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SO excited for FALL!

Happy September!!!

I am SO excited that it’s the start of September, which means that fall is in the air! It’s my favorite season of all time and I am so excited for fall foliage, apples, pumpkins, crisp mornings, sweaters, apple cider, and halloween! There are just so many wonderful things to do in the fall weather, I just love harvest time!

But first, breakfast, on the porch of course!Overnight oats in a jar, mixed with frozen berrier, fresh blueberries, a drizzle of honey, and a sprinkle of go lean crunch! Annnd coffee of course!

I didn’t do too much to celebrate the start of September and autumn today because I was sitting in classes from 10am til 5:30pm! I scoped out some classes, but think I’ll just stick with one of the 4 I ended up sitting in on. The others just aren’t quite what I’m looking for. From yesterday’s listing, I’ve ruled out

  • Management and the Environment
  • Statistics
  • U.S. Climate policy (I’ll take yesterday’s climate change course instead)
  • Life Cycle Assessment Practicum
But I will take LCA! It’ll be a tough class, it counts as a capstone which means it’s like a master’s project course, but it’ll be a really valuable skill to have, so it’ll be worth it for sure. Hopefully I’ll come out being able to use the software to do life cycle assessments on different products for companies. And I really like the professor, he’s young and enthusiastic, and I took a class with him last spring.
Lunch was leftover yellow curry from the other night, over rice, mm!
After class I met up with some friends for a drink downtown and then headed over to Jeff’s cuz he cooked me dinner! Corn on the cob, kale chips, and baked eggplant with tomato sauce. It was delish!
But didn’t quite fill us up, plus we knew there was pizza arriving at my house soon for the big gathering of dudes for a fantasy football draft (I still don’t really know what this means). Either way, I had some pizza and another beer when we got to my house after dinner. And we might have topped off the night by getting rid of eating some leftover pancakes, smothered in PB!! Ooooh grad school and college-style eating! So hard to avoid. Ah well.
Us ladies sat out on our porch chatting away while the dudes did their football thing. It was lovely!
Now for some relaxation and perhaps a viewing of the daily show (still haven’t accepted that I need to start doing work!! argh) before bedtime! Everyone else headed out to the bar, butttt I’m good with staying in tonight :)
On the docket for tomorrow: an early morning run, a meeting with my advisor, some course applications, student group fair, and TGIF party tomorrow night.
Gnight!
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Grill Time!

Tonight we had a wonderful little cookout on the back porch! Jeff drove up from New Haven, and I managed to round up dad and get him to come over to mom’s for some great food and fun together. Dad made cocktails for everyone – vodka tonics and gin and tonics went around. We munched on chips with double roasted salsa.Then I made up some bruschetta with farmer’s market tomatoes, basil from the porch, and mozzarella from Whole Foods. We had olives too, mmm. Then we got grillin with bell peppers, corn, and veggie burgers over the flame. 6 ears of corn in total! All got eaten :) There was broccoli too. I loaded my burger with pickles, tomatoes, ketchup, and grilled bell peppers. More munching and talking and it was dessert time!
Dad brought a wonderful watermelon and I picked up some special dark chocolate from trader Joe’s. We also had a plate of almonds and dates to nibble on. Healthy dessert!
The watermelon was so juicy! This chocolate was similar to the one the other day, and was loaded with caramel and dark sea salt – I loved the saltiness! We sat out on the porch til close til 10 then called it a great night.

Jeff and I are heading out early tomorrow morning for a 5 night camping trip up North. Super excited! Blogging will be minimal from the wilderness though, but stay tuned!

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Driving back to Boston

Whew, it’s been a long day in the car! We drove from DC to Boston, with a short stop in New Haven to unload some things into my apartment, get my camping gear, and say hello to Jeff over dinner. 8+ hours in the car. Summary in photos:

Breakfast – 2 egg whites and pepper stripsGood bye apartment! totally LOADED car.. happens every time, no matter how hard I try to limit my junk…
Coffee with skim milk and sugar for the roadA variety of snacks for the long car ride, including a crisp red apple, blue berries, pretzel slims, bubbles, a banana slathered in almond butter, and an amazing bar of chocolate. All were shared with mom.This chocolate from TJ’s was awesome – dark chocolate with toffee, walnuts, and pecans pieces. It was buttery, salty, crunchy, yum. But, a little bummed to see soy and corn syrup in the ingredients. I ate far more than my share… Oh and a peanut butter cookie, from the batch I had made for Kath a while ago, I had put a few in the freezer for a time like this! We finally got to New Haven, unloaded, and met up with Jeff for dinner at Bar. Pizza! And they brew their own beer. I had an amber beer, and we got a mushroom, pepper, onion pizza. It was tasty and hit the spot, thin crust pizza so you gotta eat a bunch of pieces to fill up. Just enough. It was great to see Jeff briefly, and I’ll see him again on Saturday, yay! We hit the road again for the rest of the trip up to Boston, home! On the way it POURED out so we pulled over for a while, and as we waited for it to pass, a rainbow appeared! You can’t tell in this photo, but it was a full one. We finally made it back, unloaded the car, and now I’m ready for bed! It’s good to be HOME! :)

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Art & Pizza

For me good bye lunch today my supervisors took me to Rasika! It’s the highest rated (4.5 stars by 700 reviewers in Yelp) Indian restaurant in DC so I was pretty excited.  It was a fancy pants place, and was neatly decorated. I didn’t photograph anything, but had a few bites of two different appetizers, the Ragda Patties and Palak Chaat (this was SO good, like fried crispy spinach) and for the main course I had Ghobi Matar (cauliflower) with rice and naan. It was all very good! Our bill was also very large so it was really nice of them to all take me out to such a fancy lunch!

The rest of the day was jam packed with meetings. One of them was with a fellow intern who was interested in hearing more about my grad program. I think I rattled on for over 40 minutes! It was fun giving advice to someone still finishing undergrad in the same field. I guess I have a lot to say about my life path so far! Hopefully I gave her some good advice. Before leaving for work I ate a juicy peach, and a Fage yogurt. I knew we weere hitting up a museum event after work and that I’d be hungry if I didn’t eat til 8pm. Before leaving work I said good byes to two interns and my supervisor who won’t be there tomorrow. :-( I then headed off to meet mom at the Philips collection, a neat little museum. Cool flower sculpture outside! They had a cool little event going on so we got to hear a talk about the Kandinksy exhibit as we walked around and looked at his work. They had some tea samples, a guy playing the sitar, and other neat things.

My museum threshold is pretty low, so we were only there for about an hour and a half or so. It was good though! We then headed around the corner to Pizzeria Paradiso which I had heard was really good, and there’s always a line, so must be good! We had to wait about 30 minutes so we each had a beer. I had the weissbier and mom had a lager, both were good.

They served yummy olives at the table. We sat outside which was great – it’s (amazingly) quite pleasant and almost cool here today so it was a perfect night to sit out. We had a salad to start – goat cheese, pine nuts, mmmm. And then split a pizza. We must say it was a bit disappointing. I added salt and parm cheese to it, and I never add things to pizza! It just was missing something, and didn’t blow us away. Oh well! Despite not being blown away, we ate the whole thing!! 4 pieces each. Mmmm. 

Fun night!! Double dining out is never a great idea, but today I didn’t super stuff myself at either meal so that is good! Now organizing things for my last day of interning tomorrow! Good night!

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Dresses and Dining Out

Today’s lunch looked a lot like yesterday’s lunch and featured broccoli, green beans, and hidden underneath: tempeh hunks and corn.  I also ate the rest of my breakfast apple. 
I discovered a new tasty product at Trader Joe’s – these flavor packets, they’re delicious and have stevia instead of aspartame, woo! I met my mom after work at the Smithsonian American History Museum but I was pretty hungry. Fortunately she had some snacks in her bag from being out adventuring around the city all day. I ate half of this guy. We saw lots of neat things at the museum! The inaugural gowns of first ladies, Dorothy’s slippers, and Farrah’s bathing suit. We really only spent about 20 minutes in the museum – pathetic but we were pretty beat, from walking around all day to working all day, respectively. This is Michelle’s dress! 
We then headed out on the metro and walked to Georgetown for dinner. Ever since my dad and I had Indian out I’d been craving more! So we went to the same place.

We had a beer and veggie samosas to start, then had aloo chana masala (one of my favs) and a mixed veggie curry, and of course garlic naan (I had 3 big pieces, ops). They were all delicious!  And it’s great having mom in town visiting!!

It’s not a complete dining experience out with my parents unless we get dessert! We went to ice berry, my first time there, and I got a simple small dish of chocolate with almond slivers on the top. I didn’t eat the whole thing. Mom had a tasty banana strawberry smoothie. 
We came home and I whipped up a blueberry & strawberry bread for tomorrow’s potluck lunch at work. I had to make a number of substitutions as I didn’t want to buy sugar or anything really to make it, since I’m moving outta DC in a few days! So we’ll see how it turns out… I used this recipe from Eat, Live Run, a really neat blog. Hopefully it’ll come out tasty, it sure smells good in here!  A few little tasks, then it’s bed time for me and mom! 

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Weekend in Review

Well…. Friday night I finished up helping with some moving, and then we headed to Prime 16 for happy hour! Great beers. Then.. we came home and made PIZZA! We made two: peppers and onion pizza, and a mushroom and olive one. SO GOOD!! We love the recipe from Animal Vegetable Miracle.  It came out just as awesome as the last time we made pizza :) 

And then we went for FROYO in New Haven! Froyo World was pretty awesome. Banana cream, chocolate froyo, topped with an insane amount of candy toppings. I went overboard. No good. We kicked off Saturday morning bright and early and helped out friend move. Started with that cereal again – yum! Moving is never fun, but we banged it our in 3 hours and it was a good workout! Up and down many stairs. And great seeing our friend :) We then hit the road to Barrington RI to Jeff’s parents’ house. It was so beautiful there! They had a big cookout with friends and family, it was lovely! Jeff’s parents remembered my love of pumpkin beer and picked me up this! It was good, not as good as my favorite Shipyard Pumpkin head, but good!
After jet-skiing (my first time!), riding around in the boat, eating, drinking, and sunning, we headed up to Providence for Water Fire. It was awesome, I hadn’t been in years, and it was a lot of fun! We had a beer and some sweet potato fries at this neat brew pub: Trinity Brewhouse  and their hefeweizen was great! We kicked off this beautiful Sunday morning with a great breakfast: Fake bacon and egg sandwiches. MMMmm! Enjoyed out on the deck in the sunshine on the water! It’s hot here though. 
Now we have a few more hours here in paradise to enjoy!! Then it’s a late-night train back to DC :-/ Wahh.  C ya!

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Muggy Weekend

Last night I went to the gym after work and did:

–  ran 3 miles at 6.6 pace and walked in between each mile, capping it off with about 10 minutes of walking at incline 8
– 15 minutes on the elliptical
– arm strength training
foam rolling & stretching

Good workout! Then it was a quick dinner time: smoothie and a plate o’ veggies:
More super delicious corn-on-the-cob!! SO GOOD! After dinner I walked up to meet my New Haven roomie for a drink and to head to a party. We got glasses of sangria and munched on some chips n salsa at a Mexican place, then headed up to the party. We hadn’t been to a house party in so long! It’s a warm up for all the house parties we’ll be sure to have/attend in New Haven come the school year. I also munched on chips n salsa at the party .. couldn’t get enough! I had a few beers there – a wheat beer, a Magic Hat summer beer. Then we walked home, didn’t get home til almost 2am, ehhh. Oh well it was fun to see a bunch of school friends and I got to sleep in this morning :)

Breakfast featured a smoothie, round 2! In the mix:

1/4 c frozen mixed berries
1/4 c soy milk
1/2 c water
scoop of vanilla protein powder
1/2 banana
1/8 c Organic Cocoa powder (first time trying a cocoa powder in a smoothie!)

It was chocolately, fruity, and delicious! I topped it off with some Cville Cluster Granola.

So the cocoa powder was something I got from Swanson Foods for free and I said I would review it. You can write to them and ask to review some products for free!  Are you interested in getting some free Swanson Health Products goodies to review on your own blog? Then check out the Swanson Health Blog for all the details.

I liked the cocoa powder a lot 1) it’s organic! 2) I like that it’s only 55 cal per serving (1/4 c) and has 5 g protein and other good stuff like fiber, iron, and polyphenols. It added a nice chocolately flavor to my smoothie. I don’t think I would use the full 1/4 c serving – seems like about half of that made it chocolatey enough, and with the combo of berries, it was really good. I’m not sure what else I’ll use this for, perhaps in baking. But it’s great in smoothies, and probably in oatmeal too, I’ll have to try that out! All in all, this cocoa powder is great! And it was nice that it was FREE too! Thanks, Swanson!

Having some coffee right now too. Onwards with Saturday and a big to-do list.

  • Laundry
  • Trader Joe’s
  • Buy Amtrak ticket for next week’s trip
  • Send a birthday package
  • Gym
  • Clean the apt
  • Cut my bangs
  • Cancel gym membership
  • Update Resume

Probably won’t get to everything today, especially with the cookout I’m going to this afternoon, but I will try! C ya, HAPPY SATURDAY!!

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Thirsty Thursday

Lunch and afternoon snack:

Remember thirsty Thursdays back in college? It was a big party night back then! Now it’s sort of just another night, except tonight it was a throwback to the good ol’ days – a couple beers and a margarita! Sarted with a fire alarm in our building at 4:15pm, which led to us interns deciding to get a drink at the bar right outside our office while we waited for the drill to end. Since we were willing to sit outside (yeah bad idea) in this heat, the hostess gave us a round of free drinks! Yay. I had a shock top beer, very refreshing.

Then I was off to meet an old friend for drinks and dinner. We had a beer at one bar, then dinner and a margarita at Alero. Chips and salsa, and I had vegetable enchiladas that came with rice and beans and guac! Asked for noo cheese. They were really yummy and with real corn tortillas, mmm. Probably overate today in general … ops. But it was good :) Now I’m tired, good night!

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I want Mas

Last night we lounged at the Inn for a while out on the sunny veranda.  We enjoyed the 5pm wine and cheese again, too.

We hydrated with some ice tea before having a glass of the white wine.

I love their veranda! Sitting in rocking chairs in the sun is just wonderful. Apparently grapes are wonderful, too!

We began the evening at Beer Run, a bar that both sells beer and serves it, and you can buy a bottle and then pay a bottle fee to drink it there- pretty neat because they have a huuge variety of cool beers! I had the Roanoke summer beer and Jeff tried their stout. They were pretty good! We also had some potato wedges because Jeff needed a french fry fill. 

We then walked over to Mas Tapas, a really neat tapas place in Belmont, which is either part of or right next to Cville. It was a really cool atmosphere but I didn’t take any easily-uploadable photos (they’ll be uploaded in a different post, promise). We had a few glasses of their very delicious sangria and then shared 4 different tapas – patatas bravas of course, a bread platter with artichoke and goat cheese mash, a shrimp plate (for Jeff) and a a spanish tortilla of course. These were all reminisicnet of our trip to Spain back in March. Everything was delicious, except the patatas bravas were a bit too spicy for me and they didn’t have the typical sauce on them – ah well, all in all it was a fantastic place to dine and we really enjoyed it. We then came home and watched some crappy TV (extreme addictions?!) and went to bed. TV is very special because I haven’t had it all summer, or for over a year actually.

This morning we enjoyed the Inn’s breakfast again, and I went for the granola with milk, some fruit, and a slice of coffee cake. Coffee and fresh OJ on the side.

Now packing up for the day’s adventures and heading back to DC later on. It’s been such a great time here in Cville!!

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Wineries, Breweries, and meeting KATH!!

Today we started off the day with a very, VERY, exciting little trip to a very special little bakery. Not just any bakery. But KATH’s bakery!! I have been a long-time reader and huge fan of Kath’s blog and find her writing, meals, and workouts to be so inspirational. I was excited to meet her and stop by the bakery that she and her husband run and that I read about in her blog all the time! Can you see how dorky I look in this photo?! That’s because I was so excited to be meeting Kath that I really couldn’t put a normal-looking smile on my face! Kath was so nice, and I eagerly picked out a number of treats I’d be dying to try. Jeff and I each ordered sandwiches and I picked out Cville granola as well as a Savannah bar and a loak of Dakota bread. YUMM!! Jeff prodded me out of the bakery once we had chatted and I had bought all my goodies. It was a very exciting little visit :) Kath mentioned my visit in her midday post today, too! 

We then headed out on a winery and brewery adventure. We first went to Pollak Vineyard and did a tasting. That had some really good wines and the server was very friendly and recommended a number of Cville things to check out. Their tasting room was really beautiful! Jeff really liked their Merlot so bought a bottle to take home. After Pollak, we headed to Veritas vineyards just down the road a ways. Their wines were tasty too. One of the coolest parts of this winery was the little walkway up to the tasting room. The vineyard overall had beautiful grounds and vistas, and this walkway had a covered top with big, beautiful green grapes hanging down and vines all over.Definitely a wonderful spot for a wedding. After the tasting we found a picnic table and broke out our Great Harvest sandwiches. I had a tofu pest veggie one on High Five bread, and Jeff opted for the Monticello on Dakota bread and it had hummus, olives, and veggies. We shared both and they were so yummy. The tofu was awesome and herbed – wish we had time to go check out the Twin Oaks Tofu Coop!  Maybe another trip ;) After the little break we headed to our lost stop, the Blue Mountain Brewery. Here we sampled their beers and really liked almost all of them! It was quite a day! We’re back at the Inn relaxing before more fun this evening! Happy Saturday!

 

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