Thursday, July 31, 2014

Peak of summer...

Hey, all!  Sorry for the delay.  My camera decided it wants to be fussy on me this week, so I had to rely on my ole phone camera to take most of the photos on here.  I was trying to get it up and running before I posted again, but since I'm having no luck I thought I'd just post away before it gets to be mid-AugustJ  hahahahaha  Hope ya don't mind.

Tuesday Recap:

So I had attempted to do these two 'smaller' workouts since I wasn't too much in the mood for a 'tougher' full body workout.  Ummm...WRONG-O!  These were both tough on their own, but together made for a KILLER workout.  My legs and shoulders were BURNIN for a looooonnnnnggggg time after this duo...phew!

9:00:  Breakfast- Flax pancake with almond butter & syrup

12:30pm:  Lunch- Tuna lettuce wrap & pickle

2:30pm:  Snack - 1/2 KIND bar 
Which I shared with my BFF while we made, ahem, Halloween craftsJ  Not even kidding.

BEST burger we've made in a looonnngggg time!  The hummus makes the burger SUPER moist, while the sauce (which we made with mayo, lemon juice & chipotle garlic powder) and caramelized onions put it over the TOP!  You MUST try this while grill season is in its prime.

And speaking of prime, corn on the cob is in its 'doesn't even need butter' stage...swoooooooon!  

Wednesday Recap:

9:30am:  Breakfast- Peanut butter & Jelly oatmeal
The natural PB & blueberry jelly coming directly from Emery Farms, giving this oatmeal a little extra seasonal kick.  Yum.

Workout:  Power Yoga

12:30pm:  Lunch- KIND bar
This time a WHOLE one to myselfJ  We had to fuel up a bit before we went out to enjoy the unseasonably cool weather here in Jersey.  We headed out to Russo's Orchard Lane Farm in Chesterfield for some peach pickin...
I mean, I'm sure most people are used to (and um, possibly enjoy??) 'picking your own' in the blazing heat of summer...but ummmm, not meJ  I made sure the ole thermometer wasn't going to cross 85 before we headed outJ

Russo's is family owned and after a visit to the country store, the owner's grandson hopped on a golf cart to take us out to the peach trees.  We were left with a basket, wagon and instructions that we needed to pick 10 pounds which I GASPED, but felt bad since he took us all the way out there AND we were the only ones out there while he had to sit around waiting for us.  So we picked and picked...

And picked ourselves 17 pounds.
You can't make this stuff upJ  Me thinks Katie & I are going to be VERY busy putting these to use before they go badJ

Once we headed back to the little country store to pay for the SEVENTEEN POUNDS OF PEACHES, I picked up a small bottle of this peach cider to enjoy on the way home...
Peach Cider Bottles
Made at Circle M Farms in Salem, NJ, this 90% peach juice cider was SOOOOOOOO sweet & refreshing and tasted of pure, fresh summer.  Only problem?  The small bottle came with a 300-calorie nutrition label.  I drank 1/2 and called it my snack for the afternoon.   It was TOUGH to stop at half, let me tell ya!  It was just soooooooooooo good.

5:30pm:  Dinner- Whipped Basil Ricotta pasta with fresh tomatoes
Oooooooooooo.Mmmmmmmmmm.Gggggggggggg.  This may have been one of my most favorite & best dishes in the last few weeks, using even MORE of those fresh tastes of summer.

It started with these GORGEOUS tomatoes that I had picked up from a roadside stand last week.  How pretty are they?  They were just SPEAKING to me from the refrigerator shelf...

And in an attempt to slice them quick, I tried the new 'life hack' trick of putting a few (a few too many in that pic!) between 2 plates and slicing with a serrated knife right through the pack...

It definitely works better with maybe a handful of tomatoes at a time, but when all was said and done, it only took me about three minutes to slice ALL of them.  A great time saver.

I sauteed the tomatoes with a drizzle of olive oil and 4 diced garlic cloves for about 10 minutes or so...

...and they broke down into a glorious sauce...

While the tomatoes were cooking, I boiled up some pasta (for 7 minutes) and made the quick Whipped basil ricotta.
Into the food processor went:
  • 1 cup part-skim ricotta
  • 2 handfuls fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • salt & pepper
Give it a quick whirl and you are good to go...

Once the pasta was cooked, I tossed it with the basil ricotta...

...and covered with the tomatoes...
I can't even TELL you how good this was.  The tomatoes were just sooooooooo sweet and saucy, their sweet bites sent the basil ricotta to stratospheric heights of deliciousness.  And best of all?  It all came together in under 20 minutes.  Gotta love THAT the most, huh?

8:00pm:  Dessert- Skinny Mini peach crisps
These came together in a blink and were JUST enough to satisfy your sweet tooth.  My only addition to the recipe was a little nutmeg in both the peaches & the toppings AND a pinch of sea salt in the crisp.  It always works a little magic.

Alright, well I should have something fun to show you tomorrow since I have a really fun event tonight that's definitely not in the normJ  Not to mention Katie & I are gonna start putting those peaches to workJ  

Have a great Thursday!  

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Trip to Fantasyland and back...

Hey, all!  Hope you guys had a super weekend!  I didn't visit here yesterday since I figured I didn't have much to show you, seeing as our weekend felt like it was more running around than foodJ  (shocker, I knowJ)  And then around 10 o'clock last night I remembered I had 2 GREAT things to show you...starting with that often teased and finally a reality trip to Emery Berry Patch in New Egypt for some blueberry picking...

...on what was an absolutly GORGEOUS day in the Garden state!
Emery's takes you on a little hayride out to the blueberry patch where you can pick till your hearts content (they also provide the 'picking buckets').  My Mom & I found this fascinating since neither of us had ever seen blueberries 'in the wild'J  Definitely a fun experience...especially on a NOT TOO HOT day in JulyJ
(Although ONE degree hotter and it would have been enjoyable for no one.  Just sayingJ)

BUT the REAL winner of the day was a trip HERE!  (right on Route 539)
How cute is THAT place???  Retro + Ice cream = SIGN ME UP!

And all while you listen to the tunes of "Johnny Angel" & "Boy from New York City," you can mull over your selection...which is A LOT!  TK'S Ice Cream had about 9,000 varieties and options to choose from.  Every other second I was going "Oh, hot waffles and ice cream!"  "Oh, ice cream sandwiches made on fresh peanut butter cookies!", ect.

But my pick was chosen at the last second from when I got up to the window and saw a sign for "Crunchi cream."  Say what???  
After the girl explained it was toppings added INTO the swirled soft ice cream, I was SOLD (you know I love me some texture!  It's what makes the world go roundJ)

And I was SOOOOOOOOOOOO excited to notice the JIMMIES were not just on the outside of the cone, but swirled allllllll the way throughout.  Ummmm....THAT's how you do it! much as I loved my jimmies, it was only after the fact that I was kicking myself since mini Reese's pieces were at the top of the blend-in listJ  My brain couldn't compute that one quick enough at the window...but make no mistake, it WILL be happening at some point within the next summer monthJ

ANNNNYYYWAY, thought you'd enjoy that little trip back to Fantasyland known as the weekend, before heading back into the reality of MONDAY...

Monday Recap:

9:00am:  Flax pancake with almond butter & syrup

And can I just tell you how I did an ACV shot with ORANGE JUICE yesterday (rather than the ole mango/pineapple).  OMG...NOT pleasant in the SLIGHTEST.  Shudder...

12:30pm:  Lunch- 

3:30pm:  Snack- "Tone it up" Smoothie

6:00pm:  Dinner- Guacamole Club Salad

Workout:  Power Yoga
Not only did I miss my first class with my usual favorite Monday teacher, BUT I drove out to a different fitness center when I found out my OTHER (Wednesday) favorite teacher teaches in Princeton on Monday night....only to get there and it to be a sub.  GRRRRRRRRR!!!  Not that I didn't still like the class and get a great workout from a great instructor...but OH MAN that was a bummer when I walked in.  You know how that is....I mean, right??

Oh well...Namaste.

So it is straight up FALL in NJ today!  The high for the day is 79 and the breeze is making it feel BEYOND glorious.  Hoping to get Katie out for some activity today and I MIGHT have a good idea of what to doJ

Have a great Tuesday!!

Friday, July 25, 2014


Thursday Recap:

Workout:  Tone it Up Kettlebell Workout + Cardio Kickboxing class 
Ummmmm....who thought this would be a good idea???  Oh...that's right: my own self-induced torture, as both were KILLERS in their own right.  Holy hell, I'm still feelin this combo!

8:30am:  Breakfast- Banana Smoothie  (post-kettlebell/pre-kickboxing class)

11:30am:  Snack- Iced Oatmeal Raisin Luna bar
I liked this flavor so much that I just housed another one as I typed thisJ

And after that, that's where the fun began as we headed off to the Jersey Shore last night to celebrate Nona's birthday!

We DID have a lunch of Chinese food (that was just WAY too unphotogenic for me to share...remind me never to get shrimp in lobster sauce again, K??),  but neither of us could resist the good smells of the ole boardwalk and just HAD to split a sausage sandwich with fresh lemonade...yum!

After that, we headed to the aquarium and then to my shock of all shocks:  Katie's new love for rides!!!

You MAY remember last year's EXTREMELY unsuccessful attempt...

...but this year, my girl gave Nona QUITE the birthday surprise and attacked all those rides with a furyJ

All capped off with the FREE Thursday night firework display right from Point Pleasant beach.  I mean, does it get better than that???

And since it was a "classic shore night," I DEFINITELY had to capped off the night with a CLASSIC shore treat from Kohr's Ice Cream...aka. The BEST custard on the boardwalk!  I LOVEEEEE me some custard & jimmies!
Does anywhere else in the country call these Jimmies???  Even Scott, who grew up about 45 minutes north of here, never heard of it.  Psht!  Jimmies ALL. THE. WAY!

Well, that was a quick blog, but I had to try to get this up before I ran out the door again for some yoga and my THIRD attempt to take Katie blueberry pickingJ  Hope you guys have some great plans for the weekend!  

Have a great one!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Hidden treasure....

Wednesday Recap:

9:30am:  Breakfast- Protein Pancake with peanut butter & maple

Morning Workout:  Power Yoga

1:00pm:  Lunch- Smoothie in a bowl
In the mix:

3:00pm:  Snack- 8 chocolate covered almonds

5:00pm:  Dinner- Basil Tomato Zucchini Soup with a 'hidden treasure'
I wish I could tell you this was made with fresh Jersey tomatoes...but we already used up our supply for the weekJ  Instead I sauteed a diced onion and 2 cloves of garlic before adding:

 The zucchini was a last minute addition since it was lingering in my fridge and I didn't want it to go bad, so I thought "Why not?"

Gave the soup lots more texture not to mention tons of nutrition.  I let the soup come to a boil and then lowered it to a simmer for about 30 minutes. 

I ladled the soup into the bowl, but not before adding the 'hidden treasure':  A blend of ricotta & grated cheese!  YUM!  
You could just add the ricotta and grated cheese to the soup, but I just love digging in and finding the little cold pocket of cheese.  

And even though soup wasn't SUPER appropriate for the end of July, Katie was happy to see it return to the menu and proclaimed "I LOVE SOUP!"J 

Evening Workout:  Body Jam
So fun last night...especially since I was THISCLOSE to skipping out.  

8:00pm:  Snack- Roasted Chickpeas & Cheese
Katie nearly ate my entire snack, bouncing around the house saying "I LOVE CHICKPEAS!"

Let's just say I ain't hatin on this stage where she's "LOVING" everything.  Don't even get me started about when she told me "I LOVE CHRISTMAS!"

Stick a fork in me.  I was DONE!

Well, today's a special day since it's Nona's birthday!  We still don't know how we're celebrating, but I'm sure it will involve TREATSJ

Have a great Thursday!
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