Mason Jar Goods

Hello and happy Thursday! We are almost done with our work week 🙂

Lately, I have been in the mood to craft and cook. I combined both of my interest to replicate this little project below.ImageI was inspired after visiting my friend Katie to begin storing my dry goods in large Mason jars. As pictured above, I purchased a set of 9 Mason jars from Target for $9.99. I began filling the jars with things I had around the house and needed a home. I now can access oats, nuts, etc. easier than before.

The dry goods in order from left to right are: ground flax seed, old fashion oats, whole wheat flour, pecans, cashews, and quinoa.

I hope to add a few more to my collection, including chocolate chips, and stevia.

I also have been trying something new with my chobani greek yogurt cups. Sometimes they get kind of boring to eat by themselves. So, I have been topping them with various nutritional boosters. Below is a picture of my latest which included old fashion oats, strawberries, and pecans. YUM! ImageFinally, I have to share another pancake recipe since the last one went over so well. (Thanks for all your comments and e-mails, readers!) I’m glad you loved the Greek yogurt Pancakes.

This pancake recipe, I did NOT create. It is from one of my favorite bloggers, PBFingers and you can find the original recipe here. 

I, however, re-created it and it tasted delicious!

Banana Bread Protein Pancakes Image

  • 1/2 cup old fashion oats
  • 1/2 banana, mashed
  • 1/4 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

1) Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until batter becomes smooth

2) Cook on griddle until edges begin to harden, about 2-3 minutes.

3) Flip and repeat

4) Enjoy! (They taste like you are eating banana bread but THEY’RE HEALTHY!)

The rest of my day includes working out and celebrating a birthday of a friend. More pictures to come.

Have a great evening 🙂



Nike Shoe Review


Happy Tuesday, Bloggers!

A week back from vacation can sometimes be difficult. I figured yesterday would be tough, but it ended up including much more excitement than I anticipated. It began with the power going off in our work building around 9:00am. I was sad to lose a spreadsheet I had been working on, but figured this would add a little built in break/excitement to the day. Following lunch, a tornado warning was issued for our area. I looked outside and saw the biggest wall cloud I had ever seen with cloud rotation right over buildings next door. I typically don’t become too alarmed with severe weather but I’ll admit, that was scary. Thankfully, we remained tornado-free although towns just north of us were not as fortunate 😦

I promised to provide a review of my Nike plus women’s running shoes. I wanted to spend time running, walking, and casually wearing them in order to provide the most complete review. Here it goes!


Women’s Nike Free 3.0 Running Shoe, Size 9

Overall Score: B+

What I Liked: The light-weight fabric, portability, and ease of taking on/off. These shoes were great for running shorter distances, power walking, or running errands. I also love the fact that the shoe has the Nike+ capability. Nike+ is a chip you can buy to insert in your shoe that tracks the distance, time and calories burned during an exercise. I haven’t utilized the chip but it’s only about $20 at most apple stores. I think they are semi-stylish (maybe I’m biased). Finally, the shoe ties stayed tied during runs! Alleluia!

What I Didn’t Like: Despite having the supposed proper size, my toes felt crammed at the top of the shoe. And although I liked how light weight the shoes were, I felt they lacked support. My feet have a normal arch and I have never needs inserts or other special accommodations for my shoe wear. My feet felt unsupported when I went on a 6 mile run recently.

Closing Thoughts: I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for a easily portable and low-stability shoe. Additionally, I would recommend this to an experienced runner who enjoys shorter runs.

Today, I am reminiscing about the great times I had on my vacation…

ImageEvan and I spent our last night together on the beach. I miss you already, Evan!

After my week in Savannah, I flew home to Milwaukee to celebrate one of my dear friend’s wedding. Congrats, Jess & Tyler! The wedding also provided a great opportunity to catch up with college friends. I think it’s a sign of true friendship when you can pick up right where you left off.

ImageA group of us at Water Street Brewery, downtown Milwaukee

ImageOne of my favorite roommates and college friends, Opal.

I am also anxious to get back to the gym today. Although I always enjoy breaks from exercise, I tend to feel more easily irritable and get headaches when I take a longer break from working out. Isn’t it weird how sensitive our bodies can be? I plan on easing back into it with a run and light weights.

I hope you all have a wonderful evening!

Question: What do you like to do after a vacation to help get you back into your normal routine?

Running in Southern Summers

Greetings from Savannah, Georgia!

It has been a busy and southern-filled vacation so far. We have been enjoying every minute of it. Vacations have a great way of reminding us of the need to relax and enjoy the small things–like your morning coffee or walks after dinner.

Thankfully, the 17 hour drive to Savannah wasn’t nearly as overwhelming as I once thought. Our group broke up the drive safely and ended up pulling into Savannah around 1:00pm on Monday. It only took us minutes to jump into our suits and head to Tybee Island, the most popular beach spot in the area.


We enjoyed catching some rays but quickly realized we were hungry after all of that driving! We headed to dinner after the beach where I chose a black bean burger topped with pineapple salsa with fresh fruit on the side.

20130620-145741.jpgAfter dinner, it was easy to go to bed because of our sleep deprivation from the night before.

When we woke up on Tuesday morning, Nate suggested we go for a run. We laced up our running shoes and headed out the door into the muggy, muggy Savannah sun!


While on my run, I found myself feeling sluggish quickly due to my fatigue and heat. After talking with my friends, we thought of the idea to post on proper running form.

Running properly is essential to not only safe but productive exercise. Just like any other sport, one must run with proper body mechanics to decrease the risk of injury and find the exercise most enjoyable. Starting from the top of your body, below are some basic pointers to keep in your mind.

  • Head: Try to always look out and naturally ahead towards the horizon. This will put the rest of your body in a forward position. (I’ve noticed, looking at your feet can leave you feeling exhausted and defeated.)
  • Shoulders: Should be relaxed and in a lower position. Many new runners often feel tension in their shoulders after long runs because they put strain on this area naturally. Be cognizant of this area when you are attempting to get into a solid running rhythm.
  • Arms: Should be bent by the elbow in a 90 degree position and swinging slowly and naturally. Typically, sprtinters move their arms faster and more frequently than long distance runners. Attempt to keep your hands unclenched to avoid tension build up.
  • Hips/Torso: Should be facing forward and extended. When I ran track, I remember the coaches telling the athletes to “run tall” meaning, stand up straight without slouching. If you feel yourself doing so, take a deep breath and pull your shoulders back.
  • Legs: Your knee lift does not need to be dramatic or exaggerated. Similar to your arms, let them fall into into a natural pattern.
  • Feet/Ankles: Many people differ in the way their feet hit the pavement due to bone structure. Your outer foot should be hitting the ground first and rolling inwards with every step. Most people have to intentionally train themselves to run this way.

The rest of the week will be a continuation of exploring in Savannah! Tonight we are mini-golfing and grabbing ice cream. I hope you have a great evening!


Summer Roadtrip!

Hello, Blogworld!

This weekend, I was fortunate to spend time with family, despite the circumstances being sad. My great uncle passed away so I spent time in northern Iowa celebrating his life with relatives. There was a beautiful military memorial. A shout out to Meghann, Kelly, Monica, and Melanie for the blog compliments. It is great to see that my extended family enjoy the posts.

Today is Sunday, which traditionally is filled with church, relaxing, and preparing for the week ahead. This Sunday, however, I woke up extra excited because today is the day we leave for Savannah to see Evan!

My friends Nate, Sarah, Brianne and myself are all roadtripping down to Savannah, Georgia!


(Photo Source)

According to the GPS, it should be about a 17 hour drive. Yikes! We are all planning on splitting it up with no major stops along the way. (I’m fairly positive Starbucks will be heavily involved.)

I will update you all once I arrive and begin exploring. Savannah is supposed to be one of the most haunted cities in America. Therefore, we are heading on a ghost tour! Spooky! Beyond the tour, we plan on eating well and hitting the beach! Summer vacations are the best. Plus I will finally reunite with my sweet boy. It’s a win-win 🙂

ImageRewind to this morning….I woke up and quickly threw on my running shoes. I don’t normally work out on Sundays, so I knew if I thoughts about it anymore, I wouldn’t actually end up running. I figured the exercise would help with the long drive later.

Upon arriving home from my run, I blended together a quick smoothie before I began packing for our Georgia excursion.

I call this smoothie…Mighty Mango!


  • 1, 6oz container of Stoneyfield Farms Organic Peach Yogurt
  • 1/2 cup of frozen mango chunks
  • 1/2 cup of frozen sliced strawberries
  • 1 large handful of organic baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup of organic vanilla soy milk
  • 1 pinch of chia seeds. You can read more about the power of chia seeds here.


Doesn’t look great but it tasted like something orange julius would make. Yummm

I hope you have a great rest of your Sunday! I will try and update on Savannah ASAP!


Summer Exercising…

Good morning blogging world! I hope your Monday is off to a good start. My weekend was consumed with work and birthday celebrations. (Side note: Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake is still just as good as when we were little). My birthday dinner consisted of this amazing Arugula Salad and a glass of Pinot Grigio. Delicious.

This morning, I wasn’t able to sneak a workout in before work but I plan to afterwords. I will be doing this little dandy (pictured below). It is featured on my favorite blog, PB Fingers.


Burpees are killer! They are done by completing a push up followed by standing up and doing a vertical jump. Repeat. =TIRING! I will most likely end the workout today with a little run to top it off. Evan, my friends, and myself will be running a 5K in Madison, WI this weekend. We are excited to run our first race all together.

Speaking of exercising, I wanted to talk about safety tips for working out in the higher temperatures we are experiencing. It is important to be aware of safety precautions related to summer exercise. Individuals are at a higher risk for injury and heat exhaustion because of the warmer air coupled with the body’s rising body temperature. I have collected some resources listed below.

Tips to Beat the Summer Heat (and still work out)

Focus on the beginning and end of the day. These times of day are typically the coolest outside and safest times to exercise and keep your body temperature at an acceptable level.

Purchase wicking clothing. Certain clothing materials allow sweat and air to flow more easily between your body and the fabric. An example of this would be Nike Dri Fit. (Pus they are cute and comfortable AND typically on sale at TJ Maxx).

Take it easy. For temperatures and heat index levels above 80 degrees, it may be best to postpone or slow down your workout. This may mean taking frequent breaks and running at a slower pace.

Hydate, Hydrate, Hydrate. According to Discovery Health, your body can lose up to a quart of water an hour. Therefore, keeping water with you or hydrating before and after exercise is critical. For best absorption, consume 8oz (approx one full glass) every 20 minutes before and after working out.

Take a cold shower post-workout. The cold shower will allow your body temperature to lower. Plus, it will be refreshing. 🙂


If you do end up over doing it, here are some warning signs and symptoms to be aware of (taken from Georgetown University). The following signs could be pre-cursors for life-threatening situations. Exercise should be immediately discontinued and 911 may need to be called.

  • Dizziness
  • Cramping
  • Confusion
  • Headache
  • Fainting
  • Hallucinations

I hope that was helpful and you never end up in a tricky situation! I am off to run errands over my lunch break and finish out the day strong. Tonight, Evan and I will be making black bean burgers and sweet potato fries. Yum!


Have a good day 🙂