WIAW: 2nd week of school

It’s WIAW time again. I skipped it last week, even though I planned to attend the party with a back-to-school edition. So instead, I’m back with a second week of school edition.

My back-to-work routine has gone from non-existant to nearly intact. I hit the gym each morning this week, and I got up the first time my alarm went off each morning! This is unheard of. I don’t want to jinx myself, but I think I am actually going to stick to it this time.

Pre-gym was an un-pictured  cliff kids bar. After returning home and showering I pulled out my nearly empty jar of my absolute favorite peanut butter.

Luckily, Trader Joe’s is opening soon, so I’ll be able to purchase as many of these as my heart desires. Inside went hot oats, cinnamon, brown sugar and chia seeds.

This was my first OIAJ (oat in a jar) experience. Mmmm magical.

Lunch was a Hugh Jass salad with spinach, avocado, onion, tomato, bell pepper and black beans.

Work snacks included celery w/smoked tomato basil hummus, grapes, and an apple that tasted more like a pear.

While cooking dinner, I nibbled on some zucchini chips (recipe tomorrow).

Dinner was a diversion from the meal plan,

as fish didn’t sound good, and ground turkey tacos sounded better.

I used to cut up all my veggies, and have them in nice little rows, so I could assemble perfect bite soft tacos.

But arranging the veggies takes longer than necessary, so I’ve started throwing all veggies into a tupperwear container and mixing them up.
After assembling my tacos I throw a handful or two of spinach on top and voila, salad for lunch tomorrow.

What is the best thing you ate today?

I’ve got spirit

yes I do

I’ve got spirit

how ’bout you!?!

Today I relieved my high school cheerleading career* and cheered on the students in the staff vs. student basketball game.

Complete with a real middle school cheerleading uniform, say waaaaaa!?! (note the obnoxiously large sequined bow. also note the pasty skin in desperate need of some sun).

Yes, I really am that awesome. I did, however, come to the painful realization that I am no longer as limber as I was at 17, and kicks and jumps were not as high as they once were. I am also in need of an ice pack.

Yes, you want me cheering for your team. Look at my energy! (don’t worry, all individuals pictured are staff, not students)

*my career lasted one year, but it was tons of fun.

At one point there was even a flash mob. All week the staff tirelessly trained to pull together this fun surprise for the students. It was a blast.

While I did rock the middle school cheerleading uniform. I didn’t wear it all day.

And on that note, here is your Fashion Friday update

Monday (holy blur, sorry about that)

Cardi: Banana Republic, Shirt: Tommy Hillfiger, Pants: The Limited (Drew fit), shoes: Jessica Simpson wedges

Tuesday

Scarf: The Rack, top: Ralph Lauren, tank: Lady Hathaway via Costco (can Costco pleeeeease start carrying these again?), pants: Express, shoes: Naturalizer (and I totally forgot my socks in gym bag, grr!)

Wednesday

Sweater: Mossimo at Target, skirt: Express, tights: HUE (my favorite!), boots: Impo at DSW (and they have stretch in them – perfect for fitting over jeans! Or, ya know, large calf muscles.)

Thursday

Sweater: Mossimo at Target, short sleeve blazer thing: JKLA from Ross, Pants: Express, Shoes: Naturalizer

Friday

Cardi: Halogen, polka dot top: The Rack, belt: ?, from The Rack, jeans: 7 for all Mankind, shoes: Sam & Libby (the pic where I was looking at the camera was even more blurry. Woops!)

After the staff vs. student basketball game I was all hyped up and ready to do something fun, like take a nap. But today was both payday and new coupon day at Costco. After a quick trip for the necessities the hubs and I came home to find dinner ready. I think I will make the Monday Meal Plan to designate Libb to make Friday meals from now on!

On tonight’s menu: Black Bean Polenta Casserole

We subbed a can of diced green chiles for the bell pepper, (all we had), and a mixture of pepperjack and cheddar instead of just cheddar.

Mmmm melty cheese + black beans.

This recipe was chalk full of Leila friendly ingredients: cheese, polenta, onions, cumin…however, when we make it again I would mix everything together instead of layering the dish. Libb, of course, wanted to add bacon into the mix.

Earlier eats included a 2% vanilla bean latte from the Service Station, conveniently located inside my gym. My deal with myself is that if I make it to the gym all 5 workdays then I treat myself to Latte Friday. I’m proud to say I made it all 5 this week!

I paired my latte with dark chocolate oats. Yes, you read that correctly. Better Oats makes a dark chocolate mixture called Lavish. I got a little overzealous at the last Rosauers cereal sale and stocked up on these bad boys, only to discover they weren’t as amazing as I had hoped. Luckily, if you add a dollop of peanut butter the oats are reminiscent of a no-bake cookie (a.k.a. elephant poop), and that makes me very happy. The cookie, not the poop.

For lunch I enjoyed another 50% off Amy’s meal!

This pasta was delicious! I really need to figure out the correct spice to tomato ratio for Amy’s sauce. It was, dare I say, perfect. Amy never lets me down. My side of apple slices just couldn’t compete, and were therefore not photographed.

Or, ya know, I forgot my camera when I went to lunch.

Snacks included your standard nanner and another amazing scone.

Seriously, 6 days later and these scones are still just amazing as day one. Yes, I individually wrapped them and froze them, but a lot of the time when I defrost my baked goods they lose their moisture. Not these babies. So, please, do yourself a favor and make these scones.

I’m currently watching a little BBC Life action (insects & bugs), and trying to rest my poor legs. I wonder if I can book a last minute massage for tomorrow morning…

What exercise goal did you accomplish this week?

Did you try a new recipe this week? How did it turn out?

Goodnight moon

goodnight stars, goodnight air

goodnight noises everywhere

As a child Good Night Moon was my favorite book. And although I no longer have the soothing voice of my mother reading me a bedtime story, I am still a fan of the nightly routine of reading.

Usually turning the pages while in a horizontal position will send the message to my brain that it is time to go to sleep. However, as of late I have been having quite the issue getting my daily zzz’s. My body is exhausted, but my mind doesn’t want to play along.

At first I attributed it to eating dinner too late, which would ultimately result in my stomach not being settled enough for slumber. We started eating dinner earlier, but it didn’t make a lick of difference. Then I tried a variety of herbal teas, but they only resulted in me waking up multiple times to pee. Then I thought maybe increasing the intensity of my work outs might help. It didn’t. (The hubs tried to get me to take a sleeping pill, but those, and all p.m. medicines, affect me too much the following morning).

So every night I laid there, wide awake, tossing and turning, unable to get a good night’s rest. In fact, the two weeks leading up to Spring Break I only made it to the gym on Monday and skipped the rest of the week in favor of my snooze button.

But last night I got a good nights rest. So good, in fact, upon waking at 5:04 a.m. I reset my alarm for 6:30 and fell promptly back to sleep. This time snooze didn’t win out over the gym because of lack of sleep, it won because I was enjoying my sleep so much!

Ahhh it was glorious. And I think it was directly related to the 4 mile run I pounded out yesterday morning. Running just exhausts my entire body, and I don’t know why I don’t do it more often. Oh wait, it is because in the early morning hours I need to utilize the dreadmill, rather than the great outdoors.

But the gym doesn’t have to be completely boring. Here is a smattering of amusing things I’ve seen over the past few weeks:

  • Guy walking on the treadmill wearing very large and full backpacking gear.
  • Guy thinking he is singing in his head, when in reality he is mumbling and moaning the songs on his iPod. At first I thought a cat was in heat.
  • Very old lady in flashdance attire and flashy 80’s makeup
  • Guy crabwalking and doing other quite difficult moves on the treadmill. (I was actually quite impressed with his mad skills, I would have fallen off!)
  • Guy doing kickboxing? Zumba? Billy Blanks Tao Bo? (not positive what work out it was, but he was jumping back and forth and boxing and then jumping to face the opposite wall to do the same thing) in the stretching room to a DVD playing on his laptop. This one perplexed me the most, why didn’t he do the workout DVD at home?
  • And finally, the Czech President stealing a pen (I watch CNN while working out). I literally laughed out loud, and got quite a few looks, when I saw this.

What is the oddest thing you’ve seen at the gym?

Do you have any go-to tricks to help you fall asleep?