Summer Staycation

I love having time off from work to just be home. We had planned an overnight at Mohegan Sun, thanks to an awesome deal on Gilt City so I was taking the Monday of the already short week off. I decided that it wasn’t worth working just 3 short days and that I’d be grateful for some time at home. I’m so happy I did. I feel rested, recharged, and rejuvenated. Here’s a peek at how I spent my time.

Michael and I finally took our mountain bikes for a spin at Wompotuck State Park in Hingham. We brought my mountain bike back to MA from NY with us at least 2 years ago with the intention of going for rides. We never did. I’m happy we finally changed that. We rode around for about 2 hours. It was so fun to chat, get some exercise, and enjoy the scenery of the woods! We even got to pop in and see an old friend of Michael’s who lives in Hingham. It was a bit overcast and on the cool side that day so I feel like we planned the perfect activity for the weather.

Biking

Sunday morning we woke up to downpours. We decided to sleep in, have breakfast, watch CBS Sunday Morning (I love that show) before getting our day going. We had originally planned to head to RI for a beach day before heading to Mohegan Sun for dinner and some fun. Since the rain spoiled our plans we decided to stop in Providence for lunch. Michael took me to East Side Pockets since I was craving falafel. It was so good and I can’t wait to go back!!! We wandered around in Providence a bit before heading to the casino.

East Side Pocket

We had dinner at Todd English’s Tuscany and it was great. I’ve been wanting to eat there for awhile, and it was worth the wait. We shared a burrata salad, fettucine carbonara, and a proscuito flatbread. The cocktails were awesome too. I had my favorite, a St. Germain martini with a twist of lemon. After dinner we hit the casino for a bit and had some fun on the slots before heading to bed. Monday we slept in, had a lazy morning, had breakfast, and played some more slots before heading home. It was a fun little night away and felt so much longer than it really was.

Burrata Salad

I spent the rest of week enjoying time at home. I went for runs at Lake Quannapowitt- I love not having to cross a street for 3 miles and running by the water. It’s just so much better than running through town.

Lake Q

I took care of errands I kept putting off, like taking my wedding dress to the cleaners and getting the oil changed in my car. I baked. I baked so much. I made a batch of peanut butter cup cookies for the 4th of July. Lucky for you that recipe is coming soon. I took a stab at making homemade puff pastry dough and apple turnovers. They were delicious but there is so much more room for improvement. I already can’t wait to make them again- there is at least 10 things I’d do differently. I’ll share the recipe and tips once I perfect it but since they are loaded with butter that may take a bit. You can’t make those too often! I made a summer berry crisp that was so flavorful and good, and not terribly unhealthy.

I got to meet one of my best friends babies just hours after he was born. To see the excitement, happiness, and joy on my friend’s face was so special and I just loved holding that little peanut.

We spent time at the beach soaking in the sunshine. I finished a book I had been reading for months and took naps in the sun. I even swam, a lot. It was cold and so refreshing.

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We saw fireworks and celebrated the 4th of July with friends. It was my first time in the 6 years I’ve lived here that I saw the Boston fireworks. They were gorgeous and worthy of all the hype they get.

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And we closed out the week with a day trip to Maine to see our friends and spend one more day at the beach. We chatted, we swam, we ate, and we laughed. It was the perfect ending to the week.

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Heading back to work wasn’t so bad today but I’m already looking forward to the weekend. We are headed to NY to see my family and spend time at our summer house!

How did you enjoy the week of the 4th?

Life in 2013!

It’s hard to believe that today is the final day of 2013.  It seems like just yesterday I was bundled up, running through the snowy streets and listening to Ellie Golding’s Anything Can Happen and feeling excited and hopeful for the year ahead…

January started with the completion of a long time goal…becoming a certified yoga instructor!  It felt so good to finally complete my goal.   I spent most of January and February teaching my first classes and finding my way as a new instructor.  January also brought my year of being a sponsored athlete for Athleta, which was all sorts of fun and exciting.  I even went outside my comfort zone and modeled in a fashion show for them! Michael and spent most of the winter hibernating and we even watched as we got 30 inches of snow in one storm!  It was a long winter, and having ran outside all winter I was happy to see spring arrive!

The spring brought a lot with it.  Most significantly we endured the Boston Marathon bombings, and the days that followed.  It’s still a memory that brings back many emotions and thoughts. Unfortunately it is something I’ll probably carry with me for years to come.  I’m grateful for my safety and glad I was just far enough away and most of all  I was relieved that all 150+ Team In Training runners were safe.  I’m also incredibly proud of how our city has moved on and the strength we have shown.

I traveled a lot for work this past spring, attending the Inaugural Nike Women’s Marathon Half in Washington, D.C. and the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon!  It was my first trip to DC so I made the most of every moment and saw everything from the Smithsonian to the Bill of Rights, the Constitution and all of the monuments at the mall in addition to a trip to the Newseum!  My mom came with me to San Diego and my first trip to California!  We had a great mother-daughter trip exploring Coronado Island, the San Diego Zoo (amazing!) and enjoying lots and lots of delicious food!

Summer started with a trip to NY to see my parents and a staycation over the 4th of July.  I managed to go to the beach almost everyday, explored the World’s End Reserve in Hingham and the South Shore with Michael, and took a day trip to Newport to tackle the Cliff Walk and head to the beach!  I also started to think more about yoga and what I needed from my practice.  I signed up for 2 fall half-marathons and started training.  I was feeling really good with all of my workouts and training and loving it! In mid-July we lost our love, Brandy.  It was such a sad day as she was truly our little friend who greeted us when we came home with loud meows, snuggled with us whenever possible and followed us from room to room.  You were never alone with her by your side.  She was always little spoon and loved to fall asleep next to you.  Michael and I were heart broken and terribly sad.  As Brandy would have wanted we kept our best to keep on living and loving.  We spent the day together in Manchester by the Sea, tried Stand Up Paddle Boarding, had lunch by the ocean and spent the after at the beach.  We went to the track in Saratoga with Michael’s family and enjoyed many mornings at the backstretch (my favorite).  We headed to the Cape the following weekend for another adventure!  We explored Hyannis, spent my birthday eating pastries, exploring Provincetown, eating oyster and seafood ocean-side in Wellfleet and even watched Planes at the drive-in!  We worked the Falmouth Road Race and watched 35 Team In Training runners cross the finish line!  And to complete our tour of the Cape we spent the night in Martha’s Vineyard at a super nice hotel, enjoying a fancy dinner and exploring Vineyard Haven! We even saw President Obama playing golf!  We closed out the summer with one final weekend at the track in Saratoga!

Fall came quickly and was in one word, BUSY!  I got promoted at work not once but twice! We went to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania so I could be the bridesmaid in my friend’s wedding and watch her and her husband say I do!  And we welcomed this little one into our lives!  Twila brought lots of laughter and happiness with her funny little ways! We headed to Newport again to go the Wine and Food Festival.  It was a pretty amazing day in one of the mansions trying food and wine and loving every minute of it! The last weekend of September brought one of the most exciting things of the entire year…our engagement!  Michael proposed in our Sunday morning yoga class!  We celebrated over brunch and with our family and friends!

October brought back to back half-marathons!  We headed to Portland, ME for the Maine Marathon and Half where I had an incredible race and loved the scenery!  The following weekend I ran the BAA Half Marathon yet again and had another fun race!  We celebrated both with lots of delicious food!  At the end of October my parents came to help us choose our wedding venue.  We set our date and began planning for our November 15, 2014 wedding!  In November we met with caterers, went to multiple tastings and picked ours!  My mom, cousin and I found the dress of my dreams!  We celebrated Thanksgiving with Michael’s family and yoga! December brought christmas trees, work travel and holiday shopping!  I celebrated the holiday in NY with my family and even went skiing last week with my Dad and brother!

Beyond all the activities I managed to scale back in my commitments and started to really live by the idea that less is more.  I refocused on my yoga practice and even stopped teaching in an effort to reconnect.  I’ve also scaled back my running and workouts to give my body a chance to rest and recover a bit…the first time in years.  I finally feel like I’m in a great place with work and life balance and put my time first.

It’s been an amazing year and we can only imagine what next year will bring!  We can’t wait to get married and become husband and wife and hope to see so many more amazing things come our way!  Thank you all for following my life and journey, even as I’ve stepped back and have been blogging less.  I’m hoping to be writing a bit more in the year to come!

Happy New Year Friends!!