Monday, July 29, 2013


Another week has passed by and I am still on the Insanity routine. It has definitely been tough. Week 2 was more intense than week 1 with more workouts back to back. My quads are feeling it more than anything else, but I am sure once my arms and core get stronger they will quickly catch up.

The start of week 3 brings another fit test so I will be sharing my results from week 1 to now so that I can see how it compares. Have I been getting stronger? Am I finally starting to get into shape?

Lets see how I have done thus far:

                                            WEEK 1:      WEEK 2:

Switch Kicks:                        56                71          

Power Jacks:                         38                52

Power Knees:                        65                 77

Power Jumps:                        20                 25

Globe Jumps:                         6                    8

Suicide Jumps:                       10                  12

Push-Up Jacks:                      13                  16

Plank Obliques:                      32                 42

I didn't look at my last results while doing the new fit test because I wanted to surprise myself. WOW! I knew I was getting stronger and my cardio was getting better, but it is nice to see it written down in front of you.

I am very glad that I have begun the insanity program and I know it will just get harder from here, so I need to focus and stick with it. As long as I keep tracking my results and give it my all everyday I am sure that I will meet my fitness goals in no time.

I still don't own a scale to track my weight, but I will soon enough. I have thoroughly enjoyed being naive when it comes to my weight. What girl wants to know how much they really weigh? Not me!

I welcome any helpful hints on how to stay motivated. My biggest fear is that I am going to give up because it is too hard. It really gets difficult to keep going sometimes because these workouts take every little piece of energy you have out of you. Sometimes after work I just want to lie in bed and take a nap, but I know I need to work out. What keeps people motivated?!?!?


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Insanity Week 2 & Other Happenings

I completed week 1!!!!!

It is Monday again and I am still on track with Insanity.  This is a big deal for me, because I stuck with it. I love that this is a two month program so I feel like I don't have to wait a year or more for results. It is short and sweet, which when you are working out is a blessing in itself for people that don't like to work out.

Like I said in the first week post, this is a difficult workout. You go at it as hard as you can, without killing yourself of course, and stick with it each and every day.

Since I have begun Insanity a few of my friends have asked about it and said they want to start it too! I can't wait to hear what they think.

My cardio has definitely gotten better and I am sore each and every day. Right after I complete the workouts I am incredibly exhausted, but once I shower and get ready to cook dinner I feel energized and excited that I did such a great workout that day.

The main things are to:
-  stick with the program
- do the workouts on the schedule
-  give it all you've got!!

I printed out the schedule and taped it up so that I can reference it easily. I have been crossing out each day and writing down comments on how I felt during that workout on that particular day. Mostly I am just trying to stay focused and motivated.

Also remember what you are putting into your body. It is ok to splurge every once in awhile, but don't get too carried away. Fried foods and desserts are not good for you if you are eating them all day everyday.

I have been focusing on eating more protein like greek yogurt with berries and granola for breakfast. Eating less carbs and adding a lot of extra fruits and veggies in my lunches and dinners whether I eat them as side dishes or for snacks throughout the day.

Also, when I go to the farmer's market I have been looking for veggies that I don't eat very often that I would really like try or eat more of. This weekend I bought a huge bag of arugula, a spaghetti squash, a butternut squash and lots of tomatoes big and small for snacks and salads.

I haven't noticed any weight loss yet, but with how much I sweat during a workout, it wont be long before I do start to notice.

I do have an increased amount of energy and my mood is definitely better. Overall I like where this is going and I am excited to continue the program.

If you have any thoughts on this or have tried the program yourself, please feel free to leave any helpful tips or comments on what your experience was like.

Weekend Activities & Monday:

I also got to go downtown and see my friends for a show this past weekend. It is always nice to see my sister and hang out with great people.

We also had David's niece's 12th Birthday party this weekend. It was a pool party so I was excited to finally go swimming this summer. Plus there was a piñata!!

Also Monday's at our house usually mean pizza night! There is nothing better after a dreaded Monday then pizza. 


Monday, July 22, 2013

Cauliflower, Potato and Sausage Soup

There is nothing easier or heartier than a good soup! This is a favorite of ours that I make pretty often. It is perfect for cold winter nights or even rainy summer days. :)

It is as easy as throwing everything into a large soup pot and letting it simmer. I love this soup because it never really turns out the same. I use whatever I have on hand. You can change up the sausage, the veggies, the herbs or the cheese and really make it your own.

This is one of those recipes that I do not measure anything! I simply just pick out my ingredients, prep the veggies and the meat and throw everything together. There are so many ways to make this.

You can probably google cauliflower, potato and sausage soup and you will come up with many different recipes. Essentially this is how I did it.

(Herbs from left to right: oregano, parsely, thyme and sage)

(Some nice red potatoes I got from the Farmer's Market)

You will need:
- 4 cups chicken broth ( I used one of the boxed varieties)
- 1/2 head of cauliflower chopped
- 4 medium red potatoes chopped
- 1 lb. sausage
- 2 ribs celery diced
- 1 large carrot or 6 baby carrots diced
- 1 small onion diced
- 4 cloves garlic diced
- 1/2 Tbsp fresh sage
- 1/2 Tbsp fresh oregano
- 1/2 Tbsp fresh parsley
- 1/2 Tbsp fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese *optional
- 1/4 cup half and half *optional
- salt and pepper to taste ( I used white pepper since it was a creamy soup)

You will want to first take the sausage out of the casing and brown it in the pan. Once browned, take out of the pan and reserve in a bowl for later. Over medium low heat, in the sausage fat left in the pan sauté all of your chopped and diced veggies. If there wasn't very much fat you can add some olive oil or bacon grease if your feeling frisky. I always reserve my bacon grease in a little mason jar for times like these. :)

Once the veggies are in the pot, add a little salt to extract some of the water and help the veggies soften. Once the onions are translucent add the herbs. If you don't have fresh herbs on hand then you can use dry herbs just increase the amount by 1/2 tsp.

Once the herbs are added, stir up the veggies, add the bay leaf and add the chicken broth. Turn the heat up to medium high until the soup starts to simmer. Once it reaches a simmer, place a lid over the pot and turn the heat down to low. Let this simmer on low for about 30 minutes or until the potatoes are soft.

When the potatoes are soft you will want to take out the bay leaf and use an immersion blender, regular blender or even a potato masher to mash up part of the soup. This will help make it smooth and creamy. You can leave as many or as few chunks of potato as you want. David likes HUGE pieces of potatoes in his soup so I  left a lot of large chunks and only blended for 2-3 seconds.

Once that is done, add the sausage back into the soup. Then you can also add the cheese and half and half. You don't have to add any of these things if you are looking for a healthier or vegetarian alternative.

Remember this soup is VERY versatile and you can really make it your own by adding or leaving out certain things.

I used an Asiago, Parmesan and Romano cheese blend. Usually I just thrown in some Parmesan but you can use what you have on hand.

Once the cheese has melted and the soup is still nice and hot, add salt and pepper to taste and you are all done!!!

We like to dish the soup up and then add a little hot sauce for a spicy, vinegary kick.

Hope you enjoy!!!


Monday, July 15, 2013


With it being way too hot to run outside these days, I have looked for some indoor options for working out. David was able to snag the Insanity workout videos for me, so I decided I would go ahead and give them a try.

I was incredibly nervous about these DVDs because is a HARD workout. At least that is what I have heard before starting. Also, I just started working out. I am not in good shape and have a very flabby and weak body. I try to eat healthy (aka no fast food), but I am an ex swimmer who has not worked out in a very long time, and I am a total foodie so that doesn't help either!  I have gained weight over the past few years which is pretty normal as you get older and stop working out. I don't even own a scale to weigh myself so I couldn't even tell you what I weigh now. The beauty of not owning a scale is you are oblivious to how much you really weigh. :) It's awesome!

 I really just started working out to make myself feel better and to ensure that no extra weight was going to adhere itself to my body. Even though I am heavier now than I was, I still love myself and I am a happy person regardless of how "fat" or "thin" I am. I am not one of those people who get all caught up in "thin is beauty" because in reality it just isn't true. The most important part, for me, is to love yourself. It took me awhile to figure this out, but once I did, I became a much happier person.

 I like exercising because it really makes me feel like I have achieved something. It boosts your mood and metabolism which is never a bad thing!

Here are my thoughts on the first ever insanity workout:

  • Day 1, you begin with a fit test and write down your results. Every 2 weeks you will take another fit test and see how the results compare. This is pretty cool because you get to see your results on paper and see how much you have progressed from the very first day.
  • The fit test was not easy either. It was a workout in itself. I did have to take breaks and could not do the exercises all the way through the allotted time, but that's ok!!! You work hard but you can rest when you need it then keep going until you can't go anymore.
  • Definitely must have water and a sweat towel on hand. You will sweat a lot and you will get thirsty. Stay hydrated because you are working your body harder than it is used to.
  • There is a countdown on the workout video so you know how much longer the workout will last. This helped me because I got to keep telling myself there is only 10 minutes left….You can do it!!!!
  • I felt pretty bad that I didn't do GREAT on the fit test, but like I said I have not worked out in a very very long time and I am definitely out of shape.
  • I feel confident that if I stick with these videos and do it everyday that I will make progress. It is a lot of cardio which I need.
  • I like that there are different workouts and a calendar to track which workouts to do on what day.  I am a creature of habit and like to stay on track. You do get Sunday's off, so there is another plus!
  • Always remember it is important to eat healthy. I make most of our dinners at home so I know exactly what I am putting into my body. Trying to stay away from unhealthy fats and eat plenty of healthy proteins, fruits and veggies. It's ok to splurge sometimes, but make sure you are on a good workout regimen.

The insanity has begun!!!


Friday, July 12, 2013

Scoutmob Wishlist

I recently found this amazing website that sells local goods from artists around the U.S. You can find just about anything and everything on this website! My favorite thing is that you can shop local artists in far away cities. Since I live in Texas I can search local goods from Seattle, New York, Denver, Portland, Chicago and the list goes on and on. My local city would be Austin, no San Antonio just yet!!

Feel free to browse the website here > Scoutmob

So many great items made by amazing people in a city near you or far away! So I put together a little wishlist of items I would love to have.

Please note that I get no free stuff, advertising or any re-payment of any kind from scoutmob or its designers. It is just something I love that I think people should know about.

***Each item is linked in the title.**** Enjoy! <3

1. Hawk Totem Pole Tank

Figured I would start with one of my own local artists, Charmed Fox out of Austin. I love the beautiful simplicity of this tank, and let's face it a girl can never have too many tanks during the summer!

2. Canvas, Leather & Denim Patterned Tote Bag 

This bag is made by Bow + Arrow out of Ashville, NC. Amazing bag that would be perfect for a trip to the lake, beach or pool. Plus everything is hand made and the print is gorgeous!

3. Eileen Gray Bangle Bracelet

It is so simple, yet so beautiful and unique. This is made by Gunnard Jewelry out of Shelburne, MA.

4. Wood Grain Design Patterned Paint Roller 

There are so many DIY projects that come to mind if I had this paint roller! I would probably go overboard and paint everything I own with this wood grain design. Rollers are made by NotWallpaper out of Fairfield, CT. I love that they came up with this idea while thrift shopping at an antique store. The possibilities are endless!!

5. Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate - 4 Pack

There is nothing better than an ice cold coffee drink on a hot summer day. It tastes great and it gives you energy. I also love the idea of cold brewed coffee. I have yet to try it, but I am very intrigued. This cold brewed coffee concentrate is made by Growl Coffee out of Dupont Circle, DC. Cold brewed coffee made by a coffee connoisseur?!? Sign me up!!!

6. Trunk of Treasures iPhone Case

Mostly, I love the grayish purple and the cute design of this iphone case. Also, I am in desperate need of a new iphone case as my current one is falling apart. This is made by Fuzzy Ink out of Silver Spring, MD. They also do T-shirt designs. Love their creative and pretty pictures.

7. Modern Tribal Wooden Engraved Coasters - Set of 4

Let's face it, tribal is the "it" thing again, but who doesn't love a good tribal pattern?!? They are elegant with an artistic native touch. These are hand made by Richwood Creations out of Fayetteville, WV. They have many other patterns and items to choose from too! I also love their cutting boards and rolling pins.

8. Wood Chevron Necklace

Here is another simple, yet elegant accessory. I love the different colors so you really can wear it with almost anything. This necklace is made by Maple and Mauve out of Seattle, WA. 

There are so many wonderful items on this website, and they are constantly adding more everyday. What are some items you like from Scoutmob? I would love to see what you guys are into.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

~ Cilantro Lime Hummus ~

The hummus among us!!! ha ha. Feeling quirky today.


It is hummus time again my friends. I have concocted a cilantro lime hummus that was just too irrestistible not to share.

One of my favorite all time flavors is cilantro. It is always readily available at super markets and farmer's markets alike. Plus you can get a whole bunch of it for really cheap! That is always a plus. I usually store my cilantro in a water filled mason jar in the fridge. Apparently this keeps it fresh for longer. Just make sure you change out the water every once in a while.

So here is the cilantro hummus I made.

You will need:

- 1 can garbanzo beans / chickpeas
- 3 heaping Tbsp Tahini
- 4 heaping Tbsp olive oil
- 2-3 cloves garlic
- juice from 2 limes
- 1/4-1/2 cup fresh cilantro
- 1tsp salt or more if you like
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- dash of cayenne pepper (or add some fresh jalapeno) *optional

I start off by draining the garbanzo beans and adding them into the food processor. Next I add the tahini, garlic, lime juice, cilantro, salt,  cumin and 1 shake of cayenne pepper. I blend this for a little while until it reaches a paste consistency, then I start adding the olive oil while blending until it reaches the consistency I like. Some people prefer chunky hummus compared to a smooth hummus. So add the olive oil until it reaches the consistency YOU like. Add additional cilantro, cumin salt and/or cayenne as you go along. Remember, you are making this at home so you can adjust it to meet your preferences. Always start with the basics then add as you see fit.

I am sooo in love with this hummus! I have never tried a cilantro hummus before, as they ones they sell in the supermarkets are pretty basic.

Hope you guys enjoy it!

You can check out some of my other hummus recipes here:
Roasted Lemon & White Bean Hummus


Monday, July 8, 2013

5 Pictures...5 Things....

Picture 1:  

Fresh sage clipped from my little herb garden. I really enjoy cooking with fresh herbs. It makes everything taste so much better!! Sage is the perfect seasoning for pork and is the main herb used in sausages.

Picture 2: 

Making ice cream is one of my favorite past time activities. Not only is it fun to make, but it is even more fun to eat! Plus when you make it yourself you can try fun and interesting flavors.

Picture 3:

Going to the Farmer's Market on Saturday mornings is one of my favorite weekend activities. If I can get myself up early enough to make it when it opens then I get first pick of all the fresh goodies!! I also love seeing all the seasonal items and cooking with the freshest food in the city. 

Picture 4:

I had a lot of fun doing DIY party decorations for David's mom's 60th birthday as well as David's 27th birthday. Homemade decorations just add so much personality to a little space. As they say, "It's all in the details".

Picture 5:

My three cats (from left to right) Luna, Apollo and Clementine. They mean the world to me. Also love this little window nook that the cats can lay in. So glad our kitties have grown to love each other and are enjoying the new home as much as we are. We rarely see them all sleeping in the same spot!

It will soon be 1 year since we bought our first house. So many great memories this year and I can't wait to see what lies ahead the next few years!


Friday, July 5, 2013

Buffalo Chicken Sandwich

As promised in my "A Week in Review" post, today I am sharing this awesome buffalo chicken sandwhich recipe.

Love buffalo wings, but maybe you are craving a sandwich? The buffalo chicken sandwich to the rescue!!!

We are big fans of the buffalo chicken sandwich. If we see it at a cafe, one of us is likely to order it.

Essentially its just a piece of fried chicken breast dipped into buffalo sauce and placed on a hamburger bun.

Here is how I made it at home:

I used two pieces of chicken breast since there were only two of us. Pounded them in a plastic zip-lock bag until they were about 3/4 to 1 inch thick. This will flatten the chicken and tenderize it.

Then I marinaded the chicken in a seasoned buttermilk mixture. I didn't have buttermilk so I put 1 Tbsp of white vinegar into a measuring cup and then filled the measuring cup with milk until it reached the 1 cup line. I seasoned the milk/vinegar mixture with salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and franks hot sauce. Just a shake of each into your milk mixture and that should do it. Marinate for at least 8 hours or overnight.

When you get ready to fry the chicken breast, fill a large flat fry pan with about 1-2 inches of oil, I used peanut oil. Use a fry thermometer to know what temperature you are heating the oil to. Once it reaches 350 degrees you are ready to fry.

While the oil is heating up, place about 1/3 cup of flour into a large dish and season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and even some cayenne pepper if you like. (you can really use any seasonings. Get creative with it!!)

Once the oil is ready, take the chicken out of the buttermilk and dip into the flour mixture. Once chicken pieces are coated, place them into the hot oil. Be careful as it may splatter!! You will want to cook the chicken pieces about 7 minutes on each side or until no longer pink in the middle.

While chicken is cooking, take a few tablespoons of butter and melt in a sauce pan. Then add 1/2 cup of  Frank's hot sauce, or any other hot sauce you like.

Once chicken is done frying, dip into the butter/hot sauce mix and your buffalo chicken is ready!!!!

Place on a bun for a sandwich, or use for a buffalo chicken salad. Anyway you eat it, it's going to be delicious!!!


**Sorry there are no real measurements on here, but I rarely measure when I cook. I kind of just go for it, because I know what I like and my optimal goal is it make it taste good!! Always cook by taste to ensure you get a good quality product.**