Good morning from my oven! I woke up early with the intention of going to the gym because it’s raining here this morning, BUT, I decided to knock out this Coffee Almond Baked Oatmeal recipe for this weekend’s Holly Spree at my high school.

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This weekend it felt like I worked all weekend! Besides working at my day job on Saturday, I dog-sat AND babysat. So when I have weekends like this, that seem short, I like to take Monday mornings for myself.

Some highlights though, of my “working” weekend:

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I recently ran out of the Birchbox sample Beauty Protector, on the left, which is a miracle worker for my hair!! It’s a leave-in conditioner I use when blow drying and straightening my hair. It’s weightless, non-greasy, adds shine, and is paraben and sulfate free! I’m so glad to have it back in my routine. I also ordered the full size of Harvey Prince’s Yogini perfume. I love yogini because it sticks with you through out the day and is a great Fall/Winter scent, not too sweet. Combined notes of sandalwood, grapefruit, Egyptian myrrh, amber, and jasmine. I am very pleased with both of these products! Thanks Birchbox!

I FINALLY finished Gone Girl! It took me a couple months, but it was worth it. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but like the book, I’ve heard it starts out slow, and then climaxes. The ending was a disappointment! Don’t think I would ever re-read this one. Any suggestions on what to read next??

At work it already feels like Christmastime! I’ve had fun merchandising the “Snow Village” in the front window and styling our “Christmas jammies”.

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P.S. The Coffee Almond Baked Oatmeal turned out great, although, I think I’ll have it with a dollop of almond butter for breakfast later this week!



New Look & Weekend

Morning! I’m excited about my new “collage” of photos in the header of my blog. They are a little blurry due to the transfer of the Instagram filters onto my computer files, but I’m okay with that. I think as a photo header, the “mirage” look is acceptable and even a little unpredictable – luring the reader in if you will. I do think that crisper photos are necessary in the body of a blog.

Now for the weekend. I had both Saturday AND Sunday off, but no particular plans, which is a recipe for ultimate R & R! Friday, my friend Emily and I went to Ardent Craft Ales Brewery. There have been an explosion of urban breweries popping up in Richmond in the past few years, and Ardent is the new kid on the block. Ardent is unique in that they brew with more herbs and savory flavors. We each indulged in a flight of four beers of our choice. In my flight, I chose Pumpkin, Sweet Potato & Sage, Saison, and the Common. My favorites were the Saison and Pumpkin!

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Saturday was chore day; grocery store circuit, laundry, etc.

I started my Sunday with an energizing yoga class! The instructor guided us through a different sequence in our typical routine, which was fun. After class, I re-joined Gold’s Gym, which I am very excited about. Not only am I paying LESS of a monthly fee, but at Gold’s there are many more yoga classes offered at different times of the day. I LOVE yoga, and very excited to bring it back into my exercise regimen. I plan to have an entire post on yoga coming soon!!

Sunday evening, my sister hosted myself, my brother, sister-in-law and their two boys, as well as my cousins and their families. My uncle has been battling cancer, so my sister thought it would be fun to get them out of the house or away from the hospital, for some yummy pizza, beer/wine, and family fun!

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My sister is always up for a good time, and is a wonderful hostess! Speaking of hosting, I’m hosting a few friends for dinner myself tonight!




Weekend + Update

Happy Monday!

This Halloween weekend was pretty low key. On Halloween night, I went over to my friend Emily’s house and had the heartiest chili and drank a few Pumpkin beers and a glass (or two) of Cab Sav that Emily had from one of our day trips to King Family vineyard this Summer. Everyone took turns handing out candy to the kids and we watched scary movies from the 80’s and 90’s, which actually weren’t that scary at all. The Witches, which was a flash back from my childhood, seemed so far-fetched, but still creepy! Another one we watched was Nightmare on Elm Street, which was just out of control and ridiculous in terms of  scare factor.

Saturday I worked and then babysat for one of my favorite families.

Sunday, we gained an hour over night, and it actually did feel like it!! In years past, I stayed up until 1/2PM and it seemed like I was gipped from “falling back”, but this year since I hit the sack at 11:30, which was really 10:30, I got a solid 9 hours of sleep!!

Sunday morning was laaazy…made breakfast, brewed coffee, and got dressed and out the door to yoga. I have missed yoga soooo much!!! And I am really excited that I will be re-joining Gold’s Gym this coming weekend! For several months, I tried out Richmond’s Downtown YMCA, but just never LOVED it. At the times I was able to go to the Y, I rarely saw people my own age or never saw anyone I knew or had been acquainted with. For me, it’s important to be active among peers because I think that’s a good motivator. Also, running into mutual friends is a form of socializing which is healthy too.

Sunday afternoon, I finally got around to cleaning my apartment and managed to complete the chore in about an hour and a half, without any social media distractions 🙂

Sunday evening after Mass, I went over to my sister Carrington’s house for wine and pizza. Now, I have been trying to avoid dairy, but when the occasional pizza night arises, I’m not going to turn it down! As along as I am aware how dairy affects me, I’m okay with indulging every now and then. I always love seeing my nieces and who could resist this smile?!Taylor Relaxing

I admit, on quiet weekends like this, I do have a sense of FOMO, but I just have to remember that this is an opportunity to check in with myself and reflect on to-do’s, weekly/monthly schedule, and long-term goals.

My eyes are fading, so I’m logging off for now!