Friday, March 29, 2013

Flight of Beers #2

I was so satisfied with my first home Flight of Beer that I decided to grab four more for a second one. AB and I drank these after our bike ride at Umstead and enjoyed these just as much as the last ones. It's a neat way to try different beers and thankfully Earth Fare sells them individually. Below are the ones from attempt #2:

Most favorite: Abbey Belgian Style Ale
Least Favorite: Dogshead Midas Touch

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Umstead Biking

Today AB and I were both off of work so we decided to head over Umstead and try out my refurbished Trek. It was AB's from many, many years ago and required very little fixing. The last time I rode a bike was, easily, about 15 years ago when I was a freshman at UNCW and rode my bike everywhere. Since then I've ridden for a few minutes here and there but nothing like today. We went to the park with the intent of doing a few miles to break me back into riding. Instead, we read the map wrong and ended up going almost 10 miles over an hour and a half! I won't lie either; Umstead is NOT an easy ride for a "first-timer"- there are a lot of hills and some of those are STEEP! It was definitely a workout so I'm just hoping my legs aren't so sore tomorrow that I can't run. Luckily, I was still able to walk once we dismounted and the weather stayed sunny (although cool) for the entire ride. The nice part was, we managed to exercise together and enjoyed it enough to do it again.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Flight of Beers

I love beer flights. They're a great way to sample multiple beers from light to dark without getting absolutely shit-faced by drinking a full 12 ounce serving of each beer. After buying a brewery tour on Groupon the other day (which of course offers a beer flight as part of the tour) I got an itch to make one for AB and I. Following a hike with the dogs to Umstead the other day we dropped by Earth Fare where I chose 4 single 12-ounce beers (2 I've had, 2 I haven't) with the intent of creating a home beer flight. Last night seemed like a good time to do one in celebration of my running accomplishments so below are the 4 we tried:

Most favorite: Hell's Belle (of course)
Least favorite: Double Pale Ale

Monday, March 25, 2013

Couch to 10K

For the past 8 weights I've been fairly committed to keeping on schedule with my Couch to 10K program. In the past I've always just started running, gone as far as I could while still being able to breathe, and then on consecutive runs pushed myself a little further. As those who read my blog know, this never works out well because I always quit running at some point, and then I'm back to the beginning the next time around. This time (and because I'm captain for a 5K in April) I decided I would give the C210K app a try; it's free and I know several people who were able to get into running using it without having any issues. The company offers a Couch to 5K program also, but I figured if I'm going to try running [again] why not go semi-all out and try a 10K final distance? I have no desire to compete in a 10K but I'd love to be able to run for 60 minutes 3-4 days a week; it would help allow me to maintain my cupcake addiction.

With all of that being said, today I started on Week 9 Day 1. The program sets me up to run 3 days a week, using run/walk intervals, with a final goal of being able to run 60 minutes straight (or a 10K if our pace is a 10min/mile) after 14 weeks. At week 8, which is how long the Couch to 5K program takes, I was running a straight 30 minutes with no walking intervals (yay!). Today, however, jumped to the 10K part of the training and I had to run 10min/walk 1 min x 4 for a total of 40 minutes of running. It sucked. I made it, but I'm pretty sure I started going into respiratory distress, as my husband can attest to after having me call him from the treadmill gasping and asking for his inhaler. Regardless of the misery, I survived and will be treating myself to a homemade mini "Flight of Beers" (see future post) this evening.

I've also been using the MyFitnessPal application for the past 2 weeks to track calories and exercise. So far I've only lost 2 lbs but I'm holding out hope that my body is just being stubborn and will suddenly dump 5 lbs of fat overnight (let's ignore the medical issues with that dream). For now I'll just keep counting calories (boo) and trucking away on the treadmill.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Instagram Week

1. Lake at Umstead 2.Gigi's Chocolate Stout cupcake for St. Patty's Day 3. EKG ring 4. New running shoes 5. Indy-meow 6. Too much Gigi's 7. Umstead 8. Penny-meow

Saturday, March 23, 2013

NaBloPoMo Prompt

I have had absolutely nothing to write about for weeks now. I've struggled to come up with something worthwhile for others to read but honestly, I'm falling short repeatedly. I'm not sure if it's this depressing prolonged winter weather following an already pseudo NC winter, or if there's just too many things going on for my brain to simplify itself enough to type out a post. Regardless, I decided I would borrow a March prompt from NaBloPoMo and start with that.

Prompt: Talk about an opportunity you let pass you by

I'm sure I've let quite a few opportunities pass me by, as I tend to be a lazy, unmotivated, procrastinating fool but one opportunity does come to mind. I'm actually not sure if my family knows this even happened, but if not then they will now! During my junior year of college at NCSU I was accepted as an intern for the KEMI program ie the Kentucky Equine Management Internship. I was offered the chance to live on a Thoroughbred farm in Kentucky for 6 months while learning about farm management, in addition to networking for a potential future job. Needless to say, I didn't accept the position; I don't think I even told anyone I was offered the spot. Thinking about it now, I don't remember exactly why I turned the program down, but knowing myself at age 22 it probably had something to do with boys. Sigh. With that being said, the decision is not something I regret. I made the choice that I thought was best for me at the time, and while it might have been life changing, I wouldn't be where I am now had I done things differently.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


eating/drinking: homemade kale chips, tuna/wickles/ritz crackers, and water (yes, this is my lazy person dinner!)

feeling: impatient. i'm ready to visit alex/laird in seattle and get this new job rolling

listening: to baer pacing around the room. he paces a lot. a ridiculous amount actually and between his monstrous nails and the hardwood floor sometimes the constant click, click, click can drive one a bit nutso

watching: castle

reading: i just started trauma plan by candace calvert. it was on the $.99 cent list the other day and the title attracted me

loving: that i'm back to running 30 minutes solid and i'm finally losing weight

disliking: my addiction to 800 calorie cupcakes

thinking: i've really gotten crappy about blogging

hoping: i get my tuition reimbursement paid out before i leave for the new job. things have a tendency to get lost at certain hospitals

wishing: world peace. win the lottery. eat all i want and not gain any weight. same things as always

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Instagram Weekend

1. Enjoying the sun 2. A moment of peace 3. Succulents 4. Meowing to go out 5. Lord of the Rings sword 6. Blooming orchids 7. Looking up 8. Yum

Friday, March 8, 2013

New Job

I recently accepted a new job and am super excited, partially because of the higher salary and partially because it's time to try something new. I truly enjoy 99% of the people I work with but I also truly enjoy being able to pay my bills, so this move will be a good thing (I hope). I'm absolutely terrified of being an ICU nurse (even though I occasionally have ICU patient's where I am now) mainly because I will have to manage a critical care patient for 12 whole hours (that's a lot people- I get the pleasure of sending most patients out whenever there's a room available). Those 12 hours also include interacting with the patient's family, the attending (holy crap- no residents to depend on???), the various services providing for that patient, and an entirely new group of coworkers.

I'm scared.
I'm excited.
I'm sad.
I'm hesitant.
I'm nervous.
I'm hopeful.
I'm terrified.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Instagram Week

1. Penny-Meow 2. Lazy Saturday 3. Strawberry salad 4. Indy-Meow 5. Reese's layer 6. Red wine 7. Pups  8. Umstead 9. A boy and his dog 10. Our trail 11. Bridges 12. Double Dog 13. Relaxing 14. Smoked salmon salad 15. Looking out 16. Sunny day 17. Penny paws

Sunday, March 3, 2013


eating/drinking: Flying Dog Double Dog Double Pale Ale

feeling: impatient! am i going to get this job or not? and if i don't where do i even start looking again???

listening: the tv

watching: the second LOTR

reading: i'm trying a sample of divergent by veronica roth

loving: that my contract is up and i am no longer a committed woman

disliking: that we have to pay taxes this year and therefore are not rolling in the dough

thinking: i drink too much...but damn it's good

hoping: i can get comfortable with running again before the 5k in which i am captain

wishing: world peace. win the lottery. eat all i want and not gain any weight

Chocolate Chip PB Cup Gooey Butter Cake

Last week was the end of my 2-year contract at my current job, and the other two nurses who started the same time as me agreed we should celebrate making it through the program. Given that my unit is so large I wanted to bake something that could feed quite a few people, so I decided on a pan of brownies (with icing and crushed cherries, mind you) and another version of Paula Deen's Pumpkin Gooey Butter Cake which I made several times over the holidays. I found the second recipe on Pinterest and was delighted to find out that it's essentially the same recipe, only this time there's chocolate chips instead of pumpkin. Because I was feeling especially sugar-obsessed, I decided to take it one step further and add a layer of Reese's PB cups in there also. Queue diabetic coma.


  • 1 box butter-recipe cake mix
  • 1 egg
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 1 8oz package cream cheese, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 16oz box powdered sugar
  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 1 bag chocolate chips
  • 1 large bag Reese's PB cups


  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Light grease a 9x13in baking pan
  • In a bowl combine ingredients for crust, and mix with an electric mixer (it will be very thick)
  • Pat into bottom of pan
  • Unwrap PB cups and line them up in rows on top of the bottom layer
  • Using the mixer again, beat cream cheese until smooth
  • Add eggs and vanilla to cream cheese
  • Add powdered sugar in slowly as you're still mixing the previous ingredients
  • Reduce mixer speed and add in melted butter
  • Once everything is blended smoothly add in bag of chocolate chips
  • Pour filling onto PB cups and spread evenly
  • Bake for 45-60 min (it took me almost 60 min)- the center is supposed to be gooey so don't over-bake!
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool completely
  • You can also drizzle melted chocolate on the top but I didn't go that far!
  • Cut into bars and enjoy!