Bev Is Back In Town

Good morning, and happy Friday!!

It’s been a pretty great week over here; got in three walks + yoga class, got a healthy dose of sun, and started eliminating gluten + dairy from my diet, and am already noticing that my energy level is up!

I’m ending the week and heading into the weekend with my beloved aunt Bev. This is a #fbf pic from my niece’s fourth birthday party, but I just love it.

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Anyway, tonight, I made reservations for Bev and me at Graffiato. It’s one of the many, many restaurants that has joined the dining scene in RVA, and I’ve wanted to try it for a while. I have my eye on the sea bass and charred octopus, and maybe I’ll splurge on the butternut squash pasta 🙂

I’ll try and snap some photos (but probably won’t!), either way,  I’ll let ya know how it is!

XO,

Ellen

Sunny Side of the Street

I’ve recently, as in just yesterday, decided that a morning walk on most days would be a great way to start the day and good for the soul! With Spring here, I think it will be just so refreshing and calming to begin the day this way, no matter how short the walk; the act of getting fresh air first thing in the morning is bound to do a body good, right?

While I was thinking about which route I would take this morning, I decided once I was out the door, that I would walk in the opposite way on one of my favorite streets. It was interesting because even though I had walked in that direction before, each time, I get a new perspective. Whether it’s noticing something new (I spotted a roof top deck/terrace on top of one of my favorite houses!), or just the effect it has on the brain, it was thrilling and so satisfying.

Monument Ave_Fall

This pic is from a walk/jog last Fall, but to me, this says Sunny!

XO,

Ellen

 

A Dairy Dilemma

I’ve got that stomach bug again; no, not that kind of bug, I call it the dairy bug. See, on Sunday night I ate a personal sized Mediterranean pizza from a local Italian-style pizzeria. It was deliciously mouth watering, cheesy, zesty, doughy goodness, just how I like my pizza.

Fast forward to this morning, and it’s coming back to bite me, if you know what I mean…

I’ve been “on and off dairy” for a few years now. Completely overhauled skim milk for all the nut milks out there; I especially love cashew milk in my coffee! I cut out yogurt, because it was giving me horrible heart burn and re-flux.

And if I’m really being mindful, 8 out of 10 times I consume dairy, I feel bloated, which is not comfortable or convenient any time. AND since my digestive tract is on the slower side (thanks GI surgery!), the little dairy bugs stay in my system a bit longer.

SO, since Spring/Summer is on the horizon, I am seriously considering breaking up with dairy once again, maybe forever this time.

But thinking about cutting it out all together makes me start  grieving its absence. Will I ever eat pizza again? What about my upcoming Potluck where I’m planning to cook a pasta dish that calls for Parmesan cheese?

I’m sure the affects will outweigh the damage. I’m sure all this cheese is not good for my gut. I have to admit though, while it might be a challenge to come up with dairy alternatives at first; enter tons of avocado and hummus! Those are easy ones because I already love them, however, I’m intrigued no less at the several ways to re-produce cheese from non-dairy ingredients. That’s the foodie in me 🙂

What are your thoughts? Are you dairy free? Vegan? Any cheese alternatives that are actually GOOD?

xo,

Ellen

Moments with a Weekday Morning & Cycling, Yoga, Running, Oh My!

Good morning!

Ya’ll know how much a love a good, drawn out morning. Sitting here, drinking my delicious french-pressed coffee, watching the Today Show…(Warning: scroll down if you need to see a photo, otherwise there’s lots of words in this post!)

Don’t worry, I’m planning on getting up and going for a power-walk mid-morning. I ventured out on Tuesday when it was gorgeous outside and actually jogged a mile!! Ya’ll, I haven’t jogged/ran in a year maybe?! So, this is a big deal. But Wednesday morning, I biked the hell out of my  glutes in my Boho class, so power-walking will be a happy medium.

On the Boho note, I’ve decided to end my renewal package at the end of April, instead of carrying out my original cycle package, which ended in July.

Gretchen Rubin, author of these books, says it best, “Do nothing in excess – not even moderation.”

Let’s put it this way, if fitness were my boyfriend, he would have broken up with me by now, because when it comes to any type of “fad fitness”; cycling, barre, etc., I’m the worst at sticking to it. I register for six month long packages thinking, I’m going to be this warrior and get inducted in the 100 Ride Club, and then two/three months in, I get bored with it, or sore, or whatever.

And I HATE gyms. I can’t stand being close to strangers and sweating or being mat to mat with your neighbor in a yoga class. I prefer the smaller group fitness approach, the “boutique” gyms if you will, the ones where only one type of cardio or strength training exercise is the primary focus. But these “boutiques” are uber expensive, draining my bank accounts, which brings me back to square one.

Sorry, this is a rant with no solution yet, so just bear with me, please!

I have signed up for a Vinyasa Flow class this Sunday morning, and I’m pretty excited about it. I like the brand behind this particular yoga studio, so we will see how it is.

Part of me is thinking, why not just try them all? I don’t have to commit to just one. I’ll report back on this soon – – maybe in the form of a series?

Anyway, here’s a pic of my breakfast goings on; strawberry-banana-vanilla-chia-oats smoothie, french pressed coffee with almond milk; DE-Licious!

breakfast 3.3.15

Note: while I love supporting local roasters like Blanchard’s, I have to admit, the Gevalia House Blend, which I have been buying for years now, is pretty rad in the french press.

Have a lovely one!

-Ellen