money in Whole Foods before we left on some groceries I couldn’t get back home instead 🙂

Jarid found an awesome Braves hat for $15 and I encouraged him to get it.  I mean, he looks adorable in it, no?

Soon, 4pm rolled around and we had to be home for a birthday party in my family…I swear, we are constantly running from one thing to the next.  The ride home was super relaxing.  I love riding shotgun with Jarid in the driver’s seat ❤  Can’t wait to do it for the rest of our lives!

Overall, it was another amazing trip…we did have some bloopers, though…

Blooper #1 – Saturday, Jarid drove an hour out of the way to the wrong college and missed the first 1/2 of my game.  Same name, different school.

Blooper #2 – Saturday night, we couldn’t find a parking spot near WF.  We tried parallel parking in a really tight spot & ended up creating a HUGE line of traffic in the middle of an intersection.  The Philly natives were NOT happy with us.  WE tried and tried, but ended up in a $12 parking garage for just 20 minutes.

Blooper #3 – While we were on our way to the game, some toolbag decided he didn’t stop far enough behind the yellow line at a red light.  We were behind him, and he definitely backed into us. 

Blooper #4 – We spent all our cash on dinner & parking (unexpected expense) at WF, not thinking about the fact that it cost $15 just to park at the Wells Fargo Center for the game.  FAIL.

Blooper #5 – After the game, we forgot where we parked and ended up walking the entire circumference around the Fargo Center.

Blooper #6 – On the way back to the hotel after the game, we accidentally went down a one way street, but we didn’t get caught.

Blooper #7 – We did the same thing (see #6) on our way to sight-see the next day…but we did get caught…Jarid thought he was going to get arrested, but thankfully, the cop didn’t even give us a ticket! 

Blooper #8 – Jarid bought a soda that had a screw off top right before we went into the Constitution center.  Needless to say, we had to wait for him to chug it outside, after a little bit of a spill, because drinks weren’t allowed.

Quite frankly, I wouldn’t change a thing about our trip.  We were a perfect team, even when the odds were against us 😉

Stay tuned for a bunch of product reviews!


Philly’s More Fun When You Sleepover

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Hi there, strangers 🙂 Long time, no see.  I’ve got LOTS to fill you in on…but first, a little recap of Jarid & my weekend.

I had an away basketball game @ Lehigh Carbon Community College on Saturday starting at 1pm…Jarid made it there by 1/2 time…apparently, there is more than one school with that name? 

The game was super physical, and there was bloodshed.  Mine, to be exact.  I only came out of the game long enough to get taped up, which is just the way I like it.  We came out ontop, victorious, with a score of 58-55!

Straight from the game, Jarid & I took a roadtrip to meet up with friends of ours for the 76ers game!  They gave us the tickets as a Christmas gift!  You remember Mike & Julie?

Check out that blue, Philadelphia skyline! 🙂  We actually checked into our hotel room so I could shower & get cleaned up first thing. 

Hotel Exterior

We were staying in the Sheraton @ Society Hill & it was absolutely beautiful…I had never been to a hotel with valet parking before!

How gorgeous is the lobby?  I especially loved the hanging lights and the water wall…There was even Starbie’s available!  Our room had a king sized bed and Starbie’s in the room, too!

I felt SO lucky…Not only did I get to spend a weekend in a big city with the sweetest, most handsome guy in the world, but we got a great rate on our hotel room, because his Momma works for the accounts payable dept. of a hotel management company!

Next stop, dinner.  I was starving from the game!


Say hello to my very first Whole Foods experience.   Yes, it’s expensive for a hot bar at a food market, yes it’s completely worth it.  I tried a little bit of everything that looked yummy, starting with a base of veggies (sprouts, shredded zucchini, peas, red peppers, cucumbers, and spring mix) and piled on things like buckwheat noodles, seafood & black bean paella, baked tofu, and tofu meatloaf. Mmmm.

By the time we found parking, got our dinners, ate together, and walked back to the car, we were pushing it to make it for tip-off.  We got to the gate (after being backed into by some goober at a red-light – no damage, thankfully) and realized neither of us had enough cash for parking. 

Jarid ran in to the Wells Fargo center, escourted by a cop, and came out to pay the parking attendant.

 PHEW.  Finally, we got to our seats shortly after the game started.

Polish ice for him, coffee for me. 

At this point it had only been the second day that I was the proud new owner of my iphone, and I couldn’t stop playing with it. 

Camwow gave us some interesting shots…

It was a great time with wonderful friends. 


The Sixers kicked the Pistons’ butts!!!  Personally, my favorite play of the game, which we actually missed but saw later on instant replays, was Iguodala’s pass off the backboard to himself for a dunk over the defense on a fast break. STINKING amazing.

Afterward, we were both pretty beat, so we headed back to the hotel.  We had a lot we wanted to do the next day!

Philly, day II coming tomorrow!