Easy brunch recipe & a little of the weekend

Good Morning!

Aaron and I are going to Kennywood a little later today. It’s my company’s picnic and the weather looks like it’s going to be great! I’m not sure why I’m up at 7 AM when I stayed up too late last night making these:

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They weren’t quite finished in that picture. I’ll update you on why I was making a million cake pops in a post very soon. I have to work on my master plan first.

Anyway, last weekend we had our friends Gina and Jason over for a little brunch on Saturday. Apparently once you get married, this is what you do.

I think I was MADE to be married.

We had a baked French toast casserole (Elie Krieger), quiche (concocted by me and the constraints of my refrigerator) and a berry salad made by Aaron:

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I also made salad dressing with orange muscat champagne vinegar, honey, poppy seeds, olive oil, salt and pepper.

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Blueberry – Almond French Toast Bake

Serves 4

Original here

   * Cooking spray

* 8 slices whole-wheat bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (I used TJ’s WW Tuscan Pane)

   * 4 large eggs

   * 4 large egg whites

   * 1 cups 1 percent lowfat milk

   * 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

   * 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

   * 1/3 cup pure maple syrup

   * 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries

   * 1/3 cup sliced almonds

   * 2 tablespoons raw sugar

Spray a square baking pan (8 x 8 or 9 x 9) with cooking spray. Arrange the bread in a single layer in the baking pan. Whisk together the eggs, egg whites, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and maple syrup. Pour the egg mixture over the bread in the pan, spreading it around so the liquid saturates the bread. Scatter the blueberries evenly on top and sprinkle with the almonds and sugar. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Uncover the baking pan and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Serve warm or room temperature.

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The blueberry almond French toast tastes great and it’s really easy and fairly healthy. I’ve made it twice now. Last time I made it in a 13 x 9 inch pan and used a bag of frozen berries. I think I liked the frozen berries even more. It added a little more liquid. Also, assembling brunch items the night before is awesome.

This past Friday night, Aaron and I stopped at the North Side farmer’s market again. They had some live hip hop on the stage. Funny.

We picked up the following:

  • 3 eggplants $2
  • 1 cantaloupe $2
  • 6 tomatoes $3.50
  • 2 zucchini $1
  • pint of blackberries $3

Once home, I was STARVING so we grilled a bunch of veggies and two chicken breasts marinated in TJ’s Island Soyaki marinade. I love that stuff. I also love slightly burnt grilled veggies.

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Aaron grilled while I sat inside reading blogs and then eventually came outside to photograph.

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We finished that whole entire plate of food! 2 yellow squash, 1 onion, 1 eggplant plus 2 chicken breasts. I ate half a piece of chicken and probably half that stack of veggies then I was hungry 30 minutes later and ate something else.

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Yesterday morning, I got up, messed around on the internet for too long, got back in bed for a little while longer and then finally drove down to the trail to conquer 8 miles. As soon as I got out of the car, my garmin battery died! NO! How did I ever function before I had that thing? I almost threw in the towel and pushed the run back until Monday but then decided to just do it thanks to a pep talk from Aaron. I set the stop watch on my ipod and just ran for 1 hour 20 minutes. I figured (hoped) that I would run at least 10 minute miles so 1 hour 20 minutes would equal 8.

Who knows what distance I actually ran but whatever. I felt good about it. It was a great little run with no run-ins with crazy people and nice, cool weather. I drank two bottles of water with 1/2 cup orange juice mixed into each throughout the run. That seems to help sustain my energy levels. Next weekend is 9 miles! woooo

Alright time to go get some more coffee and watch some Good Morning America. Have a nice, restful Sunday!

Chaturanga on the bedroom floor and various wedding updates.

There is a lot of noise going on outside of my bedroom. It hits 40 degrees and suddenly people are outside all night again making noise. Lame. Moving out of Bloomfield in 158 days! In case you’re wondering, that’s also the number of days until my wedding. Wooo!

Anyway, I haven’t blogged since Thursday or Friday sooo the weekend went like this…

Friday after work I went to Whole Foods and dealt with that madness for a little longer than planned because I love grocery stores and ended up buying way more than I planned… Ohh well. I could have a worse shopping addiction. Aaron and I had plans of making shrimp fajitas for dinner Friday night. He came over around 7 and we got to work deveining shrimp which is pretty freaking gross. I deveined about half than started to get horribly disgusted so Aaron took over. He doesn’t want me to stop eating seafood too… We sauteed a whole onion and two whole bell peppers, marinated the shrimp in an organic fajita seasoning packet and then cooked it all together until the shrimp were opaque. I also heated up a can of vegetarian refried pinto bins and cut up some grape tomatoes and lime. We also had some Pace Salsa on the side which I received from Foodbuzz to sample as part of their Tastemakers program. It was Pace Chunky Salsa in mild. The salsa is pretty good — simple ingredients and I like that it’s not too thick but I’m definitely not a mild salsa person. Bring on the spice. But regardless, free salsa, thank you Pace!

I had my fajita on an Ezekial sprouted grain wrap and Aaron had his on two whole wheat wraps.

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My fajita plus we both just started eating the filling right out of the pan.
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Afterward, Aaron did the dishes:
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We went to bed early Friday night because Aaron was feeling a little sickly and we’re old.

Saturday we were so productive. Wedding things that were accomplished:

  • Being VERY displeased with the service at the Mens Warehouse outside of Ross Park Mall looking for tuxes. DON’T GO THERE. They’re rude and condescending.
  • Being much happier with the service at Tuxedo Junction at Ross Park Mall.
  • Picking out tuxes for the wedding — Aaron got fitted and we’re both pleased with the tux.
  • Eating at Brueggers before attempting to register at Target for the wedding/bridal shower.

We both had the half and half thing. I had half a veggie sandwich on a whole wheat bagel and half a side salad.

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Aaron had half of a bacon/turkey sandwich and some white bean chili:
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Then we registered. It was a good time though the scanner gun sort of stopped working halfway through. We registered for 37 things and decided Target is going to be the only place we’re registering. Everyone keeps recommending Bed Bath and Beyond but I seriously dislike that store. Not sure why.
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We also checked out diy wedding invitations and I think we decided on doing that. Target had some nice ones. I think we’re going to use these, have them printed at kinkos or some other printing place (instead of fighting with a printer at home) and then punching holes in the top and tying on our own ribbon. It’ll end up saving us about $150 and they’re really good quality!

  • After registering, we went and picked out and purchased our wedding bands! Aaron’s was engraved with Aaron & Pam 6/26/10. Mine was too narrow to be engraved but I love it!   

Sunday morning, Aaron had to be at church at 8 to practice with the band so I headed to the gym and ran three quick (for me) miles and then met him at church at 10:30. Afterward, we went to Pamela’s in the Strip District for breakfast. This was my second time going there. The first time was Aaron and my first date. Unfortunately I don’t really like their food. It’s typical greasy, diner food which isn’t really my thing. Aaron likes it though.

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He had the morning after special or something. Eggs, bacon and pancakes. I’m not sure what they do to their pancakes to make them rough around the edges like that. Fry them?
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I had a veggie omelet which I only ate about 1/4 of. It had mushrooms and peppers inside and wasn’t good so I didn’t really eat much of it. Sigh wasted food.
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I was hungry when I got home so I made more food. Leftover fajita and the side salad that I didn’t eat from Brueggers Saturday.

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Sunday night Aaron and I watched the Shawshank Redemption which I had never seen but enjoyed very much! Good movie and totally kept my attention for the entire 2 hours and 20 minutes. I had off work today (bank holiday!) so I sat around drinking coffee in the morning and then started searching for a wedding photographer online. I found one that we both really like and she’s available and it fit into our budget! We’re going to sign the contract tomorrow. Her name is Jia and she has a beautiful website so check it out — JiaJia Photography. As part of the package, we also get an engagement session so we’re going to have moooore pictures of us. There will also be two photographers there the day of the wedding plus one at the rehearsal. Sweet!

The rest of the day was spent google chatting/napping/watching daytime tv and being super lazy. I napped twice. I fell asleep while watching a Hillary/Haylie Duff movie on MTV with no sound reading subtitles. I only have basic cable (like 20 channels) but for some reason get mtv with no sound. Yep.

I eventually got up long enough to do 1 and half 20 minute yoga downloads from yogadownload.com. I did Power Yoga #3 with Dave Farmar and about 10 minutes of a “vigorous” yoga for weight loss video. After hearing about Dave Farmar on a bunch of other blogs, I finally checked it out. I like him. He’s kind of funny. Talks a lot though. Anyway, yogadownload.com always has free 20 minute yoga videos to download or you can purchase longer ones.

Okay it’s almost 10:30 PM. Time for bed. Gym in the AM.

Goodnight!

Too much squash did me in.

Good Morning!

I didn’t get around to posting last night because I fell asleep at like 8:30! I was exhausted yesterday for some reason. I woke up naturally at 5 AM…with already over 8 hours of sleep.

These pictures are actually from Wednesday but I pretty much ate the exact same things Thursday so it doesn’t make much difference. Wow, the words definitely aren’t flowing this morning. I can’t seem to put sentences together yet…

Wednesday morning I went to the gym before work and did 3 miles at varying speeds on the treadmill.

1/2 cup oats for breakfast with PB, TJ’s High Fiber cereal and about a tablespoon of cinnamon under there. I hid it under the cereal because it’s kind of a ridiculous amount. I ate the apple around 11…
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At lunch, I walked over to the Strip District which is about a mile walk and got a few things. I found another kabocha squash at the Asian grocer!!! Also, that peanut butter sucks. Not good at all. It was on sale though and we’re still in a pumpkin shortage I guess so I made due with butternut squash puree.
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I also picked up a chobani and ate it with some butternut squash puree when I got back to the office:
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I got home and roasted the squash! Soo excited. Those things are good. I ate way too much of it though and felt ridiculous full then decided to have cereal afterward…bad move. Oh well. I didn’t eat ALL of this but probably about half…. The original squash was a three pounder. Oh you eat the skin too. Fiiiiber.
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Thursday morning I went to the gym and did 30 minutes on the sort of elliptical/stepper thing then got to work and had oatmeal for breakfast, did an hour long yoga class at lunch that was ridiculously intense and I couldn’t do half of the poses then had a sandwich and MORE squash for lunch..
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Okayyyy I have to go or else I’m going to miss the bus.

IT’S FRIDAY!!!!!

–Pam

New Year’s Eve Recap. Hey 2010.

Good Morning! It’s only Saturday! My next two weekends are long weekends too so I’m pretty excited. Aaron and I are off to Florida to visit my family on Friday so four day work week!

The nephews:

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I haven’t been posting much food lately so I figured I’d post a couple food pictures before the New Years Eve ones.

I’ve been eating oatmeal pretty much every day in the office (with Naturally More peanut butter which is awesome & cinnamon & sometimes pumpkin):

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I’ve also been subsisting on egg white & spinach sandwiches & soup. Egg whites in the microwave.

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Ooook so I left work at 3 PM New Year’s Eve, bussed home, got ready, read blogs, drank coffee from my new mini French press and then bussed back downtown for MOIP’s show.

A few not so great pictures for you:

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Aaron:
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They played two sets then we were out of there by 10:15 to get to my friend’s party in Swissvale.

Gina & Jason & sparkling pinot noir & Wheatus.

She was singing Teenage Dirtbag. <– I linked to the MP3.   


CAUSE I’M JUST A TEENAGE DIRTBAG BABY…

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Me and Aaron:
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mmhmm
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New Year’s Eve was lots of fun! I had three glasses of champagne I think plus a beer. Claire and I also discussed wedding planning because she’s getting married this Summer too.

I stayed in bed until about 11 AM Friday. Whoa! I haven’t slept in that late in a long time. Woke up, drank coffee, watched the rose parade sort of and sat around most of the day. Friday evening we headed out to Butler County to have dinner with Aaron’s parents and friend Cindy.
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Pork roast, corn, apple sauce, green beans, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and sauerkraut.

I LOVE sauerkraut and their pretty plates:
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Cindy and Aaron’s father:
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Dinner was great! Then we played some Punch Out on the Wii and chatted for a bit.

I went to bed late again last night and woke up around 8 this morning. Morning coffee in Aaron’s girly mug:
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Alright I’m going to sit around for a little while longer, drink some more coffee and wait for my laundry to dry.

Plans for today include:

  • Gym
  • Shopping for Christmas gifts for my Florida family
  • Grocery shop for lunch with friends tomorrow
  • Uhhh clean maybe

Alright I’m off. Have a nice Saturday!

Ring #2 & Mancakes

Hello! The rest of the weekend looked something like THIS.

Aaron came over and made pancakes.

Serious business:

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Not so serious:

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Pancakes:
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MANcakes:
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Sick and wanted veggies for lunch:

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Saturday evening, I went over to Aaron’s house and watched him assemble a futon while drinking green tea with a fan blowing on me so I didn’t start sweating. THE FEVER! I had to look presentable for dinner with the FUTURE IN-LAWS. WHAT? Diane & Jeff!
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There are two articles of plaid and two instruments visible here:
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For dinner, we drove A LOT into the Northern parts of PA and eventually made our way to the back woods of Mars, PA and then toward Grove City which is A DIFFERENT WORLD than Pittsburgh. We had dinner at the Iron Bridge Inn which was packed on a Saturday night but also quite enjoyable. The company may have been what made it most enjoyable. Also, Future Mother-in-Law got me/us a book about Real Food. She knows me already! Maybe she stumbled upon ye blog.

Anyway, I had a salad consisting of field greens, apples, cranberries, candied pecans and shrimp with raspberry vinaigrette. It was pretty delicious. Aaron wasn’t too fond of his entree but I bet he enjoyed the French onion soup. We’ll just assume because he didn’t actually say so. So that concludes Saturday night.

Onto Sunday. Church then my very last group then grocery shopping then pushing the limits and going for a run. My fever was gone! My body temperature was back down to 97ish and I was feeling pretty good .

I wore a hat & took a picture. Serious face:
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4 miles! The weather was great. I ran 2 miles then stopped in Giant Eagle and had some water at the water fountain then ran another mile then walked a minute then ran the last mile. My legs felt kind of weird after not running for an entire week! Overall my body felt okay. I’ve definitely lost some endurance over the last two weeks or so but I’m not trying to keep up the ability to run 10 miles during the Winter. Not so possible in Pittsburgh unless I was more hardcore and also purchased things like Under Armour and managed to get over my whole, “if it’s below 50 degrees, I’m not running outside” thing.

So running isn’t going to be my main form of exercise going forward. I’ll talk more about my new plan soon.

Sooo the Garmin hasn’t made an appearance recently.
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Sweaty and…scared or something.
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MONDAY! Back to work after three days off + the weekend! I managed to get through most of my e-mails and urgent matters and then Aaron picked me up from work. We went straight to Leechburg (trip #3) to SIGN THE PAPERS! We went over the contract, discussed some wedding details and signed. We’re officially booked for June 26, 2010! Yayayayayay.

Also, I have a new ring. Pretty, huh???
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I won’t go into details about why I’ve had two rings so far because it’s a LONG and personal story. All seems to be well now though.

TUESDAY…today.

Breakfast= pumpkin oats with peanut butter

Lunch=tuna on an Arnold’s Thin and a spinach salad then for dessert… pumpkin cake courtesy of Andy. Thanks Andy! It was delicious.
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Stuck to the foil! The frosting was great though.
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Afternoon snack was yogurt with an oats n’ honey bar and then….SPIN CLASS. It’s probably been a year since I’ve taken spinning. I’m going to be SORE tomorrow. It was great though. It was an hour long and I was DRIPPING sweat by the end. Awesome!

I got home, ate dinner, showered, then Aaron stopped over to say goodnight. He just left now so I’m getting to bed! 10:53 PM.

GOODNIGHT FRIENDS!

One-A-Day vitamins are not vegetarian.

Good Morning!

So I’ve been doing a whole lot of this the last few days:

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I created a shared calendar with Google Calendar for Aaron and I to share since we have so many events coming up plus about a million tasks to complete for the wedding.

On Thursday, I stopped at Giant Eagle to get some flu medicine and got their salad bar for lunch. I also got some zinc and vitamin c supplements. They DON’T SEEM TO BE WORKING since I’m still sick but it’s cool. This salad was amazing. I love artichokes!
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Hmm Wednesday and Thursday otherwise, were pretty uneventful. I was primarily just trying to nurse myself back to health and not go CRAZY sitting around being unproductive. I felt so lazy. Thursday I decided to take a walk because the weather was great and I was feeling better. I walked to Whole Foods, got a few things and then walked back. Bad idea. Once I got home, I felt horrible again. Lame.

Friday morning I went to the doctor’s (no H1N1) though they didn’t even test me… The doctor basically just said, you’ll be fine… I need to find a new doctor. I’m not a fan of this place at all. Anyway, Aaron stopped at my house after work and we went to his house to hang out. We made some split pea soup from a mix and discussed what we might want to do with the house once I move in! Troy Hill! Oh yes. Future home.

I love split pea soup.

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Aaron did his dishes:
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And I took pictures of myself:
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And was not helpful at all:
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Check out my future bike! I’m so excited! It’s an old Schwinn and was purchased for $5!
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Ring!
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I ended up going home around 11:30 last night and went right to bed (after reading a few blogs…) I woke up this morning at 7:30 and realized I felt sick again. AH. Headache. Sweaty. Gross. Hm. I ate oatmeal for breakfast and had some tea and then took an Advil and then took my temperature. Fever again. Hm.

So I’m lying on the couch yet again watching PBS cooking shows. All I wanted to do this weekend was go for a run because the weather is beautiful and perfect but it’s not looking very likely at this point. I’m hoping if I rest this morning, I’ll feel better this afternoon and then be healthy enough to go for a jog tomorrow! Hope hope hope.

Alright have a great Saturday!

Finish what??? Him.

Good Evening!

Halloween Weekend!

Thursday night..I think…Aaron and I went out in search of Halloween costume items for him.

Here is what we needed to create:

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Raiden from Mortal Kombat (minus the blue sash).

We went to Marshalls:

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Found a ladies robe:
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Took a hilarious video:

Then we went to Michael’s and got white duct tape and then went home and had soup, bread and salad for dinner.

Butternut squash soup + spinach/apple/craisin/almond salad + bread machine rolls:
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Hungry.

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Salad:

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Friday… I worked then came home and then met Sarah at her house and we went to a pumpkin party. Uhh. So it’s a party with all sorts of pumpkin themed foods:

Dawn’s plate:

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Pumpkin hummus??

Sarah:
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Dawn (who will probably be very unhappy that I posted this picture):
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The party was fun. It was pretty much a bunch of people that I don’t really know and then Sarah and Dawn. Social anxiety… FUN!

Saturday morning, I woke up sort of bright and early and Aaron and I went to North Park to run/bike together!

Driving:
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Aaron wore tights:
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It was raining…

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I wore the same shirt I always wear…
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I think this is post-run?? So we did one lap running together (Aaron ran FIVE miles without stopping!!!) How unfair huh?? It took me months to work my way up to five miles. Ah well. So we did the five miles with an average pace of about 9:30 then the second lap around the lake Aaron rode a bike (my future bike!) and I ran. I didn’t check my pace until the end but it was 10 minute miles. Sloooow but it was fun! We chatted most of the way. At one point Aaron started singing Earth Angel to me and a guy walked past laughing at us. Around mile 8.5-9, I was ready to be DONE. I didn’t feel like running anymore and I was cold, tired and it started raining more around then. I dragged myself along and we finished!

Total run time was 1 hour 38 minutes.

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This truck is LITTLE. I’m not a giant.

Ford truck man.
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It’s a Mazda.

We showered at our respective houses and then made pancakes and eggs.
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Pancakes with blueberry sauce (frozen blueberries and sugar) plus eggs with Swiss chard, onion and cheese:
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Aaron has mastered making pancakes.

Okay so that was Saturday up until party time. That’ll be a separate post. I also want to mention that there will soon be BIG changes to announce on the blog and I’m very excited. One of them will probably be discussed either tomorrow or Wednesday. Can’t wait!!!

Goodnight!