2012 Resolutions

I love setting goals, bet you didn’t know that about me! Anyways here is a list of goals I hope to accomplish in 2012. I already have my 25 for 25 but I figured I’d do a few New Year’s ones as well. On a side note, this is my final post for 2011 – number 111! It was too much of a coincidence not to be mentioned! haha

 

1. Run a half-marathon: There I finally said (wrote) it out loud. A half-marathon is no 5k or 10k, it requires a whole new level of commitment but I have done my research and think I am ready to take it on. Some people are able to jump into high mileage races, I prefer to be fully prepared. haha Now that I have conquered the 5K and 10K, next goal is 10 miles in July running the Tely 10 and a fall half-marathon is my major running goal for next year. Plus a few other races I am sure, first on my plan is a 5K in April.

2. Guest blog: I would love to be guest blogger on someone else’s blog. Smile

3. Heal my IT band fully: It’s not 100% yet and it needs to be by April…I have been a slacker with my physio exercises so I need to get back at it!

4. Have a professional sneaker fitting: I am hoping this will help with number 3 and also prevent future injuries. This needs to be done soon as I am creeping close to the 500 mile mark on my current shoes.

5. PR in the 5k

6. Get my own blog domain that doesn’t end in .wordpress

7. Organize and clean out my office: I can’t even explain how badly this is needed. haha

8. Go meatless once a week: I don’t want to attach a day to this … as much as I love the idea of meatless Monday I know it won’t always happen on Monday and I like goals that I am able to accomplish. I plan to mostly accomplish this with the help of Mama Pea’s recipeas! Smile This was a goal I actually stole from Runner’s World, I’ll never be a vegetarian but I can do it one a week!

9. Try a new fitness class: Haven’t decided which one yet. Suggestions?

10. Attend at least one professional development event

11. Run 1000 miles: I ran 429 miles since July in 2011 (when I started tracking) and because I am training for half 1000 should be easy as I need to complete at least 40 miles per week in 4 runs.

 

As this posts I am currently out enjoying a hopefully delicious meal at St. John’s highest ranked restaurant The Cellar, after that I will be spending the evening drinking champagne and watching the fireworks with friends and family. I sincerely hope that you have a wonderful New Year’s Eve. As for 2012? Bring it, I am ready to take you on! Smile Picture below is last New Years!

 

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What are you or did you do to celebrate New Years Eve?

What is your biggest goal for 2012?

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2011: A Recap & Happy New Year!

2011 was a big year for me in so many ways. I say it almost every year but this year was the best to me! I had a lot of life mile stones happen to me this year, it truly has been an adventure so I thought it would be fun to take a quick run down memory lane. My 2012 resolutions post is in progress and will be posted tomorrow!

 

I travelled a lot this year…and it was a blast!

Montreal (January)

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Florida then Haiti, Jamaica, Grand Cayman, & Mexico on a cruise (April/May) aka the best trip of my life! 3 weeks of sunny bliss!

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Calgary (June) I apparently have no pictures from this trip so here is my hotel room! Smile

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Toronto (June)

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Toronto (August)

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I graduated university with 2 degrees

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I bought my first car (my actual first car I did not buy – it was a hand me down).

 

I ran my first running race……then ran another, and then one more.

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I got my first adult job.

Most importantly I started this blog … and kept it up. A goal of mine for long time in school was to blog about healthy living. I tried it once a few years ago and never kept it up because I couldn’t with school (believe me I admire those of you who do). While it is still sometimes hard to find time it is so worth it. I love writing about living a healthy live, it is a topic I am very passionate about. This blog not only allows me to do that but it allows me to connect with people like YOU who feel the same way. I read every comment and love to check out new blogs so I love hearing from you! Thank-you for continuing to stop by my little section of the blog world, I wish you the greatest year in 2012, may it bring you everything you hope for!

 

Happy New Year – be safe and enjoy it! xo

 

What was your biggest accomplishment this year?

Where did you travel to?

Christmas 2011: A Recap

I thought it would be nice to share some of the highlights of my Christmas. It really was great this year, lots of time with friends and family plus lots of relaxation time! First of all here is our tree Christmas morning surrounded by presents (we aren’t spoiled at all).

 

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Bruce really did spoil me rotten this year. He got me a new straightening iron, Garmin, running clothes, tons of books, movies, slippers, clothes, chocolate, and so much more!

 

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My parents gave me some great gifts as well, the most thoughtful was the 2 charms for my charm bracelet. They were both beautiful! Bruce’s mom gave me Jamie Oliver’s new cookbook Meals in Minutes which I can’t wait to dig into! Of course both his and my family spoiled us as well with lots of house ware and kitchen gifts, we only bought our house 2 years ago this month so those kind of gifts are much appreciated!

 

Over the holidays, which aren’t over for me until Jan 3, I did lots of reading, watching movies, and relaxing. This is my continued plan until Jan 3. haha I even did a little running, including a 10K race.

 

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We attended many holiday parties, including a family Christmas day party in a basement. So much fun!

 

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I did lots of eating, including 2 turkey dinners, Christmas brunches with 2 families, lasagne, and so much more. I was committed to Christmas eating, I am not a quitter! I think that indulging over the holidays with no guilt is important. Worrying about it does nothing, so while I think the posts about how to eat healthy during the holidays are great it just isn’t for me. If I want to eat cookies for breakfast at Christmas I am going to! It comes just once a year!

 

What I enjoyed most about this Christmas was really taking the time to enjoy it, spending lots of time relaxing with friends and family. We drove around last night drinking hot chocolate and looking at all the beautiful lights. Hopefully we’ll get to go on a night time walk through the park this weekend to see the lights there. Tomorrow will be spent entertaining some more friends and family who are coming to visit. The gifts are great and I am so thankful but time spent with those you love is what Christmas is all about!

 

How did you spend your holidays?

What was your favourite gift?

Any new user tricks you can tell me about my new Garmin? I just learned about autolap!

What I Ate Wednesday: Christmas Edition

It’s time for What I Ate Wednesday, my eats this week will be  little different due to Christmas holidays! I tend to eat small portions more often and end up snacking …alot haha

 

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I started my day with a quick breakfast before heading out on the highway back to the city!

 

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After driving home and unpacking I made some sandwiches for myself and Bruce. Turkey, tomato, apple wood bacon, monetary jack cheese, and mayo on whole wheat with pickles! After lunch I had another coffee and some Terry’s Chocolate Orange, my favourite Christmas chocolate!

 

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That coffee was my first with soy milk in days as I forgot to bring my soy milk to Bruce’s moms! I don’t mind black coffee but prefer it with milk. After my elliptical workout this afternoon I snacked on a crumpet and some water.

 

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This afternoon I attended a wedding shower where I snacked on veggies, a small bowl of chicken soup, 1/2 an egg sandwich, and 1/2 of a chocolate chip cookie all of which went un-pictured. Later in the evening Bruce made stir-fry, I wasn’t very hungry after the shower so I just had a small bowl.

 

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Favourite Christmas Chocolate?

Do you eat differently over the holidays?

An Ugly Sweater Christmas

So I wanted to do a recap of our Christmas party we had last Friday and all the fun and food we enjoyed! First of all I have to say we had a lot of stylish sweaters at our party. Including our own:

 

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But the winner of the night and the prize is below, our friend Steve! What a great vest don’t you think? He made it himself (I am sure you couldn’t tell).

 

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I went all out on the food this year so I figured I’d create a post with my menu including all the yummy recipes I created and those I found around the internet. Unfortunately I have no food pictures but trust me it was yummy and this menu would keep any holiday or New Year’s party happy!

 

Cookies

Chewy Peppermint Mocha Cookies

No-Bake Snowballs

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cups

 

Appetizers

Meatballs  

Oriental Party Pack (spring rolls, pot stickers etc.)

Dry Spiced BBQ Chicken Wings

  • 1 pack of split chicken wings from Costco or about 4 pounds of wings
  • Roasted red pepper seasoning
  • Steak spice
  • Salt and pepper

Season with above spices to taste and barbeque for 15 – 20 minutes on medium heat until done.

Buffalo Chicken Egg Rolls (Inspired from Eat. Live. Run.)

  • 3 cooked chicken breasts chopped
  • 1/3 cup buffalo sauce
  • 1 cup old cheddar cheese
  • 1 pack of egg rolls (30 – 40 wrappers)
  • oil for frying

 

Mix chicken, cheese, and sauce in a bowl. Heat oil in large skillet with cover over medium-low heat. Take each individual egg roll and place a tbsp of filling in the middle. Wet the sides with a little water ( I kept a small bowl next to me for this purpose). Fold in both sides the roll up and seal seam with a little squeeze and a little water if needed. Do up enough to fill the pan and fry on both sides 4 – 5 minutes in batches then drain on paper towels and put next batch on pan, adding more oil as needed. You could serve them immediately but in my experience it is better to freeze then in an air-tight container and re-heat them on a cookie sheet on 350 degrees for 20 minutes, flipping once! These were a huge hit and the great thing is you can make them early in the week and freeze them for the night of the party!

 

Snackables

Cheese platter with various cheeses

Kielbasa

Crackers

Tandoori spiced nuts

Spicy salsa (jalapeño and passion fruit) and tortilla chips

 

Everyone really seemed to enjoy the food, I had a great time at our party and hope my guests did as well. This was our second year having our Christmas party and every year I love planning it as much as hosting it. I hope this menu gives you some inspiration for your next party!

 

What’s your favourite party food?

Ever attend an ugly sweater party? How ugly was your sweater?

Home for the Holidays 10K

So after a tapering of cookies and wine the last 2 days I attempted the Home for the Holidays Virtual 10K. I read about this race on Carrots n’ Cake and signed up for it at the very last minute on Thursday. I wanted to do it but had our Holiday party of Friday and then a day of family stuff on Saturday and again on Sunday. I didn’t know how I would manage to fit it in but I figured I would attempt it on Boxing Day here in Canada which is today! I am currently in Fox Harbour, where Bruce is from. It is a very small community so I was the only participant in this race today here! haha It’s was a frosty –3.6 Celsius when I headed out.

 

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What I was most excited for with this race was the chance to try out all my new running gear I got for Christmas! I got to use my new Garmin 305, Bondi Band, and my warm base layers by atmosphere which work awesome! I love all my new running things I got for Christmas. I’ll do a review on it all at some point but believe me I was spoiled rotten this year and my Christmas isn’t even over yet as I am doing Christmas at my Dad’s on Thursday!

 

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I headed out to the frosty roads of the harbour, one side of the harbour was very icy and the other the pavement was dry so I spent most of the race on the other side and walked the beginning and end on the icy side due to it looking like this.

 

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I took some gorgeous shots throughout my race, it really was a gorgeous day despite the frosty temperatures, I was cozy the entire time in my new gear. The only time I got cold was when I walked the last half mile.

 

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So I finished my first ever 10k race in 1:11:17, a respectable time in my opinion as I am still recovering from my IT band injury and have never managed that distance before. I have no idea how to see my splits on my Garmin and haven’t set it up on my laptop yet but I know my best mile was 7:49 which is great. I did walk occasionally just to make sure I didn’t make my IT band worse and walked at the beginning and end due to ice.

 

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I warmed up with a shower and a hot coffee soon as I got home and refuelled with a banana and some cashews! This race was a great way to make me feel like myself again after 4 days of indulging myself in food and relaxation. Believe me I didn’t feel one bit guilty about taking a few days off to myself but it was nice to get out for a run after a few days of being off. I hope this race happens again next year, it was a great way to stay active during the holidays. There is no way I would have went out running today if I didn’t sign up for this virtual 10K so thanks to those who organized it!

 

Did you participate in any holiday races this year?

Get any new running gear for Christmas?

Merry Christmas

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Wishing you and your family a joyous season! Smile Thank-you for continuing to visit my little piece of the blog world. You all truly mean the world to me and I couldn’t be more appreciative of your continued support. I hope the holiday season brings you all good health, happiness, and time spent with those you love!

 

Happy Holidays!

Red heart: Heidi

What I Ate Wednesday #3

So it’s that time of the week again! I am sitting in my kitchen with the back door open to air it out because it smells like a Chinese restaurant after a night of cookie making and egg roll frying for our Christmas party Friday. You would think it would smell delicious but it really doesn’t. Anyways just thought I’d share! On to more important things … like what I ate today!

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I started my day off with a glass of OJ, a bowl of Kashi Honey Sunshine and a crumpet! I just recently rediscovered crumpets, I used to eat them all the time with my dad when I was little and found them again in the grocery store last week. They taste like childhood to me! On the way to work I had a coffee with soy milk as per usual!

 

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For a midmorning snack I had a clementine and a blueberry Greek yogurt!

 

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Then I headed to the gym lunchtime for a quick 2.85 miles on the treadmill in 30 minutes. When I got back I had lunch which was leftover pasta. It doesn’t look pretty but it tasted really good! In the bowl was whole wheat pasta, garlic tomato sauce, light cheddar, bell peppers, mushrooms, and Italian sausage! Mid-afternoon I had a chocolate almond fudge Cliff Bar and another coffee.

 

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Dinner was a Philly Cheesesteak sandwich on toast with over roasted Cajun potatoes, red peppers, and onions. Really yummy!

 

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I had another coffee after dinner then spent the rest of the night sampling cookies I was making, You can’t very well serve people cookies you haven’t checked to make sure are good…right?!

 

What did you eat this Wednesday?

Ever try a crumpet?
What’s your favourite snack?

Christmas Survey

This has been all over my Google reader this week so I figured I’d participate to! Smile 

Egg nog or hot chocolate?

Hot chocolate – specifically white hot chocolate. I can’t have egg nog because I am lactose intolerant. Supposedly a soy version exists but you cannot get it here!

Does Santa wrap presents or sit them under the tree?

Santa wraps presents and always has!

Coloured lights on tree/house or white?

I like both but am partial to white a little more!

Do you hang a mistletoe?

Sure do! Smile

When do you hang your Christmas decorations up?

Whenever I have time, every year I wish I got them up earlier, maybe one day I will manage it! Case in point my tree is currently up but not decorated.

What is your favourite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?

Turkey soup that comes from the Christmas Turkey and any dessert!

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Favourite holiday memory as a child?

I can’t think of one in particular but I do have a lot of fond memories of visiting relatives and driving around looking at the lights. I also just had a memory of me organizing all my Christmas presents next to the tree when I was like 10 – some habits never die! haha

What is on your Christmas wish list?

See this post for my running related list. Other then that there are lots of books I want, hair stuff, clothes, slippers, and Starbucks Christmas blend! : ) I like to think I am easy to shop for I pretty much like anything practical.

Do you open gifts on Christmas eve?

All on Christmas day!

How do you decorate your Christmas tree?

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This is last year’s tree, this year’s tree is not finished (please see above answer for issues with getting decorations up haha).

Snow? Love it or dread it?

Kinda love it, when it’s not inconvenient for me or when I have to drive! Cold weather and running aren’t my favourites. I enjoy snow at Christmas and the occasional snow storm, other then that after about Jan 15th I am over it and want sunshine!

Real tree or fake tree?

Fake, though I do love the smell of the real ones, just not the mess.

Do you remember your favourite gift?

Tough question I love all my gifts from everyone but I’d say my Kitchen aid Stand-Mixer would top my list! Smile

What’s the most important thing about Christmas for you?

Spending time celebrating with friends and family of course, picture below is myself and the girls at our Christmas party last year!

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What is your favourite holiday dessert?

I have a new favourite – made these last week and making them again for our party this weekend!

What is your favourite tradition?

A tie between our Christmas party we have every year and Christmas Eve  just relaxing at home and friends pop by for a visit!

What tops your tree?

A star! : )

Which do you prefer giving or receiving?

Giving, I think I did a good job this year into putting a lot of thought into the gifts I bought for others which makes me really happy!

What is your favourite Christmas song?

I’ve actually done a lot of thinking about this one this week as a co-worker who I know occasionally reads this blog asked me and I had no answer. haha While I love Micheal Buble’s new Christmas album after careful consideration I would have to say Josh Groban’s I’ll Be Home For Christmas is at the top of my list.

Candy canes yuck or yum?

In other things like bark or hot chocolate yum – on their own not so much!

Favourite Christmas movie?

Elf! “Buddy the elf what’s your favourite colour”? Best.Line.Ever.

What do you leave for Santa?

Cookies and milk, plus a carrot for the Reindeer!

Do you have a Christmas morning tradition?

Bruce and I get up and open gifts then we head to my moms for brunch!

Do you prefer to shop online or at the mall?

I hate crowds so online for sure. But some of it has to be done at the mall/stores.

Christmas letter or card?

Christmas card, speaking of which I should probably mail those. I am so unprepared!

 

What’s your favourite Christmas tradition?

Tree – fake or real?

Favourite dessert, I want to see links! Smile

Are you ready for Christmas this year? I’ll be wrapping gifts Christmas Eve I am sure!

 

Now TAG – you’re it! Get to answerin’ the survey! Smile

Monday Mantra: Enjoy Every Second

I first of all want to say that Karl Wells was at my work today, judging a cookie competition! If you are not local then you have no idea who Karl Wells is but around these parts he’s a local food critic and weatherman aka kind of a big deal. haha I didn’t get a chance to bake cookies this weekend but I certainly enjoyed sampling my co-worker’s creations! My work is seriously the most fun!

 

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Speaking of fun, you know what’s really fun this time of year? Shopping….if your idea of fun is braving the crowds in minus ten degrees, with no parking, and those around you are in the most delightful of moods. A couple of weeks ago I was just really NOT feeling the Christmas spirit mostly due to shopping. Too many old men trying to run me down with shopping carts at Costco was making me get all philosophical. I kept saying to myself, really!?! is this REALLY what Christmas is about?! Believe me I love a gifts as much as the next person,  and I love giving them even more so shopping certainly is a requirement of Christmas and that’s fine with me. My issue lies in the fact that this time of year be it stress, the crowds, or the crazy amount of money spent turns normal human beings into idiots who forget what common human decency is about. That my friends is NOT what Christmas is about.

 

So before you think I’ve turned into a Grinch or worse yet have given up on the holidays altogether this story is going somewhere good. Last week I was waiting in yet another line up. I was on my lunch break and patiently waiting my turn to mail some cards at a post office. There was just one elderly woman ahead of me who had lots of packages and cards and then it was me. I just had 2 or 3 envelopes. When it was her turn to go she turned around to me and said sweetheart you go next, you look like you’re going back to work and I’m in no rush. I was shocked. It may seem like such a little thing – but to me, as jaded as I was with the season at that point, it turned my entire perception around. I felt like Cindy Lou Who when the Grinch turns it all around and she finally understands the meaning of Christmas. I of course told her I couldn’t possibly skip her in line and that I absolutely didn’t mind waiting but she insisted I go first. She made my day and my season a little brighter.

 

Religious beliefs aside, to me THAT is what Christmas should be about. The presents and the events that come a long with it are wonderful but what really matters is being kind to one and another and spending time with those you love. Whether that’s your friends, family, the family you create around you, or a stranger in a post office. So last week with the lady in the post office as my example I put a smile on my face and was kind to every stressed out person I met. I held doors, smiled and said thank-you to over-worked cashiers, let cars out ahead of me in traffic, and kept her in my mind as I went through my week. It is my belief that the one small act of kindness she did should always be paid forward. So along with my cheery attitude that probably made some shoppers cringe I went grocery shopping and  made a donation to my local food bank. I alluded to my mantra earlier in the week but wanted to fully discuss it here. My goal was to pay it forward and pass along a little bit of kindness into someone else’s Christmas. I will continue this goal throughout the season and I hope you will join me. You see I’m not perfect and I don’t claim to be, but I all think we could and should do something good for others when we can. I had forgotten that this Christmas and I am thankful I met stranger who reminded me.

 

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Monday Mantra: Enjoy Every Second

I made it one of my 25 for 25 goals to slow down and enjoy the moment and that’s my mantra this week. I am going to enjoy every second of preparation for our Christmas party this Friday and then will enjoy every moment of the holidays this weekend. It may seem easy enough to do but for me being mindful of not rushing things along takes a lot of work so a little reminder this week will help. I hope it will also help you!

 

Did you do any acts of kindness over the holidays or receive any? I’d love to hear stories!