with a loss their is always a gain

Hello my loves!

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I have a lot to share with you, but I will warn you it is not all food related. Actually most of it is not food related, but just some of the happenings around here.

As I mentioned my grandma had recently passed away.  As much as I did not want to, I took my mother’s offer of flying me out there for the funeral.  The reason I did not want to take her up on this, was again as briefly mentioned, me and my parents do not have the best of relationships, especially when it comes to money.  My mother does not let me forget when she gives me money or does something for me.  But I really wanted to say goodbye to my grandma properly and have that closure.  And even though it was the longest 2-day visit, I really do think it was worth it and I am so glad I got to say good bye to my grandma and see her one more time.

My flight was at 7am, meaning a 4:30am wake up call, so bright and early Matt and I headed to the airport. I always hate leaving him.

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Don’t ever want to let go!

And since my flight was so early, coffee is always a must at the airport.

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Double shot Americano thank you very much.

Oh funny story. The guy in front of me ordered an iced chai tea, they gave him a hot one instead.  So of course I asked if they were just going to throw it away, the barista actually offered me the whole coffee, which I declined, but not before I poured some into my Americano. Oh the perks of being so random and forward it kills me sometimes. But it made my Americano much better and much creamier!

When I arrived in Chicago, my friend Natalie picked me up from the airport. Since I haven’t seen her in awhile and as a little thank you for picking me up (and the fact I was really anxious/nervous about seeing my parents and grandma) we stopped for lunch and a drink.  I of course sent Matt a picture to make him jealous. (he was stuck at work and all)

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It was so great to catch up with her. And enjoy a good beer of course.

But I had to face reality and go to meet my parents at the funeral home. Well regardless of our past, I had a decent visit, had some good conversations with my parents in the short amount of time we had and the highlight of my trip, I got to see my niece!!

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Sometimes tragedy brings us together and I am so glad that I got to go back, say goodbye to my grandma, and spend some time with my family.

Overall a good visit. However I am completely exhausted and don’t know when, if ever, I will catch up on sleep.

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It definitely wasn’t the next day. Oh no. It was graduation day!

I contemplated not going to the ceremony because I was seriously a zombie walking that day.  I had a celebratory lunch with Matt’s parents and talked with them about possibly not going.  They talked sense into me and told me that I should go and I would more than likely regret it later if I didn’t.

Well let me tell you, they were right.  In looking at the program (as I was sitting waiting to get my diploma) I noticed something. I was valedictorian of my class!  I didn’t even know! I even got to go up on stage and receive a plaque from the school’s president. Kind of cool. On top of that I also made the school’s academic excellence list and was inducted into their honor society.  So needless to say, I am glad I went.  And it was good to see some of my classmates as well!

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Of course the ceremony was long, and we didn’t get home to late, but the next day being Saturday I would get to at least sleep in right?

Wrong.

I had to work at 7am. But it was at least an easy day and I got great news.

My externship was technically over on Tuesday and today they offered me a job!

So I am officially a paid employee now! I am so excited.

So instead of coming home, maybe taking a nap, this is how I spent the rest of my afternoon.

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Yup. Beer. And a side of Delilah. I like to day drink what can I say.

I then had a celebratory dinner.

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Roasted kabotcha with a side of valedictorian

Oh I’m sorry, did you think I was going to go out for dinner? I’m not getting paid yet. So no fancy dinners.

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Today I am actually planning to relax a little bit.

Maybe.

For a graduation gift Matt’s mom gave me some money to buy new scrubs so I think I am going to treat myself to a little shopping adventure today, but that’s pretty relaxing if you ask me!

So loves I hope you have a relaxing Sunday and have had a great weekend so far!

Next time I promise you some tasty eats.

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Would you ever consider skipping a graduation ceremony? I actually did not go to my first college ceremony BUT it was because I didn’t receive the notification.

How do you like to relax?

the good and the bad

Hello Hello luffs.

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So let’s skip the small talk. This post is serving a double purpose.

I of course have to check in for the wonderful Jenn’s What I Ate Wednesday, but I also had a recent occurrence that really got me thinking, that I think is also worth sharing.

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Monday was the first day (of my last class!!) and we had two surgeries scheduled right off the bat. To say the least it was a bit hectic.

To set the scene we typically all leave our bags in a separate lab during surgeries. After the second surgery was complete (class was not over, we were still recovering the patient) I left to go to the room to get a drink of my water. In entering the room I noticed my back pack was no longer on the lab table. Everyone elses seemed to be untouched, bags/purses all in the lab where others had left them. Now granted this was April Fool’s Day as well, so I did a quick sweep of the lab to see if someone had just hid my bag. No such luck. I then went back into the surgery room to question everyone if a joke was being played or if my bag was really gone.

Guess what, my bag was really gone. Turns out only one other girls purse was missing (which was soon found outside the women’s bathroom), but all the cash from her wallet was taken. My whole back pack was still missing. Immediately I thought, why mine? Why just mine? And then crap my car keys are in there.

To make a long story short, another student ended up finding my back pack outside her apartment, which was located near the school. I had also had about $100 in my back pack (it was birthday money just stored away, I know stupid of me to have that much money on me) which was taken.

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I bring this up because I was surprisingly calm during the whole situation. And it really showed me how I’ve grown and how I am now able to handle a stressful situation without completely freaking out. A few years ago I probably would have thought my world was over, proclaiming “why me??” “the world is so unfair” “what am I going to do???” But I was so proud of myself for taking the negative situation and finding the positives. It was only material things, some money, but nothing of true value had been taken from me. The biggest part of this was not the money gone, but the violation of the situation, how vulnerable it made me feel, and the fact that I was singled out.

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But I am truly proud of myself for being able to be positive and instead of crying over what was going wrong, I tried to find ways I could fix the situation. (now don’t get me wrong, if I find out who did this, there will be a few words, but for now there is nothing I can do.)

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But now let’s get to the more fun stuff. The food stuff.

What better way to start a day after a horrible day then overnight OIAJ.

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I truly believe oats just taste better when eaten from a jar.

This jar happened to have an insane amount of peanut butter left in it (purposely of course) and it was so so so delish.

I am seriously addicted to my TVP prOATs and this time I added the cookies and cream Plant Fusion and also a little vanilla nut butter extract.

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I of course had to add my typical frozen banana and berries. I swear I can’t have oats without a frozen banana.

I actually recently got asked why it has to be frozen. I honestly just like cold things. Maybe it’s a texture thing, maybe it’s a taste thing. Maybe it’s just a thing. But I love them. I add them to the bottom and the top.

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Just so you get the idea of how much peanut butter and how many times I’ve had TVP/prOATs for breakfast. Here is another delicious jar I recently enjoyed.

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I may or may not be consuming extra peanut butter just so I can have jars. It’s a tough life. I know.

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I finally caved and bought strawberries. They tempt me every time I walk into the store, but when it comes to fruit I always fight with myself because half the time I don’t consume it fast enough before it goes bad (which as I’m sure you know is pretty quickly). Matt always says he will help me and eat it, but never does (he always does this with blueberries. we go to the store. he has to have them. then he doesn’t eat them)

I’m glad I got the strawberries though.

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Sometimes simplicity is the best. A simple Rudi’s Whole Wheat English muffin topped with Click protein frosting and fresh strawberries.

This was such a simple breakfast, but seriously so amazing.

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You know what else is amazing?

Friends. Family. Love. Support.

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Since I didn’t do an Easter re-cap here are a few scenes from my weekend.

It started with a pedicure date with some of the ladies from my class.

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These girls keep me sane. I am so thankful to have them.

Then it was off to Matt’s parents for Easter lunch.

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But not before Delilah and I got our coffee fix.

Then it was a battle for the Easter candy.

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I won.

My prizes.

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I think moments like these make me able to overcome the moments mentioned previously.

Yes we have bad and unfortunate events in our lives, but I truly believe the good moments over come them and create that balance.

There will always be good and bad, but let’s cherish the good and not dwell on the bad.

I hope you all have a wonderful rest of your week, I’m not letting this bump in my road get me down.

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How do you deal with bumps in your road?

so very blessed

Hello loves!

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I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! Mine was beyond amazing and I am so thankful and blessed for the love I received and always receive from Matt and his family.

Christmas this year was kind of spread over the week. Matt and I started a tradition of getting each other an ornament each year, so a few days before Christmas we decided to exchange them.

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I of course got him the “stashing through the snow” and he got me the milk and gingerbread cookie, which is not just your ordinary ornament. Oh no, this one sings “Let’s get it on”. We played it over and over and just laughed and danced around the apartment to it. Good times.

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The next night we decided to do stockings.

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I got him some new sunglasses he had spotted because I do believe he has broken 2-3 pairs in the last year or so. He was down to a hand me down pair from his dad, that I’m not gonna lie, he looked pretty ridiculous in.

He needed a new pair.

He got me a pair of cheetah knee high socks and an arm band for my iPod. Which is awesome, because when I run I’m using this wrist wallet type thing that isn’t the most convenient. So I was very excited!

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On Christmas Eve Eve, Matt and I decided to do our Christmas since we would be heading to his parents early Christmas Eve.

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These are just some of the goodies, but what I got Matt: 2 shirts from Design By Humans (one was a print from one of his favorite artists, he was super stoked about that), a mustache pilsner, which he used right away, some new socks, and I also got him a new Colts hoodie.

Matt got me an owl stuffed animal (because I’m obsessed with owls), a running long sleeve shirt, and a magic bullet (!!!). I got so excited for the magic bullet that after flipping through the recipe book I saw something for a homemade blizzard, so I ran to the store (yes at 9pm) and got a pint of ice cream and made us homemade blizzards! So fun! So good!

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So for the rest of this post I thought it would be a great time to share What I Ate on Christmas.


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Christmas Eve we packed up and headed to Matt’s parents.

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Upon arriving the house smelled of Christmas dinner.

I requested a family picture before we dug in though.

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We then all loaded our plates with food and enjoyed a wonderful meal together.

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It was kind of like Thanksgiving take two. Turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, green beans and corn.

Yup, and I ate it all. You better believe it!

We were all beyond stuffed, but don’t you worry, we all saved room for a little pumpkin pie. I mean really, you can’t not have dessert. That would be blasphemous.

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Christmas morning Matt and I actually woke up before his parents.

We enjoyed morning coffee snuggled on the couch in our pj’s.

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Once Matt’s parents awoke the good times began!!

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Not all is pictured, but I was incredibly spoiled this year.

The things I got most excited about, PINK STETHOSCOPE. I had been talking and talking and talking about wanting a hot pink one. Matt’s mom found the perfect one. So excited.

Other things that got me excited was a balance/stability ball and DVD set, a new desk chair, a new pie pan, and owl scrubs!!

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Damage done.

Regardless of the gifts, I think the most I am thankful for was the love that is given to me. Its unconditional and the way they have welcomed me into their family as one of their own is just simply amazing. And I am thankful everyday for having them in my life.

Again, I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas as well. And Merry Christmas from our family to yours.

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What was your favorite Christmas gift that you received?

wordless friday

Hey loves!

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I know I have been MIA, but school, work and life have kept me pretty busy, but I wanted to at least pop in and say hello.

So instead of doing a full out post, I figured I would do a wordless post to let you know what my day has consisted of!

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Welcome to my mornings.

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Coffee is a must.

Cleaning and organizing obviously is not. Welcome to my mess. Dining room table = school mess.

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I do get to “enjoy” my mornings with the pup and some good ole studying.

So glad the mornings are cooling off though so I can actually enjoy the mornings outside.

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Breakfast PowerCakes are not getting old. Especially when topped with cherries, added Chike Protein/Energy, and Trader Joe’s grinder love.

I also somehow found time to bake cupcakes for my class mates and Matt’s co-workers.

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I know, I’m pretty awesome.

Peach cupcakes with vanilla frosting.

They were a hit!

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I miss my niece!

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I also miss my best friend!

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This peanut chicken dinner is not getting old either.

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Well loves. Boring? Maybe. But now at least you know I’m alive!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

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What have you been loving lately?

baby harper’s first wiaw

Hello all! Yes I am still alive.

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I do apologize for my absence, but it was for a good cause.

I flew back to Indiana to visit my very first niece!

(Be prepared for baby picture over load)

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Everyone say hello to the most adorable baby girl ever, Harper.

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Ok, I may be a bit bias, but she is pretty freaking adorable.

I mean seriously. Look at that face.

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It was so amazing to be able to meet her so soon (she is 3 weeks) and it was great to be able to spend some time with my sister and her husband.

And with it being Wednesday and all, I thought it might be nice for Harper to join in on her very first What I Ate Wednesday.

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Poor Harper get’s fed the same thing every 2 hours, could get pretty boring, and although I’m sure you would love to see a full post of baby bottles, we’ll re-cap on my trip a bit instead.

Sound good?

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I of course was a bit nervous about the food situation and being away from home and my safe foods, but I love how I can now “go with the flow” more. I made due with what I had to work with. And with them being so busy, it wasn’t much.

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I mean some of my meals resembled Harper’s.

This may look like mush, but it was actually quite tasty.

Whole grain toast topped with strawberry jam and warmed up cinnamon banana mush.

Simple, yet satisfying.

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Most of my day consisted of baby time though and I loved every minute of it.

I love being an aunt.

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Since they were so busy with Harper, I offered to do a lot of the cooking, and the last night I was there I insisted on doing something fun.

Homemade pizza’s it was!

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Todd did a mix of pepperoni and veggies, Angela kept it simple with pepperoni and cheese and I went veggie crazy and cheese less. Oh my goodness these were amazing and I enjoyed every last bite. You better believe I ate the whole thing.

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My time in Indiana was seriously amazing.

I also got to see my best friend Kimmie who just found out she herself is having a baby girl!

She was awesome and drove me to and from the airport from my sisters.

This is how we occupy our time on the drive.

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Starbucks stops of course.

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And silly pictures in drive thrus.

We’re weird and we know it, but if you can’t be silly with your best friend who can you be silly with?

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I also got to see my grandma.

Who in my opinion for an 80+ year old women fighting cancer, looks amazing!

Love my grams!

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All in all it was an amazing trip. Nothing too exciting happened, but the time I got to spend with my family and friends was amazing.

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Oh and just in case you were wondering where Harper’s loyalties lie.

Yes she is a Colts fan and yes she is giving the middle finger to the Minnesota fans.

We all said we won because of her. Go with it.

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Well loves, I hope you are all having a wonderful week. I am exhausted and am trying to get use to the time zone change. I was sooo sleepy today, but I plan on hitting the hay early.

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Do you have any nieces or nephews?
Do you cook or clean when you stay as a guest?

baking and loving it

Happy Monday Loves!

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I know, I know, what’s so happy about it? The weekend is over, back to work. Or school. Or just back to reality. Whatever your life consists of right now.

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Mine is school. 5:30am alarm clocks. A 7am class that doesn’t even count.

Sounds fun right?

I don’t mind though. Because even though it’s Monday, I had a very nice relaxing two days off.  Shouldn’t we focus on the positives?

My lovely Diva friend does!

The beautiful Katie at Healthy Diva Eats had this marvelous (sorry for the pun) idea of setting up a Marvelous Monday link. Most people hate Monday’s so why not focus on the positives?

Love it.

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So I thought I would do a post on some of the highlights and positives of my weekend. And even past week.

This whole having lots of extra time. I’m loving it! I’ve finally been able to get back into the kitchen and do some experimenting.

Here’s just a quick peek at some of the goodies I have made.

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My version of STUFT Mama’s Pumpkin Protein Cookie Dough Dip.

My very first Banana Bread!

A lovely creation; Chobani Black Cherry topped Frozen Banana’s.

Gingerbread Protein “Muffins” (inspiration by Mama Pea)

I’ll be posting some recipe’s later. They are definitely worth sharing!

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And if baking wasn’t enough to be thankful for (I know my belly was thankful)

I have lovely company to be thankful for.

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Oh the crazy house I live in.

Wouldn’t have it any other way.

Well loves, those are some things that make my Monday Marvelous.

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What makes your Monday’s Marvelous?

yes, i’m alive

Hello loves.

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Yes, I’m alive.

I know it has been a very long time, but a lot has been going on.

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First we moved into a new apartment!

Exciting and stressful at the same time.  So for about a week we didn’t have internet.  Which equaled me not being able to post.

I also have been extremely busy with school. Trying to study/pack/study/move/study/unpack is very time consuming.

Slowly, but surely we’re getting everything settled, but we’re really in no rush.

We typically unpack right before we move again.

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Last Sunday I also got some heart breaking news.

My grandma was in the hospital due to complications with her stomach cancer, and from the information I got that night, she was given about 3 days to live.

I recently went back to Indiana to visit her and I can’t be more thankful for doing that when I did.  I’m pretty sure that will be the last time I get to see her and I truly believe she waited for me to get out there. It just really seemed like fate.

She however has responded well to the antibiotics they gave her, but we’re still not too sure on her future. So if she could be in all of your thoughts I would greatly appreciate it.

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So I don’t know how much I will be around.

Hopefully more now that things are settling, but I did want to check in with everyone.

I hope everyone is doing wonderful!!

wiaw #29 – going green

Good morning loves.

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First I want to apologize for being so MIA. Things have been really crazy around here.  I went back to Indiana last weekend to visit my grandma.  She has recently been diagnosed with cancer and recently started her chemotherapy. Why an 84 year old chose to do chemotherapy, I’ll never know, but I’ll keep my true opinions to myself.

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If you follow my blog you know that my parents have been extremely un-supportive when it comes to my eating disorder and my recovery. I do believe my father told me that I’m 28 and I should just take responsibility for my problems, stop blaming others, and get on with my life. Then later admitted him and my mother had both had body image problems and obsessions while we were growing up. Yet they see no correlation between the two? Amazing. I never blame anyone for my eating disorder, what I try to explain is their personal body images issues influenced me as a child. I mean seriously. How could it not.

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Anywho. Not my point. But the weekend was. Good? Good in the fact that I got to spend some quality time with my grandmother.  I bit my tongue when it came to my parents. And this somehow made my mother think we were okay and things were good again.  Another realization she is so out of it and just doesn’t get it.

I also got to spend some quality time with my friend Kimmie, who was so giving and let me stay at her house while I was visiting. This girl is seriously amazing and deserves her own post on how much she has supported me and showed me what a true friend really is. Unconditional love. She is amazing. Enough said.

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I also got to see my sister, who just recently told me she is pregnant!! I am so excited to be an aunt and wish I could be closer, but I am super excited none the less!!

It was really great to be able to spend some time with her, and we had a real good conversation. I think she kind of “gets” it a little bit more with what is going on with me. I would never want to tarnish her relationship with my parents, but I also think she needs to be aware of what’s really going on and how they treat me. Because honestly, they are very very cruel to me.

But I’ve also been trying to stay real positive about things. I need to focus on me and getting better and if my parents do not want, or can’t, be a part of that right now, then they just simply won’t be in my life right now. Does that hurt? Of course. They’re my parents. But I’ve realized I need to do what’s best for me right now.

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I also have started my vet tech classes again. So overwhelming. It is my sanitation and nutrition class and we actually do a lot of hands on with the animals at the school. A lot to learn in a short amount of time, but I am excited to actually be working with the animals.

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But those are my excuses for being so absent, but I of course had to come around for What I Ate Wednesday.

Duh.

Jenn wanted to continue the theme trend with Going Green.

Since I had not been home to really cook my meals, I thought I would showcase some of my favorite ways to cook and eat green foods.

Because let’s be real. I eat a lot.

First though you know my rules. Head over to Jenn’s site at PeasandCrayons and check out everyone’s weekly eats. It always makes me hungry.

Why do I check them in the morning before breakfast? It’s dangerous.

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So let’s look at some green eats I have been having lately.

Broccoli.

I seriously eat so much of this stuff.

I eat it oven roasted marinated with a little bit of braggs amino acids and a sprinkle of spices.

I eat it in stir fry’s.

And even raw in delicious fresh salads.

I love the stuff.

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Spinach.

Green smoothies anyone?

Served as a fresh summer salad.

Or paired with a pita sandwich.

Even on top of a pumpkin hummus tortilla pizza.

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Not enough green?

What about spinach tortellini and oven baked veggies?

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Black Bean Quesadilla with some chopped lettuce?

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I even add some green to breakfast.

(this really makes me miss summer fruit)

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I think you get the point. I eat a lot of green!

Well loves, I hope everyone has a great week!

I’ve had some challenging moments lately, but I am trying to stay positive and focus on the future.

My wonderful bright future.

So I will leave you with a few inspirational quotes in case you’ve been having some rough times too.

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Do you eat a lot of green?

Do you try to make your meals colorful?

What’s your favorite color/food?