RSS Feed

Tag Archives: HR Monitor

2012 Starts With A Bang

Posted on

Before the New Year’s Eve festivities began, I figured I’d get up a little early in order to burn some calories and jump start my day.  I don’t feel awake until I’ve sweat a little bit 😉

Nothing is quite comparable to a basketball practice, because my heart rate gets higher during those than anything else…it’s much more intense than a jog on the treadmill or an interval workout on the elliptical…on the other hand, basketball practices are much tougher on my knees and back than being on the elliptical, too.

After breakfast and a shower, fixed my nails, & got my dress clothes packed up.  Jarid & I hit the road for a wedding in Bethlehem, PA around 10am.  A buddy of his from college, in the military, had to leave for California on January 2nd, and proposed to his girlfriend just two weeks before, asking her to move there with him.  How romantic is that?!  I can’t believe how amazing the wedding was for having planned it in that short amount of time.

The wedding and the reception were held at Blue, which is also a restaurant.  The banquet hall was absolutely beautiful, complete with chandeliers, antique gold trim, and a nice, little, wooden dance floor.

Jarid and I were seated at a couple’s table with the best man and his fiance, who were both exceptionally personable and sweet.  We had a great time socializing at the event and even shared our first dance.

I promised Momma FF I would be home for the NYE celebration with the family, and we ended up making it home by like 7pm. 

Almost immediately, we got changed into comfy clothing.

It’s tradition that just before midnight, everyone gathers in our living room, grabs some already blown up ballons, noisemakers, and confetti poppers, and counts down while watching the ball drop in Time Square on TV. 

We all yell, “ten, nine, eight, seven…” (you get the picture).  You can bet your bottom dollar there was a big kiss at midnight, too 😉

As you can imagine, it left a huge mess for cleaning up, but it was totally worth it to keep tradition. 

At least, that’s what we tell ourselves.  After midnight, the boys go out side & shoot their guns.  We used to have fireworks, but that was before they were illegal.  Soon everyone leaves, and we go to bed.  Within a few hours (aka, noon NYD), everyone is back for pork & saurkraut , or in my case, a big old vegetable roast.

I couldn’t think of a better meal to start the New Year than my favorites: roasted butternut squash and parsnip fries.  I could eat them every single day with either reduced sugar ketchup or light ragu.  Don’t worry, I had a little bit of the white meat pork, some roasted broccoli, too. 

After lunch, the kids have Christmas #2, when my Aunt and Grandma give their gifts to the kids.

As you may remember, there are a TON of kids in our family…it’s always fun to watch them light up as they open gifts. 

2011 had been the best year of my life…but 2012 is looking pretty promising, too.


See anything different about my left hand?

Yep!  I’m engaged!!

Just kidding.

It is a beautiful promise ring, though!

Gotcha! 😉

Here’s to an amazing year!



Welcome Fall & The Weekend

Posted on

Friday when I got home from work, there was a My Blogspark package on my doorstep.  Did you know that Yoplait added another flavor to their line of smoothie mixes?

Yep.  Chocolate & Banana, here I come.  Along with the free coupon, I got a plastic tumbler, a lavendar eye mask, & a neck pillow!   I would say that this was a positive start to my weekend 😉  I love presents!

Friday night, the boy & I went to meet my parents & sister at the movies to see Abduction.


The theatre was packed since it was a rainy night and the movie had just come out.  We had a funny audience to watch it with…you know, the kind that claps at heroic scenes and “awhhh’s” at romance. Overall, the plot was good, the acting was not…Taylor Lautner may be nice to look at, but acting wise, he doesn’t impress me.

Saturday, I felt super productive. 

I finally got to try out the recipe for Katie’s Almond CoconutMacaroons.  They were absolutely delicious.  The recipe included all ingredients that I already had onhand…except the 1/4 C. stevia baking blend.  So, for the record, it takes approximately 30 splenda packets to make 1/4 C 😉  THEY.WERE.AWESOME.  Notice, I said were. Boyfriend approved, too.

904 calories, avg. hr 113

Not ALL my Saturday morning productivity happened in the kitchen, as you can see.  I worked out in the basement for a little while.  It’s so easy to get caught up in a workout when you’re watching the Biggest Loser on Hulu (:

For lunch, I whipped up some of Mama Pea’s Mmm Sauce and made a glorious vegetable dish.

Steamfresh cauliflower & broccoli, 1 egg + 2 egg whites with a piece of Stonefire Flatbreads whole wheat roti

‘Twas divine. 

That night we celebrated my cousin’s birthday party at my house.  The camera battery was dead, so there were no pictures, buuuut it was a nice time.  Plus, Jarid and I got some shopping done for a wedding reception we’re attending next month.

Sunday morning was another great sweat session in my basement thanks to Insanity and Netflix, but not before I devoured this delicious little chocolate oat bran cake with peanut flour icing.


  • 1/3 C. oat bran
  • 1 diet Swiss Miss hot chocolate packet
  • 1 Splenda packet
  • 1 egg white
  • baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • water to thin


  • 1/4 C. peanut flour
  • 1 splenda packet
  • salt to taste
  • water to thin

Instead of heating up the oven for just a personal sized cake, I nuke mine in the microwave.  They taste just the same!  Easy peasy.

The stats from the cake fueled workout were decent as well.

615 calories, max hr 156

The series we are doing in church now was all about how to be more like Jesus.  A recently converted believer from a non-believer told us her testimony and it was baffling.  She is now part of a discipling program!  How cool is that?!

Jarid & I headed to Wegman’s to get our weekly fix for lunch.

My box of goodies was rather exciting.  I tried three different types of quinoa salads (Quinoa w/ Cranberries & Pumpkin Seeds, Blueberry Quinoa, and Butternut Squash Quinoa) and a tri-color chickpea salad, all of which were scrumptious.  I’m going to try to get the recipes from the website!  Along with the grains, I got some loose vegetables (blanched green beans, broccoli, red pepper, beets, cucumbers, and lettuce) with just a smidge of taco seasoned chicken.  Fit for a queen, I tell ya.

We dined on the way to Lancaster, so Jarid got a wrap for convenience.  He said he chose the wheat one in my honor.  Haha.

We spent the afternoon & evening hanging out and watching football together.  Jarid spent a bunch of time with my little cousin, Cole. 

My grandparents came over later and we all went to dinner together.  Later, they whipped out the “baby Sami” pictures, and we had a nice little trip down memory lane. 

I don’t get to see these guys nearly as often as I’d like, but I am pretty excited that we already have a weekend picked out in October for me to visit!  We are both just SO busy.  If we don’t pick out a time at least a month in advance, our schedules end up conflicting.

The food took a back burner to the company and conversation at dinner.  I had much more fun holding this little guy than I did chowing down on the salad bar & my sweet potato + scallops…although they were pretty awesome 😉

I had a little cup of french onion soup, too, which was mouthwatering, before I ate my dessert plate. I love that Hoss’s is jumping on the “healthy” bandwagon and offering sugar free pudding & ice cream!

Another weekend success.  Tell me about your weekends!  And don’t forget to enter the Stonehouse 27 & Lundberg Heat & Eat Rice Bowl Killer Combo Giveaway

ALSO, Kayla, the winner of the Brat Hans prize package, please email me at with your shipping info. I tried to reply to the email you used to comment, but it said the message was undeliverable to that address.



Posted on

I don’t think I ever showed you guys what my sweet boyfriend’s parents gave me for my birthday, did I? 

I absolutely LOVE it.  Probably because Jarid sneaked back to buy it after I picked it out while we were shopping together.  Stinker.

I guess I haven’t shown you what I’ve been learning in A&P, either?

That’s right.  All of the bones in the skull.  From the coronal suture to the foramen magnum.  I’ve got an exam coming up in about two weeks, so I’m really cracking down.  The tough part about the class, is that the NON lab part (textbook reading) is all on us to learn…there’s no lecture.


It’s been stress busting trips to the gym, where I can sweat out my anxieties keeping me from pulling my hair out.

Lunches lately have been lackluster, yet healthy.  I had high hopes for this Helen’s Kitchen organic burrito, but the flavors were less than stellar. 

It was all-around kinda bland, which I’m not sure I understand because I love all the ingredients.

It even smelled good when I pulled it out of the microwave and chopped it in half…I’m not sure where I went wrong.

It needed some serious salsa or marinara sauce or something…It didn’t taste bad, it just didn’t taste at all.

Steamed green beans & snap peas on the side.

Anywho, this next tidbit will be appreciated by any chick out there who has thick hair like mine, and even with those seemingly invincible hairties, manage to break a few each week.

I bought these jelly textured hairties at Rite Aid (I think they were Goody brand), and highly recommend them.  They STAY PUT not matter what and it’s next to impossible to break them…coming from the girl who went through three thick ones in one night (TWSS). 

Dinners have to be one-pot-wonders, because they are stashed in a locker until it’s time to feast after the gym and before class. 

That’s right, I’m the girl sitting in my towel on a bench in the locker room chowing down on baby shrimp, broccoli slaw, and black pearl rice.

 I think I’m in a rut… I need some healthy ideas of quickly packed lunches for this fall semester!  Preferably ones I can nuke at work. 

What are your favorite frozen meals?  I love Kashi, but I’m not a fan of Lean Cuisine, etc. 

What Drives You?

Posted on

Today, I found the motivation I needed to wake up early in this chicky’s pancake recipe.  I would make these everyday if I had an endless supply of fresh blueberries.

I know, I know, you’re tired of hearing about how delicious they are.

Take a peek instead? 🙂

(1/3 C. ww flour, 2 tbsp. oat bran, 1/2 c. blueberries, 1/3 C. unsweetened coconut milk, a dash of salt, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 Splenda packet)

Yes, these were totally worth getting up an extra half hour early to make.

 Okay…this daily devotional really hit home.  You see, it isn’t easy living at home as a 22-year-old, after having lived in an apartment on your own.  Schedules conflict, bathroom time has to be shared, cooking is limited, and heads butt, but overall, I need to remember how important it is to God that I respect & honor my parents. 

After a rush of certifications to process at work in the morning, it was nearing noon quickly, and since the weather has been so gorgeous lately, I couldn’t help but want to be outside. 

After a quick stroll around the capitol, it was time to dig into the lunchbox.

Any guesses?  I’ll save you the trouble…I was reading in my new book, “Must’ve Been Something I Ate” that kelp noodles are SUPER for thyroid health. 

 So, I gave them a whirl at the beach using Elise’s avocado/pea concoction, but Monica’s thai peanut noodles sounded good, too! 

For the sauce:

  • 1/4 C. peanut flour
  • 1 tsp. siracha (depending how hot you like it)
  • 1 tbsp. maple syrup
  • a sprinkle of chili powder
  • water to thin

You just rinse the kelp noodles, microwave them for 1 min, and then add the sauce!  Mine were accompanied by steamed broccoli. Thanks for the idea, Monica (my favorite red-headed Mexican ;))

Lunch dessert was fresh watermelon (unpictured).

Getting back into my routine, means returning to my Insane Abs DVD & Ab Ripper X, but also outdoor basketball, which I couldn’t be happier about.

942 calories burned; max hr 183 – DANG.

After my little shenanigans on the basketball court, I came home to a house full of people and a grilled feast on the deck courtesy of Momma & Poppa FF.

My plate was chock full of nutrients and deliciousness.  Squash, zucchini, roasted red potatoes, yellow and red pepper, onion, mushrooms, and grilled chicken breast. 

We each made our own little foil packets and I was quite proud of mine!

Everyone had a wonderful time just hanging out and enjoying the sunshine.  To me, grilling and cookouts were made for summer.

My Momma is such a cutie pie.  I’m a little jealous of her tan, too, as mine has faded immensely since our return home from the beach!

I also made a protein shake for dessert, with the last of my ABOUT TIME protein packets *tear*.  It looked the same as all of those other green smoothies on blogs, so I’ll spare you the picture.

Two question Tuesday time:

What has been your favorite adventure this summer? 

What summer foods are your favorite?


Paradise Part 2

Posted on

While every single morning at the beach began with a workout of some type (running/biking; usually both)

every single night at the beach ended with dessert as it should, right?!

Considering the fact that our house was within 1/2 mile (walking distance) to the nearest ice cream shop, Fat Boyz, this should be no surprise.    More so, there was a place that I couldn’t resist.  American Pie, a little shop in Nags Head (all home-made!) made a “no sugar added vanilla” which tasted like Pillsbury icing from the can that I couldn’t resist.

 Breakfasts before these morning workouts consisted of coffee &

Ezekiel cinnamon raisin sprouted english muffins with a Laughing Cow cheese wedge mixed with Splenda smeared on top .  It was like cream cheese frosting.  After the workout, it was About Time for a protein shake with spinach blended in I don’t have any pictures, because I think the blog world has seen quite enough green drinks.

Beach time was next on the agenda. 

I made it there by about 11 (if not earlier) every morning, breaking around 1 or 1:30pm for lunch.

This was a typical plate of mid-day eats consisting of a turkey sammie with lettuce, tomato, hummus, and onion on Nature’s Own whole grain bread. 

On the side I had some fresh seasonal fruit, because at the beach, nothing tastes better!  Strawberries and cantaloupe were on the menu this particular day.   Watermelon was another favorite!

The rest of the afternoon was spent basking in the sun, typically, causing me to turn into one big freckle…a happy one, though.

 After showering, I usually hung out with the family and helped get dinner ready…when we ate in, it was mostly things like this.

No, that’s not baby food…that would be my Amy’s Organic low-fat split pea soup and a huge monstrous salad with homemade honey mustard dressing (mustard +S & water to thin). Carbage came later in the form of hummus toast 🙂

One night after dinner, we hit up the sand dunes for a spectacular view of the sunset.

At the sand dunes, they have a hang gliding school, and I swear, one day I’m going to try it. 

Could you imagine gliding in the air off of a sand dune with a view like this one?

…yeah, it’s that gorgeous.

Morgy & I thoroughly enjoyed the sand between our toes after trekking up-hill to get to the top of the dunes.

Momma & Poppa FF got a nice little shot together with the moon in the background.

Anndddd recap #2 : complete! (:  Still lots to show you, so come back for #3 tomorrow!

I’ve Got Soul.

Posted on

As if the fact that it was Friday wasn’t enough to put a smile on my face, a co-worker from another program office with the State sent me this sweet, little hand-written note to thank me for doing a good job 🙂

It makes me feel really good to know that someone appreciates my efforts.  I don’t think she realized how much she brightened my day!

Friday night, I went to dinner with a friend from basketball.  He took me to Red Lobster and we had a really nice time.  Afterward, we just went home to hang out and watch a movie.  “Wanted” with Angelina Jolie was a pretty neat flick with lots of special effects, but I could’ve done without all the “f-bombs”.

With the weekend came some leisurely workouts with Shaun T

andddd some One Tree Hill episodes that I missed out on during the week.

 James Lafferty, you make a great Nathan Scott, but you’ve got some serious competition in the “Cutest OTH Character” department with Austin Nichols as Julian Baker.

UGH. I will be your Brooke Davis anyday of the week 🙂 Ha.

Anywayyy,  I had a hankering for some soup, and found a bottle of French Onion mix in the grocery store.

I was surprised and delighted by the nutrition facts (per 1/2 c. serving- 40 cals, 0g fat, 4g protein) and the simple preparation (just mix with 1/2 c. water!)

I simply carmelized 1/2 an onion in some non-stick cooking spray, added the broth to the pan, and let it simmer for a little while until cooked through.  

I poured the soup over 1 1/2 slices of light multigrain Fiber One bread and of courseee, added a slice of fat free swiss cheese to the top for melty deliciousness.


 In other news entirely, I had another great find at Rite Aid this weekend!

Hellllooooo leopard print nailss! These are my favorite of the nail effects prints thus far!

Sunday I got to play basketball for threeee hoursss (and nine minutes ;)) ❤

And burned a crazyyyy amount of calories : 1058! Max HR 187

I had a sister date with the middle for her birthday.  We went to Jade, a chinese buffet and she tried her first piece of sushi!

I wish the would’ve had some with brown rice!  I would’ve enjoyed that.

Instead, I found some seaweed salad and started with that!

I love this stuff and haven’t had it for SO long.

Next, Randa went for some lomein and chicken & broccoli.

While I, on the other hand, took full advantage of the bar where you could mix your own bowl and have it prepared however you like it!  I opted for steaming, of course 🙂

Broccoli, shrimp, green pepper, bean sprouts, mushrooms, and snap peas

I had another plate just like this one, only with chicken instead, and finished off with a tiny cup of no sugar added, reduced fat vanilla ice cream for dessert. 


I broke my fortune cookie and left it sit. I was just too full!  I hope that’s not “bad luck”!

After dinner, I treated her to a movie of her choice.  I was excited when she chose Soul Surfer, because I had heard such great things about it.


The movie was great, actually.  I was worried that it would be a flop since there were an overload of big names in the mix (Carrie Underwood, Dennis Quaid, Helen Hunt, etc.) and sometimes that can be overwhelming, but it was excellent.  I loved the several Bible references and scripture incorporated into the flick!  Totally inspirational…even more so, that it was a true story!

Needless to say, another successful, enjoyable weekend down!  Now for finals week…this should be interesting!


And This Is How It Went…

Posted on

Friday started with this,

proceeded to me getting girly,

to go here

in support of the  high school kids,

but mostly the cousins 🙂

who managed to pull off being the cutest oompa loompas in the world!

All this leading to Saturday…

So far, so good.  Breakfast started me off on the right foot.

I was the proud Momma of a new-to-me combo that I’ve decided to name Pineapple Upside Down Cake in a jar.

After I made an oatbran cake in the micorwave (1/3 C. oatbran, 2 egg whites, cinnamon, pineapple, and sugarfree vanilla syrup), I plopped it into a pumpkin butter jar and poured in a little light vanilla soymilk. Holy yum.

Just what I needed to fuel me through a yucky, rainy commute to my Speech Communications class at 9am. 

I didn’t let the weather, or my three hour class get me down…I made up for all the lack of gorgeousness in the weather with a plate full of nutrients for lunch when I got home!

And then I decided not to neglect my core, and got to work on the AB Ripper dvd.

I had tickets to the Bob Birthday bash, thanks to a friend from work who scored me a ticket.


IT was rather ugly outside (still?!), and the line to get in was a mile long, but totally worth the wait.

 Any other Thompson Square fans out there?!

At some point this weekend, I also made an awesome frozen treat discovery at the grocery store!

The ingredients were impressive,

The nutrition facts were decent, and they were all around delicioussss.  Anyone who likes coconut, I recommend they check out the organic, frozen section of their grocery store 🙂

Is it terrible that on Sunday morning, I allowed the fact that I had a 1PM basketball get-together to dictate which church I went to?   I hope that doesn’t count as idol-atry. Haha.

I played with the guys for a solid two hours and had a crazyy calorie burn: 1001!

Reward? This vegfest (purple cabbage, snap pea, cucumber salad with apple cider vinegar + splenda for dressing and peanut flour paste with baby carrot dippers) for dinner accompanied by a mint chocolate chip green monster 🙂

3/4 C. unsweet vanilla almond breeze, shizzz ton of baby spinach, lots-o-ice, 1 heaping tbsp. Hershey’s special dark unsweet cocoa powder, sugar free vanilla syrup, 1 scoop vanilla supercharge whey protein, pinch of xanthan gum, and peppermint extract

 Let’s end on that note, shall we?


Sorry posting has been irregular!  Desperate times call for desperate measures.  School and work together keep me pretty busy, so I as much as I miss all of you, I’ve GOT to make them my priority right now.

Tell me about your weekend?!