July 27, 2014

Mingle Monday Blog Link-up

Hurray! Thanks for swinging by le blog to link-up for some networking!
Every single week there are some incredible bloggers that you are bound to discover. Your on your way to new great reads and more loyal readers!

I hope your weekend was incredibly relaxing and full of the people who make your heart full. \I spent my weekend with eleven of my closest girlfriends at the family cabin. We sat on the dock and dipper our toes in the pond, went on long walks, and played way too many crazy games. Those girls sure wore me out! ;)

On to mingling!


 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 ** Only 3 easy rules - that's all I ask! **


1) Link-up your blog below.

2) You must share a link to Mingle Monday on your post or the Mingle Monday photo.
 
3) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below and have FUN!
 
** What new hobby or skill would you like to learn? **
(I would pick sewing or canning... old school!)

________________________________________________________________________________________

Still proud to say that 100% of advertisement sponsorship proceeds go to my charity of choice, the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge. There are dozens and dozens of Hope Lodges across the country that give cancer patients a free place to stay while out of town for cancer treatment - such a cool place! 

With just $10, you can get a month long ad and know that it is going to help real cancer patients and their families. So please join me in my fundraising effort by becoming a sponsor HERE!


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Cheers to an easy and surprisingly smooth week!

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovinInstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest

July 24, 2014

8 Favorite Fitness Must Haves

I have had so much fun lately sharing our new lifestyle change with you all, from our eating plan to our grocery list, and now I am here to share some fitness fun.

Growing up, I was always active with dance and sports and loved every minute. I was with my friends and having fun, which totally distracted me from the struggles of training. Once I went away to college and was without team sports and dance class, I had to learn how to workout on my own.

Within the first year, I slowly learned to enjoy running to relieve stress, and started going to the gym at 6AM before class. Now, 8 years later, I am so glad that I actually find pleasure in attending a workout class or taking the Beast on a walk.

Setting goals, trying new things, and discovering my favorite fitness items has kept me motivated along the way. Here are a few I can't live without...


1// Fitbit Flex 




I just purchased my Fitbit Flex and I already love it. As I move throughout my day it tracks my steps, calories burned, activity level, water intake, and calorie intake. Meanwhile at night it tracks my sleeping patterns, which is totally nerdy for me to be so excited about, but it's very interesting to see if I had  a restful night sleep or if I was rolling around like a tornado!

Believe it or not, it tracks all of this while wearing a stylish colorful bracelet (I chose yellow... are you shocked?), and syncs wirelessly to your smart phone, tablet, or PC. I also love that you can pop out the tracker at any time and switch it to another colored bracelet. I am loving the soon-to-be-released Tory Burch band designs - both athletic styles and gold jewelry styles, that are way more trendy for all you fashion forward gals!


 2// FT4 Polar Calorie Counter + Heart Rate Monitor 



I got my FT4 Polar 6 months before my wedding as a workout motivator, and have been wearing it ever since. If you don't have this and you need a fitness wake-up call like I did, you need to rush to Amazon and buy this watch ASAP. If you've been going to the gym and tracking your calories burned by what's on the treadmill, think again! Mine was off by over 200 calories, but this tracks your specific calorie burn accurately.


 3// Contigo Autoseal Water Bottle + Contigo Tranquil Water Bottle




I absolutely love these autoseal Contigo bottles. The big one I use for my water all day everyday, and the Tranquil bottle I use with a blender ball to blend my protein powder for breakfast or post-workouts. You can shake those things silly and they will never ever leak. Way better than past Nalgene or Camelbak bottles.


 4// Champion C9 Workout Gear 

Always cute styles of tanks and tees, and I have 3 pairs of their workout leggings and capris. They are made well, despite their affordable Target price, and they've lasted me for years.



 5// Goody Stay Put Headbands 



Having very fine, thin hair and cheekbone length bangs, I depend on these grippy little headbands to keep loose strands out of my face. With other headbands, they tend to slide out of my hair mid-workout class, but these headbands have thin little sticky strips all the way around the band to keep it from budging. Not to mention, they are cheap and easy to find at most drugstores.


 6// Old Navy Active Workout Tops



Have you seen the Old Navy Active line? I am a girl who loves color and texture, and ON is doing it right. Every season they introduce new patterns and colors of their most popular tanks and tees, and they're always on sale. I mean, who can beat a $9 dry fit, super cute workout top? They also have great workout jackets, well fitting sports bras, and sometimes hair accessories.


7// GAP Fit gFast Leggings



This is also a newer obsession for me. This winter I had a GAP gift card, so I went browsing through the GapFit section until I came across their leggings. Holy heck. I like them so much I bought long ones for cold weather workouts, and little capri leggings that I sport at yoga and Zumba. They are high waisted, have a drawstring and thee structure of the material hides any lumps and bumps.


8// My Fitness Pal App



I know you have probably heard about this time and time again from me, but I love this free app. What a great way to get in the habit of keeping a food and exercise journal, and it syncs effortlessly with my Fitbit for a streamlined, simplified lifestyle tool. Feel free to add me on MFP and we can do this healthy living journey together. Encouragement is key!

.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.


What are some of your fitness must haves?



 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

July 21, 2014

Mingle Monday Blog Link-Up

So glad you dropped by for a little link-up networking!
Grab a latte and get comfortable... you are bound to meet some great bloggers.

I hope all of you had a wonderfully relaxing weekend. We had lots of fun outings and celebrations with family and friends, so it was a memorable weekend for sure. Lots to be thankful for.
Happy Mingling!


 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 ** Only 3 easy rules - that's all I ask! **


1) Link-up your blog below.

2) You must share a link to Mingle Monday on your post or the Mingle Monday photo.
 
3) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below and have FUN!
 
** If you had a $100 to splurge on anything, what would you pick? **

________________________________________________________________________________________

Still proud to say that 100% of advertisement sponsorship proceeds go to my charity of choice, the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge. There are dozens and dozens of Hope Lodges across the country that give cancer patients a free place to stay while out of town for cancer treatment - such a cool place! 

With just $10, you can get a month long ad and know that it is going to help real cancer patients and their families. So please join me in my fundraising effort by becoming a sponsor HERE!


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Have a wild week, y'all!

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovinInstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest

July 18, 2014

30 Day Slimdown Grocery List + Favorite Recipes

It's been a solid 12 days of sticking to our simple, healthier eating plan, and my energy is out the roof!
I am down 5+ lbs. and Adam has rocked it out at 7+ lbs. lost.

This easy plan works!

After posting our 30 Day Slimdown Challenge eating plan last week, I've received messages from many of you asking about what type of foods we purchase at the grocery store in order to set ourselves up for success.

So since you asked nicely with extra sugar on top, I am here to deliver the inside scoop!




Our Guidelines

1) Minimally processed, nutrient-dense, whole foods
2) Extremely limited dairy (if any)
3) No caffeine, sugar, white flour, fried foods, etc.
4) Focus on lean protein + vegetable/fruit


Produce:

mini carrots
celery
cucumbers
bell peppers
sweet potatoes
broccoli (frozen or fresh)
brussels sprouts
mushrooms
spinach
lettuce 
tomatoes
apples
bananas
grapes
berries


Healthy Fats:

avocado 
almond butter (Justin's all-natural nut butter)
dry roasted cashews
dry roasted almonds
dry roasted edamame


Proteins:

chicken breast (we prefer organic, antibiotic-free Smart Chicken)
chicken tenderloins (Smart Chicken)
ground chicken (Smart Chicken)
ground turkey (Jennie-O 99% lean)
fresh salmon
flank steak
deli turkey breast (from deli counter)
eggs (farm fresh, if possible - yum!)
canned tuna in water
hummus
mozzarella cheese stick 


Other Complex Carbohydrates:

brown rice
quinoa
whole grain english muffins (Orowheat double fiber)
whole grain tortillas - if needed (local Kansas brand)
steel cut oatmeal
black beans


Spices/Other:

low sodium taco seasoning
low sugar salsa
italian seasoning (I purchase ours from a spice merchant at the Farmers Market)
cinnamon 
unsweetened vanilla almond milk
low sugar tomato sauce


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.



Our Favorite Meals

Breakfast:



Lunch / Dinner:



Snacks:

Tuna Stuffed Eggs
Egg Muffins
Kale Chips
Turkey Cucumber Roll-ups
Baked Cinnamon Apple Chips
Rosemary & Sea Salt Baked Sweet Potato Chips


Dessert:

Baked Almond Butter Banana 
Banana Ice Cream
Grilled Peaches & Cinnamon
Grape Sorbet

.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.


For more insider information to our 30 Day Slimdown Challenge eating plan, check out this post!
To see my food and exercise journal, add me on MyFitnessPal!


Here's to a healthier + happier you!

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

July 16, 2014

Balsamic Rosemary Marinated Flank Steak

The summer is the perfect time to host a fun backyard barbecue and invite all of your friends over for a delicious warm weather meal on the patio. So when the forecast predicted an unseasonably cool Monday, we knew exactly what we wanted to do. 

 Knowing that Adam is quite the expert griller, I wanted to look for a recipe that would perfectly compliment his skills, be healthy, and just taste like the essence of summer. So you can imagine the perfect fit when I came across this mouth-watering flank steak recipe from Food & Wine magazine. 

 It took us a whopping 5 minutes to throw this easy marinade together the night before, and we let the steak marinade for 24 hours. As you can imagine hosting a group of 10 people for dinner, we were super relived to come home from a long day of work and simply throw the steak on the grill for a good sear for 10 minutes. 

It was perfectly cooked, juicy and lightly pink when we carved it up for our guests. There were so many good moans and groans while taking first bites that many of our guests begged for the recipe. Oh my goodness, this one is a keeper and definitely a must try for lean red meat lovers everywhere!  

//  Balsamic Rosemary Marinated Flank Steak  //
Adapted from Food & Wine




  1. Ingredients:
  2. 4 garlic cloves, minced
  3. 2 tablespoon rosemary leaves
  4. 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  5. 2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  6. 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  7. 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for grilling
  8. Ground sea salt
  9. Freshly cracked pepper
  10. One 3-pound flank steak (or skirt steak works well too!)

Directions:


1) In a large bowl, combine the minced garlic, rosemary, oregano, mustard and vinegar and beat until well combine. Gradually add olive oil wine whisking until creamy. You can also use blender to combine all ingredients. Season mixture lightly with salt and pepper.

2) Place steak in a glass baking dish (9x13 works well), and sprinkle sea salt and pepper and rub into the top of the meat. Pour marinade over meat (you can reserve 1/4 cup of the mixture to drizzle over steak after cooked); turn the meat to coat well. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours ( we recommend overnight for most flavorful results).

3) When ready to grill the steak, oil the grates of your grill well, and heat to moderate heat. Remove the steak from the marinade, letting the excess mixture drip off and season well with sea salt and pepper. Place the steak on the grill (turning occasionally) and sear on both sides lightly until internal meat temperature reaches 125 degrees (10 - 12 minutes).

4) Remove steak from the grill, and let rest on a carving board for 5 minutes. Once it is cooled slightly, carve 1/2 - 3/4 inch pieces of steak against the grain, and serve. Drizzle the reserved vinaigrette over each serving for maximum flavor.




I hope you will try this recipe the next time you're craving a juicy, lean piece of steak. 
You can't go wrong, my friends. This one is fail proof! 


Bon Appetit!

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovinInstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest
________________________________________________

July 14, 2014

Mingle Monday Blog Link-Up!

Anyone else on their 3rd round of caffeine?
It's definitely a Monday, and I'm trying to get myself in work week mode. Please tell me I'm not the only one dragging!

Although it was our Slimdown Challenge weigh-in day, and I've lost 4.2 lbs!  Woop woop! 
Now that's a heck of a great way to start off a Monday morning. Inching closer to healthy everyday and you can join me on the journey via MyFitnessPal!

I just wanted to say I'm glad you're here, I'm glad you're you, and thanks for taking the time to stop by to make Mondays happier! I hope you meet some great new blog friends and find a few extra readers!
Happy Mingling!


 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 ** Only 3 easy rules - that's all I ask! **


1) Link-up your blog below.

2) You must share a link to Mingle Monday on your post or the Mingle Monday photo.
 
3) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below and have FUN!

 
** Have you ever paid it forward to a random stranger? Let me hear your stories! **

________________________________________________________________________________________

Still proud to say that 100% of advertisement sponsorship proceeds go to my charity of choice, the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge. There are dozens and dozens of Hope Lodges across the country that give cancer patients a free place to stay while out of town for cancer treatment - such a cool place! 

With just $10, you can get a month long ad and know that it is going to help real cancer patients and their families. So please join me in my fundraising effort by becoming a sponsor HERE!


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Have a spectacular start of the week, sassy ladies (and guys?)!

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovinInstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest

July 11, 2014

A Must Watch for Women Everywhere

Elle Magazine recently had the opportunity to sit down with Grammy Award-winning artist, Colbie Caillat, and talk about her brave, new life mantra.

Her newly released EP, Gypsy Heart, boasts a "powerful new music video in which she makes a powerful statement about unfair beauty ideals by shunning hair and make-up." She opened up to the fashion magazine about why she is tired of being Photoshopped, has shut down people's expectations for women, and has never felt better.


"When I see gorgeous models and singers and they look perfect on their album covers, it makes me want to look like that, too, and it makes me feel like if I don’t Photoshop my skin on my album cover, I’m the one who’s going to look a little off and everyone else is going to look perfect. And that’s what everyone is used to seeing."

Watch this video.
You can see just how freeing it is for her to wipe off her make-up, unclip her hair extensions, and simply feel beautiful being in her own skin. What an amazing message for women everywhere to be vulnerable and real.


 

"We shot the video in reverse, we started bare, and by the end we finished with the full hair and makeup, and then reversed the film for the finished product. All of the women were amazing. My favorite was the woman who has no hair. I first saw her completely bald, no makeup, with a huge smile, she was just so happy and confident. She was so beautiful to me."

Wow. How brave and refreshing. Bravo, Colbie!
Help spread the word to women everywhere.


Just a reminder...
YOU. ARE. BEAUTIFUL.

(and don't you forget it!)


{Full Elle article here.}

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png






Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

July 10, 2014

30 Day Slimdown Challenge + Eating Plan

I don’t know about you all, but I celebrated the 4th of July holiday with a little too much indulgent food, three margaritas too many, and a belly ache. It’s so easy to do overindulge when the weekends are filled with summer BBQs, dinner parties, happy hours, and the like.

 And that has tended to be the norm ever since a few months past our honeymoon. It felt so good to let loose after our wedding that I never really honed it in on a consistent basis. I loved moving in with Adam after the wedding where I enjoyed cooking delicious meals, inviting friends over, baking up a storm, and rushing home after work every night to spend time with him.

 So all that hard work of a nightly gym regimen, eating copious salads with grilled chicken, and feeling good in my body flew right out the window.

The wake-up call for me has been three-fold… 

1//  Not feeling comfortable in my own skin (heck no, I don’t want to wear tank tops with flabby arms!)
2//  Those skinny jeans are getting a bit too snug, and I’m waiting for the button to pop off...
3//  The most unflattering photo of me ever taken of me during 4th of July weekend
(I almost didn’t recognize myself.)


Thank goodness Adam and I were on the same page when we both discussed a little lifestyle change boot camp was majorly needed. With a Christmas trip to Hawaii planned (more details to come soon!) and my high school reunion approaching this next year, what better motivation than to start our journey together now.

We have been talking about how we want to approach this plan for a few weeks, and found something that is working out great for us so far! We are kicking it off with a 30 day challenge of following the plan with no cheating to jump start the road to healthy.

Here are the deets below to in case you are looking for good way to spark your healthy eating motivation. I will be sharing our grocery shopping list + favorite recipes next week!


Breakfast - 8AM //
- Protein
- Complex Carb
- Fruit
- Multi-vitamin

Meal examples:
- 2 eggs over easy, whole wheat english muffin (minimally processed), and berries
- 1/2 cup steel oats, 1/2 cup almond milk, blueberries, cinnamon, stevia (overnight oats)
- protein shake (no sugar), fruit


Morning Snack - 10:30 AM (if needed) //
- Protein + Fruit

Meal examples:
- string cheese & apple
- 1 oz. cashews & fruit
- cottage cheese and bing cherries
- hard boiled egg and berries


Lunch - 1 PM //
- Protein
- Complex Carb
- Vegetables

Meal examples:
- spinach salad with veggies and grilled chicken breast
- whole wheat tortilla (minimally processed), seasoned ground turkey, hummus, lettuce, cucumbers
- tilapia fillet, steamed broccoli, half sweet potato


Snack - 3:30 PM (if needed) //
- Protein, or...
- Protein + Complex Carb (if working out)

Meal examples:
- whole wheat rice cake, tablespoon almond butter, half sliced banana
- almonds & fruit
- celery sticks, hummus, turkey deli slices


Dinner - 6 PM //
- Protein
- Vegetables
- Complex Carb (if needed)
- Omega 3 Supplement

Meal examples:
- greek yogurt chicken, roasted squash & zucchini
- baked salmon, mixed steamed veggies, sweet potato or brown rice
- hummus crusted chicken, roasted garlic brussels sprouts, steamed broccoli
- mexican seasoned ground chicken, black beans, tomatoes, mixed greens, sauteed peppers and salsa (taco salad)


Evening Snack (if needed) //
- Protein, Veggies, or Fruit (in moderation)


Dailies
- water (half of your body weight = how many ounces to drink/day minimum)
- daily vitamin supplements
- exercise (minimum 30 minutes 4-5 days/week)
- no caffeine, sugar, white flour
- one drink/week at social gathering (if at all)
- no cheating!
- track food, exercise, and progress on My Fitness Pal (add me and we can do this together!)


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Believe it or not, just in 4 days I am already feeling like I have more energy, am less bloated, have better focus, successfully ate out on plan, and have conquered the few cravings for sweets and junk food. The bonus? I am down 3 pounds already - loving this. Who knew that with a healthy diet and some exercise you could feel so much better?! ;)

We both took body measurements at the start of the week so that we can compare our success with where we started. Sure, it will be great to see the number on the scale go down as my body adjusts to the new lifestyle, but losing inches and building muscle is more important to focus on. And we got brave by taking before photos - what an eye opener!.

Looking forward to feeling like myself again, and so glad I have a partner in crime along the way.
Wish us luck! :)


What helps you keep a healthy lifestyle?
Any great tips you try to stick to?


   photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

Cabin Shenanigans + 4th of July in Photos

I spent the whole weekend outside as much as possible, and I was in my element. We slept in, made homemade meals, did a lot of cheersing with adult beverages, and held the annual family olympics tradition (go Team Orange!) - which included a triple challenge in bocce ball, soccer, and kayak races.

 A little sunshine and exercise was exactly what I needed, and we had such a great time that I almost didn't come home.  Thankfully I am rounding up some girlfriends for a ladies cabin weekend in a few weeks, otherwise cabin fever might set in (Pun intended? Unintended? I clearly have decision making issues...).

So anyway, here's a sneak peek at all the fun and adventures.

The typical cabin get-up. My favorite hiking sandals, comfy shorts, sunscreen, and sunnies. Had to be ready for some leisurely kayaking, a pick-up soccer game, or to grab a super soaker (and run!) at the drop of a hat.



Of course we ventured into Arlington for a stop at the famous Carolyn's Essenhaus for made-from-scratch home cooking, and of course a slice of one of Carolyn's to-die-for pies.



Slightly blurry, but I couldn't resist posting this one of my sister-in-law, Meredith, with my fur nephew, Ollie, our favorite Russian babushka wearing pup. For the rest of the day we attempted to speak to Oliver in a Russian accent, and as it was pointed out to me... I apparently have no idea how to do that. :)






Everyday we helped plan and cook delicious meals, and nothing beats cooking and good company with friends/family.I absolutely loved the night where Meredith and Kyle made pizza dough and we all made our own pizza pies for the grill. 

Just a little sprinkle of cornmeal on the bottom of the plate and it slid right onto the grill with ease. My toppings of choice - pesto, mushrooms, caramelized onions, goat cheese, a sprinkle of parm and a little sausage... oh baby!



I also checked off "learn how to cook with rhubarb off of my summer bucket list. How on earth did I wait this long to experience this deliciousness? No one can go wrong with a little strawberry rhubarb pie action!




Unbeknownst to us, the Beast is a total water sports fanatic. Although I think she could've grabbed a paddle and helped out a bit. What a freeloader! ;)







.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.


Cabin weekend highlights...

+ catching up with my in-laws during the roadtrip
+ the weather was unreal
+ playing "Heads Up" and laughing so hard I almost peed my pants
+ taking my first ever tequila shot (ole!)
+ extended family party complete with fireworks and great company
+ sour cream raisin pie from the gods
+ spending time with my boo
+ late night conversations in our jammers
+ seeing 5 shooting stars while stargazing on the deck


How was your Freedom weekend?
//  What's your favorite place for a quiet getaway?  //

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovinInstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest
________________________________________________

July 7, 2014

Mingle Monday Blog Link-Up!

Hey ya little firecrackers!
Hope you all had a wild weekend celebrating with family and friends.

We rounded up the fam and headed down to the cabin for a nice long weekend of good food, lots of outdoor activities, and of course, the boys being pyromaniacs (photos coming later today!).

I want to give a special shout out to the lovely Mary from Little Bit of Class Little Bit of Sass for becoming a Life of Meg sponsor. Because of wonderful bloggers like Mary, we are ale to help cancer patients by donating 100% of sponsor funds to the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge!

Over $350 has been raised in the last few months, and Hope Lodge is doing great things to help patients and families with the donation! Check out more sponsor info below the link-up or click here!

From the bottom of my heart, I have to say thank you for faithfully stopping by, spreading the word about Mingle Monday via Twitter and blog posts, and for making blogging such a wonderful blessing for me. Now, let's get mingling!


 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 ** Only 3 easy rules - that's all I ask! **


1) Link-up your blog below.

2) You must share a link to Mingle Monday on your post or the Mingle Monday photo.
 
3) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below and have FUN!
 
** What was the highlight of your 4th of July weekend? **


________________________________________________________________________________________

Still proud to say that 100% of advertisement sponsorship proceeds go to my charity of choice, the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge. There are dozens and dozens of Hope Lodges across the country that give cancer patients a free place to stay while out of town for cancer treatment - such a cool place! 

With just $10, you can get a month long ad and know that it is going to help real cancer patients and their families. So please join me in my fundraising effort by becoming a sponsor HERE!


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Go show Monday who's boss! ;)

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovinInstagramTwitterFacebookPinterest

June 30, 2014

The Perfect Summer Treat: Blueberry Crumb Pie

Last Saturday morning, my parents drove out to The Berry Patch to handpick pounds of juicy plump blueberries. They called me to let me know they had a little treat to drop by, and brought over a huge bag of berries that were bigger than grapes and so sweet. We couldn't stop popping berry after berry into our mouths - they were so ripe and sweeter than sugar.

We decided to invite over some company for dinner that night, so when I was scrambling to make a nice dessert full of summer flavor, I knew those blueberries were my perfect inspiration.

I whipped together this delicious pie in no time (seriously, it was so easy peasy), and I knew by sighs and the taste bud inspired groans that this was a home run. The melt-in-your-mouth crumb topping perfectly enhances the fresh berries. A must try this summer!

{ Blueberry Crumb Pie }
{altered from allrecipes.com}


Ingredients:

- pie crust shell (I love this recipe)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup flour
- 21/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 5 cups fresh blueberries
- 2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons butter

Directions:

1) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

2) Lay prepared pie crust shell over a 9 inch pie pan, and gently press dough into the bottom and sides until it is formed to the plate.

3) In a large bowl, stir together the sugar and flour until combined. Slowly stir in the grated lemon zest and lemon juice. Once blended, gently stir in the blueberries until they are coated in flour mixture. Pour into the pie crust.

4) In another bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, oats, flour and cinnamon. Next, cut better into small pea sized pieces and mix in with forks or hands until mixture is crumbly. Lightly sprinkle the crumb topping evenly over the pie filling until top is covered.

5) Place the pie in the middle of the oven and bake for 40 minutes, or until crumb topping is lightly toasted and golden. Remove the pie and place it on top of a wire rack to allow to cool. Serve pie warm and top with vanilla bean ice cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon.


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Once this pie was in the oven the whole house was filled with scents of cinnamon and fresh, plump blueberries. Our mouths were watering, and I could barely keep my husband from picking at the pie before it cooled. 

A nice warm piece of blueberry magic with a little scoop of ice cream on top will make those summer nights even sweeter. You have to give it a shot, you can thank me later! ;)


Bon Appetit!

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

Mingle Monday Link-up + Engagiversary

Heyyyy-oooo!
Congrats on surviving your wild weekend plans, you crazy party animals. My wild weekend included skipping Zumba for a donut date, making a fresh blueberry pie, and watching a whole season of Glee.

Crazy, I tell you.

Before we get to mingling, I have to give a shout out to my groom. I can hardly believe he proposed 2 years ago today. It was the perfect proposal under a sea of fireworks and the beginning of our greatest adventure. Happy engagiversary, my love! #sappypost

Now let's mingle!




 
    

HOW TO MINGLE

 ** Only 3 easy rules - that's all I ask! **


1) Link-up your blog below.

2) You must share a link to Mingle Monday on your post or the Mingle Monday photo.
 
3) Answer the weekly question in the comments section below and have FUN!
 
** How are you going to be celebrating the 4th? **
(I'm cabin bound on Wednesday, and I can hardly stand it!)


________________________________________________________________________________________

Still proud to say that 100% of advertisement sponsorship proceeds go to my charity of choice, the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge. There are dozens and dozens of Hope Lodges across the country that give cancer patients a free place to stay while out of town for cancer treatment - such a cool place! 

With just $10, you can get a month long ad and know that it is going to help real cancer patients and their families. So please join me in my fundraising effort by becoming a sponsor HERE!


.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.


 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

June 27, 2014

Currently + Weekend Wishes


Thank sweet little eight pound baby Jesus, Friday is here in full fury.
Happy weekend, my friends. Let the wild rumpus commence!

Lots of new adventures lately, so I couldn't help but share what's been on the brain box lately. Here's the inside scoop.

Currently...

thinking | That meeting besties for coffee + daydreaming before work is the shiz.
making | Cute patterned eye pillows full of rice and lavender for my coworkers to enjoy at our weekly yoga class. Namaste.
drinking | Quay spice latte with extra fancy latte art or green smoothies like they are going out of style.
reading | "Beautiful Ruins" by Jess Walter, but just finished "The Fault in Our Stars".
wanting |  Absolutely every piece of Americana inspired gear from this post.
looking |  Forward to next weekend's cabin weekend escape.
playing |  Sam Smith's amazing Whitney Houston cover. So much goodness.
eating |  Farm fresh eggs for the first time. Life changing.
remembering |  That one time when we went through Krispy Kreme's drive thru at 8:15 PM. Oh yeah, that was last night.
trying |  desperately to actually like greek yogurt.
watching |  So You Think You Can Dance. It's good for my dance loving soul and the fact that they used Ben Rector music last episode made me squeal.
deciding |  Whether or not to sell the Haskins House. #bigkidproblems
wishing |  I was sipping pina coladas at Galley Bay Antigua - take me back!
planning |  To attempt a strawberry rhubarb pie from scratch.
enjoying |  The World Cup games.
daydreaming |  About going back to San Francisco to explore my old stomping grounds and relive my urban adventures.
waiting |  For the clock to reach 5 o'clock - we're off to Theater in the Park tonight!
liking |  The fact that I have come across some amazing new Instagram feeds.
wondering |  If a DQ Blizzard is in my very near future.
needing |  Some Beast snuggles ASAP.
wearing |  My limited edition Charlie Hustle USA tee.
noticing |  That traffic into downtown was amazingly light this morning. #itsamiracle
smelling |  Like men's bodywash. Awkward. I was all out, so what's a girl to do?
buying |  A sweet USA turban to debut at 4th of July pallooza. I just hope I am cool enough to wear it... ha!
feeling |  Thankful for the news that after my dad's check-up he is still cancer free!

.:::.:::.:::.:::.:::.

Oh how life changes month-to-month and year-to-year. One day I am going to look back on all of my "Currently" posts and laugh. What a trip down memory lane! {Thanks for the inspiration, Jess!}

// What things have you been eating, drinking, or doing lately? //

_____________________________________

In case you missed it...



Have some wild weekend adventures, you party animals.

 photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

June 26, 2014

The Essentials: Americana Swag

The 4th of July holiday is just a week away, and I couldn't be more antsy to get out to the cabin to celebrate with the fam! Every year we have a huge patriotic blow out and party the day away.

Family Olympics, kayaking, a cookout, fireworks over the pond, star gazing... you name it!

So of course, everyone is always out to one up each other by introducing their latest Americana swag. Little do they know, I've made a few purchases that I'm excited to debut! :)  Here are some awesome finds I came across. I think you will love them too!






(purchased!!)






(purchased!)









(purchased!)



One thing is for sure, I will be decked out in red, white, and blue, and celebrating in style!

I already can't wait to hit the road for the family cabin, so we can sit on our red bench where Adam proposed under the fireworks 2 years ago (has it really been that long?).


How will you be celebrating?  
#merica

   photo Signature-5_zps1ea392df.png
Follow along here:  BlogLovin, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest
________________________________________________

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails