Archive for the ‘Thursday Things’ Category
Happy, happy day. Not only was I able to score a nice run with Oliver today (it’s finally in the 40s!), but our Florida vacay is coming up shortly (I won’t say exactly when for fear of stalkers, robbers, i.e. bad people), but I will make sure to post a recap when we get back.
Since we are going to the tropics (anything south of Tennessee sounds like the tropics at this point), I needed a swimsuit. Since I’ve been wearing the same suits since I was 17, I figured it was time to upgrade.
I ended up going to Kohl’s and choosing this colorblock suit from Chaps. I really wanted something strapless (i.e. no tan lines), and this suit spoke to me right away. I have a very classic style when it comes to clothes, partly so I can wear some of the same pieces for years and years. Here’s a pic of the model wearing it as a halter.
I’ve also been writing about food like it’s my job (which is why you haven’t seen too many recipes lately). Since I test all of the recipes I include in my articles, I haven’t had time (or enough meals in a day) to cook “me” food. Still, I’ve been making tons of delicious things. Check out this article I wrote on Passover and another I wrote on Egg Decorating. As part of the egg decorating article, I got to experiment with natural dyes and make these bedazzled eggs. Since you decorate them after they’re blown out, they last forever.
Not bad if I do say so myself!
Question: Do you decorate for Easer? Also, what’s the longest you’ve owned a piece of clothing?
I’m not ashamed to say that the jeans I’m wearing now are at least 9 years old. At least they still fit!
Happy Thursday! As we speak (or as I type, rather), I’m making my second Alpha Bakery Banana Bread of the week. We’re headed to Appleton for a funeral tonight, and Brenton’s family could use some comfort food (don’t we all?!). Unlike my healthified version from Monday, I don’t have any white whole wheat flour or cacao nibs. So I’m making this loaf exactly like my dad and I used to make it, complete with walnuts because every good banana bread needs nuts. Here’s what else I’ve been up to:
1. When it comes to comfort food, there’s nothing higher on my list than a casserole. After writing this article for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, I discovered that you can make a casserole out of pretty much anything (baked mac and cheese, lasagna, even a breakfast strata).
One of the coolest things about researching and writing this article was that I got to interview Bobby Deen! (yes, that was an inaudible squeal) He was the epitome of southern charm and so down to Earth. He has a complete chapter on casseroles and one-dish meals in his new book, “From Mama’s Table to Mine.” I included a recipe for his Mexican Fiesta Casserole, which fed Brenton and I for days (the consequence of making any casserole in a two-person household).
2. I’ve been living in Zensah’s Seamless Power Running Jacket. The fabric is ultra breathable, soft and moisture wicking. You can tell this is a quality fabric as soon as you pick it up (I was introduced to Zensa when I first tried their compression socks). One thing I especially like about this jacket, besides the thumb holes, is the pocket in the back. Most people would use this for a key. I use it for poop bags. #TheLifeOfADogOwner
Thanks for everyone who entered the Dreamfarm giveaway. The winner is…
Congrats, Tara! Please send your address to Alysha@Shesontherun.com by Saturday, Feb. 23, so I can get your prize out to you asap! If I don’t hear from you by then, I will choose a new winner.
Of Possible Interest:
Restaurants Turn Camera Shy (The New York Times)
Question: What’s your favorite casserole recipe? (links welcome!)
Sorry I’ve been a little MIA since Monday’s delicious Ginger and Pear Butternut Squash Soup post. Truth be told, this week has not been great. I don’t know if it’s this Wisconsin winter that has no end or the fact that my hair is all about static these days (and don’t forget the pale, dry skin!), but this time of year has me dreaming of spring. So in Thursday Things format, here’s what I’ve been up to lately.
1. I’ve finally cleaned my coffeemaker!
Before you go all Martha on me, let me tell you what this machine has gone through. It’s almost 7 years old. It got Brenton and I though college and this cruddy old thing was how I got addicted to coffee. After all that, you’d think we could show it a little more love. But no. It hasn’t been cleaned this whole time until this week (ok, we have cleaned the pot but not the actual machine). I actually used this Capresso Cleaning Solution.
Basically it’s a powder that you dissolve in water and you run it through your coffee machine. This really helped get rid of the grime and anything that was left behind we whipped away with a paper towel. I’d have to say, I really think our coffee tastes better now that we’ve cleaned the machine.
2. Tuesday was a treat. The day started out with me checking my personal email (of course). Well I guess someone else had the same idea because my account was on lockdown due to their attempt to break into my account. After a solid 30 minute freak-out, I was able to get back into my account and change my password.
Well, later that same day I was driving down the interstate and a stone hit my windshield and it cracked! Thank goodness a repairman could drive to my house and fix it.
3. To cheer myself up, and anyone else who’s having an off week, here are some cutie-pie pics of Oliver. Enjoy!
What a good sport :)
Question: Have you been having an off-week too? What happened? Feel free to vent/complain. This is a judgment-free zone!
I have Christmas on the brain, which means my thoughts today are completely scattered and random. Here’s what I am doing/craving/thinking about:
1. I think Oliver is conditioned to sleep during the day. I worked from home today in light of the major storm hitting the Midwest (Snowpocalypse maybe?). I think because we’re usually at work during the day, he reserves his energy for when we get home — which includes him flying around the living room and whining to go outside. But from 8 am – 4 pm, he’s pretty much a vegetable.
2. With only a few weeks until the Icebreaker Marathon Relay, I’m getting more serious about training. For the past few weeks, I’ll jump on the treadmill and run a comfortable 9 minute mile pace. Then I’ll crank up the speed to 8:27 or 8:00 and try to maintain that for a mile. Then I’ll go back go jogging and repeat 2 or 3 times. I’d love to know how my teammate Laurie is tackling this :) Our goal for this race is to have fun, but I still want a good time.
3. I am reading the most amazing book. It’s called “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.” It’s about a woman from the 1950s who dies of cervical cancer. Her doctor took samples of her tumor which multiplied to be the first immortal human cells, which are still alive today. They’ve been used to create the polio vaccine as well as other medical advancements. I’m less than halfway through, but I am completely transfixed. I love how this novels interweaves science with the story of Henrietta’s actual life.
4. Enstrom Candy Giveaway!
I’ve been munching on the Almond Toffee from Enstrom Candies for the past week. As someone who LOVES candy and often makes her own (I’ve tried my hand at English Toffee and Lollipops), I consider myself an connoisseur.
Enstrom’s toffee is buttery and rich. With chunks of almonds and a milk chocolate coating sprinkled with crushed almonds, this candy is is as gourmet as it comes.
Now here’s where you come in: Enstrom has offered to send one lucky She’s on the Run reader a 1-pound box of Milk Chocolate Almond Toffee! I’ll leave the giveaway open until January 2, 2013. To Enter (Mandatory): Like Enstrom Candies on Facebook AND leave a comment here telling me what you favorite candy is.
And don’t forget! You still have until Christmas to enter my giveaway for a set of William Bounds Salt and Pepper Mills (an $80 value!).
Disclaimer: Enstrom Candies has given me this product to review. I was not given the product in exchange for a positive review. All opinions are my own.
It’s been way too long since my last Thursday Things post. I have a ton of good post and reviews to share, but today I just need to rant (in a good way!).
What I’m eating for dinner:
Laurie posted this recipe for Spaghetti Squash and Sautéed Vegetables a few days ago, and with a ton of squash on our hands, I couldn’t wait to make this. Like most of my cooking, I used her recipe as a guide and made it my own using what I had on hand. I made more of an Italian version that features olives, Italian spices and Parmesan cheese.
Italian Spaghetti Squash and Sautéed Vegetables
Inspired by Laurie
1 spaghetti squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 zucchini, sliced
1 10-ounce bag frozen, chopped spinach, thawed
1 large tomato, diced
1/3 cup sliced olives
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 -2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper, to taste
Cut the spaghetti squash in half, and put in a pot of water. Bring the water to a boil, and continue boiling the spaghetti squash for 15 minutes. While the squash is boiling, add the olive oil and zucchini to a large pot and sauté for about 7 minutes, or until lightly brown. Add the diced tomatoes, spinach, olives and spices and continue cooking. Remove the spaghetti squash from the water (tongs work well for this), and with a fork, scrape the sides of the squash into the skillet with the other vegetables. Finally, add the cheese, and mix until all the ingredients are combined and heated through.
What I’m eating for breakfast:
Chobani is, by far, my favorite brand of Greek yogurt so I’ll try pretty much anything they make. However, as someone who despises anything pineapple flavored (I LOVE fresh pineapple though), I was skeptical to try their 2% Pineapple yogurt. I have to say though, this is my favorite of their line. It’s so fresh and fruity without tasting artificial at all. YUM!
What I’m coveting:
This blouse…and just about anything from The Limited. This is my favorite clothing store and about 50% of my closet is from here. But whatever they’re showing on their website now is especially calling to me. The tunics…the sheath dresses…the coats. Swoon.
What new gadget I just love:
As someone who brings lunch to work 90% of the time, I know how hard it is to cart salad dressing. Either you bring a full bottle or make a mess trying to fit it into a small Pyrex container. So I was thrilled when I saw this Dressing-2-Go Container from Stonewall Kitchen. At only $4.95, I know I’ll be getting a lot use out of this. Now if I only I had fresh veggies in the house to make a salad :)
Question: Tell me, what’s your favorite clothing store? Chobani flavor? Gadget?
What I’m announcing:
I got a new job! I start on Monday and couldn’t be more thrilled. I’ll be a social media strategist at one of Milwaukee’s largest advertising agencies. This company has such a stellar reputation, and I feel privileged to say I work there. The whole transition will obviously be a challenge in itself; it’s always so hard starting a new job, learning new names, processes, your way to the bathroom…
What I’m looking at:
Our Pinterest DIY Wine Crate Coffee Table is now complete! It turned out even better than I expected. Two weekends ago, Brenton went up to Appleton to make the base and screw everything together with his dad. They also added wheels to make it easier to move. You can check out the original pin here.
Oliver is obviously thrilled as seen by his tongue sticking out. Surprisingly, he wasn’t too freaked out when Brenton brought this in the house (like he gets whenever be bring a large box, suitcase or anything else foreign into the apartment).
If you have any questions about making your own DIY Crate Coffee Table, email me at Alysha@shesontherun.com. I didn’t know how many people would be interested in seeing the whole process.
What I’m wearing:
Boot candy a la Pinterest. I’ve been looking at these riding boot toppers for months. Since Brenton’s mom is an expert knitter, I asked if she would make me a pair. Check out the awesome job she did:
These are the original ones from Pinterest in case you’re wondering:
What I’m eating:
Trader Joe’s Spinach and Kale Greek Yogurt Dip. Last week we got a new TJ’s in Brookfield, which Brittney and I flocked to on opening day because we are total food nerds (check out her fun purchases here). Thanks to Carol, I still have 3/4 jar of Cookie Butter left, so I didn’t need to pick that up :)
What I’m entering:
This Fall Baking Giveaway from William Bounds (the awesome company who hosted my Sili Tea Ball Giveaway.) When you “like” their Facebook page, you can enter to win $70 in prizes — including a nutmeg twister and their Sili Gourmet server, brush and pie crust protector (everything you need to bake and serve the perfect pie). Hurry! Contest ends Nov. 19.
What I’m looking forward to:
Remember my trip to Blue’s Egg in Milwaukee last month? Well, I’m so excited to get together with Brittney and Laurie (and their respective hubby’s/hubby’s to be). They are troopers for agreeing to meet Brenton and I at 8 am on a Sunday, but Blue’s Egg is one of the hottest brunch spots in town and I’d rather get there early than wait an hour (patience is not one of my virtues!)
Question: What are your Thursday Things?
I’m starting to think these random Thursday posts should be a weekly staple on She’s on the Run.
What I’m watching:
The CMA’s tonight! Although I’m into a bunch of random music (70s, rap, light rock, pop), county may be the top of the list for me. I’m especially excited that Faith Hill and Tim McGraw are performing. Tune to ABC at 8/7 central if you want in.
What I’m drinking:
I go through smoothie phases. Months will go by without me touching one and then I’ll drink a smoothie for breakfast every morning for a week. I created this Mango Protein Smoothie on the fly before work today, and dare I say it’s the best one I’ve invented so far.
Mango Protein Smoothie
4 ounces Mango Good Belly Probiotic Drink
4 ounces apple juice
1/2 cup frozen diced mango
3 ice cubes
1 scoop protein powder (I used Perfect Blocks from Fortified Nutrition)
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Add a few tablespoons of water, if needed, to thin the smoothie out.
What I’m wearing:
Or should I say, what I will be wearing. I’ve confessed on here that I love fashion blogs. As a subscriber to Lucky Magazine, I discovered a new blog, For All Things Lovely. I love Megan’s girly style and how she can pull of the most daring of looks. I fell in love with this necklace that Megan sported with an olive blazer and jeans. When I found out it was Lia Sophia, I immediately started looking for it so I could purchase it, which I found on their website for $98. However, I think that’s a lot to pay for costume jewelery, so I went to ebay instead and scored the same necklace for $45! I hope it’s as lovely in person as it looks on screen. #sigh
What I’m reading:
It seems like everyone in the blog world has already read “Gone Girl” By Gillian Flynn. Right now I’m halfway through the audiobook (I have to pass my 30 minute commute somehow!). All the clues in the book point to Nick, the husband, as being the perpetrator. I feel like the author never makes it that simple, so I’m on the edge of my car seat to hear who really did it.
What I’m wishing I could turn back time for:
Here is my battle scar after roasting my first turkey breast in the oven. Brenton probably thought I was being a baby after I burned myself. Well, I obviously wasn’t whining over nothing! By the way, doesn’t it look like there’s a cross in the middle of that circle burn? It’s kind of like someone who sees Jesus in their toast.
Question: What are you watching/reading/wearing/eating/wishing you could turn back time for?