Memorial Day Weekend

This long weekend was just what I needed.  I was feeling sort of stagnant and tired, and so it was wonderful to get away from home for a few days, see some friends, and have fun.

Friday
We left around 12:30 on Friday and made it to Jamaica Plain (JP) at about 4:30.  Our friends, Pepe and Shannon, live right near the pond, and their neighborhood is really pretty.  They’ve got a great 3 bedroom apartment with a screened in porch, and an awesome little poodle mix named Oliver.  I’m kind of obsessed with him.

Oliver sleeping, looking like he's dead

Oliver sleeping, looking like he’s dead

Ben and Pepe used to work together, so Pepe invited a bunch of their work buddies over for dinner and drinks.  We had Filipino egg rolls, tacos, and cheese ice cream (weird, but good-it tasted like buttered popcorn).  I also had this delicious grapefruit IPA from Abita brewing.

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Saturday

A lobstah for Suz ;)

A lobstah for Suz 😉

I had intended to get up on Saturday morning and take a few laps around Jamaica Pond, but I was wiped out, so I just slept in a bit.  Pepe made us the best scrambled eggs I’ve ever had–scallions, queso fresco and some other magical spices.  Seriously delicious.  Shannon had to go do wedding prep for her friend’s wedding, so Pepe, Ben and I went to see X-Men:  Days of Future Past.  Holy crap, that movie was awesome!  Possibly my favorite of the entire franchise.

After the movie, we took a stroll down by the pond, which was really nice.  There were tons of people out–joggers, bikers, walkers, boaters…  The weather was perfect, and I was really disappointed in myself for not having gone for a run in the morning.  Oh well.  We went to FoMu, a vegan-friendly ice cream place–everything is either coconut milk or nut based, so there’s no dairy.  The coconut milk gives everything a slightly grainier texture, but the flavor is so amazing I hardly even noticed, and ice cream is one of my absolute favorite treats.  I got Cake and Batter, a sweet cream ice cream with vanilla and chocolate cake batter mixed in–delish!

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Then, it was time to take our leave and head to Watertown, where we spent the rest of the weekend with our friends, Nick and Nikki.  I’ve known Nick since I was a freshman in high school, and he’s one of my closest friends.  When we lived in Watertown, we saw each other pretty much every week, but we haven’t seen each other since before Ben and I moved back to Vermont in August, so it was great to see them.

We headed downtown to hit up Ben’s and my favorite Irish pub, Emmet’s.  It’s on Beacon street near the Common, and most of the employees are actually Irish.  The food is phenomenal, the service is great, and they always have great beers on tap.  We got curry fries and buffalo chicken dip for appetizers, and then I got a blackened chicken caesar salad that was twice the size of my head.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t eat it all, but I tried.  Sorry I didn’t take any pictures, but it was just too good and we were too hungry!  P.S., curry fries are AMAZEBALLS.  I know, it seems weird to have curry at an Irish pub, but it’s actually a traditional dish.  It’s a sort of curry gravy that you dunk the fries in.  So, so tasty!

Photo May 25, 12 23 56 PMThe rest of the night was spent lounging in our pjs, drinking beer (Yeungling is available in Boston now!), watching Game of Thrones, and snuggling with their cockapoo, Stormy.  I love this little guy.  He’s really more muppet than dog.

Sunday
We slept in, had homemade egg sandwiches for breakfast, and headed back downtown.  The weather was gorgeous, and we spent most of the day wandering around.  We spent an hour or so sunning ourselves on the Common, got delicious hoagies at a little hole-in-the-wall Italian joint (Primo’s) in Beacon Hill, and got Birthday Cake tea at David’s tea.

Frog Pond

Frog Pond

Since we ate lunch so late, we had a little smorgasbord of snackies for dinner–grapes, apple slices, goat cheese, cheddar, and crackers.  Not too heavy, but very satisfying.  After some more Game of Thrones, we made a late-night run to Rancatore’s for some gourmet ice cream.  I got one scoop of Irish Coffee Cookie Dough and one scoop of Salted Caramel–what a fantastic combination!

Monday
Photo May 26, 10 48 44 AMI woke up around 9, and everyone else was still sound asleep.  I had a short debate with myself, but ultimately decided to get up and run.  Nick and Nikki live right next to Victory Field, and there’s a track less than a quarter of a mile away, so I decided to do some sprint intervals.  I ran over and did a warm-up lap, then sprinted 100 meters and did 300 meters of recovery running until I made it 3.2 miles (I think about 10 laps).  I was glad I got up, because everyone was still asleep when I got back, so I didn’t miss anything and no one had to wait around for me.

We watched one more episode of Game of Thrones (oh my gosh, so addictive!), and then Ben and I hit the road around 1.  We stopped in Concord, NH for food and gas, and we got some supermarket sushi and almonds.  As an aside, I highly recommend stopping at grocery stores for travel food as opposed to fast food.  It’s usually a cheaper and healthier alternative.  You can get fruits and veggies, and many grocery stores have salad bars or prepared food areas (like sushi!).  I got a brown rice spicy California roll and it was really yummy and filling, and only $5.50.

We got home around 5 and did NOTHING for the rest of the day.  I made some pasta and roasted squash for dinner, and we went to bed early.

It was a whirlwind weekend, but we had a blast.  While we’re incredibly happy that we decided to move back home to Vermont, we still love Boston and miss all of the friends we left behind.

How did you spend your Memorial Day weekend?

Ever been to Boston? 

Friday Free For All (Three)

Welcome to Friday Free-For-All, where I talk about anything and everything on my mind.  Sometimes, it even makes sense!

My parents are moving.  Long story short, my parents relocated last summer because my dad got a new job.  They were living rent-free in the town where dad works.  Tiny, tiny town.  600 people.  Fishbowl.  Gossip city.  They HATE it there.  Since they never managed to sell the old house, they’ve decided to move back and my dad will commute to work.  This is awesome for many reasons.  One, instead of being 2.5 hours away, they’re only 1.5 hours away.  More visits!  Two, the house they’re moving back to is really nice and in a great area.  Three, my parents will be happier and less stressed.  Win, win win!

I’m leaving work at 12:30 today.  It’s a three-day weekend, so we’re shipping off to Boston (woah oh oh!) to stay with some friends.  I’m looking forward to beer, food, runs around scenic Jamaica Pond, puppies, movies, games, and laughs.  Oh, and having three and a half days off of work 😀

Morning runs are totally working out.  I have gotten up at 5:30am every day this week, and I have run two of those mornings.  With Ben 🙂  It’s actually been really nice, and I may add in an extra running day just because I want to and I like it.  So there.

I scored a free exercise ball from work.  One of the big inflatable ones.  This will be great for ab work, and generally bouncing around the house.  I tried using it to sit on at work, but my desk is a bit too high, so it just didn’t work out.  Oh well.

What are you up to this holiday weekend?

Do you live close to your parents?  Do you see them often?

Manic Monday – 04/21/14

Another edition of Manic Monday, where I recap the previous week and set out goals for the upcoming week!

Monday
I walked the 2 miles to and from work.  Ben declared that it was too nice out to go to the gym (sunny, 75 and breezy), so he played basketball with Pete and I ran some errands.  I did some random strength exercises after dinner just so the day wouldn’t be a total wash–body weight squats and sumo squats, push-ups, biceps curls, and a couple of minutes of planking.

Tuesday
Photo Apr 19, 3 37 06 PMI walked the 2 miles to work in the morning.  After work was supposed to be a 3 mile run, but it was cold, windy and rainy, AND we had dinner plans at 6.  So instead, I pulled up my Nike Training Club app and did their 15-minute “Ab Blast” workout.  It certainly got me sweaty, and I was sore the next day.  Then we had so much good food!  Our friend Erik loves to cook, and he made bacon-wrapped veal meatloaf, pureed cauliflower, and asparagus.  I also had a few beers.  Delish! Although my tummy was not pleased the next morning…

Wednesday
I finally did some cross-training!  I went over to my friends Aimee and Andrew’s house because they have a home gym.  Andrew is a PE teacher and a fitness nut, and he KICKED.MY.A$$.  Or rather my arms.  We did over an hour of upper body super sets and it was pure torture awesome.  I really want to try to make it over there once a week because a) Andrew makes me do stuff I wouldn’t do on my own, and b) it’s fun to work out with friends!

Thursday
I was scheduled for a 4 mile run, but I was so stiff in my upper body from Wednesday’s workout that I was having a tough time regulating my breathing and pace.  I think I was also hungry and a little under-hydrated, because it was a rough go, and I stopped at 3 miles.  I also walked to work in the morning.

Friday
Scheduled rest day, which worked out well because Ben’s sister Emily and our friend Johannes (from Austria!) were in town, so we went to Ben’s parents’ place for a bonfire and beers.

Saturday
The Light the Night 5k!  I PR’d, which was amazing (full race recap coming soon), but I’m not sure I’d ever do an evening race again.  It’s hard to stay focused and in preparation mode all day.

Sunday
Scheduled rest day.  We slept late and had a nice, early Easter dinner with Ben’s parents.

All in all it was a good week.  I think I did a pretty good job of hitting my goals from last week’s Manic Monday, although I still have work to do on the hydrating and eating better fronts.  I brought my 32 oz Nalgene water bottle to work today, and I’m going to try to finish one full bottle before lunch and one before heading home.

Goals for Upcoming Week

  • Incorporate speed work and/or hills.  This is definitely something that has been missing from my training up till now
  • Complete ALL scheduled runs for the week.  The last couple of weeks I’ve missed at least one for one reason or another.
  • Do more cross-training

Before I sign off, I have to send love and positive vibes to everyone who ran, volunteered, or was otherwise involved with the Boston Marathon.  I will never cease to be amazed.