Ten happy moments of the week

Photo by Jessica Cangiano of Piccolina Photography

1. I got in touch with my inner child over the weekend. I did handstands and cartwheels and round-offs, I can't remember the last time I did that. Also, I may have stole a pineapple, but that's a story for another day.  

2. Getting to see one of my best friends in the whole world on Saturday for her baby shower. She is going to have a baby boy in July and I'm so excited to have a new little nephew in this world. She is glowing and gorgeous and fills me in on all the weird details of pregnancy.

3. Visiting my family and playing the most amazing game of Salad Bowl (like Celebrity, but slightly different.) My dad has some serious acting chops. Next time you see him, you should ask him to act out Rachael Ray or a roller coaster, trust me, it's priceless. 

4. It was amazing to watch my friends from the gym compete in the CrossFit Mid Atlantic Regionals last weekend. They totally impressed me. It was just so nice to see all of their hard work and dedication pay off and they made me so proud to be a part of the CFMY community. 

5. This Embrace Kickstarter Campaign. If you haven't seen it, you should, and you should consider donating. Wouldn't it be a happier world if more people embraced and loved their bodies exactly as they are?!

6. So excited to have a movie date night with BryGuy tonight. 

7. Spontaneous trips to Cape May, New Jersey. It was the best way to start summer and end our Memorial Day Weekend. 

8. Chatting with a cute little kid in the elevator at work about his awesome bug collection. Fake bugs, thank goodness.  

9. Getting in a great workout with my favorite workout partna' this week. We're competing together tomorrow and this girl always pushes me, somehow she makes working out kind of fun :) 

10. Iced coffee. It's finally necessary. 


Cape May for Memorial Day Weekend

I hope everyone had a fabulous Memorial Day Weekend! It took me a few days to recover from mine, so I apologize that this post is going up a little late. BryGuy and I drove up to New York to spend a little time with family and attend a baby shower for my lovely friend who is expecting her first child in July. We had friends that were at the shore (in New Jersey) and they kept sending us enticing text messages telling us to drive and join them. Once you tempt Bry with a little beach time, he can't think about anything else, so we woke up bright and early on Sunday and made the five hour drive to Cape May. 

What happened over the next two days was pure summer fun. The weather was gorgeous so we sat outside and soaked up the rays, had a backyard barbecue, checked out some of our favorite bars and restaurants in Cape May, had a speed-walking and cartwheel contest, stole a pineapple, and came up with a few good inventions (patents pending.) We were supposed to head back to Philly late Monday night, but after a filling dinner at the Lobster House, we just couldn't do it. So we got some shut eye, woke up at 4:30 a.m. and hit the road on Tuesday morning. It was the worst thing ever. But I did get a few good photos of the spectacular sunrise; I haven't seen one of those in... ever. 

Check out more photos from our MDW below.


Ten happy moments of the week

Image credit: Found on Pinterest, original source unknown. If you know the original source of this image or own rights to it, please let me know and I’ll credit/remove as appropriate.

Happy MDW lovers and friends!!! It's finally here, the unofficial kick-off weekend to Summer 2014. I hope you have a fantastic awesome long weekend! I have so many things to be happy for, but I can only list ten, so here you go:

1. I feel unbelievable amounts of mama pride (or what I imagine it would feel like if I were a mama) seeing my friends and fellow athletes compete at the CrossFit Mid-Atlantic Regionals! Although, I wish I was there in the stands cheering them on (and more importantly, celebrating with them in the evening,) believe me, I'm screaming just as loud at my computer. I also love that they are streaming the workouts live so I can pretend I'm there! 

2. Great stuff is happening at work these days. As we wind down on the crazy spring event schedule, the atmosphere at work gets a little more relaxed. 

3. Enjoying a fun night of barbecue, fire pits and hanging out with some of my nearest and dearest last weekend. 

4. Being a part of this photo shoot

5. Three cheers for having a super fast week. Sometimes weeks just drag on and on, and this one flew by for whatever reason. 

6. Getting to the gym, even when I really wasn't feeling it on Thursday. It ended up being a really good and really fun workout that concluded with running sprints in the pouring rain. 

7. The Made in America Festival line up was released this week and it looks awesome, per usual. I'm excited for Pharrell, Kings of Leon and of course, Kanye

8. Having a random movie night with BryGuy on a Wednesday, complete with homemade truffle butter popcorn. Plus, Monuments Men was really good! 

9. I'm looking forward to a road trip up to NY to visit family and friends this weekend, car rides with Bry are the best!

10. Despite craving a big juicy burger topped with bacon, cheese, fried onions and pickles, I demonstrated an ounce of willpower this week and did not give into my craving. *Pats self on back*


What my summer will look like

I'm warning you. Many of my posts over the next three months are going to look a lot like this... friends, barbecues, fire pits, lawn games, drinking games, furry babies and lots and lots of laughing and dancing. Doesn't that sound like the most perfect summer? Throw in a handful of trips to the beach here and there, and I might just be the happiest gal in the world! Well last weekend BryGuy was busy with reunion activities with his buddies from UPenn and I had no plans. So my wonderful friends, the K sisters invited me over for a little Saturday get together. Like most shindigs, it started off very innocent and as the sun set, got progressively less innocent.


Pure bad assery

If you follow me on Instagram or we're friends on Facebook, you might have seen a teaser from a photo shoot I participated in this weekend. One of the members of our gym is a super talented photographer and she had an idea for a shot that would showcase some of our strong and beautiful female athletes. The photo shoot was so much fun! We all started out a little nervous and stiff, but we quickly loosened up and had fun with it. The end result is the photos above which show strong, healthy and confident women and that's the perfect way to portray how CrossFit Manayunk will make you feel. 

Check out more behind the scenes shots below, and on the photographer's blog: Peachy Pie, Sugar Plum, Sweet Petunia Blossom


Ten happy moments of the week

Image credit: Found on Pinterest, original source unknown. If you know the original source of this image or own rights to it, please let me know and I’ll credit/remove as appropriate.

1. My business cards for this here blog finally arrived and they are so pretty! I can't wait to share.

2. We had a lovely visit from my bro-in-law, Josh, this weekend. First, we got a little crazy at a house warming party and then we enjoyed a little Funday Sunday the next day! It's always a good time when Josh is in town!

3. What a great episode of Game of Thrones on Sunday? I am on the edge of my seat about where this Tyrion Lannister plot line is headed.

4. I whipped up a quick stir fry this week and it came out so good. I always forget how easy it is to make and it can be made in one pan. I really need to keep that on my go-to list for easy dinners.

5. The sound of kids playing outside after school. I forgot how comforting a noise that is to hear laughter and screaming and crying from the little neighborhood kids when the weather is nice and they're running around the streets.

6. Finally beating a level in Candy Crush that was so infuriating, I was ready to quit. On to the next!

7. Hanging with my crew in the art department and practicing our party tricks - one-legged squats, headstands, and other random talents.

8. A haircut that was soooo long overdue it was borderline embarrassing. But, I got a fresh cut and I feel like a new women. I'm totally ready for beachy summer hair. Cape May and Ocean City -- here I come!

9. Having a great and responsive landlord. They are few and far between and we are so lucky to have someone that's always willing to help us out and is beyond generous. 

10. A green backyard. The "lawn" (and I use that term loosely) in our backyard has always been my pet project, I want it lush and soft and something you could walk on in your bare feet. It's not that yet, but it's getting there. It looks a million times better than last year, so that's deserving of a happy moment shout out. 


Guest Post: Summer Blockbuster Guide

BryGuy is back with another hostile takeover a la Gordan Gekko. It is only fitting that we start with a short film clip, because this is the inaugural Summer Blockbuster Guide. Big-time, high budget, explosion laden, CGI filled movies are as quintessential to summer as hitting on that older girl on the 14th floor during your summer internship and hoping against all hopes this thing can make it to Christmas (this might be how I met the illustrious founder of Marissa says...) Some of my favorite summer blockbusters of all time include Independence Day (duh), Mission Impossible's 1 and 3, Air Force One, Bad Boys II (also major duh), Iron Man and Transformers. Why not the OG Bad Boys? Unfortunately, that was released in April and just misses the May release date criteria of "summer blockbuster." But, we all still wanna be like Mike. Okay, here we go with the ones I'm most looking forward to this season.


2014 wedding guest style guide

Wedding season is upon us, my friends. It seems to get longer and longer each year. From May through October you can count on attending at least a few weddings each year, especially if you're in your mid-20s or 30s. I pulled together 11 options to serve as inspiration for your next soiree. My number one requirement when choosing a dress to wear to a wedding is comfort. Basically, I plan to be doing a lot of eating and dancing and therefore I need a dress that's going to hide my food baby, and not look risque on the dance floor. Keep reading to see my picks for 2014 wedding season. 


A feast at Sbraga and cocktails at Bar Volvér

Warning: If you are hungry in any way, shape or form, close your browser tab now. You can come back to this post after you have a fuller tummy. Really. You've been warned. 
After a long work week, we had the pleasure of meeting up with some wonderful friends for a delicious dinner at Sbraga. It only took us about two months to get this dinner scheduled (we're all very important people, duh) but it finally worked out and we had the feast of all feasts. Bry and I had come to Sbraga shortly after it opened in October of 2011. We absolutely loved our meal, but unfortunately when you're in a food mecca like Philadelphia, there are so many new places to try out, sometimes it takes a while to get back to the ones you loved. Finally, we made it back, and somehow, this time it managed to blow us away all over again. Get ready for some serious food porn below. Gentlemen suitors above, fine foxes below. 


Mother's Day Gift Guide

If you've waited until the very last minute to pick up something for your mama. Here are a few ideas, most are available on Amazon Prime for next day shipping. 

1. Fitbit Wireless Activity and Sleep Wristband $99 // 2. Statement Necklace $26 // 3. French Press Coffee and Tea Maker $38 // 4. Salad Spinner $30 // 5. Fossil Rose Gold Watch $80 // 6. Flowers // 7. Birch Box Year Subscription $110 // 8. Toms $59 // 9. Garden Goddess Tool Set $30

Fitbit is perfect for the active mom, while the watch, necklace and shoes are perfect for the stylish mothers. If your mom loves spending time in the kitchen and she doesn't have a salad spinner or french press, both will change her life. For the gardening mama, this adorable garden set is sure to make her smile. Birch box, is the gift that will keep on giving all year long. It' a monthly subscription program that will let your mom try new beauty and grooming products each month.

Last but not least, I put flowers on there. While flowers might seem like a cop-out they are not, as long as they are done right. Don't order online, and don't pick out an arrangement from a book. Call up a local flower shop around where mom lives and talk to a real person. Explain your mom's style and taste. Does she like rustic, classic or modern arrangements? Do you know her favorite flower? Arrangements that have a lot or all of the same flower tend to have a dramatic impact. Also, consider switching up the vessel. A plain glass vase is just that, plain. Find a unique vase/container and she'll have it to put fresh flowers in forever! The key to having flowers not seem like an after thought is to make them different from any other arrangement she's received before! 

Most importantly, don't forget the card. While I'm sure you are all great sons and daughters and you tell your mom how special she is throughout the year, take a few minutes to jot down some of your favorite memories or reasons your mom is extra special to you in a Mother's Day card!


Ten happy moments of the week

Image credit: Found on Pinterest, original source unknown. If you know the original source of this image or own rights to it, please let me know and I’ll credit/remove as appropriate.

I'm slackin' yo. I missed happy moments last week and didn't even realize it! I wish I could say that I have 20 happy things to get you up to speed, but ain't nobody got time for that. So here's the list of ten...

1. I hit a new PR (personal record) on one of my lifts (the snatch) yesterday! I got to 115# (my previous PR was 110 and that was last summer) and to tell you the truth, it felt pretty good...I think I can do more :) I understand that to most of you this sounds like gibberish, but to those of you that know what I'm taking about, this is a MAJOR happy moment. 

2. A week of mostly healthy eating. I'm a bit unhappy with my physique these days, basically because I was eating like garbage and drinking like a fish all winter long, so now it's time to reverse some of those unhealthy habits and get bikini ready! 

3. Getting lots of sleep. I don't know what it was about this week, but BryGuy and I were SO tired. We kept getting into bed by 10 p.m. a full hour before our usual time, and we both were passing out pretty quick. I guess it was much needed and I certainly feel more refreshed. 

4. Thunderstorms. Loud scary thunderstorms. I love them. They remind me of summer and sitting on the porch of my parent's house. 

5. Receiving an awesome new coffee mug from my favorite lil babe. I am loving all that I'm learning about photography, and still have so much to learn, but it's awesome to have a super cute subject that just loves to have his picture taken. 

6. Going on a hiking adventure with my lover boy, and then visiting an awesome farm. 

7. Excellent service on an annoying car issue. Last weekend, I was making a quick run to the grocery store for some lemons (to make a whiskey smash.) As I pulled my car out of its spot, my tire popped. I called up AAA because listen, that's why I pay for it, so I don't have to get my hands dirty and change my own tire. Within a half hour they were there, and five minutes later I had my fresh spare on. The next morning I brought my car over to our local tire shop and they found me a great deal on two new tires and the next day I had my car back. For something that could have been super annoying and stressful, it was a pretty painless process. Thanks AAA and the nice folks over at Gabriel John Goodyear and special thanks to my patient husband for letting me use his AAA membership because mine was expired, and for driving me back and forth to drop off and pick up the car. He's really a saint. 

8. Wedges. Wearing sandals to work for the first time this year makes me so happy. But I really need to paint my toes this weekend...

9. Trying raw milk for the first time. It's so rich and creamy and I don't know how I'm going to be able to go back to pasteurized milk.

10. Game of Thrones being back. I know I said this before, and it will probably make my "ten happy things" list for the next eight weeks, (or however long the season is) because every Sunday I get so excited to watch it and then so sad when the credits roll.


Thirsty Thursday: A delicious derby cocktail

While mint juleps are traditionally all the rage during the Kentucky Derby, I have a new elixir for you that's just what the doctor ordered. It's smashing good, extremely refreshing and will have you acting like a fine southern gentlemen or lady in no time. It's really not too far off from a mint julep, but the addition of the lemon makes a world of difference. Grab a bottle of your favorite bourbon, a few lemons, some fresh mint from the garden (or grocery store, if that's how you roll) and crush up some ice. The best way to do the crushed ice is fill a gallon ziplock bag with a bunch of cubes, and use the back of a ice cream scoop to smash the cubes into little jagged pieces. 

Whiskey Smash
3 lemon pieces (cut a lemon in half and then quarter one of the halves, use three of the quarters for one drink)
5 mint leaves
1 ounce simple syrup
Splash of club soda
2 ounces bourbon
1 mint sprig for garnish

Muddle the lemon pieces, mint leaves, simple syrup and club soda in the bottom of a shaker glass. Add the bourbon and stir with with ice. Strain into a rocks glass filled halfway with crushed ice. Top off with a little more crushed ice and garnish with a mint sprig.

Do you have plans to pull out a floppy hat and watch the Derby this weekend? Tell me where you're watching. Obviously, I only pick my horses by the cleverness of their names... 
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