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Summer Bucket List 2018

Hello friends and happy almost Summer! I believe the official start is this Thursday the 21st, but it’s Summer time here because we are out of school, wahoo! If you haven’t already got your AC checked out by someone like WireNut Home Services’ hvac services in Colorado Springs, now is the time to do so to make sure that it won’t let you down when you need it most! Summer also means that you should stay tuned for more blog posts each week including recipes, workouts, and favorite things as my schedule is pretty clear until September.

Keeping the tradition two years strong of sharing with you what’s on my Summer Bucket List, if you’d like to check out last years you can find it here. I love that this list holds me accountable for some of the things I need to do and gives me fun ideas for the weekends. And of course I hope to inspire you all. Be sure to share in the comments below something on your Summer Bucket List!

Dominican Republic Punta Cana Majestic Resort

Tidy up the house; organize, get rid of things, deep clean. I’m currently reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and hope to apply some of Marie Kondo’s tips.

I also hope to read plenty of fiction novels, currently I have What Alice Forgot, A Stranger in the House, and The Favorite Sister on my reading list. If you’re looking for other suggestions I’ve read and highly recommend All the Missing Girls, The Husband’s Secret, and The Family Next Door.

And a few non-fiction novels on my list are, How to Be Everything, Woman Code, You are a Badass, and Body Love.

Spend plenty of time by the pool reading and relaxing. Honestly, the past few months have been so stressful, I am finally ready to put my mental health first! Which reminds me, I would love to try some CBD infused products this summer. I know that a lot of my friends from the UK use Blessed CBD gummies and other CBD products to help them to relax and unwind so I want to see if they can help me to switch off. My friends are always telling about the health-boosting benefits of CBD so I am excited to see how I get on.

Go to a sunrise yoga session. As you know, I love yoga. It is SO good for your body and mind.

Visit my parents in Cleveland.

Take walks and listen to podcasts.

Eat crabs, total MD thing to do.

Plant an herb garden.

Grilled Pizza Night.

Clean out technology, computer, phone, camera.

Work on my photography skills.

Decide on a fitness or nutrition program to continue my studies in the health field.

Volunteer.

Take a new workout class.

Go to a Nationals baseball game.

See Fireworks.

Attend Truck-A-Roo. DC Food Truck Festival.

Play Mini-Golf.

Eat Ice Cream!

Visit a Museum.

Go Hiking.

Wine Tasting and Picnic. Running Hare and Ingleside are our favorite local Vineyards. I love tasting, then sharing a bottle and snacks.

Ride bikes.

Go on lunch dates. Day dates are my fav for some reason.

Try new recipes, currently on my list are learn how to make sourdough bread and try some new desserts.

Host a BBQ using our new Traeger Grill.

Go Paddle Boarding.

Get a massage.

Thanks to Amanda and her Thinking Out Loud link up.

What’s something on your Summer Bucket List?

What travel plans do you have this Summer?

Any Summer reading recommendations?

Summer 2017 Bucket List

Summer 2017 is almost here! This year I finally sat down and made a bucket list and am sharing it with you to hold me accountable. I always try to savoy every moment of beautiful warm weather and being off in the Summer. I know I’ll try new recipes, lay by the pool, and explore new restaurants so I wanted to come up with other Summer Fun. I’ve already done the important things like check that I don’t need AC repair from someone like Mr. Quik (mrquikhomeservices.com/indianapolis/hvac/ac-repair/) – the last thing I would want would be for the unit to break down when the sun is blazing hot, so I figured it was better to check it sooner rather than later. No problems to report, which was a relief! Below is my own personal list, but I hope it can give you some ideas if making your own. So if you are looking to completely reinvent your garden for summer or get it ready for a garden party, you may want to look into services like Trugreen CT, as well as furniture websites so you are fully prepared.

Dominican Republic Punta Cana Majestic Resort

Girls Trip. My college girlfriends and I are planning a trip to Chicago in August. I can’t wait to see them and celebrate two engagements!

Wine Tasting and Picnic. Running Hare and Ingleside are our favorite local Vineyards. I love tasting, then sharing a bottle and snacks.

Ice Cream. Just eat lots of ice cream ūüėČ

Make a new Summer Cocktail. I have a long list of Drinks on my Pinterest Board I’ve never made.

Read. Any recommendations would be appreciated!

Host a Brunch. I love making breakfast food and have always wanted to have friends over for a Boozy Brunch.

Sunrise Yoga. I’ve seen a few Classpass classes I hope to take advantage of this Summer.

Visit Mom and Dad in Cleveland. And Mom wants to go zip lining.

Make a Pinterest Craft. I have zero crafts pinned, so I need to do some research.

Go to the Beach. Hoping to visit my sister in California and then maybe a weekend trip to Ocean City, MD.

Visit a Museum. I’ve lived outside of DC for seven years and have only been to one Museum. I really want to go see the Newseum, Holocaust Museum, or the new African American History Museum.

Go on a Hike.

Go to the DC Zoo. Hello Pandas!

Make Popsicles.

Try a New Workout Class. I still need to try Orangetheory Fitness and I’m hoping my sister will take me to Barry’s Bootcamp when in CA.

Go to an Amusement Park. I grew up in Cleveland and loved the thrill of Cedar Point rides, but I would settle for any park. I just love roller coasters.

Do a Full House Cleaning. Like hands and knees scrub the floor, wipe the baseboards, etc.

Finish Decorating my Office. I just need to hang some things on the wall and figure out an easy set up for my photography.

Play Mini Golf.

Brunch and Baseball Game. Has to be both together, brunch then afternoon baseball.

Truck-A-Roo. DC Food Truck Festival.

Host a BBQ. Especially since Tom has mastered smoking ribs, chicken, and pork. We really need to have some friends over. There are some great charcoal grills out there if you haven’t bought one yet, I suggest reading some background on them, such as the Weber charcoal grill reviews these can help you to pick the one that suits you!

Learn More and Practice Photography.

Make Homemade Grilled Pizzas.

Volunteer Together.

Go Strawberry Picking.

Bake and Decorate a Cake. Then eat cake ūüėČ

Plant a Herb Garden. Usually I do basil, cilantro, and parsley. Honestly, I cannot wait to spend more time in our garden this summer! I just hope that we do not encounter any pesky termites this year. Last year a nasty termite infestation almost ruined our lawn! However, fortunately, our friends told us all about pest control companies like terminix pest control and so we were able to get rid of the termites for good. Garden pests can be such a pain sometimes…

See Fireworks.

Do something on this Dating Bucket List I found while doing research for this Summer Bucket List. How fun are some of these?

Rooftop Happy Hour.

Beer Tasting.

Attend a Cooking Class.

All You Can Eat Crabs.

Also do things on my Birthday Bucket List.

[bctt tweet=”Looking for some Summer fun? Check out this Summer Bucket List.” username=”sweetandstrong_”]

Thanks to Amanda and her Thinking Out Loud link up.

What’s something on your Summer Bucket List?

What travel plans do you have this Summer?

Any Summer reading recommendations?

2017 Fall Bucket List

Hi there and Happy Thursday! Tomorrow is officially the first day of Fall, which in my opinion means all things pumpkin are now acceptable. The weather is a bit warmer here this week, but I’m so ready for booties, sweaters, and blanket scarves.

Just like I did for the Summer, I thought it would be fun to share my Fall Bucket List of all things I want to accomplish and do to enjoy this beautiful season.

Visit a Pumpkin Patch, duh!

Go to a college football game. I get my fill of high school football every Friday night, I’d love to make it to a college game.

Carve pumpkins and roast pumpkin seeds, we always used to do this growing up.

Make and/or eat my favorite pumpkin foods; pumpkin cheesecake, bagels, cupcakes, puppy chow.

Visit a winery. Wineries during the Fall in the DMV are so beautiful with the leaves changing, and well wine!

Dress up for Halloween. I plan to dress up at school and for the Bodypump 103 launch at my local gym. For the launch there’s four of us so we’re being the four seasons, I’m Spring. Open to any suggestions for an elementary school appropriate costume for the PE teacher.

Visit a Sunflower Field, I believe there are some in upper MD near Baltimore I would love to visit.

Make a new Cocktail or try making Mulled Wine. I have a long list of Drinks on my Pinterest Board I’ve never made.

Host a College Football Game Day Party with football foods or smoked BBQ.

I really hope my family visits and I get to host Thanksgiving this year.

Go to a Beer Tasting. Some of my friends recently went to Germany and got to try a whole variety of different beers so I might have to book a similar trip for next year! My friends stayed in Hamburg and they had such an amazing time. Apparently they even got chatting to an escort in the hotel bar! She was telling my friends all about how much the sex industry has changed thanks to the internet. My friends said that she turned out to be the friendliest escort hamburg had to offer! She even gave my friends a recommendation about where to try some more beers. Honestly, my friends always seem to get into mischief!

Enjoy another all you can eat brunch. Our trip to Cava was one of the best brunches I’ve ever eaten!

Try a new meal delivery service. I tried Blue Apron and Hello Fresh last year and would love to try another service, especially becasue I’ve been needing some dinner inspo ideas.

Go on a hike. The leaves changing is probably one of my favorite parts about Fall.

Visit a Museum. I’ve lived outside of DC for seven years and have only been to one Museum. I really want to go see the Newseum, Holocaust Museum, or the new African American History Museum.

From my Summer Bucket list, I still want to master baking and decorating a cake.

Try a Sweatbox or Blast class. You know I love trying new fitness classes.

Work on possibly getting a spin instructor certification. I’ve also considered looking into becoming a health coach. Either way, continue my education in the health and fitness field.

Run a race. I’ve been wanted to do this since I came down with the flu and missed the Cherry Blossom Race.

Host a couples dinner party.

Go out to eat a good Italian Dinner. After my trip to Chicago and RPM Italian, I feel like my homecooked Italian dinners don’t even compare.

Have a bonfire.

Decorate the house for Fall.

Watch Hocus Pocus, love that movie!

[clickToTweet tweet=”One of the most beautiful seasons, Fall 2017 Bucket list by sweetandstrong_” quote=”One of the most beautiful seasons, Fall 2017 Bucket list by sweetandstrong_”]

Liking up with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud.

What’s on your Fall Bucket List?

What’s the weather like in your area?

 

All the Summer Highlights

Good Morning! How was your weekend? Hope you did something fun and had time to relax. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Summer is over and I’m heading back into work today. I thought this summer would seem extra long since we had about an extra week of break. But seriously I blinked and it was over. Remember back in June when I shared my Summer Bucket List. I decided today to use Meg’s Week in Review to share all the Summer Highlights.

Dominican Republic Punta Cana Majestic Resort

Girls Trip. My college girlfriends and I are planning a trip to Chicago in August. I can’t wait to see them and celebrate two engagements! CHECK Read my Chicago Trip Highlights Here.

River Roast Chicago

Wine Tasting and Picnic. Running Hare and Ingleside are our favorite local Vineyards. I love tasting, then sharing a bottle and snacks. Still would love to do, maybe Labor Day weekend.

Ice Cream. Just eat lots of ice cream ūüėČ Triple CHECK! Ice Cream is featured Here, Here, and Here.

Magpies Soft Serve Silver Lake

Make a new Summer Cocktail. I have a long list of Drinks on my Pinterest Board I’ve never made. CHECK! Hello Watermelon Fros√© I couldn’t stop drinking.

Watermelon Frosé aka Frozen Rosé. A refreshing Summer Cocktail.

Read. Any recommendations would be appreciated! CHECK! I finished several books, some of my favs being The Husband’s Secret, The Couple Next Door, and The Hand that Feeds You. Hoping I can continue with some light reading into the school year.

Host a Brunch. I love making breakfast food and have always wanted to have friends over for a Boozy Brunch. Maybe one good college football weekend, will have to add this to a Fall Bucket List.

Sunrise Yoga. I’ve seen a few Classpass classes I hope to take advantage of this Summer. I did lots of yoga, but not Sunrise.

Corepower Yoga

Visit Mom and Dad in Cleveland. And Mom wants to go zip lining. Ah I’m a terrible daughter, need to make a trip home soon.

Make a Pinterest Craft. I have zero crafts pinned, so I need to do some research. Any suggestions?

Go to the Beach. Hoping to visit my sister in California and then maybe a weekend trip to Ocean City, MD. Went to Laguna Beach! And took pictures of this great Booty Workout and layed out after of course.

Visit a Museum. I’ve lived outside of DC for seven years and have only been to one Museum. I really want to go see the Newseum, Holocaust Museum, or the new African American History Museum. We took my Dad, a retired lawyer, through the Supreme Court. More highlights on this visit here.

US Supreme Court Washington DC

Go on a Hike. CHECK! One of the most strenuous hikes I’ve ever been on, but it was a lot of fun!

Go to the DC Zoo. Hello Pandas! Didn’t make it to to the zoo yet.

Make Popsicles. Uh I still need to order a popsicle mold.

Try a New Workout Class. I still need to try Orangetheory Fitness and I’m hoping my sister will take me to Barry’s Bootcamp when in CA. CHECK! I tried and loved both! And also did a Pilates Pro Class.

Barry's Bootcamp

Go to an Amusement Park. I grew up in Cleveland and loved the thrill of Cedar Point rides, but I would settle for any park. I just love roller coasters. Maybe in the Fall for Halloween!

Do a Full House Cleaning. Like hands and knees scrub the floor, wipe the baseboards, etc. I got a lot organized and made a huge trip to Salvation army. But uh scrubbing floors. Don’t they make things so you don’t need to do that anymore?!?

Finish Decorating my Office. I just need to hang some things on the wall and figure out an easy set up for my photography. It still looks the same…..

Play Mini Golf. Going on the Fall Bucket List.

Brunch and Baseball Game. Has to be both together, brunch then afternoon baseball. Boo we didn’t make it to a single game.

Truck-A-Roo. DC Food Truck Festival. Why are you only every other Friday? Please make it Saturday too!

Host a BBQ. Especially since Tom has mastered smoking ribs, chicken, and pork. We really need to have some friends over. CHECK! We Smoked several times!

Learn More and Practice Photography. I signed up for and am still making my way through a Blogger Summer Camp, lots of great blogging and photography tips.

Make Homemade Grilled Pizzas. CHECK! Pizza Night are my favorite.

Volunteer Together. Hopefully soon.

Go Strawberry Picking. Oh didn’t happen and prime picking season is probably over. Maybe apple picking in the Fall.

Bake and Decorate a Cake. Then eat cake ūüėČ Really want to make one this weekend.

Plant an Herb Garden. We don’t have any grassy area so I just want a few herb plants on my porch. Usually I do basil, cilantro, and parsley. I just bought fresh herbs all Summer and failed to plant a garden.

See Fireworks. CHECK! Saw some awesome fireworks on 4th of July.

Roasted Garlic Chicken and Spinach White Pizza

Do something on this Dating Bucket List I found while doing research for this Summer Bucket List. How fun are some of these? Well we did’t travel to any of these places, lol.

Rooftop Happy Hour. Did this in LA.

Beer Tasting. Was way more into wine and cocktails this Summer.

Attend a Cooking Class. Didn’t happen, but really hope to this Fall/Winter.

All You Can Eat Crabs. I still really want to do this, it’s one of my favorite things to do in Southern MD.

Also do things on my Birthday Bucket List. Wahoo, totally accomplished some of these!

I love having this blog to not only share my healthy lifestyle tips, but it’s also so fun to go back and reflect on fun memories. Hope you had a fantastic Summer and to all the teachers and kids happy back to school!

[clickToTweet tweet=”Summer has come to an end. See all the Summer Highlights @sweetandstrong_” quote=”Summer has come to an end. See all the Summer Highlights @sweetandstrong_”]

Also linking up with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud.

What was the highlight of your Summer?

What would you put on a Fall Bucket list?

Trigger Point, Shakeology, Summer Vibes and other Friday Favorites

Hello friends and Happy Friday! We have one more week, ONE, left of the school year, I can make it, I think….. I don’t want to wish the weekend away but I am so ready to be on Summer Break. When I can enjoy some time traveling, reading, and relaxing by the pool. For this weekend we don’t have many plans which probably means I’ll spend most of my time in the kitchen, outside, or at the gym, follow along on Instagram for all the fun. Now to the real reason you stopped by the blog today, for Friday Favorites where I share all the food, fitness, and things around the web I’ve been loving lately.

Trigger Point

Trigger Point makes a variety of foam rollers, handheld rollers, and massage balls. I have done a little foam rolling myself and have read about all the benefits of self-massaging your sore muscles to keep you moving well . My friends at Trigger Point were kind enough to send me a few of their most popular products that relieve muscle aches; the GRID Foam Roller, MB2 Roller, and NANO Foot Roller.

Trigger Point Therapy self massage rollers

I have started to incorporate more foam rolling into my workouts, so stay tuned for a Foam Roll Routine in the next couple of weeks. And as someone who works on their feet all day long, I have really enjoyed using the Nano foot roller to relieve foot pain because I always have aching feet at night after a hard days work!

Trigger Point Trigger Point Therapy NANO foot roller

I’m also so glad to have these handheld rollers for my Summer travels, we all know sitting on an airplane for hours is not very comfortable for our bodies. All the rollers can be used to roll through tight muscles, knots, and kinks.

Trigger Point Therapy handheld roller MB2

Vegan Vanilla Shakeology

I’ve tried several protein powders and Shakeology is by far one of my favorites. I use one scoop in my morning smoothie along with some fruit and spinach.

Vanilla Vegan Shakeology Smoothie

The powder itself is packed with protein, probiotics, superfoods, vitamins, and other nutrients. Beachbody recently released a Vegan Vanilla flavor. While I don’t have a dairy intolerance and don’t eat a Vegan diet, I still wanted to try the new flavor. I typically have not been a fan of plant based proteins, but the Vegan Vanilla is delicious. I actually think I might like it better than the Vanilla Whey Shakeology.

Beachbody Shakeology Vegan Vanilla

Friend’s Engagements

In the last week and a half two of my closest girlfriends from college have gotten engaged! My friend Kelly while on the beach in Mexico and my friend Caitlin while sitting under the Eiffel Tower in Paris, seriously how romantic! I’m so excited to celebrate their engagements, wedding plan, have bachelorettes, and just have reasons for us all to get together in the next year. The last time my college girlfriends and I were all together was last Spring so I’m so excited to see them all.

Summer Vibes

Yesterday was the first day of June, and it’s crazy to me that the official start to Summer is not until the 21st. What are you doing this Summer and what’s on your bucket list? I need some ideas besides lay at the pool and eat ice cream =) I’m also desperately in need of a Summer wardrobe shopping trip!

And if you’re trying to get bikini ready, don’t forget to check out my Fitness Page for some great Cardio and Strength Workouts, especially this Killer Abs Circuit.

Killer Abs Circuit Workout

[bctt tweet=”@TPtherapy, Shakeology, Summber Vibes, and other #FridayFavs” username=”sweetandstrong_”]

Thanks to Heather for todays Friday Favorites link up. You can view previous Friday Favorites posts here.

What’s on your Summer bucket list?

Do you foam roll?

What’s your favorite way to eat protein?

Food and Fitness Week in Review #31

Need some meal and workout ideas? Here is my food and fitness week in review for the week of June 24th through June 30th 2019.¬† Be sure to read previous Food and Fitness Week in Review’s here and tell me in the comments below your favorite meal or workout from the week!

Happy Summer! ¬†I not only have plenty to accomplish on my Summer Bucket list and a family vacation to the Outer Banks to look forward to. ¬†But I also have plenty of meals I really want to cook this summer. ¬†Gotta take advantage of the nice weather for the grill and smoker. ¬†Lately though we’ve still been making easy meals during the week. ¬†Unless Tom’s home it’s hard for me to feed or watch Audrina and make dinner, but definitely getting easier.

Weekly Menu:

Monday:  Chicken Shawarma Bowls

Grilled Chicken Shawarma
Tuesday: Herb Salmon and Roasted Veggies

Herb Roasted Salmon and Veggies
Wednesday: Pot Roast with Cauliflower Potato Mash from the Whole 30 Cookbook and Green Beans
Thursday: Leftovers
Friday:  Basil Chicken Saltimbocca
Saturday: Tacos at Delaware Beach

Tacos Bethany Beach
Sunday: Leftover Brisket, Mac and Cheese, and Roasted Veggies

Smoked Brisket Dinner

And this Paleo Cinnamon Streusel Banana Bread for dessert.

Paleo Cinnamon Streusel Banana Bread

Weekly Workout Recap:

The past two weeks I’ve been back to teaching classes at the gym and it feels so good. ¬†I have missed the environment and community that working out at home can’t provide. ¬†Luckily the gym has childcare and it’s nice for Audrina to be around other people to get ready for her transition in the fall when I head back to work.

On days I’m not teaching or practicing for classes I enjoy walks, yoga, and the occasional run for some cardio. I am also using Les Mills On Demand to stream workouts from home. ¬†I first fell in love with the Les Mills programs taking them at my local gym and then became a BODYPUMP instructor. ¬†They have a variety of workouts you could also do at home and something for everyone from strength, cardio, sports conditioning, dance, yoga. ¬†I would love for you to try the workouts also so ¬†Click here for a FREE 21 day access to Les Mills On Demand and see why I’m loving them!

Monday:  Taught a Cardio Conditioning Class
Tuesday: Taught a BodyPump Class
Wednesday: Did a BODYFLOW video On Demand
Thursday:  BODYPUMP video On Demand
Friday:  Practiced one hour of Barre
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: 30 minute Stretch

Questions of the Day:

What was your favorite meal or workout from last week?

What’s your favorite Les Mills program?

What’s a meal you’re looking forward to making this week?

Bachelorette Party in Scottsdale AZ

Whether your planning a bachelorette or girls trip to the desert read about my experience during a Bachelorette Party in Scottsdale AZ.

This post is long overdue as I was in Scottsdale for the Bachelorette party back in May and it’s currently July, opps! ¬†But life happens and as I’ve been stuck inside for the past four days because of all this rain on the east coast while the desert is experiencing extreme heat waves which makes me think of our time in Scottsdale.

Bachelorette Party in Scottsdale, AZ

Quick little overview, one of my best friends from college Kelly got married in June and she really wanted a destination bachelorette party with all her closest girlfriends before the big day.  We looked a little into Charleston and Nashville before deciding none of us had ever been to Arizona and Scottsdale would be the perfect destination.  In Scottsdale we would have great weather in May and be able to do a mix of hiking, hanging pool side, and going out.

Scottsdale Bachelorette Weekend

Gift bags, koozies, and sunglasses all ordered from Etsy

I immediately started researching things to do and places to stay.  There are several beautiful resorts and hotels to stay at in Scottsdale.  But we really wanted something a little more private so we booked a VRBO house for 3 nights.  FYI when booking houses your options really open up when staying 3 nights as opposed to 2.  We decided on a modern chic house in northern Scottsdale that slept plenty and had its own pool.  We were a bit far from the livelihood of Old Town which is considered downtown Scottsdale.  So if I were to do it all over again I might find something a bit closer.

Scottsdale AZ VRBO

The first day after landing at the Phoenix airport we rented a car, Uber and Lyft are both available in the area as well.  And we drove to lunch at Olive & Ivy in Old Town.  Then walked around a bit before making our way to our VRBO house and stopping at Safeway along the way to gather groceries for the weekend.

Olive & Ivy Scottsdale AZ

Once we were settled in, being the first night in the house we hung by the pool and ordered pizza from Grimaldi’s which was delicious. ¬†It was hard to find a non-chain pizza place that delivered so I ended up using DoorDash so we didn’t have to drive to pick it up.

Scottsdale VRBO

By the next morning all the girls had arrived and with the time change we were up at the crack of dawn and ready for the day. ¬†After breakfast we had plans to hike Tom’s Thumb. ¬†A local to Scottsdale told me there was also a hike up Camelback Mountain, but it was crowded and bit more of a challenging hike. ¬†Tom’s Thumb wasn’t far from our house so a short drive later we were on our way up the mountain.

Bachelorette Party in Scottsdale AZ

Outdoor Hiking in Scottsdale AZ

The trail is a little over 4 miles there and back and took us a little over 2 hours. ¬†The views were absolutely breath taking. ¬†And Tom’s Thumb is just that, a giant rock that looks like a thumb, ha!

Tom's Thumb Hike Scottsdale AZ

Tom's Thumb Hike Scottsdale AZ

crop pants | similar top

Post hike we spent the rest of the day relaxing by the pool.  This was the advantage of having our own place instead of trying to get lounge chairs by the pool and/or drinks at a hotel or resort.

Later in the afternoon we started getting ready for our night out. ¬†I was given several great dinner and drink recommendations. ¬†We decided on eating at Diego Pops, they don’t take reservations however, so knowing this we got there early and we were seated nearly instantly.

Diego Pops Margaritas

Diego Pops is a Mexican restaurant. ¬†Their food was super fresh and I’m assuming all house made. ¬†I sipped on a spicy margarita and as a table we ordered the queso and brussels sprouts nachos to share. ¬†Then many of us ordered a burrito or tacos a la carte for our entree.

Diego Pops Brussels Sprouts Nachos

After dinner we were off to explore some of the bars of Old Town and took a golf cart ride, yes your read that correctly, instead of an uber or taxi you can also make your way around Old Town Scottsdale via golf cart.  We stopped at the Dierks Bentley Whiskey Row Bar for a drink and then went around the corner to Dakota Club where we had reservations for the night.

Dakota Club Scottsdale AZ

All the clubs in Scottsdale are bottle service only after 9 p.m. so we spent the rest of the night dancing away at Dakota. ¬†It was a great time, but I honestly wasn’t impressed with the staff. ¬†And you couldn’t request songs from the DJ which was a bit of a bummer. ¬†But overall a great girls night out.

Dakota Bar Scottsdale AZ

Feeling just fantastic the next morning, ha.  We knew we needed brunch and had made reservations at The Henry.  The restaurant is actually located in Phoenix and was a good 30 minute drive to get to but the food and build your own bloody mary cart were so worth it!

The Henry Phoenix AZ Bloody Mary Bar

The rest of the day was spent pool side and we cooked dinner at the house and gave Kelly her bachelorette gifts.

Overall the weekend was a great mix of hiking, hanging by the pool, and girls time out which is exactly what the bride wanted.  I would most definitely recommend Scottsdale as a bachelorette destination.  There were several other bachelorette parties we noticed out, but there are plenty of places to go and things to do in the area.  Just plan ahead of time.

My recommendations for a bachelorette party in Scottsdale would be to definitely spend time in Old Town and do at least one outdoor adventure. ¬†I can’t wait to make my way back to the desert again soon!

Like this Post?  Then Read:

What I Ate in Los Angeles, CA

Sqirl LA Crispy Rice Bowls

Places to Eat in Washington D.C.

Best Places to Eat and Drink in Washington DC

Summer Bucket List 2018

Questions of the Day:

Have you ever been to Scottsdale, AZ?

What was your favorite bachelorette destination?

Tell me about your last girls trip.

Food and Fitness Week in Review #12

Need some meal and workout ideas? Here is my food and fitness week in review for the week of July 16th through July 22nd 2018.¬† Be sure to read previous Food and Fitness Week in Review’s here and tell me in the comments below your favorite meal or workout from the week!

Ok Summer please slow down a bit! ¬†I’m trying to savor everyday but still have lots I want to do on my Summer Bucket List. ¬†Anyways it was a pretty normal week in the food and fitness department last week. ¬†I tried a few new recipes and have been teaching a few extra classes at the gym because they need subs. ¬†Let’s get right to last weeks review.

Weekly Menu Recap:

Monday: Leftover Greek Yogurt marinated Chicken Kabobs with veggies
Tuesday: Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos
Wednesday: Grilled Chicken Shawarma Bowls

Chicken Shawarma Bowl
Thursday: Breakfast for Dinner, avocado toast with eggs and bacon and a side salad
Friday: Old Bay Wings on the Traeger Grill and oven baked fries and roasted vegetables

Wings on the Traeger Grill

Chicken Wings on the Traeger Grill and Oven Roasted Fries and Vegetables
Saturday: Chicken Parmesan Meatballs and a side salad
Sunday: Leftover Pork Carnitas from the freezer made into tacos (recipe was from the Pretty Dish Cookbook)

For desserts I made these Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookie Bars and also tried some blended Chia Seed Pudding that was surprisingly super delicious, I hope to be sharing a recipe with you soon.

Weekly Workout Recap:

Monday: 2 mile run/walk followed by Abs
Tuesday: Taught a one hour BodyPump Class
Wednesday: Taught a 30 minute total body weight training class
Thursday: Took a one hour yoga class at Live Out Loud
Friday: Taught a 45 minute Bodyweight Tabata Class
Saturday: Did a total body workout focusing on biceps, triceps, and glutes
Sunday: Took a 1.5 mile walk

It was a great mix of cardio and strength training this week.  And the yoga was much needed on Thursday.  I was actually really sore in my upper body after yoga from holding a few different poses.

Thanks for reading the blog today!  Have a great rest of your week!

Questions of the Day:

What was your favorite meal or workout from last week?

What’s your favorite group fitness class?

What do you still want to accomplish on your Summer to-do List?

Protein Cookie GIVEAWAY, Recent Reads, and other Friday Favorites

Happy Happy Friday! ¬†I hope you had a great week, but I’m sure you’re ready for the weekend. ¬†Not too many weekend plans here, I’m subbing a HITT class at the gym this morning, then probably just hanging out by the pool and cooking dinner at home the rest of the weekend. ¬†No complaints about those plans here! ¬†Be sure to follow along with all the food and fitness on Instagram. ¬†Now lets get to all things I’ve been loving lately including Munk Pack Cookies (read below in this post about a GIVEAWAY), a few of the books I’ve been reading recently, and other Friday Favorites.

Munk Pack Protein Cookies

A cookie that could be a snack OR dessert count me in! ¬†I was recently sent each flavor of Munk Pack Protein Cookies; Coconut White Chip Macadamia, Double Dark Chocolate, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, and Oatmeal Raisin Spice. ¬†Each cookie is packed with 18 grams of plant protein to help you fuel through your day. ¬†Or if you’re like me you can also enjoy these for a healthy and delicious dessert. ¬†The cookies are made with quality ingredients, they’re plant-based, non-GMO, and a good source of fiber. ¬†They are also dairy, gluten, soy, cholesterol, and sugar alcohol free. ¬†A whole cookie averages about 16 grams of sugar, I’m a believer that sugar is sugar and should be eaten in moderation. ¬†But I’m glad Munk Pack uses quality sugar sources such as cane sugar, turbinado sugar, and monk fruit. ¬†These sugars are natural and easier for us to digest as opposed to refined sugar.

Munk Pack Protein Cookies

Now for the GIVEAWAY! ¬†I’ve tried a few other protein cookies and Munk Pack are my new favorite. ¬†Tom and I tried each and the Double Dark Chocolate was both our favs. ¬†I absolutely love the taste, texture, ingredients of each cookie compared to some of their competitors. ¬†And I want you to get a chance to try them for yourself.

To enter for a chance to win one of each protein cookie follow the instructions in this Instagram Post. ¬†I’ll choose and notify a winner on Tuesday July 31st. ¬†Good Luck!

And if you can’t wait to try Munk Pack Protein Cookies you can find them at Target in the Health Foods aisle with the protein bars or order them online as well.

Summer Reading

Not gonna lie, the routine of sleeping in, working out, then heading to the pool to read for the day certainly does not get old #teacherlife. ¬†I’ve been trying to soak up as much relaxation time as I can and wanted to share some of my recent reads. ¬†My favorite book so far this Summer has been What Alice Forgot from the author of Big Little Lies, I’ve loved all of her books and they’re perfect Summer reads. ¬†I recently finished Behind Closed Doors, and while the story was a bit disturbing I could not put it down and had to know the ending. ¬†I just started An American Marriage and am having a tough time getting into it, but I have a feeling the story line is going to pick up soon. ¬†A few other fiction and some non-fiction books I recommend or hope to finish before the end of summer in my Summer Bucket List. ¬†

An American Marriage Summer Reading List

Mom’s Place Gluten-Free

While I don’t personally follow any specific diet, I know many readers choose or need to because of certain conditions. ¬†I was recently given the chance to try Mom’s Place Gluten-Free, they have a variety of products such as bread and dessert mixes, soups, and pastas that are all gluten-free, free of preservatives, and made with non-GMO ingredients. ¬†I’ve really been into sourdough bread lately, hello avocado toast. ¬†But I know sourdough is a process to make yourself. ¬†Using Mom’s Place ingredients I made the ‘sourdough starter‘ and let that sit for two days, then added that to the bread mix to make a loaf yesterday.

Mom's Place Gluten-Free Sourdough Bread

The directions were a bit complicated to make the bread and I ended up probably adding too much water because my dough ball was initially too sticky.  But once I added more sourdough bread flour it was good to go.  The sourdough bread was really soft and tasty, nothing beats some fresh homemade bread right out of the oven.

Mom's Place Gluten-Free Sourdough Bread

Mom’s Place has a great variety of food options, I’m excited to try out a few more of the goodies they sent me.

Around the Web

In case you missed it here on Sweet and Strong I posted last weeks Food and Fitness Week in Review.

Giant Eagle Steak, Potatoes, and Asparagus

If you need a Summer drink to cool off with in the heat definitely try making my Watermelon Frosé Recipe.

Watermelon Frosé aka Frozen Rosé. A refreshing Summer Cocktail.

That’s it for me today, thanks for reading and I hope you have a great weekend!

Linking up with Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for the Friday Five.  And Heather for Friday Favorites.  Enjoy your weekend and be sure to read previous Friday Favorites posts here.

Questions of the Day:

What flavor of Munk Pack Protein Cookies would you try?

Have you ever tried baking bread?

What are you currently reading?

Food and Fitness Week in Review #9

Need some meal and workout ideas? Here is my food and fitness week in review for the week of June 18th through June 24th 2018.¬† Be sure to read previous Food and Fitness Week in Review’s here and tell me in the comments below your favorite meal or workout from the week!

Last week was our first week of Summer break which means I had a little more time and fun in the kitchen making dinner each night.  During the days off I worked out, started a new book, and got some of the tidying up around the house done, both of which can be found on my Summer Bucket List for this year.

Later this week I’m off on another trip to Ohio for my friend Caitlin’s Bachelorette in the Hocking Hills. ¬†We have a cabin for the weekend and just have plans to hang out by the pool and enjoy our time together, be sure to follow along on Instagram.

Oh and one last thing before we get to last weeks meals and workouts, be sure to enter to win an OCHO Candy Giveaway over on my Instagram. ¬†The mini and regular bars have been my favorite healthy dessert lately. ¬†I can’t say enough great things about these organic candy bars. ¬†They come in so many delicious flavors, the caramel and peanut butter are my favs! ¬†Enter to win a care package from OCHO Candy by following the instructions on this Instagram Post, Good Luck!

OCHO Candy Bars

Weekly Menu Recap

Monday: Leftover Carne Asada Tacos
Tuesday: Cedar Plank Grilled Salmon from the Half Baked Harvest Cookbook

Cedar Plank Salmon from the Half Baked Harvest Cookbook

Wednesday: Turkey Chorizo and Sweet Potato Hash
Thursday: Leftovers
Friday:  Summer Bolognese from the Half Baked Harvest Cookbook
Saturday: Grass-Fed Burgers with Roasted Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts

Grass-fed burgers and roasted vegetables

Sunday: BBQ Chicken on our New Traeger Pellet Grill and a vinegar potato salad and S’mores Brownies for dessert

Traeger Pellet Grill Pro-Series 22

BBQ Smoked Chicken Thighs on the Traeger Pellet Grill

S'mores Brownies
Weekly Workout Recap

The week started off great with doing a few different workouts since I wasn’t teaching as much this week. ¬†But then after Friday’s workout something gave out in my lower back while I was cleaning and I’ve been in some pain ever since. ¬†Trying to rest so that it can heal, but it’s definitely been a pain (no pun intended).

Monday: 3 mile run outside and 10 minutes of Abs
Tuesday: Taught a one hour BodyPump Class

Les Mills BodyPump InstructorWednesday: Took a 55 minute Chest, Back, and Abs Barry’s Bootcamp Class

Barry's Bootcamp DC
Thursday: Took a one hour Yoga Alignment Class at Live Out Loud in the A.M. and took a one mile walk in the P.M.
Friday: Lower Body Workout of squats, deadlifts, step-ups, hip bridges, lunges
Saturday: Took a 2 mile walk and foam rolled
Sunday: Took a 1.5 mile walk

Thanks for reading the blog today!  Have a great rest of your week.

Questions of the Day:

What was your favorite meal or workout from last week?

Have you ever needed to take a break from workouts to let an injury heal?

What’s your favorite cookbook? ¬†I’ve been loving using books instead of the internet lately.

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