Chronicles of Becoming a Grownup III

How many of my wrist and finger muscles are working as I type this right now??

Gross anatomy is on the brain. Luckily for me, I have all spring break at home to study! #turnup.

Each time I come home is a different experience, because I learn more and grow more every time I go back to school. I think this is a good time for the next part of “Chronicles of Becoming a Grownup”! (here is part I and II)

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1) When I was taking the train from Boston to NY to come home for spring break, I ran into a guy from my high school who I was kinda friends with back in the day. I was so surprised to see him that I said his name out loud in disbelief, half regretting it because thereafter I would have to talk to him.

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But it wasn’t weird. We caught up on life and had a pleasant train ride together, because we’re adults (with quasi-sheltered lives still) who can talk to each other like adults, despite the awkward high school world in which we once lived.

2) I’m over mirrors. Like, I guess I need them to make sure I don’t have spinach in my teeth and that my hair is at least a 6/10, but coming home to big mirrors is a reminder of why I was so obsessed with my body image.

At my apartment this year, I don’t change in front of any body-length mirrors, so I don’t really have time to “body check” (checking for chubby spots/muscles/imperfections, which can easily become an unhealthy habit). I have learned that the availability of big mirrors increases the likelihood of body checking, so I have also learned to be more deliberate in not dwelling too long in the mirror (striving for humility and self-esteem!).

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My advice to anyone who has trouble quitting body checking: do what this cat does.

No I’m kidding. For real: try to only have a full length mirror by your front door, so you can only check yourself when you’re fully dressed and ready to leave your place. Don’t let the mirror steal your joy!

3) I’m not afraid to challenge some things that my parents say. Not because I want to be a rebel, but because I want us all to find and know Truth. This goal allows our arguments to flourish in understanding, rationality, and trust in God, who knows better than any of us.

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4) Lent is showing me that I really am attached to peanut butter…so it’s good that I’m giving it up for 40 days. It’s hammering home that idea that food is just food.

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5) The family and I went to the Maryknoll Sisters’ annual charity concert again this year, and I was really getting into those classical pieces. Orchestra concerts, in my mind, were always the “bran flakes” of all events—fine but just meh. This year, although I’m no music connoisseur, I appreciated the music, the performers, and even the spectators more than ever. I don’t love classical music now, but I just appreciate it for what it is. This applies to a lot of other things/people in the world too.

It also didn’t hurt that the orchestra ended with a fantastic Lion King medley.

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Mini desserts are also a bonus.

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the pignoli cookie in the middle was the BEST

4) Despite all these new things I’m realizing at home, some things will always be the same. Like how my body seems to want more sleep and more food than ever when I’m at home.

Madre’s cooking is rocking my world per usual.

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Pillsbury crescent rolls are my childhood literally rolled into buttery, flaky parcels of goodness

6) Pop and I also went to go see a movie in theaters just like we did last spring break! This weekend we watched The Shack, based on the book by William P. Young. We both loved it! It has unmistakably Christian themes, but I think anyone can learn a lot about why tragic loss/evil happens from this movie.

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7) I really need to stretch more. These muscles aren’t getting any more flexy on their own!

So tell me:

An example of how you’ve learned to appreciate the “bran flakes of life.”

Thoughts on body checking in the mirror?

Have you watched any good movies lately?

Two things you did this weekend!

A Grand Ol’ Weekend Recap

Instead of thinking of a title for this post, I’ll just l start typing as I belt out “No One” by Alicia Keys (← quality song).

There’s so much to share today, so let’s nix a proper intro and catch up!

Thursday

On June 9th, 2015, I chopped my hair to shoulder length. On June 16th, 2016, I chopped my hair to chin length. Who knows what June 2017 will bring? #pixiecut?

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even the same shirt color as the emoji

My hair was shoulder length all year, but it was starting to flip outwards like Betty Rubble from the Flintstone’s, which is not the look that I’m personally going for.

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Just like last year, I’ve gotten mixed reactions to my new ‘do, but most people have been in support of the short locks (thanks, friends)! One of my friends from work said I look 10 years old though…

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Ya know, I’d rather look like Dora than Betty Rubble, so I’d say it’s a step up.

After a long day of work, Pop and I came home to a KILLER dinner made my Madre. She made sushi hand rolls + delicious chicken drumsticks. *jaw drop*

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leftover brown rice + roasted broccoli on the side (pro tip from Madre: cut the meat off the bone a little bit before cooking if you want the drumsticks to cook more quickly. it’ll still be juicy!)

Spoiled.

Friday

Banana and mango overnight oats to start the day— my forever favorite ♥︎ (p.s. post about how to make oatmeal two ways coming soon!)

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Dinner was simple and light because I was planning on working out soonish afterwards.

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sunny egg on avocado toast with sriracha + salad with homemade honey mustard dressing

But then I rebelled against my dairy cutdown and also ate cheesy jalapeño Popcorners. And then Pop came home and I decided that I really wanted Greek yogurt with dried figs.

“Sureeee. Go wild. But you might pay for it later.” – Pop

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I was totally fine later. Actually, my digestion this week might be the best it’s been in a while! Hmmm.

AFTER I ate dinner and dessert, I worked out at 10 pm in the basement. I needed 5 hours to decompress from work and nourish myself before working out, I guess.

A video posted by Alison (@alison_grooves) on Jun 17, 2016 at 7:52pm PDT

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Saturday

A weekend breakfast favorite:

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Kylie’s simple paleo pancake + peach + peanut butter + glass o’ milk

I really wanted to put Greek yogurt on this, but I think having too much dairy still wouldn’t be great for me.

Madre and I went on a couple errands including grocery shopping and clothes shopping. Productivity, I say!

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didn’t buy this, but LOL I am a mother from the 50s

Moves and grooves of the day: 20 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible)

After Mass, Madre wanted to take Pop out to pre-Fathers’ Day dinner, so we went to a place called The Iron Tomato. It’s a casual Italian marketplace, so we each ordered something at different stations and reconvened.

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I got chicken meatloaf + artichokes, beets, and broccoli rabe to share with mom

We digested for a couple hours before I made a beloved classic for Pop and myself:

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Peanut butter banana soft serve!!! For two people: 3-4 frozen overripe bananas blended with peanut butter in a food processor, topped with granola.

Sunday (Father’s Day!)

My dad just made a good point (as a good father does): I FaceTimed a lot of people from Europe yesterday.

  1. Rachel in Ireland.
  2. My brother in Spain.
  3. My uncle, who is a priest in Rome.

What a great day already!

I made breakfast for Pop (and myself) in the morn’.

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made him a chorizo, onion, spinach egg white omelette + banana oatmeal

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banana, mango, chia oatmeal for moi

He opened his gift while eating. Peep the Sephora-bag-turned-“man-bag”.

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He loves Under Armor shirts!

After some more FaceTiming and relaxing, we all got started on our late afternoon BBQ! Pop requested that he grill on his special day. Madre and I went shopping and marinaded/skewered everything, and he and Madre split the grilling job. Teamwork!

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Madre’s incredible ribs, smothered in Stubb’s sticky sweet BBQ sauce (thanks so much to my pal for sending us this— you know who you are 🙂 )

To think that I used to not like ribs… So naive.

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our favorite Moroccan chicken!

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We ate everything in lettuce wraps, Asian style — with Thai basil, cilantro, fresh backyard mint, cherry tomatoes, bean sprouts, and Madre’s fantastic peanut sauce. None of us could choose a favorite meat that we cooked (maybe the ribs though).

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don’t ask me what I’m doing because I could not tell you

We cooked way too much food for three people, but hooray for leftovers for work lunches this week!

We ended “dinner” at 5 pm (talk to Europeans, eat like Europeans), after which we chilled out and digested. Pop and I went on a 2 mile walk around the ‘hood in the evening, and the weather was absolutely perfect. Cool and comfortable.

I got started on dessert when we got back home. We had weird peaches that were ripening but not softening. Like, we had them for a week, and they were starting to taste overripe (read: kinda alcoholic), but they were still hard. So I tried this recipe for individual peach crisps to put them to use.

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Pop and I had one each, topped with Talenti pistachio gelato. I ate the peach first (it was still hard and weird even after baking) and then ate the gelato. And then went back for a little more gelato.

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I just proceeded to do the 7 minute workout with Madre shortly after finishing dessert. Ice cream and squats is not an ideal combo, but I’ll survive.

I might do some late night stretching before turning in. My legs are super tight (I was a bad girl/PT student and didn’t stretch after working out on Saturday).

Happy Fathers’ Day to all fathers out there— of children or of souls! 🙂 You are so loved and appreciated.

Hope you all have one heck of a good Monday! Strike a silly pose when no one’s looking, but someone could be looking.

So tell me:

Did you do anything notable for Fathers’ Day/the weekend?

Do you like ribs?

What is the best thing you ate this weekend?

What is the worst hairstyle you’ve ever had? Honestly, my “bangs” in middle school were pretty painful.

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seriously WTF is happening with that

WIAW: Day in the Life Take Two

Hello, friends!

Yesterday wore me out, but definitely for good reasons! I also finally took pictures of {nearly} all the food I ate so that I could compile a cohesive WIAW post for you today.

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Linking up with my veggie-love inspiration, Jenn at Peas and Crayons!

I did a “day in the life” post for WIAW back in January, but I thought I’d do another one since they’re my favorite kinds of posts, every day is different, and last semester senior high schoolers start getting super lazy about everything, so it’s a different perspective. I guess we get excited for the end of the year too, but we’re still a little too far from there to start celebrating. Anyway, here’s what my life and eats looked like yesterday!

6:55 AM

Wake up (definitely NOT feelin’ like P-Diddy), freshen up, say morning prayer, change, put on makeup.

7:05 AM

Paint my toe nails super duper quickly so that I can wear open-toe shoes and not have ogre feet.

7:20 AM

Eat my favorite breakfast while packing lunch and reading blogs in between bites.

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Overnight oats with sunflower seed butter, banana, and berries + cereal for crunch!

7:45 AM

I’M LATE! Leave home and drive to school.

8:03 AM

Wee bit late to AP Calc, but we’re not doing much anyway since the AP exam is over!

*In class doing work…ish*

10:30 AM

Snack time in business calculus per usual. I forgot to take a picture, but I had a bag of mixed nuts.

*In class {not really} doing work*

11:45 AM

Lunch!

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Chicken, sauteed onion, cheese, and green bean sandwich a la madre (so good, ma!) + sugar snap peas

1:00 PM

Physical education was the highlight of my school day because we just got to walk around the track and the weather was beautiful! I got more of a workout from laughing with my friends than walking.

2:27 PM

Last bell rings. I go to a quick meeting with my English teacher before driving home.

3:15 PM

Snack time and some work.

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2% Greek yogurt (incredible— so much creamier and more satisfying than 0%), half banana, pepita sunseed butter

4:45 PM

Go to Haagen Dazs for free cone day with my friends Susie and Charli from dance company!

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Cookies and cream!

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5:00 PM

Pick up some nut butters from Trader Joe’s next door. We peruse other stores in the plaza, including Best Buy:

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I left this beautiful snapshot on one of the laptops. You’re welcome, whoever finds this.

6:00 PM

Ballet starts and I feel dead. My lack of quality sleep the night before plus the Haagen Dazs sugar crash made ballet class look VERY unappealing. Ballet is usually my faveeee.

7:00 PM

“Wow I really want this to be over.”

7:30 PM

Still have pointe class. Strongly consider going home, but I stay. It went well.

8:10 PM

Get home and dig into some FOOD!

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Mom made a fresh, cold shrimp salad that was ready to eat, so I thankfully ate that with some sriracha.

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Dried figs and Greek yogurt to cool down my mouth from the spice. And just because I love this duo.

Type this blog post!

9:20 PM

Shower, brush teeth, say evening prayer, and go to bed.

I can study for business calculus tomorrow morning 😀 (No really, I have a study hall, don’t worry!)

I promise I’m not slacking. We’re really just not doing much in school, and everyone’s energy is shifting towards summer. I can literally SMELL summer in my house. Does anyone else ever notice that things start smelling distinctly different when seasons change? And it’s not B.O.

Happy Wednesday!

So tell me:

What did your day look like yesterday?

Did you get free ice cream from Haagen Dazs?

What did you have for lunch yesterday?

Does it smell like summer/winter (depending on your hemisphere)?

Boston Road Trip Eats + Adventures

Mornin’!

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Please tell me you know that song

Evidently, yesterday was another mini road trip, but this time to Boston! My dad also came with us this time around since he had a day off of work. We left at around 8:30 AM, so breakfast was taken on the go:

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Overnight oats in a jar! I just switched out the real spoon with a plastic one and then headed out.

We visited my brother (who goes to Northeastern University) for the day to catch up on life and visit his new apartment since he also had day off for President’s Day (I’m on winter break right now). He’s livin’ off campus like a big shot now. 😉 I kept calling him “Domestic Ben” while also telling him to clean his kitchen appliances more thoroughly. I’m not an annoying sister.

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My face = judging.

After checkin’ out his new place, we walked around town for lunch. It was super chilly and we were getting hungry, so we chose a random Cuban restaurant that we were passing.

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I ordered the yellow rice with shrimp. According to the menu it was supposed to come with fried green plantains (nowhere to be found) and a “green salad.” Hm. The main dish itself was very tasty nonetheless.

The worst part of our dining experience came when it was time to pay the bill. My mom saw that they charged a lot more for some of our dishes than what was noted on the menu. The waitress said casually, “Oh this is our old menu. The prices have changed.” (Note: Everyone in the restaurant received the same menu.) Uhhhh….ya think you could have told us that when we ordered?! Even after admitting their mistake, they still didn’t offer to lower the prices or anything. Lucky for them, Mom was feeling gracious yesterday, so she just paid the price on the bill and still gave a tip. It’s safe to say that we will not be returning there.

Anyway, we started walking around a park after lunch, but we thought our ears were going to fall off from the frigid wind, so we headed back to Ben’s apartment to eat popcorn, do some planks, and then say goodbye. It was a short and sweet day trip, but we always love spending time with Ben!

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Ben added parmesan to this microwave popcorn, and I nearly inhaled the whole bag.

Another four-ish hours of road trippin’ later and more snacking…

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Honeycrisp apple slices and a few roasted unsalted cashews

…and then it was dinner time! We decided to stop by our favorite Thai restaurant on the way home as the finale to our nice President’s Day.

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Grilled chicken salad with peanut dressing. So good.

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Dessert for everyone to share: mango with coconut milk sticky rice. My favorite Asian dessert!

My life this weekend: Eat. Drive. Walk. Eat. Drive. Walk. Eat. Drive. Sleep.

Now my butt hurts from sitting so much. My belly is certainly happy from all this awesome food though!

I hope you all have a great day!

So tell me:

Americans, what did you do for President’s Day?

Have you ever had a bad restaurant payment experience?

What are your favorite road trip snacks?