food

I’m Really Bad at Coming Up With Names for Workouts…

How do you fellow bloggers always seem to come up with a cute name for the new workout you are sharing? I am the worst at this! If you look at my Workouts page you will see that I don’t have many creative names for the workouts I have made up. Maybe I will get better at this, or maybe my workouts will just have boring, corny names. Most likely it will be the latter. ๐Ÿ™‚

I did some strength training as part of my marathon training yesterday and made up a new workout I wanted to share. Because it’s a strength workout and ย you are working your muscles, I gave this workout the clever name, “Work All of Those Muscles.” I know, I know, I don’t know how I am so creative. ๐Ÿ˜‰

real work all of those muscles

I did 15 reps of all of the exercises except for the lunge pulses into a bicep curl and the wall sit, and you can read in the picture what I did for those. (Note: for the lunge pulses into bicep curl, I did 20 total, 10 each leg). I went through this for a total of three times, and could feel the burn! Make sure you use weight that is challenging enough for you!

Here are a few links to some moves that you might not be so familiar with.

3 Lunge pulses into bicep curl

Push-ups on medicine ball

Hamstring curls on ball

And before I go get ready for bed I want to share a picture of my dinner because it was sooooo delicious! And yes, all of those o’s were necessary in “so” because it was that good.

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Now that I am posting this picture, I see that this actually isn’t a very good picture and it doesn’t look that appetizing. Please trust me though; this was delicious. Ryan put it under the “phenomenal” category! This was taco chili with nacho cheese sauceย from Angela at Oh She Glows. This is also where I got the recipe for the amazing whole wheat pizza crust we made on Sunday.ย None of her recipes have disappointed us yet! If you have never checked out her blog or recipes, you should!

I ate my chili on a bed of spinach, which you can see from the picture above, so that I could get in some extra veggies, but this chili is perfectly fine by itself. Ryan ate it in a bowl with some shredded cheese on top and some tortilla chips. I also think it would be amazing on a bed of quinoa. So many options!

Lastly, I also made some homemade almond butter for the first time last night in our food processor.

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Oh my gosh, I’m so happy I decided to do this! It was so easy and absolutely scrumptious! All I did was put one cup of almonds in the food processor and put it on high for a few minutes. Anyone can do that! I will probably use more almonds next time so that it will make more almond butter! This is a much more affordable option since almond butter can be a little pricey.

Now, off to bed!

Questions:

1. What is a good strength workout I should try?

2. Tell me something good about your life right now. ๐Ÿ™‚

3. Have you ever made any type of homemade nut butter? I really want to make more now! I am thinking cashew butter next!

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80th Birthday Party and Homemade Pizza

Are you all ready for a great week?? Let’s be positive and say HECK YES! ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you all had a fantastic weekend! Our weekend was fun, but very busy!

I woke up naturally at exactly 6:12 a.m. on Saturday and layered up for my long run.

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I am so over this cold weather, and by cold weather, I mean like barely freezing. You know, I live in Texas, so I’m a huge baby when it comes to cold. So all of you Northerners are way tougher than me. I apologize for complaining about weather that I can still run in, when a lot of you can’t even run outside it’s so bad out there! But it was 27 degrees when I started my run, and only 32 when I finished, and to me those are some low temperatures!

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Despite the cold weather, the 15 miler felt great! This is a huge encouragement for the rest of my training!

When I finished my run, I came in and stretched while I talked to Ryan laying in bed. Then I showered and got ready for a wedding shower! One of my best friends from elementary school/junior high/high school is getting married in April, and her shower was Saturday. I am so happy for her, and I can’t wait for her big day!

Oh, and just a tip, if you run a long run and you want to wear your procompression socks or sleeves, just wear a dress with leggings and boots, and no one will ever know. ๐Ÿ˜‰ This totally saved my legs Saturday!

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The shower was in the town where my parents live, so Ryan and I drove to their house so my Mom and I could go to the shower together. While we were gone, Ryan, my dad, and my brother, Ben, went and played disc golf.

The shower was beautiful, and Amber was gorgeous!ย It was also nice to see some people from my hometown that I hadn’t seen in a while. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures here, but just take my word that everything was wonderful. ๐Ÿ™‚

After the shower I hung out at my parents’ house with my Mom, and with Ryan and my Dad when they returned from disc golf . Ben and Kaleigh came over about 5 that night and we all left to go to my aunt and uncle’s house to celebrate my grandfather’s 80th birthday!

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This is my wonderful Pappy. I guess some people call him Max, but that’s not his real name; it’s Pappy. He is one of the most amazing men I know, and is such an incredible role model and leader for our family!

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My Mom with her two parents!

We all enjoyed a delicious dinner of lasagna and salad, and then homemade chocolate cake with ice cream for dessert. It was so nice being together with everyone and just talking and having fun.

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Ryan, Ben, Kaleigh, and I played Monopoly for a little bit that night with our two little cousins, Cooper and Cade.

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When we left my aunt and uncle’s house we stopped by Mammy and Pappy’s house so the boys could help them fix on of their televisions. So us women had to get a picture together. ๐Ÿ™‚

Ryan and I drove home right after this, where we immediately crashed and fell asleep in bed.

Saturday morning I had a great breakfast!

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I sauteed tomatoes, onions, bell pepper, and mushrooms with some leftover quinoa and then cooked two over easy eggs. When it was all done cooking I topped it with 1/4 of an avocado and some salsa. Then obviously I needed a banana with some peanut butter. ๐Ÿ™‚

We went to church that morning, came home and had leftovers for lunch, and then I went to Aldi to go grocery shopping. I came home and Ryan and I got to work making this homemade pizza dough. I had never made pizza dough like this, but Ryan had, so he was such a huge help and taught me some things!

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Once we made part of the dough it needed to rise for a bit, so Ryan and I went to Wal Mart when it rose so I could finish getting a few groceries I couldn’t get at Aldi.

When we got back we finished making the dough, and I cooked and chopped some veggies for the week.

Here is the final crust.

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This recipe is amazing for numerous reasons, but one of the reasons is it was enough to make two pizzas! Ryan and I love leftovers, especially homemade pizza leftovers, so this was perfect for us!

I sauteed onions, bell pepper, mushrooms, tomatoes, zucchini, and squash to put on top of the pizza.

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I am so happy that Ryan eats all of these beautiful, tasty vegetables now! I mean, look at all of those pretty colors, who wouldn’t want to eat that?

We topped our pizza with pizza sauce, the veggies (I also put broccoli on my half), mozzarella cheese, and some pineapple. Once we fixed the pizzas up, we baked them for 10 minutes, and they came out perfectly!

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This was seriously the most delicious crust Ryan and I have ever had. We absolutely loved it! You need to all try it. And don’t be intimidated by making your own pizza dough, it’s not as hard as it seems. It’s just intimidating, but you can do it, I promise. Plus, Angela gives great instructions and pictures to help you!

The rest of our Sunday was spent cleaning and getting ready for the week. Ryan and I have been talking, and we have decided that we think it would be best if I could do our grocery shopping on Thursdays after work. It’s just so exhausting to do all of the grocery shopping, food prep, and getting ready for the upcoming week on Sundays. Ryan and I love being able to relax on Sundays, but when we have to go grocery shopping, clean, and cook, we just can’t relax. We love being outside when the weather is pretty outside (which it was yesterday), and we want to be able to go outside and enjoy it, and not have to be stuck inside working all day. So hopefully I can start meal planning and grocery shopping at the end of the week from now on!

It was busy, but still a great weekend, so I will link up with Katie! Thanks for hosting girl! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Questions:

1. Tell me some fun things from your weekend?

2. Have you ever made homemade pizza crust? What are some of your favorite toppings for pizza?

3. When do you do your grocery shopping?

4. Will you have a busy week this week?

A Diet Change and WIAW

If you follow me on Instagram then you might have noticed that I have been cooking and eating more vegetarian/meatless meals lately. There is a reason for this. Ryan and I have decided that we want to start having less meat in our diets. This has nothing to do with wanting to lose weight, wanting to follow a fad, or wanting to label ourselves as vegetarian or vegan. I am not one for labels when it comes to my diet, but we are changing what we are eating quite a bit.

I have been wondering for a while now how healthy meat is for everyone, especially how much meat most people in America eat every day. I feel like for the majority of people, and I know it was this way for us, most of our meals involved meat, and meat was the main course of the meal. Now most of the meat we ate was chicken or turkey products, which I think is much better than too much red meat, but I still wasn’t convinced that we needed meat for every meal.

A few weeks ago Ryan and I watched the documentary “Forks Over Knives”, after my brother and SIL told us we needed to watch it. I won’t give too much away because I think a lot of y’all would enjoy watching this, but the documentary discussed the benefits of a plant based diet. I am a huge believer that fruits and vegetables are full of nutrients that most of us don’t get enough of, and it’s not that I think meat is bad for us, but I don’t know if we need as much of it as most people eat. I also definitely don’t think the way animals are treated and fed is healthy or natural, and I think humans suffer negative consequences from these unnatural ways. This makes all natural, grass-fed meat healthier, but this is a very expensive option.

With that being said, the majority of meals we eat are now meatless and we are finding different ways to get our protein. I am married to a man who loves meat and cheese (the documentary, “Forks Over Knives” says you should go all plant based, which of course would be no dairy either, we haven’t gone that far yet. We are changing our diets gradually), and he has tried more foods and meals in these last three weeks than he probably ever has, and he is realizing that he can like meals without meat, and there are more vegetables that he actually likes than he thought!

If you are anything like me, you won’t have a clue on how to start to make delicious, meatless meals that meat loving people will still enjoy and make sure they are still nutritious. I did some research and looked through multiple recipes, and I thought I would share some of the meals we have eaten with y’all. So what a perfect day to take part in WIAW: Veggie Style! Head on over to Peas and Crayons if you want to see more delicious food people are eating!

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I made some black bean sweet potato chili, and I loved this meal! Make some healthy cornbread muffins, and this meal is perfect!

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Tofu frittatas from Peas and Thank You. The Hubs wasn’t a fan of this one, but I thought they were really good! They were perfect for breakfast, or a snack, or as an add on to another meal. I really enjoyed putting a couple of them over salads for lunch. I loved to eat mine topped with salsa!. The picture above to the right was a snack for me one day, and I ended up putting a little salsa on the frittata after I took the picture.

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Black bean veggie burger from Peas and Thank You.ย As you can tell, I ate mine on a bed of spinach instead of with a bun, and then I topped it with avocado, tomatoes and bell peppers. And obviously load up on the vegetables for sides! And if you have a veggie burger, home made sweet potato fries are a must, in case you didn’t know.

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Spaghetti and lentil “meat balls”, that are made without any meat. Again, this recipe is from Peas and Thank You.

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Jambalaya made with quinoa, seasonings, veggies, and some type of veggie sausage. We wouldn’t eat the sausage by itself, but when it was mixed in with all of the seasonings, quinoa, and vegetables, it tasted fantastic! Oh and I bet you can’t guess where I got this recipe. Well maybe you can, Peas and Thank You again.

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Tortilla soup from Oh She Glows. I ate mine with some homemade plantain bread from purely twins. Ryan said this meal was “phenomenal”. This was an incredibly good soup, and I can’t wait to make more of Angela’s recipes.

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Homemade pizza on sweet potato crust from Tina. We loaded it up with veggies and then put some mozzarella cheese on top, followed by some pineapple.

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Eggplant parmesan from Ashlee. I loved this meal! I ate mine on a bed of quinoa, and Ryan ate his on noodles. Ryan thought it was delicious!

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Tempeh “sloppy joes”, which I ended up just calling barbecue sandwiches because that’s what they were. They weren’t like sloppy joes at all. Ryan ate his, and had leftovers for lunch the next day, but he said this wasn’t his favorite, and this meal shouldn’t be on of our regular meals.

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A sweet potato topped with scrambled eggs cooked with veggies and avocado for breakfast .

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Blueberry spinach pancaked topped with 1/2 of a banana, some peanut butter, and a drizzle of pure maple syrup.

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Leftover barbecue tempeh on a bed of quinoa with a salad and green beans.

 

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Carrot cake waffles that are amazing! I topped mine with half of a banana and a little pure maple syrup.

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Quinoa, black bean, and corn tacos. Mine are too loaded with toppings for you to see the quinoa mixture, but it was amazing. My plate is on the left, and Ryan’s is on the right.

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The quinoa, black bean, and corn mixture made a ton, so earlier this week for breakfast I sautรฉed some of the leftovers with spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, onion, and bell pepper, and then cooked two eggs with it. This was one of my favorite breakfasts! I topped it with avocado and salsa and had a lentil banana muffin from Lindsay on the side.

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Last night Ryan and I went to a hockey game, and we didn’t want to pay to eat out or eat at the game, so I packed a dinner that we ate in the car before going into the stadium. Not only was this cheaper, but it was healthier too. I wanted to show this picture so you can see that you can pack vegetarian meals too! I had a salad with some of the quinoa, black bean, and corn mixture in it, with some Greek yogurt and nuts afterwards. Ryan had a peanut butter banana sandwich with Ritz chips and an apple.

So there are a bunch of our vegetarian eats lately! Now we are not going totally meatless, right now, we are having mainly vegetarian meals during the week, and some meat on the weekend if we want it. This is working out great so far because it’s on the weekends when we normally go out with friends or family, and that’s when eating meatless might be a harder option, or might not even be an option.

I am also a huge fish lover, and I think fish has many benefits. I still want us to have fish about once a week or so, and that’s why we are having shrimp this Friday night. Meat and fish give people Vitamin B12, which is one reason I wouldn’t want to get rid of it completely. We are just having much less than we used to. ๐Ÿ™‚

Now I do not judge anyone who eats a lot of meat; we are all different and we all need different diets. But for Ryan and I, this diet is working great for us. Ryan even admits that he feels better having less meat; he has more energy and is less tired. Sometimes you just have to explore your food options to see what works best for your body.

Questions:

1. What have you been eating lately?

2. Do you think you would like to watch the documentary, “Forks Over Knives?”

3. Do you like vegetarian recipes?

Date Night, Errands, and Tennis

Mondays are usually hard because I mean, let’s be honest, who wants to go back to work after the weekend? Well, today is a good Monday because Ryan and I are both off of work! I am looking forward to a seven mile run, waffles for breakfast, seeing my friend Brittany for a bit, and maybe some disc golf with Ryan and my Dad! Oh, and maybe ย we can finally put our Christmas tree up today… Oops! At least it’s not February yet, right? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Even though my weekend is not over yet, I will go ahead and do a recap. Everything has been marvelous so far, so obviously I need to link up with Katie!ย 

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Friday night was a perfect start to this weekend! We have a couple of Chili’s gift cards we got for Christmas, so we used part of one to buy dinner and bring home, and we got a red box movie. We ate in the living room while watching “Olympus Has Fallen”. Oh, and I was in my pajamas. Perfect date night!

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Seriously, I know sometimes it is fun to go out and dress up, but Ryan and I love ordering food from a restaurant, bringing it home so we can eat and relax in our own home, all while watching a movie in our sweats or pajamas. If you have never done this, you should!

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I had the mango chile tilapia from their lighter choice menu, and it came with broccoli and rice. This dinner was delicious, and didn’t leave me feeling stuffed, which was a major plus.

Saturday I got up about 6:45 to get ready for my long run, which was 13 miles.

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I got to use my running belt that Ryan gave me for graduation for the first time, and I loved it! It didn’t bounce or bother me, and it was nice to have water when I needed it. I felt great during the run, which was a big encouragement since I have many more long runs to do that are much longer than 13 miles!

I refueled after my run with some healthy spinach blueberry pancakes.

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I ended up topping them with half of a banana, some peanut butter, and a little bit of pure maple syrup. I was using my own recipe for this, and I enjoyed it, but I need to work on tweaking a few things before I can share the recipe on here. If the green scares you, don’t worry, I promise you can’t taste the spinach! It’s a great way to get some veggies in at the beginning of the day!

For the rest of the day Ryan and I ran some errands. We got my oil changed in my car, went to the bank, and drove to the closest James Avery to pick up my charm bracelet. When we got home I started cooking dinner, and then we dug in! We had black bean veggie burgers, green beans, and sweet potato fries.

After dinner Ryan and I finished our Scrabble game that we started last weekend but never finished. Unfortunately I lost. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ But it was still fun, and I am determined to win next time!

Sunday Ryan and I went to church, then came home and had leftovers for lunch.

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I had quinoa with barbecue tempeh on top, a salad, and green beans.

After lunch I went grocery shopping and then came home to change into some athletic clothes so Ryan and I could play tennis.

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I have mentioned this before, but tennis is my favorite sport, and it is something Ryan and I both love playing together. The weather was so beautiful, we had to enjoy it by doing something outside! I love that it’s January and I was able to wear shorts outside and be comfortable. ๐Ÿ™‚

Once we got home I started cooking dinner, and boy oh boy, it was a good dinner!

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I made this butternut squash Mexi-Bake from Danica, and it is a new favorite! The husband and I both thoroughly enjoyed it!

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I topped both of our bowls with 1/4 of an avocado, and Ryan put some tortilla chips in his. This meal is full of veggies and is meatless, but I think even the meat lovers will still love this recipe!

Afterwards we relaxed and watched Revenge.

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After our busy, non-stop weekend last week, it was nice to be home this whole weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚

Questions:

1. What did you do this weekend?

2. Have you ever ordered food and brought it home for a date night?

3. What is your favorite thing you ate this weekend?

4. Favorite way to exercise besides run or lift weights? Tennis or volleyball for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

5. Are you off work today? If so, what are you doing?

 

 

Christmas 2013 Came and Went

And just like that, Christmas is over. I hate to say it is over because I love Christmas so much, but this Christmas was absolutely wonderful!

I have been absent from most social media because we’ve been celebrating with family. Thursday we left to spend the weekend at Ryan’s parents’ house, and we didn’t get home until almost 9:00 last night. We had a blast with everyone, and we hated to leave because Ryan’s brothers and their wives were staying longer, but Ryan had to work today so we headed back. However, I will admit, it feels good to be home. Nothing is quite like home. ๐Ÿ™‚

Since 2013 is quickly coming to an end, I thought I would do a recap of Christmas #2 (with my family) and Christmas #3 (with Ryan’s family) in this one post. Then I will move on from Christmas, I promise. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Get ready for pictures!

Christmas #2

IMG_5011Ryan and I spent Christmas Eve at my parents’ house. My brother, SIL, parents, grandparents, aunt, uncle, and cousin were all there. We always have ham sandwiches, chips, dips, fruit, veggies, and lots of desserts.

IMG_5038The grandparents and the kids.

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IMG_5005My plate of food from the night. Turkey, lettuce, pepperjack cheese, strawberries, grapes, cherry tomatoes, broccoli, carrots, vegetable dip, and crab cakes. I snacked on other things too, but this was the only picture I took.

IMG_5034When everyone else left my family and I ended the night with games, and obviously making silly faces.

IMG_5032Jenga!

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Thinking hard for Scrabble. We get serious about games.

My parents started a new, fun tradition where every year each couple gets a game they wanted for Christmas. Ryan and I got a rotating Scrabble board, Ben and Kaleigh got Jenga and another game I can’t remember, and my parents got a game none of us had ever played called Suspend. That game was a lot of fun too!

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Of course before we went to bed we layer out cookies and milk for Santa. They were eaten the next morning.

IMG_5030Sorry for the blurry picture that you can barely see, but here are our stockings full from what Santa brought.

IMG_5016I love my parents’ tree!

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So I got some really awesome gifts that I love, but I wanted to share something with you. You know you are getting old when you get really excited about a new kitchen trash can for Christmas. But in all fairness, I had really been wanting a stainless steel trashcan, so I feel like it was a perfectly normal thing to be excited about.

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I thought you might also be interested in the barbells I received from my parents! As I have mentioned before, we aren’t members at a gym yet, so all of my workouts are done at home. I have resistant bands, but it will be so nice to have these too! I plan on using them today!

IMG_5022After we opened gifts at my parents we all quickly got dressed and headed to my aunt and uncle’s house for breakfast with my family. It was basically all of the same people that we were with for Christmas Eve, except for this time my other cousin and her husband and two little boys were there as well. I love all of the decorations my aunt has at her house, so I had to get a picture of Ryan and I in front of her tree.

IMG_5023My family doesn’t have big lunches or dinners for Christmas, but we do have a big breakfast, and I love it! After I ate this plate above, I went back for another biscuit with sausage gravy and about 1/4 of another cinnamon roll. I know it was a lot, but I get this breakfast once a year so I enjoy it!

IMG_5044My little cousin, Cooper, got a bow and arrow for Christmas, and to be honest, we all enjoyed shooting it a little. ๐Ÿ™‚ Unfortunately, I’m no Katniss.

IMG_5045My other little cousin, Cade, got a bike, so we watched him ride around in it for a while.

We went back home about 11:00 in the morning and just relaxed for the rest of the day. We did go outside and play with this cool frisbee disc each couple got from Santa in the afternoon, which was a lot of fun. Ryan and I left a little after 7 that night to head home and get ready to leave the next day for his parents’ house.

End of Christmas #2.

Christmas #3

IMG_5052I drove Ryan to work Thursday morning so that I could pick him up Thursday afternoon and we could leave straight from there to make the road trip to his parents’ house. We left about 3:20 and got to their house about 8:30-9:00.

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These pictures that look horrible because of bad lighting, the car moving, and the fact that you can’t really tell what everything is, is the food I packed for the road for me to eat. I had one slice of leftover homemade sweet potato pizzaย that we had Monday night, and then a bunch of random veggies that I threw in some tupperware and later put balsamic vinaigrette dressing on. Ryan enjoyed two slices of leftover pizza with some Cheetos he got in his stocking Monday.ย It was getting dark so the pictures aren’t the best. But I am all for packing food on the road because it saves you money, time, and it is so much healthier since you can control what you eat and what is put into your food.

IMG_5055It was so nice when we finally arrived at their house. Their tree was absolutely beautiful!

Sadly, I didn’t get as many pictures here. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Ryan’s brothers and their wives and kids didn’t show up until Saturday night, so we got to enjoy Ryan’s parents to ourselves for Friday and most of the day Saturday before everyone else came. The house was full by Saturday when everyone got there, and after enjoying dinner together we started opening gifts! After all of the gifts were opened we got to look in our stockings, which is always so fun! The only picture I snapped was Ryan and his two brothers looking in their stockings. Ryan is looking through some binoculars they all got; he really liked them!

One of the gifts I got was an Anne Taylor Loft gift card, and I’m so excited because I need to build up my teacher wardrobe.

IMG_5057We all went to church on Sunday and then snapped this picture of us all. Gotta love self timers on cameras. ๐Ÿ˜‰

IMG_5058We had lunch with everyone, and then sadly Ryan and I had to pack up and leave to make the drive back home. We knew Ryan had work the next day so we didn’t need to get home too late. It was a short trip to my in-laws’ house, but it was so special and fun.

End of Christmas #3.ย 

In case you can’t tell, our first Christmas was absolutely amazing! We were surrounded by so much family and love, and so many memories were made. I am so thankful and blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful people who I love very much!

Questions:

1. When did your Christmas celebrations end?

2. Favorite Christmas tradition?

3. Any new Christmas traditions you want to start?

4. What did you do this weekend?