I'm the kind of person who needs goals and finish lines. When I have an end goal I am hyper-focused and I almost always achieve it, for example I go into beast mode before half marathons and get this focus and energy that (still) surprises me every time. So a confession: even though I want to say that I solely exercise because it makes me feel good and I want to be healthy, I almost always have secret goals deep down such as: upcoming college friend's wedding and I can't be the one who came back fat ///- Want everyone to see our save the dates and be like "HOLY SH*** she looks good! etc. -All of these revolve around what other people think of me and that is so frustrating to me but I'm working on it.

There are some reasons that keep me motivated that are for myself like feeling good, and the fact that exercise is the BEST stress relief for me, and also does anyone else feel like they have ants in their pants when they don't workout for awhile?

Despite these secret- and not so secret - goals I've had a hard time staying motivated lately so today's post I present my inspiration (thanks, Pinterest!).

I actually really don't like the Fitspo that shows women with insane bodies. Good for them for getting to that point, but body building is a career for some of these women or they are just at a point that I will never (and honestly don't want to) be at. If that works for some people then more power to ya, but these are my fitspos:


My favorite excuse:


Because this is some concrete motivation- talk about a finish line:

And a funny (because the last one was 100% serious):
How do you stay motivated?

Linking up today at WOW Wednesday, Humpday Blog Hop, Humpday Confessions, Weigh In Wednesday

Wednesday Workout: Staying Motivated

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Happy Tuesday! Is anyone else really not feeling this Tuesday? Is it summer yet? Is it time to move into the new house yet (the answer to that is no- more on that later).

Last week I made this yummy fiesta stuffed chicken, and here's the recipe just in time for one of my favorite holidays- Cinco de Mayo (which happens to fall the same weekend as my birthday- Lindsay de Mayo sooo..)

Servings: 2
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins


  • 2 Chicken Breasts, thawed ($5.00)
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 Bell Pepper, diced ($.80)
  • 1/2 Large onion, diced ($.50)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Lime Juice of 1 lime ($1.00)
  • 1/3 Cup Fresh Cilantro, fresh ($.50)
  • 1 Tablespoon Cumin
  • 1 Tablespoon Paprika
  • 1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon Black Pepper
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Butterfly cut the chicken breasts (see here for a 10 second tutorial). Season the chicken breasts with cumin, paprika, salt and pepper.

Combine the bell pepper, onion, garlic, lime and cilantro- now you have pico de gallo! Spoon the pico evenly onto one half of each chicken breast (one butterfly wing?). Fold the other half over so you basically have a taco with a chicken shell and pico stuffing.

Place the chicken breasts into a baking pan and add the chicken broth. Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the chicken breasts are cooked all the way through. 

I chopped up some sweet potatoes that I seasoned with cumin and sea salt, and cooked in the oven with the chicken breasts and topped with some extra pico de gallo that I made. YUM!

And now for Home Renovation Update: Self Reflection Edition. In this process I have learned a few things about myself:
  1. I am extremely Type A (Type A + perhaps?)
  2. I need to control everything
  3. There are approximately zero things I can control in this project
  4. I live by deadlines, timelines and checklists. If all my boxes aren't checked off, then the day is not over yet.
  5. Deadlines, timelines and checklists are mere suggestions for contractors. Checklists apparently do not exist in this industry.
  6. When things are off schedule, I am thrown into a tizzy and get completely stressed out (sorry, Dad, for my major temper tantrum the other day re: things not running on schedule)
  7. Nothing in construction runs on schedule.
  8. I feel like when I can't oversee everything, nothing will happen right.
  9. I haven't overseen anything for the last week and everything is completely fine.
So I guess God is telling me to let go of some control huh? It's hard to teach this old dog new tricks, but I'm trying to give over some of the control and be a little more Type B about this. I'm so thankful to have my parents helping out and doing so much of the projects because a) I trust them and b) they understand how psychotic I am because they made me and c) they explain everything to me, including WHY things have to run behind schedule. 

So now for picture updates:

Kitchen Before:

Kitchen Before:

 Kitchen ALMOST THERE! HELP- what color would you paint the kitchen? What kind of backsplash would you use?!?

Master closet before:

Master closet during (it now takes up AN ENTIRE WALL)

Linking up today at Turn It Up Tuesdays, Delicious Dish Tuesdays, MaMade, Tuesday Recipe Swap, Tough It Out Tuesday, What We Eat Wednesdays

Clean Eating Fiesta Stuffed Chicken + Home Reno Updates!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

This weekend was amaazzz, and despite the high of 45 degrees in Milwaukee we had a blast at my friend's bachelorette party!

I made these mushroom and kale stuffed quesadillas when my dad was in town helping with building the kitchen in our new house and they were a hit with Dad and Harrison so I consider this a win!


  • 4 Tortillas (I use Ezekiel
  • 1 pack mushrooms, sliced ($2.50)
  • 1/2 lb ground turkey, browned (I used leftover from our calzones last week) ($2.00)--Turkey is optional. If you want to go vegetarian these would be just as good, but Harrison refuses to eat anything that even sounds vegetarian sooo..
  • 1 zucchini, diced ($1.50)
  • 1 squash, diced ($1.50)
  • 1 onion, diced ($1.00)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup kale, removed from stems and diced ($.50)
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons Garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt

Serve with:

  • Black beans
  • Greek Yogurt
  • Avocado
Combine everything but the kale and tortillas in a large non-stick frying pan and saute over medium heat for about 6 minutes. Add the kale and mix well, letting everything cook together for another 4-5 minutes. Make sure to stir this constantly so nothing gets stuck to the pan.

Top some tortillas with the turkey/veggie mix, add some Greek Yogurt, black beans, and avocado and enjoy!

Annnd in other news- Milwaukee is really fun! Who knew right?! We got in Friday night and went to Waukesha for the bride's dad's retirement party where the accents were ouuttt offf controoll! We kept it pretty low key Friday and hung out at our hotel bar (stayed at the Intercontinental  in the Third Ward- definitely recommend!) where we saw IRA GLASS from This American Life. He was so nice and asked lots of questions about what we were doing in Milwaukee, so if he mentions Milwaukee bachelorette parties next week, you know where it came from! Sidenote: my iPhone's theme for the weekend was Blurry Pictures but hey.

I could kill the bystander for taking a blurry picture

Saturday we got up and had amazing breakfast burritos and coffee from Colectivo, went to the Milwaukee Public Market where we explored local food/vendors/artists, and saw some cool local art:

Saturday afternoon we went out to Waukesha (the bride's home) for the wedding shower at A Touch of Glaze  where we all painted pottery for the bride and groom and drank wine (lots of wine). It was such a fun shower and so different from other showers I've been to- no cheesy games, just making plates, bowls, and mugs for them! I love this idea and kind of want to copy it?

After the shower we all came back to the hotel and got dressed for the Pin Up themed bachelorette party. The MOH got us all big flowers to wear to go with the theme:

We had dinner at  Swig which was delicious food for really good prices and really tasty local beers. I love this picture of my 2 best friends (who I lived and worked with for a year in Rhode Island) because a)it's goofy and b)you can see how good Amanda did with her hair for the pinup theme:

We continued the party at a 20's themed bar called Bugsy's Back Alley Saloon. The staff was dressed like full-on flappers (kind of goes with the pin-up theme?) and there was live music and cheap beer so we were happy. Then we took the party to a fun dance club called Oak Lounge where things spiraled out of control, one thing led to the next, and the bride chipped my front tooth. I couldn't be mad because it was so funny and such a great story...remember your bachelorette party when you broke my tooth? Anyone have recs for dentists in the DC area? I'm thinking about keeping it for the next 2 months so it can still be chipped in Amanda's wedding pictures and we can have this memory forever:

I was driving the strugglebus on Sunday because I'm too old for this. We went to Milwaukee Ale House  on the river where I drank a (life-saving) bloody mary and ate a famous Milwaukee brat.
The bloodys come with a sidecar of beer. thank you, Wisconsin
Amanda got a cheese burger and in true Wisconsin fashion, it came with about as much cheese as it did meat:

They also had some amazing menu items I'd like to try another time:

All in all it was an amazing trip. I am so glad I got to celebrate one of my best friends, and it didn't hurt that Milwaukee is a pretty cool city. My friend is moving there this year and I can't wait to visit her in the summer to take advantage of Lake Michigan and the river!

Linking up today with Monday Morning Gossip , Much Ado About Monday, Monday Tips, Weekend Recap

Clean Eating Mushroom & Kale Stuffed Quesadillas + Weekend Recap + My chipped tooth

Monday, April 28, 2014

For today's Friday Fav I have a post from one of my FAV, happiest, spunkiest bloggers, Kelly at Southern Komfort- go check her out! Thanks, Kelly, for taking over while I hop on a plane to Milwaukee to celebrate one of my best friend's bachelorette parties!

Twine, twine, twine...
Oh the things we can do with twine. I love the idea of twine wrapped wine bottles. It’s such an easy, decorative DIY craft! After looking over different steps on how this can be done, I gathered my resources and began the process. 

  • Glass bottles - they can be any shape or size you so desire.
  • A roll of twine - the twine I purchased from Hobby Lobby is a pretty, hunter green color. The length was 208 feet (random, I know) and 3 ply.
**Note: Feel free to choose any length and thickness of the twine to your liking. Remember, the thinner the twine, the more you will need.
  • Elmer's Craft Bond Multi-Purpose Spray Adhesive.
**You can pick up this little can of wonder at any local craft store and it goes A LONG WAY! In addition to not receiving near third-degree burns from a hot glue gun, I was able to continuously wrap my twine around the bottle without much hassle... But I'll explain that later.
  • Floral piece 

Here's how it's done: 
1) Using an old wine bottle, I removed any outer labels by running it under hot water and scraping it off.

2) Once the labels have been removed, dry the bottle thoroughly to make sure the spray adhesive works properly.

3) Working from the bottom up, spray the adhesive about an inch around the bottom of the bottle. Don't worry, it won't dry quickly!

**Note: It helps to have either wax or parchment paper down to keep the adhesive from getting on your countertops. Another smart thing to do... Don't have your phone nearby since you can easily get the adhesive on that as well...

4) Once you have sprayed some adhesive onto the bottle, start wrapping your twine. When you have reached the point where you are almost out of adhesive, spray about another inch above what you have wrapped thus far.

5) Continue to spray and wrap the twine until you reach the top of your bottle.

6) Once you have reached the lip of the bottle cut the twine, spray the inside of the lip of the bottle, and place the twine in there.

7) Add a decorative flower or any other artsy item and ta-da! You have a twine wrapped bottle!

Based on the size of my wine bottle, it only took me about 25 minutes to complete everything. To help get the sticky off of your fingers from handling the adhesive, you can use soap and hot water or pour some nail polish remover over your fingers and that should do the trick.

I hope this has helped inspire your creative juices to decorate your homes with twine wine bottles!

Southern Komfort Blog

Friday Favs: Southern Komfort Blog (guest post- How to Make a Twine Wrapped Bottle)

Friday, April 25, 2014

I'm currently packing my bags to fly out of DC for a bachelorette party in Milwaukee (yes, you read right- Milwaukee, Wisconsin) for one of my best favorite friends and I am so freaking excited!!!! I'm going to be reunited for a whole FREAKIN WEEKEN with my two best friends from my year in Rhode Island- we lived AND worked together- and it's going to be a blast. Plus I've never been to Milwaukee! Any suggestions? Anything I can't miss while I'm there? Food I HAVE to try (it's a cheat weekend)? Drinks I have to drink?

So all this pre-wedding fun has me thinking about how the heck I'm going to afford to dress myself for all the weddings this summer. So many weddings! So much money going towards airfare/bachelorette parties/gifts/showers/that little thing that is MY wedding/renovating a house, I got approximately $0 to spare to look nice. These are my favorite finds for $30 or less (PS what did people do before online shopping?): 

 1. | 2. | 3. | 4. | 5. | 6. | 7. | 8. | 9. 

Things I'm obsessed with: the patterns, #5's details, #6's lace, #4's black insets, dreaming of being tan enough to wear #3 and #7, and everything about #9. Every last thing.

I have a few formal weddings coming up too and am going to order from Rent The Runway . I went ahead and got the premium membership for $25/year which gives me free shipping (for TWO dresses at a time- get it, like I order a size up for back up, but only pay for one rental), free insurance for the dresses plus a free birthday dress (which is hilarious considering we call my birthday Lindsay de Mayo since it falls 2 days before Cinco de Mayo, and it's just a big ole Mexican style sh*t show...Nothin wrong with a sh*t show in a pretty dress!) Also, when you select a dress you can see other people (aka real humans aka people with bodies and curves not just skinny models) wearing the dresses- um YES PLEASE why hasn't every online store caught onto this?! My friend ordered the most beautiful dress  for her rehearsal dinner and I was sold. For my upcoming formal weddings I'm thinking this and this or maybe this?!?!.  Which one should I pick??! Help (please)! 

And a little #TBT to honor my bff whose bachelorette party (and the other one I'm about to be reunited with) I'm about to go to- this is us meeting Leslie Hall, a rapper from Iowa who also happens to hold the Guiness World Record for Largest Gem Sweater Collection. This is real. Just a tiny claim to fame. And if you need a good laugh check out her website.
Also note my hair straightening phase and overplucked eyebrows phase I went through for a few years..

Check back tomorrow for a guest post from the wonderful Southern Komfort, but for now:

Where do you shop for wedding guest dresses? Sites I don't know about??

Linking up today at Little Friday, Lovely Thursdays, Look What I Got, Tres Chic Fashion Thursday

Spring Wedding Guest Dresses Under $30

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Wait so summer is right around the corner? I somehow forgot- perhaps because of the fact that it was 28 degrees when I woke up last week? I DO always know summer is close because my favorite/worst sale event of the year: EASTER CANDY CLEARANCE! God was watching out for me this year though and cleared out all the Cadbury Mini Eggs and Starburst Jelly Beans before I could get my hands on them. Blessings in disguise I guess. The best thing that has come out of Cadbury Mini Eggs this year is this discussion with my office-mate, who recently moved here from China, that occured as I was dumping an entire bag of Mini Eggs in my mouth casually snacking:
Him: Easter is a Christian Festival, correct? To celebrate their savior is not dead?
Me: Yeah! Well not necessarily 'not dead' more like resurr-
Him: What does this have to do with candy egg?
Me: Oh see the Easter bunny comes at night and leaves candy eggs for kids-
Him: Bunny? A bunny is a rabbit yes? Why does bunny have egg? And what does bunny have to do with your savior? Did he come back to life as a bunny who lays eggs?
Me: I actually have no idea where this whole bunny thing came from now that I think about it?
Him: That is so American. 

Anyway, back to summer mode and burning off those eggs- If you have followed this blog, or in fact read any posts, you know I am Type A and always love to have a plan. So here is my 4 Weeks Till Summer Plan- the average workout should be about 45 minutes. Click the links for the workout videos. Nobody got time for 2 hour workouts just to get in shape for summer!

*While exercising is important, you won't have the energy to do this if you aren't eating right! Diet is 70% of the battle, and I am a clean eating believer! Click here for clean eating recipes and meal plans.

Week 1:
  • Monday: HIIT + Yoga
  • Tuesday: Barre
  • Wednesday: 30 Minute Interval Run (20 seconds @ 90%, 1 minute jogging for 30 minutes)
  • Thursday: Barre
  • Friday: HIIT + Yoga
  • Saturday: Rest
  • Sunday: Rest

Week 2:

Week 3:
  • Monday: HIIT + Yoga
  • Tuesday: 4.5 mile run
  • Wednesday: Barre
  • Thursday: Rest
  • Friday: HIIT + Yoga
  • Saturday: 6 mile run
  • Sunday: Rest

Week 4:
  • Monday: HIIT + Yoga
  • Tuesday: 35 minute interval run
  • Wednesday: Barre
  • Thursday: HIIT + Yoga
  • Friday: Rest/happy hour
  • Saturday: 6.5 mile run
  • Sunday: Rest

**I am not a fitness professional, just someone who spends hours parousing youtube for the best workouts and who loves to share. Do this at your own risk (that sounds scary?)

Linking up today with WOW Wednesday, Humpday Blog Hop, Weigh In Wednesday, Humpday Confessions

Wednesday Workout: 4 Weeks Till Summer Plan (includes full length videos)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Today's recipe is the cleaned up version of my all-time favorite high school cafeteria lunch: CALZONE DAY! This was, of course, before my awareness of calories/fat/carbs/food in general as well as a 16 year old metabolism (so jealous of 16 year old self), so I had zero problem stuffing my face with 1-2 calzones and greasy french fries followed by a few Otis Spunkmeyer cookies (EEK).

We ate these with sweet potato fries and you know what? It was just as good as it was in high school!

Servings: 2
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins


  • 1 head of cauliflower, grated (or riced in a food processor if you have one) ($3.00)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tablespoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic powder
  • 1/2 lb lean ground turkey ($1.50)
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced ($.80)
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced ($.50)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1 cup clean tomato sauce (sugar free, natural, etc. Trader Joe's has lots of good ones, or you can use crushed tomatoes and add seasonings)
  • 1 Cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided ($1.50)
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat the grated cauliflower in the microwave for 4 minutes. Give it a few minutes to cool, then wring the water out of the cauliflower using a dishtowel- THIS IS SO IMPORTANT!! You should get up to a cup of water out of this cauliflower- if you don't wring it enough you'll have super soggy crust which is gross.

Combine the egg, 1/2 cup of shredded cheese and cauliflower and mix well. Divide the "dough" in half, flatten each one out  on a non-stick baking sheet and heat in the oven for 20 minutes. 

While the "crust" is cooking, sesaon the turkey with garlic powder and Italian seasoning and brown in a large frying pan. Once browned, add the bell pepper, onion, and garlic to the mixture and saute for about 6 minutes over medium heat. 

Once your round flats come out of the oven, top each one with the sauce, meat and veggie mixture, red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese. Fold the cauliflower "dough" over to make it into a "calzone" and enjoy!

And in honor of my favorite high school meal, I present this gif of my favorite high school cafeteria moment:

Clean Eating Calzones

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Happy Monday! We survived another weekend of home reno and we are finally getting into the part I like- where we are starting to SEE the changes! It's really exciting, I'm just so ready to MOVE IN! 

Since things were chaos I didn't have much of a meal plan or a grocery list and just bought $40 worth of goodies at Trader Joe's (oopsies!). With the random assortment of TJ's sale items I came up with this Mexican Pizza:

Servings: 3
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins

  • 2 Tortillas (I use Ezekiel)
  • 1/2 lb lean ground turkey, cooked ($1.50)
  • 2 tomatoes, diced ($2.00)
  • 1/2 large white onion, diced ($.50)
  • 1/2 package of diced butternut squash (this is about 1 lb) ($2.00)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup salsa ($1.50)
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded ($1.50)
  • 1 avocado, diced ($1.00)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Saute the onion, butternut squash and garlic together.  Place the 2 tortillas in a baking dish. Evenly distribute the turkey onto the tortillas. Top with the sauteed veggies. Layer the tomatoes on top of the veggies. Top the veggies with the mozzarella cheese. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes, slice up and enjoy! I took the leftovers to work the next day.

We spent Easter weekend working on the house- have I mentioned how grateful I am to have parents who drive 2 hours just to help out with this home reno stuff? It's getting to the fun part where we can actually SEE the progress:

My mom and I painted the cabinets, and the granite guy came and gave us counters! And thank you, Mom for coming to Home Depot to help me cope with my semi-mental breakdown over gloss vs. semi-gloss vs. eggshell paint and choosing between approximately 682 shades of almost-black paint...

Here's what that same wall looked like before:

And we added a wall to the bedroom to give ourselves a WALK IN CLOSET WITH TWO ENTRANCES (the opening and the door go into the same closet). Next stop: Ikea!

My mom and I went to Community Forklift, which, if you are in DC you have to go. It's basically a thrift store for home goods. I found this and can't wait to buy it to put in the dining room:

Since my parents are in town we still had a semi-easter celebration. I tried to make resurrection rolls (family tradition) and failed. See the marshmallow inside the crescent roll is supposed to be "Jesus", and when you pull them into the oven aka the "tomb", the marshmallow/Jesus is gone! However I just ended up with Jesus as a sticky mess all over the cookie sheet:

And since I have no life outside of this house stuff right now (socially this consists of my parents, Harrison, and about 4 contractors who don't speak English), I live through everyone else and can we just talk about this fabulousness that was happening down the street? Michelle! I don't care what your political views are, you gotta admit the Obamas know how to dress!

And Andi's Thundershirt came just in time for the thunderstorm and wind storm we are supposed to have this week- look at that model workin it! She let me put it on which is a good first step...we'll see how this goes...

Anyone have recommendations for dog anxiety? And recommendations for walk-in closet organization? 

Happy Monday! Linking up today with Monday Morning Gossip, Much Ado About Monday,  Healthy Tips. Weekend Recap

Clean Eating Mexican Pizza + Weekend Recap

Monday, April 21, 2014