down to eat.

This weekend was the end of our 3rd cut with RP (and the end of our first ever CF Ripcord Nutrition Challenge! Woohoo!). I can’t believe we’ve been following RP for almost a year and a half now! They just make it so simple with their templates telling me exactly how much food to eat for every meal and how to make adjustments depending on my training for the day. Following RP has improved my relationship with food so much. Growing up, I was always under the impression that carbs are bad for you, so I would try to avoid them if possible. Which was miserable because carbs are the most delicious. I also had a bad habit of really shorting myself on food, not so much starving myself, but really keeping my calories at a lower level than they needed to be. I was never overweight, but I was also never what I would consider in shape or fit. Thank God RP came into my life and taught me that I can eat carbs, carbs, and more carbs (and protein and fat too, of course) and be in the best shape I’ve ever been in. I now know how to fuel my body properly so that I can do my best in a workout, recover properly, and sleep better. And if I decide to treat myself to a guilty pleasure (Reese’s cups, Cake Bake Shop, Thai food, stop me before I ramble off an excessively long list of my fave foods), I no longer feel the guilt. I thoroughly enjoy whatever treat I’ve eaten and move forward, picking back up on the healthier choices for my next meal. With that being said, I ate ALL the food this weekend in celebration of being finished with our cut. We had the greatest “treat yo-self” weekend. Oh, Parks and Recreation, I sure do miss you…I know I can’t be the only one. Anyways, we had the greatest “treat yo-self” weekend and I don’t regret it for a second!

Josh made his best homemade deep dish pizza yet- flaky, buttery dough; the perfect amount of crunchy green peppers, onions, and mushrooms; my yummy homemade pizza sauce; tons of ooey gooey mozzarella cheese…and he made an extra batch of dough for homemade breadsticks sprinkled with Parmesan and mozzarella cheese. This man is after my heart, y’all!

I might have fallen asleep on the couch after eating that amazeballs pizza while Josh whipped up a homemade chocolate chip skillet cookie for two for dessert. We paired the cookie with the always scrumptious Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream (Middle West Whiskey and Pecans flavor this time- whiskey flavored ice cream with hints of butterscotch and honey, loaded with salty toasted pecans). For those of you that don’t already know, you can have pints of Jeni’s ice cream shipped right to your house! Do it! There is nothing quite like a warm-from-the-oven gooey melty chocolate chip cookie with that cold bite of silky smooth ice cream on top…it just makes my heart so happy.

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We capped off our date night feast by watching “The Big Sick”. I really enjoyed this movie- there was plenty of humor, it kept my interest piqued the whole time, and I got sucked into the real-life romance of Kumail Nanjiani and his girlfriend, Emily. Definitely recommend seeing this one when you’re in the mood for a romcom or really any time at all.

As luck would have it, we had leftovers from Saturday night, so we sat ourselves down for a Sunday “brunch” of deep dish pizza and breadsticks. If possible, the pizza was even better because it had time for all the flavors to meld overnight. *drool*                               

In keeping with the “treat yo-self” theme, we got the idea to make a trip up to the Cake Bake Shop for lunch. And by lunch, I really just mean dessert. We never make a trip there for anything other than dessert. We stopped at Starbucks on the way because Josh won a $5 gift card for filling out a survey and I got the cutest little hedgehog cake pop!

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We perused the menu and decided on the apple crumble cake for me, the peanut butter banana cream pie for Josh, and a peanut butter honey and jam sandwich cookie for us to share. Everything was beyond delicious. The apple crumble cake had layers of spice cake filled with caramel buttercream and caramel all topped with apple pie crumble. A dream cake for fall. The pie consisted of a peanut butter crust topped with sliced bananas, banana cream, fresh whipped cream, chopped peanuts, and a caramel drizzle. My favorite, however, was the peanut butter honey and jam sandwich cookie- there was the most delectable blackberry jam with honey and peanut butter buttercream sandwiched between two peanut butter cookies. I could have eaten spoonfuls of the blackberry jam all by itself. I’ll most definitely be making a trip back up for the blackberry cake smothered in that scrumptious blackberry jam.  

We’re adorbs…I’m biased. Whatever 😉

After all the dessert, we needed to get moving or I was going to fall asleep. Where better to walk around than the mall? We spent a few hours browsing through the stores, just spending time together with no pressure to be anywhere or do anything. It was lovely. When we left the mall, we found ourselves in a debate about whether to just go home or go eat somewhere. Eating somewhere won. The next question was, should we get Thai food or Cheesecake Factory nachos? Now, I love me some Thai food. And I’ve never had the nachos from Cheesecake Factory, but Josh has talked them up good since he ate them once Black Friday shopping several years ago. We pulled into the parking lot and flipped a coin to decide where to eat. Tails (Cheesecake Factory) it was. The nachos did not disappoint. The chips were extra crispy crunchy, covered in queso and shredded cheese, pico de gallo, sour cream, jalapenos, and spicy shredded chicken. I can see why Josh has had these on his mind for so long. We headed home after our day of eating to lounge on the couch and relax. This weekend was what I needed to reset after cutting for three months, just enjoying time with my husband, eating lots of yummy treats, and gearing myself up to maintain through and enjoy the holidays. Life is too short to be stressed about what to eat and worrying all the fun away. So, take a meal, a day, even a weekend if you’re so inclined, and treat yourself!

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all good things are wild & free

Sunday morning, Josh and I both woke up extra early for no reason. We ate some leftover pizza for breakfast (even more delicious the next morning, if possible) and watched a few of Sunday’s CF regionals events.

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With the whole day ahead of us and nothing planned, we decided to head over to McCormick’s Creek State Park. I’ve never been (that I remember…my mom said they used to take us when we were kids) and neither had Josh. We packed up a cooler of water, ham, cucumbers, tomatoes, and peppers and headed over. If you have never been to McCormick’s Creek, I highly recommend you make a trip over. It took us about an hour and twenty minutes to get to- it’s just past Bloomington, in between Ellettsville and Spencer. Definitely worth the drive. The park was very clean and well kept. We parked next to Canyon Inn and made our way onto Trail 3. The trail takes you along McCormick’s Creek, it’s canyon, and ends at the Falls. One of the first things we saw on our hike was a black rat snake! It was right on the side of the trail just slithering away.

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We passed only a few people on the hike. It was so peaceful and quiet. You could hear birds chirping and the sound of the breeze rustling through the leaves. There really are no words to describe the beauty God surrounds us with. The trail was neat because once you get to the canyon, you walk along the riverbed over rocks and through the creek water until you get to the Falls.

We enjoyed the Falls for a bit, then grabbed our cooler and went to eat lunch at the Old Concession Shelter. It was nice to enjoy time together alone, just the sound of the birds and the breeze and no distractions. After lunch, we drove up to the Wolf Cave Parking Area and started our hike on Trail 5. This trail begins in Wolf Cave Nature Preserve, leading you through the forest to Wolf Cave and Twin Bridges. Within the first few minutes on the hike, we walked right up on a box turtle! I’ve been on so many hikes before, but this trip was the best because we saw a snake and a turtle. I loved it!

There were signs around Wolf Cave stating you were welcome to crawl through, but to avoid climbing on the sides or on top of the cave. We ventured into the opening, but realized we weren’t prepared to make our way through the cave. We continued along the trail around to the back side of the cave where we came upon Twin Bridges. Twin Bridges are a pair of stone arches, all that remains from a cave that has collapsed from erosion.

After all the hiking, we were beginning to get hungry again. We decided to head over to Bloomington and stop to eat at The Trojan Horse. We debated on whether to order an appetizer, but came up with a great plan to get ice cream for dessert instead! We both ordered the gyro and it was very yummy. I love me some pita bread and Tzatziki sauce.

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We headed over to Bruster’s for ice cream after lunch. I ordered Wedding Cake (an almond cake batter ice cream with a black raspberry swirl) in a waffle cone and Josh got Chocolate Raspberry Truffle (a chocolate ice cream with raspberry crinkle and chocolate flakes) in a waffle cone. It was a lovely way to end our trip.

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Rocko and I headed to my parents for a few hours to enjoy the pool when we got back, while Josh stayed home to relax. The pool water was perfect for cooling off from the hike. It was nice to chat with my parents, while Derrick was splashing around and pestering my mom, jumping up on her tube and yelling “Hiiiiiii, Mom!” He’s a trip for sure. He definitely keeps us all entertained.      

To cap off our ultimate Sunday, Josh and I ate the rest of our pizza for supper (seriously, it’s soooo dang good) while finishing up the final Regionals events. And I might have talked him into making another chocolate chip skillet cookie while I ran to the store for some ice cream. Cheers to an amazing weekend!!!

when a moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie, that’s amore

OMG, I don’t know why I waited so long to start watching “Younger”! I am obsessed with this show! I started watching season 1 on Tuesday and I’ve binge watched up to season 3 episode 9 in the past 4 days…I can’t stop. The show follows Liza, a 40-year old divorced mother who can’t find work anywhere, so she decides to reinvent herself as a hot, single 26-year old and lands a job in a NY publishing house. The show is hilarious and has the most unexpected, ridiculous twists. I only have 3 more episodes until I’m all caught up. Season 4 doesn’t start until the end of June and I don’t know how I’ll ever handle waiting to watch them week by week as they air. OK, enough about my current TV obsession.

I love Saturdays so much. We get to “sleep in” until 6 before heading up to the gym for our lifting. We can take our time and just enjoy being at the gym, chatting between lifts, watching funny YouTube videos, and just having a good time. Even when it’s a bad day of lifting or I have no motivation, I love that I can count on my friends at the gym to be there for me. Saturday was definitely one of those days for me. Mobility and class were fine, but I had no motivation whatsoever to push myself like I normally would. The workout turned into more of an active recovery for me, which is just what I needed without even realizing it. You know the drill- after class, it was home to meal prep and do laundry, while Josh mowed the grass. Predictable, yes maybe, but we’ve got this adulting stuff down and the whole rest of the weekend to do whatever we want. #winning

CF Regionals this weekend covered the Meridian, Atlantic, and West regions. And it was another crazy couple of events and even more guys injured their pecs…ugh, I hate it for them. They put in so much time and hard work and with one rep, it all goes away. I know it’s just part of the risk any athlete takes, especially at the higher levels, but it still sucks for them. We decided to have a stay at home date night.

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For dinner, Josh made his homemade deep dish pizza. Let me just tell you about this amazing pizza…it’s better than any pizza you can get at a restaurant. Josh makes the crust from scratch which takes 2-3 hours of prep. It’s a lot of work, but so worth it. It is the most buttery, flaky, crunchy crust in the world after it’s baked. We topped the pizza with a layer of fresh mozzarella, homemade pizza sauce, green peppers, onions, mushrooms, and a ton of Asiago cheese that we grated ourselves. Perfect combination of gooey, melted cheese and crunchy veggies with that extra flaky, buttery crust. Makes me hungry again just thinking about it! For dessert, Josh made an oh so scrumptious, gooey chocolate chip skillet cookie topped with homemade Jeni’s vanilla bean ice cream (from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home cookbook) and chocolate peanut butter sauce. Hands down my favorite dessert we make. Really, is there anything better than a hot gooey cookie covered in melted ice cream?? Don’t bother thinking about it, there isn’t!       

    

We couldn’t leave Rocko out of the dessert fun, so he got his very own Frosty Paws pup cup (they’re made by Purina and can be found at Walmart). Love doesn’t begin to describe how he felt about his pup cup. He started off eating it in the kitchen, then the rotten pup picked it up in his mouth and carried it all the way back to our bedroom to finish eating it on the bed. His face was so cute all covered in “ice cream”.

After dinner, we found “Doctor Strange” on Netflix. I knew nothing about the movie going in and I was pleasantly surprised. Benedict Cumberbatch was wonderful in the movie, just enough snark and humor and seriousness to keep me interested. And I’ve always been a super huge fan of Rachel McAdams, so I loved her character. There were some amazing special effects and some really trippy scenes, almost like Inception on a lot of crazy drugs. I enjoyed it a lot and can’t wait to see how it ties in with other Marvel movies.