Fitness, Food and Photography

Follow me on my road to fitness… Because it's all about the journey, not the destination.

I Lied …

5 weeks ago, I said I was back.  But apparently I lied.

I have a great excuse, though.  I promise!  ……I’ve started a new job.  (Yay!)

But it’s been hard trying to get used to the new schedule.

I have to leave the house earlier so I can drive farther, park in a garage 3 blocks away and walk up to the 5th floor of the building.  And leaving downtown at 5pm isn’t much easier.

I’m not complaining though.  Once I’m downtown, I really enjoy it.

And how can I complain when this is the view from my new office?

View #1

View #1 looking left

View #2

View #2 looking straight ahead

View #3

View #3 looking to the right

Yes, I said OFFICE!!  For the first time ever in my career,  I actually have an office.  With a door and everything!!  Yay!

So far, my favorite thing to do is walk around and explore downtown during my lunch hour.  (If you follow me on Instagram, then you’ve already seen a few of these) …..

tennessee sign

One thing I love about downtown is the architecture.

gorgeous downtown door

Gorgeous doorways …..

20130718_135709[1]

Curious alleyways ….

alleyway

Interesting angles ….

architecture 1

architecture 2

So many sights to see downtown.  That’s just a few of the many photos I’ve taken.

And there’s so much more where that came from!

So stay tuned.

Hopefully this time I can actually be back for real.

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A Few Friday Faves

I have a few new favorite things to share with you …. and since it’s Friday, it seems as good a time as any.  🙂

1) My new afternoon treat ….  White with Orange Tea.  We’ve got this awesome single-serve coffee/tea maker at work.  In the almost two years we’ve had it, I’ve actually never brewed any tea.  I’m very much a coffee in the morning kind of person.  And usually I don’t drink anything but water in the afternoon.  But lately, tea has been my little afternoon obsession.  And this White with Orange is awesome!!!

bright tea

2) Pumpkin Spice Caramel Ghiradelli chocolate square.  Oh my goodness.  It’s a good thing I have no idea where to buy more.

chocolate heaven

3)  An all blue week!!!  This rarely happens, if ever.  It’s actually only happened one other time this school year.  And I think only once last year.  My son had an all blue week at school.  He even earned the coveted ‘Star Student’ title.  Yay.  So proud.  I don’t know what it was that turned him around, but I am thrilled!!

blue week

4.  Lunch time runs.  My new favorite way to spend my lunch hour.  Today I ran 4.2 miles.  It was a balmy 65 degress here in the middle of January.  Crazy, but awesome.  I got a little sweatier than I had anticipated, but I certainly enjoyed it.

lunchtime runs

5.  My fuzzy zebra house slippers.  There’s not much else that’s better than fuzzy pajamas in the middle of winter.  And now I have fuzzy slippers!!  🙂

fuzzy zebra

That’s it for today.

By the way ….  any WordPress users out there …. can you tell me why my photos are so small???  I want them to post large size.  To fill up the width of the text box.  But they are much smaller than they used to be.  I haven’t changed anything.  The only thing that has changed since my previous posts (where they used to be larger) is this new version of WordPress.  They updated something and now my pictures are smaller.  I’ve posted a question on the forums but they say it’s my fault.  When I upload the pic, it says it 2560 x 1920. I promise you … I haven’t changed any settings.  How do I get them bigger??  (And increasing the size isn’t an option – anything over 100% is all grayed out).  HELP!!!

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Weekly Photo Challenge: My 2012 in Pictures

From WordPress: My 2012 in Pictures. Do I need to say more? And you knew this was going to be a multi-photo challenge! Make sure you include picture captions to explain to people what they’re seeing, and experiment with the tiled galleries I love so much.

Pick the best pictures from your 2012 and have those pictures tell everyone about your year.

My theme for 2012 was ‘Family Time’.  We took several trips as a family, and also managed to get a few weekend get aways as a couple too.  I want to do even more in 2013!

Here are just a few of the pics I took in 2012 ….  in no particular order.  (Mostly because I am unsure as to how to get them in a particular order with this gallery tool).  🙂

New to The Daily Post? Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, you’re invited to get involved in our Weekly Photo Challenge to help you meet your blogging goals and give you another way to take part in Post a Day / Post a Week. Everyone is welcome to participate, even if your blog isn’t about photography.

Here’s how it works:

1. Each week, we’ll provide a theme for creative inspiration. You take photographs based on your interpretation of the theme, and post them on your blog (a new post!) anytime before the following Friday when the next photo theme will be announced.

2. To make it easy for others to check out your photos, title your blog post “Weekly Photo Challenge: (theme of the week)” and be sure to use the “postaday″ tag.

3. Subscribe to The Daily Post so that you don’t miss out on weekly challenge announcements. Sign up via the email subscription link in the sidebar or RSS.

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Weekend Recap: Christmas Part Two and Family Game Day

Whew.  We had a busy weekend.  Hard to believe it’s over already.  We had such a good time – first with hubby’s family on Saturday and then my family on Sunday.

I wore my ‘HO HO HO’ shirt, which backward is ‘OH OH OH’.  LOL  Even though it was the 29th of December, we were pretending it was still Christmas Day.

me

#ootd

One of my favorites parts of Christmas is always watching other people open the presents I buy for them.  I try to put careful thought into purchasing gifts and get things that I think they will really enjoy.  I could care less if I open anything.  Really.  I’m not just saying that.

more presents!!

Lunch was Egg Salad Sandwiches with chips and slaw.  YUM.

egg salad

my plate

my plate

My kids, however, were not quite as thrilled about egg salad as I was.

kids

Well, this picture was taken BEFORE we gave them the sandwich.  They look unusually happy here.  Perhaps they don’t know what we’re serving for lunch.

present time

After lunch, it was time to open presents!!

cowboy boots

My daughter stomped around in my cowboy boots all afternoon.

sassy pants

Then she wore her new socks on her hands while she carried her Dr Seuss tote bag around.  I’m telling you … this kid is a TRIP!!!  She is constantly cracking me up.

pants on the head

Now she’s wearing her pants on her head.  (Thank you, Uncle Alan, for teaching her that!)  lol

baby lamb

And after yet another wardrobe change (into her brand new pajamas), she’s examining her new baby lamb.  I guess she decided he was alright so she gave him a hug.

lamb2

Since today’s Elf4Health challenge was to do something for yourself, I tried to sneak away for a little quiet time with my hot tea by the tree.  It didn’t last very long, but it was the only quiet time I would get all day!

hot tea

Cute mug courtesy of Joy Tanner Pottery! 🙂

version5edited Elf for Health

Dinner was Chicken Tetrazzini.  I wasn’t thrilled about seeing all those carbs.  And it really just goes downhill from here!  (Might as well go ahead and take away my “Elf4Health” badge right now)!   🙂

chicken tetrazzini

Don’t get me wrong – it was delicious.  But I felt guilty for eating it.

dessert tray

I felt even worse after I had a piece of cheesecake.  Seriously, how can I resist cheesecake???  In my defense, I have not had one in over a year!  Yes, a full year.  The last cheesecake I had was the one I made for Thanksgiving last year ….  Southern Living’s Pumpkin-Pecan Cheesecake.  It was DIVINE! Here’s a pic:

last year's cheesecake

PhotoGrid_1356955671813

Who brought the chocolate????

mom and martha

I didn’t take any pictures while we were playing Apples to Apples.

Nancy and Andy

But this was towards the end of the evening when we played Scattergories.

games

So. Much. Fun.

Question of the Day:  What is your favorite family game??  (We might need a few suggestions for our next get together)!!

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Weekend Recap: Concert, Pancakes and Cleaning

I had been anxiously awaiting this weekend for a few weeks.  Ever since we saw the Delta Saints in Market Square and found out they were having a CD release party at Exit/In in Nasvhville, we knew we had to go!

It was a really quick trip.  We didn’t even leave Knoxville til 5pm on Friday, and it’s a 2-1/2 hour drive to Nashville.  Thankfully, you gain an hour on the drive over when you cross from Eastern to Central time.  We had planned on eating at a local place called the Tavern, which came highly recommended by a friend who lives in town.  Unfortnately, by the time we dropped our stuff at the hotel and made it to the Tavern, it was 8 o’clock central time.  The concert started at 9pm and there was an hour long wait at the Tavern.  I’m sure it would have been good, but we couldn’t miss the concert.

saki

So we ended up at a little sushi place across from the Exit/In, called Samurai.  I ordered Saki, of course!

drinking sake

My first sip of sake

Unfortunately, my phone was acting a little crazy.  So I didn’t get any pictures of the sushi.  Nor did I get any pictures of the opening band, The Black Cadillacs, who are also from Knoxville!  But thankfully it decided to work again when I wanted a few pics of the Delta Saints …

the delta saints

This concert was so totally worth the drive!!  They killed it!!  If you’ve never heard of the Delta Saints, you absolutely have to check them out.  They totally know how to rock…  New Orleans style.  A mix of blues and rock, very soulful rhythm.  And oh my goodness, Ben can sing!!!

delta saints

the delta saints 2

You need to listen to this video…  A Bird Called Angola.  And check out their new album with ‘Liar’ and ‘Death Letter Jubilee’.  They are my new favorite band!!

signing my name

Me signing my name on their sign

We found a deal on Expedia for this place called the Hotel Preston.  It ended up being a very cool, contemporary place.  I would totally go back there.

hotel preston

Despite the way the neon sign looks, the room was really nice.  We were up on the 10th floor and enjoyed the views of downtown Nashville from the room.

hotel room

We didn’t have much time on Saturday morning before we had to head back to town to pick up the kiddos.  I couldn’t decide if I wanted to go shopping or get breakfast.  Food won.  After a late night out, I wanted pancakes.

line for pancakes

Do you see that line out the door??  That’s the wait to get in.  And it was consistently backed up ALL morning!  People were standing in line for over an hour ….  to get PANCAKES!  I figured they must be pretty good so we decided to wait as well.

pancake pantry

pancake menu

I chose the Sweet Potato Pancakes.  They were the BEST pancakes I’ve ever eaten!!

sweet potato pancakes

sweet potato pancakes

And yes, that is a spoonful of butter on the side of the pancake.  I watched them as they spooned it out of these large buckets to put on every plate.

See the Batman building?

See the Batman building?

We hated leaving Nashville.  So much fun.  I think I could totally live there.

cleaning out drawers

Sunday, it was back to reality.  It was time to clean the house.  I’ve been meaning to do this for several weeks, and it just so happened that the #Elf4Health challenge this weekend was to clean out your closets.  I basically pulled everything out of my drawers, put back in the things I wanted to keep and then whatever was left on the floor was going to Goodwill.  That took most of the day.  It feels so good to purge!  I highly recommend it.

Click HERE for the Elf4Health calendar for the coming week.  If you’re not already signed up, you still have time to get in for next week.

nutritionella

I’ll leave you with an Instagram of the sunset I took this weekend.  The sky gave us beautiful sunsets on both Saturday and Sunday night …

instagram sunset

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Green

From WordPressGreen. For some of you, in the northern hemisphere, you may not be seeing green for a while. Let’s celebrate all things green!

Share (many) pictures in a gallery which mean GREEN to you!

To me, GREEN means summer.  Green grass, green leaves, green shrubs.  I love summer!

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Renewal

From WordPress:   Renewal. This word conjures a variety of images, from bright blossoms to meditating monks. When I think of “renewal,” I think of starting a new job, arriving in a new city that’s ripe for exploration, walking through a new apartment with white walls, and taking a hot shower after a challenging day. I also recall a trip several years ago to the Lan Su Chinese Garden in Portland, Oregon, which is where I took the photograph above. This lone pink flower amongst lily pads makes me feel renewed, fresh, and ready for what’s to come.

What images does Renewal conjure for you? Get creative. Think beyond the usual images (a sunrise, a birth). We want to see what else you can come up with.

Ugh.  This is a hard one.  For me, the word ‘Renewal’ is part of my every day language.  I work in insurance, so I am constantly dealing with clients’ renewals.  So it’s not a glamorous word in my world.  In fact, I almost wanted to skip this week’s challenge.  But then I looked through my photos and came up with a few.

Renewal reminds me of Easter and the resurrection.

“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength…” ~Isaiah 40:31

“Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” ~Psalm 51:10

Butterflies are the ultimate renewal, are they not?  Starting out as ugly caterpillars, being renewed as beautiful butterflies.

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” ~2 Corinthians 4:16

 

New to The Daily Post? Whether you’re a beginner or a professional, you’re invited to get involved in our Weekly Photo Challenge to help you meet your blogging goals and give you another way to take part in Post a Day / Post a Week. Everyone is welcome to participate, even if your blog isn’t about photography.

Here’s how it works:

1. Each week, we’ll provide a theme for creative inspiration. You take photographs based on your interpretation of the theme, and post them on your blog (a new post!) anytime before the following Friday when the next photo theme will be announced.

2. To make it easy for others to check out your photos, title your blog post “Weekly Photo Challenge: (theme of the week)” and be sure to use the “postaday″ tag.

3. Subscribe to The Daily Post so that you don’t miss out on weekly challenge announcements. Sign up via the email subscription link in the sidebar or RSS.

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Weekend Recap: Music and Rest

First of all, I want to say thank you to everyone who posted with their own homemade remedies on Friday!  I’m not sure what worked, but I am feeling better now.  I had planned on taking it easy all weekend.  But then I found out that a band I really like was playing a free concert in Market Square!!  I couldn’t pass it up.  These guys aren’t in Knoxville very often and I didn’t want to miss it.

We were first introduced to The Delta Saints in February when they opened for our beloved Dirty Guv’nahs.  They were really good, so we downloaded a few tracks and started following them.

the delta saints

My favorite song is the brand new one, Liar.  The album hasn’t even been released yet.  But you can get a FREE download from their website HERE.

the delta saints

Other really good songs are: Swamp Groove and Momma and Bird Called Angola.  Check out their You Tube channel – they can jam!!

the delta saints

Me with the Delta Saints, minus one

We love to listen to LIVE music.  As you might recall, we saw The Dirty Guv’nahs in Market Square not too long ago.

Brooklyn Octoberfest

There were still 2 more bands to play after them, so we headed over to Blue Coast Burrito for some grub.  We sat outsite while we listened to the second band.  It was freezing!!  Good thing I had beer and hot salsa to keep me warm!!

Blue Coast Burrito

We ordered the fish tacos, but I didn’t take a picture of them.  They were super disappointing.  Kinda soggy and wrapped in not one, but two corn tortillas.  I think Marlin & Rays still has the best fish tacos around!!

That was Saturday.  Despite my fatigue, I am soooo glad we went!!

I didn’t do too much on Sunday, I tried to take it easy and rest up for a busy work week ahead.  Although, I did manage to get a brisk walk through the neighborhood in.  It was super cold.  Okay, it was like 55 degrees.  But for this summer girl, I’m never ready for the first cold snap.  55 felt like winter!  Brrrrr.

Bring summer back!!

I’ll leave you with a sunset pic from the weeekend!  That is unretouched.  And, taken from my crappy phone!!

Have a great week, everyone!!  🙂

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Weekend Recap: Lego Party and Sushi Class

Another exciting weekend!  🙂

Saturday morning started off with a birthday party for  a 7-year old.  Not my 7-year old, mind you.  One of his friends, Paulo.

It was a Lego-themed birthday.  They had gone all out.  Some people are so creative.

lego birthday party

lego birthday party

lego birthday party

fish tacos

They even served fish tacos!!  YUM – my favorite!!

My kids. That’s her “cheese” face.

After the birthday party, the hubs and I had plans to go to a sushi-making class.  There just happened to be a Groupon for the Sushi Academy a while back.  So we purchased it months ago and then realized that it expired this weekend.

sushi class

We learned how to make a california roll and a monterrey roll.

sushi making

sushi

The best part, though, was getting to eat our creations!!  YUM.

It was fun learning the technique, but I think in the future I will leave it to the experts at Nama to make my sushi.

(That’s me – still rockin’ the spex.  Actually, I don’t think I’m rocking them at all.  I hate wearing glasses.  It’s been two weeks since my corneal abrasion, and I can’t wait to go back to the contacts)!!

On Sunday, we took the kids out for a picnic lunch by the water.  It was a gorgeous day, though a little hot, so we ate our Subway in the shade of a tree.  If you follow me on Instagram (katiedaisy921), then you’ve already seen these photos:

 

instagram ducks

Ducks!

 

Lazy Sunday Afternoon

After the picnic, we headed home and all 4 of us took a Sunday afternoon nap!  I guess we needed it.

Question of the Day:  What is your favorite way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon??

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