Wednesday, August 28, 2013

All Over the Place

Hello friends! How’s your week going?

Mine’s been pretty darn good over here, other than all the flash flooding we had yesterday! It seriously rained all day long. I was parked a couple spots over from the drain in the parking lot, and when I left work there was probably three inches or so of water surrounding my car on all sides. I had to walk through it to get to my car and my pants, shoes, and socks were soaked! I wish I would have taken a picture. It was nuts!

Anyway, as far as the weekend goes, I ended up hanging out with my new friend Anna a lot. I met her through my friend Elly from pharmacy school and she’s a lot of fun! We went to a place called Shorts Brewing Company up in Bellaire on Friday night, and on Saturday we hung out downtown in Traverse City.

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I actually ran into her again last night when I was at Trivia night with some other friends. She was there with a bunch of coworkers and she convinced my friend and I to go downtown for a bit afterwards. We ended up staying up a bit later than planned, but it was a lot of fun!

I snapped this Instagram photo of us girls. Here is my friend Amanda (my next door neighbor), myself, and Anna, plus one of her crazy coworkers photo bombing in the background:

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Good times Winking smile.

In other news, workouts have been going okay. I got in three or four last week and two this week so far. I’ve also been trying to go on walks lately at night on some of the local trails and have been bringing my camera to try to take some nice pictures. Here are some from a walk I went on with Anna last week:

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Fun and relaxing! I really enjoy going on walks. It’s a good way to be active, take pictures, and it keeps my mind off food! Haha.

Speaking of food, I’ve been trying to eat out less often because frankly, it's costing me just a bit too much money. I usually throw something super, super simple together for dinner – like this grilled turkey and cheese sandwich with frozen veggies:

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Boring, but it hit the spot! I’m really loving these grilled sandwiches lately.

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Another favorite is this ham I’ve been buying from Oryana.

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It’s fully cooked so all I have to do is slice it up and warm it in the microwave. I keep it in a Tupperware in the refrigerator and just eat it all week long for lunches/dinners and sometimes snacks. It’s sooo good too. Seriously the best ham I have ever had! On Monday I had a couple slices with some frozen edamame that I cooked up.

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No pictures of the whole meal, but you get the idea!


Sorry this post was kind of all over the place – guess I had a lot of random stuff to talk about! I’m off to work for the day, but I’ll catch you folks later this week Open-mouthed smile.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Ryan and Gina’s Wedding

After spending a couple of days in Grand Rapids, Aimee and I grabbed breakfast on Saturday morning at a local place called The Westsider Café. We needed food in our bellies ASAP after our late night on Friday! It was a small restaurant, but was completely packed full of locals. Our friend Babs recommended it to us and it was a good choice! I got the eggs benedict and it was delicious.

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With our tummies satisfied, we packed our things and hit the road for the small town of Bad Axe to see our good friend Gina get married. For those who aren’t familiar with Michigan geography, Bad Axe is waaaaaaay out in the middle of the thumb – aka nowheresville.

Map Of Bad_Axe

Source

Unfortunately, the 3 & 1/2 hour drive there was not exactly smooth sailing. First, we hit multiple construction zones and thanks to a huge rock that came out of nowhere, I ended up with this beautiful crack on my windshield:

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*joy*

Then, both the GPS in my car AND the one on Aimee’s iPhone took us to the wrong place when we were trying to find the hotel. We ended up getting lost before eventually getting directions from a friend who was already at the hotel.

THEN, after we finally made it to the Holiday Inn Express (the designated “wedding hotel” that the bride and groom had a block of rooms reserved), I was informed that my reservation had gotten screwed up and that I was going to be charged for an extra half night. I don’t normally use my blog to make customer service complaints, but I was so outraged at the lack of customer service skills that the manager of this hotel possessed that I just have to say something. If you’re curious to know the details about what happened, you may read my review on Google, Yelp, Trip Advisor, or Yahoo. Needless to say, our Bad Axe trip was not exactly off to the best start.

However, things quickly turned around after we got changed and met up with our friends. Time to get excited for Gina’s wedding! In a matter of thirty minutes we all piled into the car, drove down the road to the ceremony/reception site, and took our seats right in the front. I saw the groom, Ryan, as I was walking in and he looked so, so happy. He took a minute to come over, give me a hug, and thank me for coming. He is always so relaxed and easy going and I know that he and Gina are going to have a long and happy marriage. She definitely picked a winner!

Moments later, it was show time!

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The ceremony was actually quite humorous and the pastor had us cracking up more than once. I loved it! It was still short and sweet though and within twenty minutes, Ryan and Gina were married.

Then it was time to celebrate!

Our whole pharmacy school crew sat together and loved the fact that she had included the “Dr.” prefix on our name cards.

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I wish I had a picture of our whole group, but we were so busy chatting that it just slipped my mind! The professional photographer took a few though so when those are available I’ll be sure to post one.

I did end up snapping a couple photos of dinner, which was served buffet style.

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My plate was filled with chicken, fish, stuffing, and green beans. We also had delicious cupcakes for dessert.

After dinner, we took a few slightly blurry iPhone photos with our friends. Here’s one of Aimee and I:

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With our friend Josh:

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And Dan:

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And of course, the beautiful bride herself!

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Our group also spent a lot of time in the photo booth, per usual.

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So fun Smile

We spent the rest of the night dancing away until the reception was over, and then our group walked down to the (only?) bar in Bad Axe, ordered a pizza, and hung out for another hour or two. It was such a fun night – I wish it was easier to get all of us together more than once a year but we all live so far apart. I just love these guys so much; I know these people will be in my life forever, no matter how long we go without seeing each other or how far apart we live. Love them <3


Congratulations, Ryan and Gina! You’re wedding was such a blast and I’m so glad I could be there to help you celebrate your special day.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Fun in Grand Rapids

Good morning!

I’m back in Traverse City after a fantastic long weekend. Late Thursday morning, I drove down to Grand Rapids to pick up my college friend Aimee from the airport (she lives in Arizona now). We stayed in Grand Rapids for two nights before heading to Bad Axe on Saturday for a wedding. I will have a wedding related post up later this week, but first I wanted to talk about some of the fun we had while we were in Grand Rapids!

We stayed with our friend, Babs, and her adorable pup, Charlie.

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That face. Seriously makes my heart melt.

Aimee and I met Babs through Kappa Psi – we were all in the same pledge class – so it was fun to be reunited after not seeing each other for a while. Babs was in the pharmacy class below us, so she graduated from pharmacy school this year and just recently became licensed. Exciting!

On Thursday night, the three of us met up with a few of our other friends that we also know through pharmacy school. We spent some time at Ashley’s apartment drinking homemade sangria and catching up before heading out for dinner.

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(From left to right is Babs, myself, Aimee, Ashley, and Ashley’s friend Devin).

I didn’t get any pictures at dinner, but we had so much fun talking about everything that’s happened over the past year that we’ve been apart. Great start to our weekend!

On Friday Babs had to work so Aimee and I went downtown to stop by some of our favorite places. Our first stop? Lunch at Marie Catrib's!

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Marie Catrib’s is a farm-to-table establishment with a focus on organic, high quality food. They have a very unique menu, but are well known for their sandwiches made on their fantastic homemade bread. Everything is so delicious!

I got one of my all time favorites, the Vermaire; also known as the Chicken Cranberry. Check out the description in the above photo!

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Now THAT is a sandwich.

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I was a happy camper and could not wait to dig in.

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Aimee got fish tacos and she raved about them.

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Love that they were served with a entire half of an avocado!

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Of course, you really can’t stop at Marie Catrib’s without drooling over the dessert display. It didn’t take much convincing for us to pick out a couple of treats to enjoy. We decided to choose two things and split them – I went with the blackberry cheesecake and she picked the Nutella cupcake. The photo that I took of them is blurry, but you can probably imagine how amazing they were!

Our next stop after lunch was Founder's Brewing Company was for a couple of beers. Eric actually drove over from Lansing to meet up with us.

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For those who are wondering, Eric and I are on okay terms. We still talk, but not nearly as much as we used to. Eric, Aimee and I actually used to all be best friends in college so it was fun to get together and catch up.

After a couple of hours at Founders, Eric drove back to Lansing and Aimee and I went back to Bab’s place and waited for her to get off work. By this time, a second lab had joined the party and we had a ton of fun playing with the doggies while waiting for Babs.

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So cute Smile

Aimee and I were itching for a night on the town, so after Babs got home we all went out!

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We stopped at a local dive bar and had a couple drinks with Babs before she had to head back home. Unfortunately she had to work the next day so she dropped Aimee and I off in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids before driving home. Aimee and I had such a blast hitting up all of our favorite spots and loved that we could just walk from one bar to the next.

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One of the places, McFaddens, was playing 80’s music and we went crazy when they played Whitney Houston’s hit, “I Wanna Dance with Somebody.” Please tell me someone else loves this song as much as we do!

That became the song of the weekend and I had it stuck in my head for days. We even requested it at the wedding we went to on Saturday. Ha!

After closing out McFadden’s we grabbed a cab and then crashed hard after getting home a little after 2:00 am. What a blast!

Up next, Ryan and Gina’s wedding!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Crazy Mikey, A Leg Workout, and Recent Eats

Someone would like to say hello:

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I think Mikey has missed his frequent appearances on the blog. He’s still just as cute and playful as ever, and he still drives me totally crazy sometimes. I’m telling you, he really is like a child.

This morning I caught some shots of him trying desperately to get to a grasshopper that made its way onto my window screen.

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This is precisely why I do not open the windows in my apartment. With the way he tries to pounce on anything and everything that he sees outside, it would take approximately 0.3 seconds before he would be knocking the screens out and flying through the window.

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Actually, I’m not sure if I ever posted the picture, but did anyone see the Spider Cat photo of him I sent to Funny Cat Site last year?

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That window happened to have a screen on the inside (it rolled out to open). At night time when I had that light on near the window, moths would all flock to the area and it would drive Mikey absolutely crazy. He would jump around and climb all over the screen trying to get to them. So funny!


Alright, enough about my cat. I actually want to share a leg workout that I did yesterday morning! I warmed up with thirty minutes on the elliptical and then did the following routine at my apartment gym:

  • Squats 3 sets x 15 reps
  • Lunges 3 sets x 10 reps (each leg)
  • Lying leg curls 3 sets x 12 reps
  • Leg extensions 3 sets x 12 reps
  • Deadlifts 3 sets x 12 reps
  • Calf raises 5 sets x 20 reps

For the squats and calf raises, I didn’t use any weights. I’m so out of shape that my body weight was plenty good enough for me to feel the burn! My legs are sore today but not as sore as they were after I did that Awesome August workout last week, which is perfectly fine by me. I like being sore, but I don’t like being sore to the point that it is actually painful to walk. It’s just too uncomfortable at work when I have to stand and walk around all day.

Anyways, as far as recent eats go, I am still on my egg and goat cheese kick for breakfast.

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I don’t know what it is, but I am totally obsessed with goat cheese. It’s pretty much to the point where I can’t eat eggs without it, and I don’t really care for any other cheese that they put on salads (i.e., feta). You can’t really see it in the photo below, but that little two-egg omelette is packed full of the good stuff!

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I’ve also been enjoying fresh fruit with my eggs in the morning when I have it on hand.

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As far as lunches go, lately I’ve reverted to plain old turkey and cheese sandwiches. You guys know I get on “kicks” with my packed lunches, where I eat the same thing for weeks and weeks before getting sick of it and moving onto something else. Lately, I’ve been all about the turkey sandwich! I usually pair it with a yogurt, string cheese or granola bar, and some fruit. Here’s today’s lunch that I packed up this morning:

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(I’m out of fruit right now – sad day!)

I also love that it takes about 10 seconds to assemble this lunch. That’s how I roll!

About once a week or so, typically on the days that I don’t go into work until 1:00, I treat myself and order lunch from my favorite sandwich place, Rolling Farms Café.

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Yesterday I got my favorite – The Napoleon (minus tomato/onion). It is served on a warm croissant and comes with turkey, some sort of cheese, lettuce, and I believe mayo and honey mustard.

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They have the best soups, too. My favorites are the broccoli cheddar and the roasted butternut squash, but yesterday I decided to try to the cream of mushroom.

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Yummmm!

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I’m pretty excited because today is actually like Friday for me. I took a couple days off work this week and tomorrow I’m heading down to Grand Rapids to visit with some old friends from pharmacy school. Then on Saturday we are all going to a friend’s wedding in Bad Axe. Should be fun!

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