Accepting truth, no matter who says it or how you feel

Heyo! I hope you all had a wonderful and restful weekend. If you did not, I hope that you are still receiving many instances of joy and peace throughout.

pray.

Although God calls us to love our neighbor as ourselves and even to love our enemies, I’m sure we all know / know of people who we don’t really like (but who we ought to still love) OR people who we like but don’t trust fully because of certain things they regularly believe, say, or do (not that we can put full trust in any one person in the first place, but perhaps you get the gist).

Those people can be politicians, family members, friends, clergy members, bosses, colleagues, celebrities, anyone (i.e., human beings). I am talking about those people who, when they give some sort of advice or opinion, you instinctively react to defend yourself, oppose what they are saying, or criticize their argument in some way, because you know that they believe something differently from you or because they have said ludicrous things in the past. In a sense, you’re tempted to make an ad hominem argument, or attack the person’s argument based on your perception of his/her character.

I think most people know not to attack a person’s argument based on his/her character (although we see a lot of that these days anyway). But I can say for myself that I certainly do feel ~sOmE TyPe of wAy~ when someone with whom I don’t agree on certain things (not even hot topic issues, but just general approaches to daily life things) gives me their advice or thoughts. My immediate internal reaction is to push back somehow; there must be some disagreement here, because I subconsciously think (sometimes mistakenly) that we fundamentally don’t see eye-to-eye.

But that other person, whoever it is, can still say things that are good and true, even if not everything they say is good and true. They can still give me sound advice on specific things, even if they have given me unsound advice in the past.

That period of recognizing and acknowledging the truth in what that person is saying — and that period of taming my pride and replacing it with humility — is sometimes more painful than I’d like to admit.

So I have been praying for the grace of humility to accept and acknowledge truth when it is said and done, no matter who it comes from and no matter how I feel about it in the moment.

Oof that was a longer reflection than I thought it would be.

eat.

I bought avocados for the first time in a while, so I’ve been enjoying some classic avocado egg toast with sriracha the past couple days. Ooooo baby, this combo will never get old.

old pic but looks exactly the same – runny yolks FTW

I made Cookie & Kate’s whole wheat banana pancakes for a leisurely Sunday breakfast, and topped it with the usual plain Greek yogurt, pb, and maple syrup + a glass o’ milk on the side. I made the pancakes with “chia eggs” instead of real eggs, not because I’m actively trying to be vegan but because I needed to save eggs for ^^said avocado egg toast 🙂

also an old photo but looked the same (sorry, running out of media storage for new pics!)

Not gonna lie, I also baked Cookie & Kate’s banana muffins last night. I had many ripe bananas to be used, and I’m not mad in the slightest.

Lastly, I enjoyed a big ol’ ice cream cone while hanging out (socially distanced) with a high school friend last evening. I got blueberry cheesecake and “Captain Crunch Berry” flavors, and it was dreamy. Except that it was melting all over my hand at rapid speed, so I had to barbarically race to eat the whole thing.

move.

Friday’s workout was fun but hard. My quads were more sore the day after than they had been in a while!

5 rounds:

  • 200-300 meter run (I just ran down and back my cul-de-sac)
  • 10 asymmetric front rack KB squats (right side heavier)
  • 10 asymmetric reverse lunges R
  • 10 asymmetric front rack KB squats (left side heavier)
  • 10 asymmetric reverse lunges L
  • 10 double swings
  • 10 pushups

Be sure to check out my “moves part 3” highlights on Instagram if you want to see what these exercises are (it’ll be all the way at the end of the highlight)!

Yesterday I did Jen’s 1000 rep home workout, which is an old favorite of mine because it is composed of simple bodyweight exercises, yet it’s still challenging. I needed lots of breaks because it was so hot outside, and also I have not trained my stamina recently.

groove.

I went on a walk by the Hudson River on Saturday evening, and I can’t believe that after 15-ish years of living in NY, this was my first time walking this gorgeous boardwalk! It was a fun mini adventure.

lol @ the sunscreen-laden sweat dripping down my neck

My friends, Henok and Raymond, and I watched the movie Jojo Rabbit together (virtually) on Saturday night. I loved it. Both funny and heartbreaking, which is an interesting but good combo.

I also just realized that I can use “night shift” on my MacBook to make the screen easier on my eyes at night. I’m behind on the times.

Have a marvelous week, friends!

So tell me:

Do you have trouble accepting / acknowledging truth when it is coming from someone you normally disagree with?

What is the best thing you cooked / ate this weekend?

Have you watched any movies recently?

Do you use blue light glasses or night shift on your computer?

Operation “Say Yes”

…”to the dress.” I’m getting married!

Just kidding. This is about how I am the flakiest, most indecisive person ever.

“Hey, Alison, do you wanna go out tonight?”

“Oh!…maybe. I’ll let you know. I want to, but I need to do ‘stuff’ tonight.”

“Okay let me know!”

(Two hours later) “I think I’ll come!”

“Yay!”

(20 minutes later) “Actually…I think I should stay in….”

“Aw. Okay.”

(5 minutes later) “But should I just go out?”

“Yeah if you can!”

(2 minutes later) “Maybe not…”

“Alison… Do whatever you want.”

I’m indecisive because I spend too much time thinking about whether I should go somewhere or not, and then I end up procrastinating anyway, when I could have gone out, come back, and done what I needed to do.

So this past week was Operation: “Say Yes”

Yes to going out on Thursday night.

Because Thursdays are the new Friday, right? We actually don’t have classes on Friday, so Thursday really is the start of our weekends for the first half of our semester.

97% of the time, I’m not one to say, “I wanna go out tonight!” I’m usually more like, “let’s go get dessert and be in our PJs early tonight!” But I felt like celebrating the submission of our first big paper on Thursday, so I went out to a pub with some friends that night. It was my first night really “going out” in regards to drinking and such.

I drank more than I ever have that night, but I was still totally sober throughout, haha.

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“Baby Guinness” (Kahlua and a touch of Bailey’s— looks like a Guinness but tastes like chocolate!)

I only had one of these. I’m not that tolerant (or wealthy).

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arguably the most pointless €5 purchase of my life

Not even tipsy, but not mad about it. Watching all the other wild kids around me was fun enough.

My favorite part was coming back past midnight and sharing a big bowl of popcorn with my friend.

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Yes to napping.

Because I went to bed at 2:30 am after a night out and woke up naturally at 8:50-ish on Friday morning.

I was thinking of doing a longer workout later that day rather than napping, but napping gave me energy to PR my 100 burpee time! 6:16!
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I was on the ground panting two minutes before this photo was taken

Yes to walking somewhere solely for dessert.

My friend Brenna and I went to Bread & Butter to pick up dessert on Friday night, which was a freaking fantastic decision. I bought bread and butter pudding for €2.95, and the portion was HUGE. Megan was kind enough to have half, and she shared her vanilla ice cream with me to go with it 🙂

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this is only one half of the whole portion they gave me

10x better than alcohol. 100x happier. (Half the price too, holla.)

Yes to the Bray Cliff Walk with three friends.

I could have spent the whole day working on my ethics essay, but I decided to go to another cliff walk for the first half of the day. So worth the fresh air, exercise, and company!

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selfie with a banana, because I am a banana

The walk took approximately 2 hours, since we stopped for a bunch of photo sessions.

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thank you to Brigid and Caroline for this photo!

For lunch, we chose The Happy Pear, a super cute vegetarian market/cafe/restaurant.

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I got this bomb Buddha bowl, which had brown rice, pickled cabbage, “kimchi” (wasn’t actually kimchi, but that’s what they called it), lentil dahl, garlic kale, avocado, and sweet potato fries!

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Hiking and buddha bowls, are we in LA!?

Yes to FaceTiming four people over the weekend.

I miss my friends a lot, and although it can take a couple hours to FaceTime a couple people, it is always worth it to talk with such beautiful souls. I laughed and cried.

Yes to Sunday brunch.

After Mass on Sunday, I met up with my friend Cassandra for brunch at a fabulous little place called Herbstreet.

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This was one of those restaurants where you think, “I could honestly order any of this.” Cassandra and I both went for savory + sweet.

Cassandra got the “Eggos Mexicalos” for her main, which was spicy and satisfying (and GUACAMOLE). I got a strange combo— smoked salmon with capers and dill creme fraiche + small stack of blueberry pancakes with orange butter. I ate them separately, don’t worry.

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I was totally craving pancakes, and MAN did these deliver. I love blueberry pancakes, but the zesty orange butter really put it over the top.

The best of the meal was Cassandra’s sweet pick: the French toast with caramelized bananas, pecans, and clotted. cream.

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Be still my heart (but not literally, please, I know this is a lot of cholesterol, sry). We already decided that we have to go back.

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Yes to working out outside. 

I usually work out in my room these days, because a) that’s all I have time for; b) it’s dewy and cold outside in the morning. But on Sunday, I took a nap and just went outside with my jump rope. It was glorious to move and groove outside!!!

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5 rounds:

  • 50 double unders
  • 2 laps (~1/3 of a mile)
  • 5 pistol squats each leg

Yes to walking.

It can be time-consuming to walk to city centre from our campus, and sometimes I feel like I should save time and take the bus, but it’s [almost] always a good idea to walk.

I say [almost], because yesterday we walked to Parliament for a field trip, and it was down pouring. I was soaked and freezing throughout the rest of the field trip, but Megan reminded me to be grateful that I can go home and be warm, whereas some people cannot.

#HUMBLED.

Yes to cooking for real. 

I bit the bullet and bought a tikka masala simmer sauce for some chicken, plus bell peppers and real rice (I refuse to buy microwave or “boil in a bag” rice).

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Prior to this, I had just been seasoning things with salt and pepper because I wanted to be cheap and minimalist, but variety is the spice of life. Or spice is the variety of life?

This delicious lunch salad also happened a couple days ago:

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beets, roasted sweet potatoes, avocado, two fried eggs, salt and pepper

Yes to saying no to blogging.

It’s been a busy week with essay writing and such, so the blog has been on the back burner. I wanted to type this post for Monday…then Tuesday…then Wednesday…then Thursday…and now it’s finally typed. Life happens, and I’m always learning how to prioritize.

Yes to a free online yoga inversions class on the CodyApp.

It was on Tuesday night right after my healthcare policy class ended, plus it was free, so I just signed up and did it! I highly recommend CodyApp, guys. I mean, I’ve only tried the free classes so far, but even those are great. This inversions class really did help me learn more about handstand alignment!

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not in the inversions class, but wanted to see how titibasana was coming along

I hope you guys have an awesome weekend! I’m organizing a wine and cheese night for the group tonight, and I AM PUMPED. Finals are next week already, LOL (we start internships in November!).

So tell me:

Are you indecisive?

Is it hard for you to say yes to things?

Two beautiful things that you did/happened to you this week!

Tummy Troubles

Thinking-Out-Loud

Thinking out loud with Amanda today!

1) It’s cold outside. Not that I’m complaining (the cooler days are welcome in the midst of summer heat), but I’m still a little surprised! Mild winter…now mild summer? No more seasons? End of the world?

2) But I snapped this on Monday, so apparently I’m still feelin’ that heat. 72F is great for lounging outside, but STEAMY for working out.

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3) And this tragedy.

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that little black speck = a flea

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[source]

4) Alrighty, friends. This community has plenty of experience in the area of food + GI issues, I’m sure.* I’ve had indigestion and general GI discomfort for the past couple of weeks, which is throwin’ off my appetite and, well, the comfort of my insides. (LOL this is legit poop therapy.) I can’t think of anything in my diet that could be the cause.

5) …maybe it’s stress from adjusting to a new work environment and routine?

6) …maybe it’s dairy?? (Please, Lord, don’t say it is so.) I do eat a helluvalot of that stuff.

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7) I’ve even been looking seriously into possibly doing Whole30. I’m considering this because of the GI issues, but also because I’ve been getting a lot more red spots/acne/dryness on my face + a weird rash on my back. If there’s a time to do Whole30, it’s during the summer at home (and right before my family goes on vacation in July, heh). I’m not 100% sure I want to commit, but for now, I’m taking it easy on the dairy (with sadness).

8) That means grains are still in my life, but I’m trying to keep things simple.

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*I’ll talk to a doc if this persists, but for now, I’m willing to listen to anyone with experience!

9) I never thought I’d say this, but these vegan, raw crackers taste like the delicious Parmesan crisps my mom used to buy.

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Kale Goji crackers from Healing Home Foods

I SWEAR. I don’t do imposter foods, but these are an exception. We got these from…the farmers’ market.

10) Mom has been getting into these 7-minute workout apps, and she’s been asking me to do them with her. Moving and grooving with Madre, what a dream.

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Hope you all have a great pre-Friday! Take care of your tummies 🙂

So tell me:

Do you have any experience with prolonged indigestion? What was the cause for you? Dr. Google is telling me many possible causes, of course.

Have you ever tried nutritional yeast? I can finally vouch that it tastes a lot like cheese. 

What are some of your favorite workout apps?

Summer Job + Recent Eats and Moves

I’ve had some pretty sick tan lines for the past few weeks, and I’m proud of them in an odd way.

There are two different shirt styles printed on my back though. Like, mostly a racerback tan line, but also a faint bathing suit tan line. It’s a good thing I’ll be working in business casual clothes and scrubs all summer.

Speaking of which…

Yesterday I started my job at a rehabilitation hospital!

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It’s called HELP (Health Experience Learning Program), specifically designed for college students studying to be health professionals. We’ll be exposed to various health professions through classroom and clinical learning experience, and I could not be more excited!

I felt like a nervous child on her first day of school going into it yesterday, but as the orientation went on, I felt more comfortable and made some friends (I hope)!


I haven’t done a classic show-and-tell of my eats, moves, and grooves recently. I don’t know about you guys, but these are some of my favorite kinds of posts (ex: Kath’s “Lately” posts) because I like a nosy quick and dirty rundown of someone’s food and fitness.

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Gina’s oatmeal cookie dough cereal with blueberries and bananas

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avocado, smoked salmon, roasted red pepper, artichoke, spinach in a Flatout wrap

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whole wheat toast: one with avocado, egg, sriracha + one with pepperjack cheese and egg

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overnight oat green smoothie

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spinach, tomato, chorizo, cheddar, avocado egg white omelette for Pop — I was so wishing that I made this for myself though

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Italian chicken, mozzarella, basil, balsamic toasted sandwich

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salad at a local Mexican restaurant (eaten with corn tortillas taco style) with the family

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summer watermelon

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dried figs with plain Greek yogurt!

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my new favorite pasta dish inspired by Fr. Barnes: whole wheat spaghetti tossed with olive oil, marinated artichokes, mozzarella, heirloom tomatoes, spinach, Italian herbs, minced garlic, and lots of black pepper, topped with chicken/shrimp. WOWZA

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leftover oatmeal dried fruit cookies from Christmas (thank God for freezers)1

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overnight oats in a peanut butter jar on my first day of work

Moves and grooves these days have been really…organic. My workouts are chosen and done on a day-by-day basis, depending on what else I’m doing, how I’m feeling, and the weather. Honestly, this go-with-the-flow attitude allows me to have the most fun working out.

Last week involved a lot of rest and light hikes at Fiona’s summer house, but there were some other great workouts sprinkled in there!

Last Monday I knew I wanted to go outdoors for a workout. I also really wanted to use this wall, so I put on my creative cap (which I don’t have with me more often than not) and did this doozy of a workout:

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.jsI broke that dumbbell at the very end of the workout because I dropped it on the ground in my exhaustion. At least it was 25 years old and had a good life.

On Friday, I did Tina’s At-Home Chipper Workout outside also. For the squats and lunges, I used my makeshift sandbag (a canvas bag filled with a bunch of random free weights ~26 lbs.). The burpees and pushups were the hardest!

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Also, I know how I should do hollow rocks, but I feel like I am a useless, cranky banana when I do them.

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Sunday’s workout involved these:

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The stairs may be going up, but it kinda feels like hell.

3 rounds:

  • STAIRS UP
  • 5 pistol squats
  • 10 pushups
  • 15 v-ups
  • 20 tricep dips
  • STAIRS DOWN
  • 5 pistol squats
  • 10 pushups
  • 15 v-ups
  • 20 tricep dips

And then up the stairs uno màs.

My body still felt like a stone from Friday’s workout, so I let myself take decent breaks in between rounds.

those DAM stairs are always killer. nice to be back home for the summer 🌞 #fituniversity @gofitu

A video posted by Alison (@alison_grooves) on May 22, 2016 at 9:54am PDT

//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.jsI also took a 1 hour walk on Saturday night in the drizzly dark while jamming out to music. Pretty sure all my neighbors thought I was an angsty teen.

Lastly, this yoga video saved my body from the tension and antsy-ness of sitting in orientation all day yesterday.

Hope you guys have a lovely day!

So tell me:

College students: What are you up to this summer?

What was your favorite summer job you ever had?

Do you like these kinds of posts?

Best way you moved this week!

Best dish you cooked this week.

Weekly Moves and Grooves XXVII + Recent Eats

Two more weeks until I’m not a college freshman anymore!

It’s humorous to think about how fast the year went, but I won’t go on about how sentimental it is to see time pass so quickly. Instead, I’ll keep this intro short and sweet and get to this week’s moves and grooves!

I’m also sharing some of my delicious recent eats that haven’t made it to the blog yet. I don’t know about you, but I just like looking at food pictures. My Pinterest, my Instagram, my Facebook, my blog— 95.78% food photos. It creeps me out when people say “food porn,” but I guess that’s accurate…? Pleasure in looking at food photos?

Guatever, I’ll just drop the issue. Enjoy!

weekly moves and grooves

Sunday

Rest

Monday

outdoor leg workout

I forget the exact exercises I did, but it was a total of 30 rounds of 30 seconds work: 10 seconds rest, so it took exactly 20 minutes. All I remember is that there were a lot of jumps and plyometrics that left me sore the next day!

Tuesday

100 burpee challenge

In 7:40. It was tough this week!

Wednesday

outdoor circuit workout

My goodness, I am digging the outdoors these days. It’s still pretty chilly here in Boston despite it almost being May, but that makes for the perfect temperature when you’re working up a sweat!

I did 7 rounds of:

This took about 35 minutes, and I was pooped at the end.

Thursday

Rest

Friday

dynamic warmup + leg workout

It had been a while since I had gone to the gym since the nice weather just calls for moving and grooving outdoors. But I was feelin’ the gym on Friday!

To warmup, I did 3 rounds of:

  • 5 burpees
  • 5 pushups to side plank right
  • 5 pushups to side plank left
  • 15 KB swings
  • 20 air squats

Then the leg workout:

  • 5×8 Bulgarian split squats (35#) // 16 jump lunges between each set
  • 1×8, 2×6, 2×5 hamstring curls (100#) // 20 squat jumps between each set
  • 1×8, 4×5 trap bar deadlifts (135#) // 8 box jumps between each set
  • 3×20 hamstring ball curls // 30 side jump lunges between each set

I walked much more slowly than normal on Saturday.

Saturday

Active rest

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And now onto the recent eats! Disclaimer: the epic amount of salads I’ve been eating is due to the fact that I discovered $185 of dining points left on my account that I must use before the end of the semester. Thus, I have been buying salads at my favorite salad bar ever, which are pricey, so they’ll use up the cash quickly. I’ve also been inviting my brother to eat with me very often 🙂

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scrambled eggs + English muffin with peanut butter and banana + glass o’ milk

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two eggs with veggies + English muffin with butter and jam + apple

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two eggs with veggies + French toast with peanut butter and banana + glass o’ milk

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scrambled eggs + plain yogurt with fruit + whole wheat blueberry pancake with butter, cinnamon and banana

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baby kale salad with cranberries, pepitas, and some kind of dressing + half a sandwich (roast beef, roasted veggies, dijon mustard, cheese on whole grain ciabatta) + apple

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salad with chicken, goat cheese, spiced pecans, roasted apples, roasted butternut squash, and some kind of dressing (it was good!)

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salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, beets, peas, carrots, chicken, and sundried tomato blue cheese dressing (it was made out of yogurt or something…interesting!)

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salad with beets, carrots, tomatoes, corn, steak, and corn bread!!!

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salad with balsamic + turkey, tomato, lettuce, cheddar, honey mustard sandwich on wheat

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salad with tuna, feta, and honey dijon dressing + mushroom barley

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salad with beets, tomatoes, peas, artichokes, chickpeas, carrots, pasta salad, chicken, and garlic bread (as in, roasted garlic baked inside the bread!)

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pizza + teddy grahams at Women’s Group

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mashed potatoes with turkey chili and broccoli // the weirdest combo ever served in the dining hall, but it was good!

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a Torta de Aceite that my roommate brought home for me // it’s a tender, flaky, sweet and slightly savory flatbread with anise— so good!

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biscuit with honey and butter

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Insomnia chocolate chip cookie that my next door neighbor so kindly gave me

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vanilla and cookies ‘n’ cream ice cream at a Women’s Group sleepover on Friday!

Now I’m hungry.

Hope you all have a superb Sunday!

So tell me:

Did you do fun things outside this week?

What is the best carb you ate this week? Mine is a tie between the roasted garlic bread and the biscuit with honey butter.