Things I Learned Yesterday

Yep, it feels like summer.

I usually look around and realize how much I have to do, but yesterday I looked around and realized how much I DON’T have to do. In one sense, that was liberating, but in another sense, that made me anxious. I like to be productive (or at least feel like I’m being productive), so this threw me for a loop.

It was a relaxing day, but I did find some fun + not-as-fun things to keep me occupied. Idleness ain’t cool. So this is what I learned yesterday as I found things to do:

I’ve lost so much flexibility.

I did this 60 minute yoga video, and some stretches that used to feel awesome felt…not so awesome anymore. I mean, I still got a nice stretch, but man was it humbling! I guess it’s a gentle/painful reminder to keep stretching.



I can do a headstand {against a wall}! 

Then I try to get my toes off the wall and I’m down in three seconds, yay! But hey, at least I know my noggin can handle the weight.

My burpee wound is finally healed enough for me to not wear a bandage. 

It’s ugly and scary though.

Nectarines are naked peaches. 


I always thought there was a slight difference in flavor between the two, but nope! They taste exactly the same. Peaches just have the fuzz.

I can do a dead hang pull-up!

It has to be at the right time, and it sorta looks like I’m fighting to not fall off a cliff, but I finally got it!

I still don’t like to vacuum.

I vacuumed yesterday so I could be useful around the house. It was fine, but it’s still my least favorite chore. It’s really the mile-long cord that’s the biggest obstacle.

There are dragonflies outside my house that could be mistaken for mini dinosaurs.

What the heck.

Brie + jam sandwich ➔ “where have you been all my life?”


Do it if you haven’t yet. Do it if you already have.

June is over.

That’s not even possible. So many awesome things have happened this month, but it’s been such a whirlwind that I haven’t noticed that the calendar days keep flipping.

I have so much to read this summer!

Mostly books related to faith/meditation, but books nonetheless! I’m actually excited to read those kinds of books. I might throw some fiction in there for spice and everything nice (I’m usually more of a memoir person). The Rosie Project, Paper Towns (recommended by Jeannine!), and Hungry look interesting! Oh, and maybe I’ll finally finish Catching Fire… but chances are slim.

Hope you all have a lovely day!

So tell me:

Do you work on flexibility often?

Any recent fitness goals reached?

Brie and jam?!

What’s on your summer reading list?



WIAW: The Best Bite

Hi there!

Tuesday’s are always my days of sheer exhaustion. I skipped ballet class last night because I desperately needed a nap after an awards ceremony I attended, and I ended up sleeping until ballet class actually started. Whoops. I called in and told them I couldn’t make it because a) I would have been late; b) I was still exhausted. I’ll make up classes next week! If I didn’t have to eat dinner and do homework, I would have tried to sleep until the morning.

Other than my sleepiness, yesterday was lovely. And today is also lovely because I’m joining Jenn’s WIAW party!


I don’t know about you, but I eat my food sort of meticulously. Not in a pick-apart-my-food way, but in an I-wanna-get-that-perfect-bite way. I’ve talked about food ratio problems before, and this WIAW digs into similar details. There are always those bites that just have the perfect amount of everything and the perfect textures. Anyone else agree??

Thus, here are some of my recent eats + descriptions of the perfect bite from each!



Hot banana oats and Greek yogurt with sunflower seed butter

Best bite: The end of the bowl when there is a lot of sunflower seed butter left (since I save the best for last), a little bit of yogurt, and the oats are cooled and doughy.


Oatmeal cookie dough smoothie (with spinach added) + Greek yogurt for dipping {recycled photo}

Best bite: The first one when the smoothie and Greek yogurt are still cold.


Corn English muffin with sunflower seed butter and pepita sunseed butter + Greek yogurt with banana and honey

Best bite: Spoonful of yogurt with a banana slice, followed by a bite of the spot on the crispy English muffin that has an unusually thick layer of nut butter.


photo 2

Green Machine Naked juice….I guess you can’t bite this.


Romaine leaves + spiced (paprika?) brown rice crackers + hummus

Best bite: The crispy, cold romaine stem with hummus, followed by a bite of a cracker.


Greek yogurt + half banana + peanut butter

Best bite: Small spoonful of yogurt, smidge of peanut butter, and one banana slice.


(From the weekend)


Purple sticky rice (no coconut milk in this batch), Laotian sausage, scrambled eggs + green beans. Eaten the Laotian way: with your fingers 🙂

Best bite: Little bit o’ rice with a bite of that fatty, amazing sausage, followed by a crunchy green bean.


Almond butter and jelly on an English muffin + spinach salad with a HB egg (x2) and a simple dressing (olive oil, S+P, honey— my new favorite dressing!)

Best bite: A spot on the AB&J that had a lot of AB and a lot jelly.



Barley and curry chicken + spinach salad with the same dressing

Best bite: A piece of creamy curry chicken with a spoonful of the fluffy barley.


Smoked salmon on toast with this honey mustard yogurt dill sauce + same salad

Best bite: Bite of the salmon toast followed by a bite of the salad. There’s not much else to this meal.


Some kind of fish my mom got from a Chinese buffet + a crapton of spinach (I had other things along with this)

Best bite: Small pice of the fish (it was so salty!) with a LOT of spinach.



Mom’s coconut sticky rice with mango

Best bite: Perfect ratio of the creamy rice with the sweet mango.


Peanut butter banana soft serve with cereal for crunch

Best bite: ….The whole dang thing. Except the last bite.


Dried figs with Greek yogurt {recycled photo}

Best bite: What you see above— lots of Greek yogurt and a nibble of the dried fig.

Describing all these perfect bites is making my mouth water.

Happy Wednesday!

So tell me:

What is your perfect bite?

How do you feel about Tuesday’s?

It’s All About Perspective + Ab Workout


I hope everyone had a lovely Labor Day and a nice three day weekend if you had the day off! We had a relaxing time at home, which involved some delicious baked goods, movies, exercise, and quality family time. I’m one of the lucky ducks that doesn’t start school until next Monday, so I’m still a free bird this week. I am trying to get some college essay stuff under my belt, but the inspiration is still falling in place. Ya can’t force a story that expresses yourself, right? I’ve got some ideas though…

Some things have happened in the past year that have allowed me to find a new perspective on certain aspects of life.  For instance, my rocky journey with food and fitness has brought me to focus more on whole health–physical, mental, and spiritual. Not just physical.

Even my struggle with insomnia a couple weeks ago has made me a more grateful, positive person. I don’t exactly know how, but perhaps that was just God’s way of helping me out a bit 😉 I think not being able to sleep put me in such a Negative Nancy mood, and that just spiraled into more sleeplessness. The less I moped and felt sorry for myself, the better I was able to sleep. I am thankful for every good night’s rest I am given! The experience has also helped me just feel more and value others’ experiences, no matter how small they seem. I’m reading the content of blogs more thoroughly, and I connect with people more closely during conversation. Kelly Clarkson was right–what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger!

The real inspiration for all this personal talk is actually an email titled “It’s all about perspective” that my uncle sent us. It was a short, sweet, and hilarious dialogue between him and his 2.5-year-old daughter, who we call CC:

Screen Shot 2013-09-02 at 8.04.22 PM

I was CRACKING UP. Life through a 2.5-year-old’s eyes.


My mom cooked up some delicious food yesterday including potatoes, chicken, sautéed onions, and pesto rice. For lunch, I decided to assemble a brunch-y hash of sorts:


Sautéed red potatoes, caramelized onions, wilted spinach, and two sunny-side up eggs. Sriracha added post-photo-snap 🙂


Yesterday I went back to the usual 20 minutes on the elliptical, because my knees are feelin’ it from running more than usual. Does that mean I’m doing something wrong? Maybe. I gotta check with some of my trackie friends. Anyway, my arms and abs were sore from Sunday, and my legs were actually still sore too. So I went with this workout from Julie that would keep me moving from one exercise to the next. I was pooped by the end (actually even by the end of round 5)!

I tried another new-to-me Chobani flavor afterwards:


Passion fruit

I’ve never even had a real passion fruit before, but it was tasty! I added cereal on top for crunch of course. I also added more plain yogurt when I got to the bottom of the container because there was more fruit left. No wastin’ here!


Last night’s meal hit the spot!


Chicken, pesto rice, and caramelized onions.

I also had a side salad of spinach and balsamic vinaigrette for some produce.

For dessert:


Reheated coconut banana muffin! Yum.

In my post yesterday, I mentioned that I did some burnin’ ab work on Sunday, so I decided to share what I did! I called it the ’13 Ab Workout because there are 13 exercises (if you count right and left side plank separately) and it’s 2013. Lame, I know, but I’m not known for having cool ideas anyway. This was also my first time making a workout on Pic Monkey too. It was fun!

2013 abs

Here are demonstrations of the exercises:

Sitting toe tap crunches

Weighted Russian twists

Spiderman plank


Ankle touches

Clock abs

Mountain climbers

Butterfly situps

Plank cross knee tucks

Side plank hip lifts

Burpee pushups


Hope you love (or despise 😉 ) it!

I also made some desserts last night for la famiglia:


Fruit “snow” for mom. Just blended up frozen fruit in a food processor and voila!


That would be banana s’mores. Ben was my taste tester (ok, I had a bite too upon Ben’s urging) and they were delicious! Too sweet for me, but I’m sure that could be fixed. Maybe I’ll post the recipe later!

Have a terrific Tuesday!

So tell me: Is there anything you’ve experienced that has changed your perspective? What did you do this weekend? 

Lucky Charms on My Smoothie

I can’t believe it’s already past 5 PM!

Thank God for this blessed Tuesday! I woke up a little earlier to go to a (pointless) ENT appointment, and then a couple hours later (plus a nap in between) it was time to go to my first ballet class of the year. My muscles are definitely not used to all that turnout. Oof.

Then of course, there’s the food I’ve been eating!

Last Night’s Snack

It was sweet, colorful, and something I should make for St. Patrick’s Day:


Green smoothie with LUCKY CHARMS sprinkled on top! This smoothie had milk, frozen fruit, protein powder, and some spinach (you CANNOT taste it at all–pinky promise).

Lucky Charms are my guilty pleasure, and I often contemplate buying a box whenever I see them on the shelves. Then I turn down the idea because I want to be “mature.” But then again, if I look like I’m 12 years old, who would care if I bought them anyway?



Sunflower seed butter and peach jam sandwich + banana (+ a glass o’ milk on the side)


…Was eaten at the dance studio and included this awesome sandwich:


Avocado and smoked salmon on sunflower seed bread. So good.

Sorry if it smelled like fish in the dressing room, ladies. But not that sorry 😉

I think I am speaking truthfully when I say that all the dance company girls are PUMPED about the repertoire we’re learning right now. That’s always a great way to start off the year. The piece is called Spells, choreographed by Michael Foley, and one of our teachers is re-staging it. The dance makes us feel intense, a little dark, a little mysterious, and just cool. I can’t show any of the piece on the blog for copyright reasons, but you can check out this Youtube video to get a sense of Michael Foley’s style!

Another day of bootcamp awaits tomorrow. I’m so excited to be with all the dance company girls, and I’ll probably introduce their lovely faces on Thursday after our first formal get-together.

Have a lovely evening!

So tell me: Do you like Lucky Charms? Any delicious eats today? How was your Tuesday?