Weekend Moves and Grooves {MIMM #25}

Today? School? What the heck is school?

Yes, yes. The time has finally come to go back to the grind after a seemingly endless string of snow days and then winter break. As much as I’ll miss my days of chillaxin’, I’d say it’s about time to get back into a routine. Spring is upon us, and I need to buckle down for all the events coming up!

This last weekend before turning my brain back on included a ton of moves & grooves (naturally), and a lot of delicious eats. All marvelous things!

MiMM

Linking up with Katie‘s Marvelous in My Monday!

Friday

This was technically my last day to myself since dance started back up on Saturday, so I definitely soaked up the time. My morning started off with my favorite breakfast— overnight oats. After reading blogs and doing some religious education prep, I went to my happy place and baked some banana nut muffins (using this recipe + walnuts). Does anyone else feel that baking is therapeutic? Or maybe I just think it’s therapeutic because I know I’ll have a sweet end product. 😉

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Moves

I headed to the gym for a bodyweight leg workout. After a 5 minute warmup on the arc trainer, I completed 3 rounds of each set of these bodyweight exercises:

  • 10 modified pistol squats (each leg) + 20 Bulgarian split squats (each leg)
  • 60 sec. wall sit (I did hold a weight for this one) + 20 lunge pulses each leg
  • 20 hamstring ball curls + 20 single leg bridge lifts (each leg)

Short and sweet! I ended with a quick 8 minute ab tabata that included 2 rounds of: toe touches, Russian twists, Spiderman planks, reverse crunches, side plank hip raises right and left, cross knee tuck planks, and ankle touches.

Then my mom came home with sashimi. She’s the best. ❤

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I also made a valiant effort to finally continue reading Catching Fire on Friday. Yeah, I’ve prolonged reading that book for about two years now. I still only read about 5 more pages…I’m not dedicated enough. But I wanna watch the dang movie, so that’s my motivation.

I was probably distracted by the awesomeness of this dinner:

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Sesame soba noodles (made by Mom), bell peppers, coconut oil roasted brussels sprouts, cashews, and a soft-boiled egg.

Everything was already prepped thanks to Mom, so this dinner came together in about 2 minutes, and it ROCKED. And if I may… #eattherainbow.

Saturday

I woke up thinking, “Wow. I actually have to do stuff today.” That stuff included dance from 11 AM -4 PM and then Mass at 5:30 PM. In the evening, we went out for a Groupon dinner (surprised?) at one of our favorite Persian restaurants. I totally spoiled my appetite by eating a snack at 4:30 after dance and then eating way too much of the appetizer. It was a delicious eggplant dip with house-made naan.

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I had only a few bites of my entree because I was already so full. Amazing falafel salad! I was sad that I couldn’t eat more of it.

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Lucky for me though, the waitress took quite a while before taking our dessert order and bringing them out, so I had time to digest and make room for the good stuff 🙂 Persian saffron ice cream and THE BEST saffron pistachio cake. I think it’s my favorite cake ever!

Sunday

Compared to others’ Sundays, mine are usually pretty long and full. It kinda goes against Sunday as a day of rest, but teaching Sunday school and dancing aren’t really considered work. It’s a joy to spread God’s teachings and dance with my girls!

My friend in dance company, Rachel, baked blueberry muffins for our brunch yesterday, and it hit the spot. I am a HUGE sucker for blueberry muffins. Hers had cinnamon and so many plump blueberries! Thank you for making my day, Rachel. 🙂

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Dance rehearsal was especially tiring yesterday, so I was more than ready to relax at home with my parents to watch the Harding-Kerrigan-20-year-later special (<—did anyone else watch that? the tension is real.) and the closing ceremonies of the Olympics. I smiled at Russia’s sense of humor as they mocked their own opening ceremonies.

2014-sochi-winter-olympic-games-closing-ceremony

[source]

I’m sad that they’re over! Sochi bear’s tears almost made me cryI guess it’s a good thing though, because I would be staying up until the wee hours of school nights to watch them. My family always gets really into the games…as you can tell from our hockey-watching drama. We’re already looking forward to Rio! Oh, and the World Cup is this year too, right? So we’ll turn into soccer fans for a little while just for that. 

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#TeamUSA

So this is goodbye to the Olympics and my perpetual winter break. Unless it snows again. If it does, I can kiss my spring break goodbye.

It was a wonderful weekend though, and I hope the same is true for all of you! Have a great Monday, friends!

So tell me:

Do you find baking/cooking therapeutic?

What is the best cake you’ve ever had?

Three things you did this weekend!

Fascinating Friday Links #25 + Hockey Drama

Friday already?! And that’s not out of excitement. I’m shocked that my pretty low-key winter break is coming to a close. I guess it’s about time I kick my butt back in gear after all those snow days though.

The weather finally warmed up yesterday, so I took full advantage of it by going for a brisk, hour-long walk around my neighborhood.

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Lots of kids were playing outside, neighbors were walking the dogs, snow was melting, springtime felt near. Then I came home to hear on the news that the temps will drop back below freezing in a week….K.

In other news, my mom turned into a different person during the women’s hockey game yesterday. Honestly, I was a little scared. I guess she has this passionate rivalry with her siblings who live in Canada since she’s the only one of her siblings who lives in the US. So for an hour of our lives, we were die-hard hockey fans. She was literally jumping up and down for Team USA when they made their first two goals, but when Canada scored two goals in the last three minutes, she went c.r.a.z.y. Like, upset crazy. You don’t even know.

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The pressure is too much to handle.

Of course, I had to cry out to the Twitter world for consolation. Thanks, Jo.

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ANYWAY. Link love. As usual, here are some great recipes, workouts, and thoughts from around the web this week!

fascinating friday links

Health and Fitness

[That thing: a calorie] What IS a Calorie Exactly? via More Than Just Desserts

[Great tips!] 7 Tips to Get the Most Out of Group Fitness via Busy Bod

[Form first] How to Do the Perfect Deadlift via Greatist

[Awesome ideas to make healthy meals easy] Top 10 Foods for Sunday Food Prep via The Lean Green Bean

[Helpful] 10 Ways to Improve Quality of Sleep via Your Trainer Paige

[Never hibernate] Five Ways Winter Makes You Fitter via Wellness Today

[This could be true in Europe] Eating Pizza Lowers Your Cancer Risk via The Skinny on Health

[Sweat it out] Leg Torture Workout via Purely Twins + Winter Shape-Up Week 4 Workout via Fitnessista

Food for Thought

[Do you need ALL those Facebook friends?] On Unfriending via The Lunchbox Diaries

[She handled this situation so well] Own Your Positive Body Image & Own Your Workouts via Your Trainer Paige

[Reflection on “unplugging”] Making the Most of Time via My Neon Running Shoes

[Why should we have to hold so much back on our own blogs?] The Thing I Hate Most About My Blogging via Fitting It All In

[This girl knows how to handle it] Cyber Bullying via Miles On Oats

[What about those not-so-great workouts?] When Working Out Feels Like Work via Perfection Isn’t Happy

Food for Belly

[So perfect] Broiled Fontina Toasts with Roasted Garlic and Poached Eggs via How Sweet It Is

[What?!] Banana Bread Doughnuts with an Almond Butter Glaze via Flourishing Foodie

[Nugget-style!] BAKED Chicken Fried Tofu via Peas and Crayons

[“Flavor-town” — Guy Fieri] Hawaiian Pulled Pork Skillet Nachos with Pineapple Guacamole via Iowa Girl Eats

[Creamy and dreamy] Thick and Creamy Chocolate Smoothie via Running with Spoons

[Jaw-dropping] Honey Kissed Baklava Muffins via Edible Perspective

[*Angels singing*] Smoked Salmon and Avocado Egg Sandwich via Once Upon a Cutting Board

Miscellaneous Fun

[Score.] 29 Ways to Eat Peanut Butter For Every Meal via BuzzFeed

[Cool stuff!] The Evolution of a Food Photo via Pinch of Yum

[The kid with the hat (Lucas). Just watch him.] Kids React to Frozen — Let It Go (Multi-Language) via Fine Bros. Youtube

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

So tell me:

Did you watch the hockey showdown?

How’s the weather in your area?

Which links did you enjoy?

Tell me that Lucas kid isn’t the most adorable thing you’ve ever seen. 🙂

I ♥ The Olympics {MIMM #23}

Who else has been obsessed with the Olympics?? I don’t know what it is about the Games, but I just get excited for everyone and every sport and every cheesy-as-heck commercial. I’ve been loving watching figure skating especially since I used to be a competitive skater myself, back when I was a nugget (<— click to see proof!).

MiMM

Joining Katie‘s Marvelous Monday linkup!

Favorite athlete right now? Yulia Lipnitskaya. She’s a 15-year-old Russian figure skater, and she is ridiculous. Not only her flexibility…

Julia+Lipnitskaya+Rostelecom+Cup+ISU+Grand+QsnFzOmRnCYl

[source]

OW…But her jumps are powerful, and her artistry is mature. If you haven’t watched her yet, I highly recommend you do! [Watch here and make sure to watch the 4 minute mark.]

Saturday night included an incredible sushi dinner at my favorite Japanese restaurant ever. My parents and I calculated that this was my seventh time going to this restaurant, and it has only been open for less than a year. The waiters and waitresses recognize us pretty darn well now!

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My mom ordered the wagyu beef special as an appetizer, which was melt-in-your mouth amazing. Of course, my personal favorite was the sushi. Mom and I shared a roll combo (eel avocado, tuna, and yellowtail rolls) and the Amazing Tuna Roll special (seared pepper tuna and avocado inside and fatty tuna belly on the outside). Dad also ordered a spider roll (fried soft shell crab) and a Dragon Roll (eel and cucumber inside with avocado outside). GAH. No words.

I was famished when I walked in, and floating on sushi cloud nine when I walked out.

In other news, my dance pal Allison (fraternal name twin 😉 ) tried overnight oats for the first time upon my (and Lilly’s!) suggestion. The verdict:

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Woohoo!

Besides that, it has been a normal-schnormal weekend for us here. Dance, Mass, Sunday school teaching, homework. Before signing off though, I want to share the delicious dinner I ate last night after a long day of dance:

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Quinoa, marinara sauce, sautéd spinach, and roasted red pepper-spinach chicken sausage. 

Simple, yummy, and super satisfying. 

Well this definitely was not my most thrilling post ever, but consider this our Monday morning catch-up 🙂 I hope you all have a great week!

Get me up to speed with YOUR weekend:

Favorite Olympic highlights so far? Favorite athlete?

What did you have for dinner last night?

Highlights of the weekend?

Behind the Scenes #7: Cheerio Algebra

1. I had a huge brain fart last night. Dance company had a scheduled rehearsal from 8-8:30 last night of which we were notified at the beginning of the week. But here I am last night, going about my business at 8:00 PM, and then I get a call from the director of company:

Me: Hello?

Director: Hey Alison, I just wanted to call you because we have rehearsal right now and I was checking to make sure you were okay.

Me: (thinking for 2 seconds…@!#%@$#!!) *Gasp* Oh. my. gosh. I am so sorry. I completely forgot. 

How’s that for the world’s crappiest excuse? But honesty is my best policy, as I’ve said before. The problem was that I didn’t right down the rehearsal time anywhere, so despite saying I could go, it just slipped my mind. Thankfully, the director was very cool and understanding about my foolishness, and she said I can catch up on the little tweaks made to our dance during rehearsal. Lesson: write appointments down ASAP.

2. Midterms start today, and apparently I need the whole kitchen table to study for AP Calculus. (Note: We always keep our most frequently-eaten snacks on the table. Those aren’t ALL my study snacks 😉 )

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3. I’m also the biggest nerd/breakfast enthusiast. Look at what I found in my notes:

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honey nut + banana nut = yum

nut (honey + banana) = yum

honey + banana = yum/nut or nut = yum/(honey+banana)

My friend, Kristi, who sits next to me in business calculus used to always bring Cheerios as a snack, so I guess I decided to make math out of food. I don’t even know what else to say.

4. I cleaned my laptop the other day, wiping is nicely with a wet wipe and then a dry paper towel. But that has rendered absolutely pointless since I’m always eating around my computer and thus always getting crumblies and dirty fingerprints all over it.

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I should probably at least get one of those silicon keyboard covers, because when I took my laptop to school, I saw allllll the stuff on my keyboard under those fluorescent lights. Or I can just be less clumsy when I eat, but that’s not gonna happen.

5. There are 3 reasons I would like to go to Florida right now: a) It’s warmer. b) Hello, it’s Florida. c) GRILLED CHEESE at this place. It’s called Toasted and they have craft grilled cheeses and burgers, and I’ve actually never been there before. For some reason, my Yelp account is set to Orlando, FL (I guess since I set it up when we went down there last summer), so I always get emails about popular restaurants down there.

The grilled cheese I want right now: fig & goat cheese with Havarti, basil and honey. That’s right.

6. My parents went to visit my relatives in Canada this weekend to make up for our absence during Christmastime, and they came back with some fun Canadian loot!

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Coconut sugar

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Dehydrated pineapple rings— so good!!!

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Canada mitts, homemade shortbread and maple sugar dark chocolate from my Aunt Sharon (Thank you!)

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These tasty-lookin’ bars from my grandparents (thank you!). Are these like Canadian-brand KIND bars? 😉

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A scarf and earrings from my other aunt and a homemade rubber band bracelet from my cousin, Kate 🙂

7. I keep forgetting that the Olympics are coming up so soon! I’m so out of the loop, so I need to brush up on my winter athlete knowledge.

Sochi 2014 Company Olympics

[source]

8. Currently obsessed with this song my Young the Giant’s alter ego (their former name), The Jakes.

9. I’m finishing typing this in school, and I just took the first part of my AP Calculus midterm….You know that grrrreat feeling when you find out you got a question (or two) wrong? That’s me right now.

10. I hope you all have a wonderful Thursday! Thank you to Amanda for hosting this awesome Thinking Out Loud linkup!

Thinking-Out-Loud

So tell me:

Have you forgotten something important recently?

Do you eat by your computer often?

Are you in the mood for grilled cheese?

Are you looking forward to the Olympics?

What is your favorite song right now?