Books, Daily Happenings, Holiday

Christmas In New York City

Hi friends! It’s finally Friday, woo hoo! This week felt like it flew by for me, anyone else feel that way? Regardless, have a great day πŸ™‚

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After sleeping about an hour longer than normal, I woke up feeling a little better but congested this time. A hot shower helped that a bit (tmi?), and I got dressed for work. I took a little extra time with my makeup since I would be going out after work so Alex made breakfast for me. I’m back to scrambled eggs and toast which was delicious.

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I finally finished “Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe” and loved it. It took me a little bit in the beginning to really get into the book, but once the pace picked up I was hooked. This is the story that is told in the present as well as back in time. There’s a few characters to keep track of and the years skip around so at first it was hard to keep everything straight but I got over it fairly easily. Now I want to watch the movie to see how that is. Are you a book or movie first person? To be honest, I didn’t even realize this was a movie until someone told me in the comments.

One thing I love about my company is we get 4 leave early hours every quarter that do not count against our vacation time. I decided to take 2 hours yesterday and headed into New York to meet Alex. While on the train, I snacked on half of a Power Crunch protein bar. The french vanilla creme flavor isn’t my personal favorite but it was tasty to fill me up instead of my typical afternoon yogurt I have.

I walked to Alex’s office then we headed off to our first stop of the night: the Rockefeller Christmas tree! It was less crowded than I thought it would be which was nice. I was expecting it to be worse so not having to really fight for a picture spot was a pleasant surprise.

After that, we walked back to his office to drop the sweater I brought for him off. I met a few of his coworkers then we headed off to dinner. We planned to go to a bar with a really good happy hour deal, New York City prices are no joke, but it was beyond crowded. We ended up going to Stout which was packed as well. The hostess said it would be about 45 minutes for a table but we put our names in anyway. Before we could even get our drink order filled at the bar, they called and said our table was ready. It was perfect timing because I started getting hungry. We started with fried pickles. Ya know, because on our first date, the fried pickles worked out so well…

Alex is pointing out that his meal was still bubbling from the oven.

The food was delicious! While the bar and restaurant was crowded, the food was quite speedy. I opted for the grilled chicken sandwich that had bacon, white cheddar and an avocado ranch on ciabatta. Alex had Shepard’s pie that had peas, carrots, onion, ground beef, mashed potatoes and he opted to get it topped with some cheddar cheese. They did not skimp on anything for either dish. It was so tasty and we had leftovers which is always nice.

After we paid, we headed to Bryant Park’s Winter Village. It’s a small market with a variety of vendors. We walked around and looked at a few vendors to see what they had to offer. One vendor was selling ornaments that you could personalize. Naturally I bought one for us to commemorate our first Christmas in our first place together! While this isn’t our first Christmas while dating, this is the first time we’ll spend it together. There was a tree there as well so obviously we had to take a picture.

Once we finished, we made a quick pit stop at his office to pick up Alex’s briefcase before heading to Penn Station for our train. When we got home, the congestion was real so I had some sleepy time tea before crawling into bed after our fun date out.

Question of the day: What’s one Christmas tradition you have?

Holiday, Recipes

Homemade Chocolate Truffles

Happy hump day! How is your week so far? I’m halfway done with my truck following trip and I’m surviving. Being at work before 5 am is rough to say the least. Have a wonderful day πŸ™‚

On Thanksgiving, Alex’s mom asked if I could bring a chocolate dessert. I set the bar pretty high for myself with the cake I made so I knew I had to do something good. Since I knew there would also be two pies, I wanted something small but good. I opted to try my hand at homemade truffles! The amount of recipes I looked at was unreal. I didn’t find one I was in love with so I took a little bit from a few and created this recipe. It’s much easier than I thought but does take a little bit of time as the chocolate sets so just keep that in mind.

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Ingredients

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8 ounces semi sweet chocolate (a little 2/3 cup of chocolate chips)

8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, I used 60% cocoa

1 cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon prepared coffe3

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

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Put all of the chocolate into a bowl.

In a saucepan, warm the heavy cream until it starts to boil. Stir to avoid any film developing on top.

When it starts to boil, remove from heat for 20 seconds. Pour over chocolate.

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Stir until the chocolate completely melts. It will look clumpy at first but keep stirring.

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Place in fridge for 1 hour to harden and cool once completely melted and smooth.

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Once hardened, take out and roll into bowls. I found it easiest to use a spoon then roll with my hands.

Place in the fridge for 20 minutes to harden.

At this point, you can serve them as is or top them. I chose to dip them in chocolate and top with sea salt. But you can really do whatever you think is best: powdered sugar, cocoa powder, sprinkles, use what you want!

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Note: I also made a batch that were mint. For the I took out the coffee and vanilla extract and used mint extract instead. The consistency was a little different but they were still delicious.

Question of the day: Have you ever made homemade truffles?

Daily Happenings, Holiday, Weekend

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

Happy Sunday everyone! If you’re like me, it seems like the past few days has been Sunday with the long holiday weekend. I’m going to soak up every minute of the day before work tomorrow. Have a great day πŸ™‚

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Since Alex and I were up so late on Saturday night, we slept in fairly late yesterday. I didn’t wake up until 7:40 woo! By the time we got dressed and out of bed, it was about 10 am. At that point, we decided to enjoy our coffee (Alex) and tea (me) and just wait a little longer to eat so we didn’t throw off our whole eating schedule. A grilled cheese and fries from our favorite diner was the perfect dish after a night of drinking so we enjoyed that for brunch.

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Alex is a huge Christmas person. I swear, he would have bought a tree the day after Halloween if I let him. Due to a work trip happening soon for me, his late hours, and us leaving for 5 days to be in Chicago, we figured decorating this weekend was our best option. After Christmas last year, I went to Home Goods and found the cutest sign saying “Let’s wine and dine it’s Christmas time”. Little did I know I would have a bar cart and it was perfect! The first decoration was up before we headed out to buy everything else.

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The only downside to moving into your first place and wanting to decorate for Christmas is the cost of decorations and all the supplies 😦 Luckily we have a dollar store close by so we got a few silver and gold ornaments there as well as ornament hooks to save a few dollars. Home Depot had a ton of trees at really good prices if you are in the market for one! We got a 6-7 foot tree for less than $35 dollars plus 75 ornaments for under $10. We also hit up Target for a few other things before heading home to start the process.

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Mid-decorating we took a break and headed to Alex’s parents house. Alex’s brother went to Alabama and one of his mother’s clients (she’s a real estate agent) also went to Alabama so they had everyone over to watch the Alabama vs. Auburn game. The client had two small children, 8 and 9 who were there. Since neither Alex or I had any real stakes in the game, we went downstairs to set them up with a game on the Wii. We got roped into playing Life with them so we hung out with the children during the game instead of the adults. Since Auburn won though I think we got the better end of the bargain.

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Once the game was over, we said our goodbyes and headed home. We walked into a mess but were quickly able to clean up and finish decorating. It looks so cute you guys! It turned out really well and I can’t wait to get some snow (hopefully) to really add to the ambiance of the season. Aside from needing a centerpiece for our table (any suggestions would be appreciated), we are Christmas ready! I’m glad with how everything turned out since we’ll be able to reuse for years to come.

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We intended to stay at home last night and relax. One thing led to another and next thing you know we were in Princeton at the bars. It was much better than Friday night’s outing since it wasn’t as crowded. We were able to see some of Alex’s friends (and his brother and his fiancΓ©) that we were not able to see the night before. When we headed home we were ready to crash. We hung out on the couch for a bit (plus ate and drank water #HangoverPrevention) before heading to bed.

Question of the day: When do you decorate for Christmas?

Holiday, Running

Thanksgiving 2017

Hello friends! I’m coming at you today with a VERY late post for me. I was going to wait until tomorrow to give a recap but decided I would just post it super late today πŸ™‚ I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday!

Alex and I said we were going to try and wake up close to our normal alarms so we don’t get too used to sleeping in…well that did not happen. Not even close. We ended up getting out of bed shortly after 7 and then rushed a bit to get ready for the Turkey Trot. Luckily, we found a really good parking spot when we got to Princeton that was just a short walk to the race’s start line.

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Overall it was a good race! It started late (which I hate for races!) and they had people holding signs in the middle of the group of runners and walkers which I thought was weird. I get it though, they want slower people in the back and faster in the front but couldn’t they wait on the curbs instead? Anyways…Alex did great! I ran with him and we only walked once for about a quarter mile. We finished right under 35 minutes which I was pretty proud of Alex for (he doesn’t run at all).

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Chocolate sea salt and peppermint truffles!

When we got home, Alex showered while I got the final touches for the truffles ready. Alex’s mom asked if I could bring some sort of chocolate dessert and I happily obliged. I opted to make truffles. They were surprisingly easy! Well making them was easy but covering them in chocolate was a different story. On Wednesday night I was so close to tears and it’s been the only time I have ever said “I wish we had a microwave”. Major shout out to Alex for stepping in and saving the day! We finished covering them yesterday before I showered.

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We decided we should have a little something in our stomachs, so once I was ready we made some cheese quesadillas for a small lunch. If you’ve never had a little hot sauce mixed in with your sour cream I think you should try it. So good! Then again I put hot sauce on almost everything πŸ™‚

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It was finally time to head to Alex’s parents house for dinner. His mom asked for help pulling the appetizers out but otherwise she had everything under control. How pretty was the table we ate at?! It was gorgeous so I took a picture of that instead of my plate. For dinner I had turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, brussels sprouts, corn, gravy and a dinner roll. Everything was delicious! I had seconds of some of it. For dessert, I put a slice of pumpkin pie and one of the peppermint truffles.

After dessert, we helped his mom clean before we came home. Alex is a huge Christmas lover so we decided to make our own little tradition. We will now be sitting on a blanket in front of a fire while watching a claymation Christmas movie. Last night we watched “The Year Without a Santa Claus”. It was the perfect day to wind down a bit after eating and drinking with his family.

Question of the day: How was your Thanksgiving?!

Daily Happenings, Holiday, Running

A Not So Spooky Halloween

Happy Wednesday! How was your Halloween? I hope you ate some extra treats. Have a great day πŸ™‚

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Waking up was impossible Tuesday. I was not in the mood. I dragged myself out of bed and got ready for work. Even though its now cold in the morning, I had prepared overnight oats for breakfast. Thank goodness I thought ahead on Monday night for that.

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Work was great. I’m really enjoying my new job and the work I’m doing. There was a bowl of Halloween candy on the table. Funny enough, I never went to it but my coworker kept walking by my desk and giving me some even when I said no. At that point I couldn’t let it go to waste so I hate those pieces πŸ˜‰ My midmorning snack and dessert at lunch were Twizzlers.

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After work, I came home and got ready for a run. It seems like my days of wearing shorts and a tshirt are numbered though. 4 miles total with speed intervals thrown in during the middle two. I was surprised at how I didn’t feel that gross from drinking and eating more than normal last weekend during the day. Then my run happened and I felt it ha!

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Once I stretched and showered, I put my pjs on and cut up an apple. For some reason, when I eat red apples I don’t dip them in peanut butter but I always dip green apples in peanut butter. Am I the only one?

Guys, I felt so bad for the people that came to our door. In our apartment complex there are some kids but we had no idea if they would trick or treat or not! I heard one group and I didn’t realize how many there were so I opened the door. We have a bowl of candy in our kitchen that is rarely touched so I gave the kids a piece or two each. But then it was gone so I was that mean person who pretended to not be home on Halloween. Now I know for next year!

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While waiting for Alex to get home, I did some chores around the apartment. Once he was home, I cut up potatoes into French fries and put them in the oven to bake. When they were almost done, he threw some hot dogs on the grill. We didn’t eat until after 8 so I was pretty hungry by then. I had two hot dogs and fries. Very simple but tasty!

Alex and I had talked about watching a Halloween movie at night. I said I wasn’t in the mood for scary and Alex suggested “Corpse Bride” since he had seen it somewhere. The movie was on Netflix and relatively short (77 minutes) so we turned it on. We said it wasn’t a bad movie but not great either. It was good for Halloween but I don’t think I’ll watch it again. Once it was over, we crawled into bed.

Question of the day: How was your Halloween? Did you get a lot of trick or treaters?