Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Life Lately: Workout Edition

I've struggled lately to have something to say on this little blog of mine. Probably because life for the last few weeks has mostly been comprised of the normal day-to-day stuff and lots of hard work trying to get back in shape. Veggie pics and sweaty selfies aren't the most exciting thing to look at. Especially when snowy mountains are the standard. 

Getting back into shape is so much harder than it was to get out of shape. I'm looking forward to the day my face isn't red after a hard workout. I've caught the running bug again and have my sights on at least two half marathons this summer. Nathanial says running is the only free sport that is this expensive.

I completed my first sub-freezing 5K on Valentine's Day. The temperature was in the 20's and the whole course was ice or snow. I was relieved I got my shoes studded. 


I've also started Crossfitting again. I'm so grateful my friend Monica got me back into it. I forgot how much I enjoyed it (which is only easy to say on an off day.) 


Aside from my workouts, I've also overhauled my eating habits and am back to a more Paleo way of eating (hence all the veggies.) I'm blessed with a wonderful, supportive husband who will eat almost anything I put in front of him even if it's paleo meatloaf that substitutes the normal ingredients for some odd ones. He might even ask sweetly if I used a new recipe and then when thanked for his support may say "It's ok, I'm living vicariously through lunch."  

I can already tell a huge difference in how I feel because of my efforts and other people are starting to notice which is pretty awesome. I've already gotten several compliments and my gift from my secret sister at church was a bag of Smart  Water. I love that she bought my favorite brand and that me drinking water is a noticeable habit. 

This week I was scouring the produce section trying to add some variety and came across this crazy broccoli. I snapped a pic but decided I'd rather see it at the store than on my plate. 



Monday, February 2, 2015

Stunning Views and Sweet Surprises

We had an incredible time celebrating our first anniversary with an Alaskan style weekend getaway.  We visited a beautiful resort about an hour from where we live.  The views were breathtaking!

We left Friday afternoon once Nathanial got home from work. I knew it would be a good weekend when he banished me from downstairs while he loaded the car. He really outdid himself with all the sweet surprises he had for me over the weekend.

We laughed about how the gray-ness of the day and the remoteness of the resort made us feel like we were driving into The Shining.


We arrived at the hotel and went up to check out our room.  We were on one of the highest floors with a north and mountain facing view.  Nathanial had me stay in one part of our suite while he got the first of many surprises out of his box of tricks.  I do mean a literal box.  He wouldn't let me look into it and was very specific with the bellhop about how to handle it.

The first surprise was a vase of beautiful roses which he had nicely arranged. 

We exchanged gifts after a great dinner at the Double Musky.  Our actual anniversary wasn't until the next day but we decided since the whole weekend was a celebration we should go ahead and open gifts.

I decided to use my design skills for Nathanial's gift.  I wanted to follow the traditional theme which was paper. I created a print with the lyrics from our first dance. I sent a copy for King George to autograph as well. We'll see if he comes through this time!  I also designed note cards with Nathanial's initials and name. I loved how both turned out and so did he!


Nathanial made me a gorgeous canvas with our wedding vows.  I love the picture he selected and am excited to have a written reminder of our vows.  He even made sure the border color was one of our wedding colors.  Swoon.


One of the fun things about vacationing in Alaska was that our resort offered a Northern Lights wake-up call.  The skies weren't very clear over the weekend so that wasn't something we got to experience.

However, we were spoiled by beautiful sights all weekend. Our room had a wall of windows and it was fun to watch the sun come out through the day.  Sunlight completely changed the look of things. 

This was the view in the morning.

























We ate breakfast Saturday morning at the resort.  The best part was the view and the strawberry sauce they had near the crepes and pancakes.



That afternoon we headed out for some snowshoeing.  Neither of us has experienced much of the outdoors in our time in Alaska. Our friends speak highly of snowshoeing (and offered us their shoes) so off we went.  It's been a really light snow season this winter so the trail we took didn't have much snow and what was there was packed tightly.  We ended up taking off the snowshoes about halfway up and just hiking the rest of the way.

Snowshoeing selfie!


The temperature was in the low teens but with lots of layers and views like this we didn't mind.



We ate a late lunch back at the resort.  They surprised us with an anniversary dessert called Baked Alyeska (the name of the resort.)  I loved how the sugar details embodied the Northern Lights. They didn't light it on fire but it was still delicious.


Saturday evening we had an elegant dinner at a restaurant on the top of the mountain.  It was accessible only by tram which only added to its grandeur. 

Even the walkway to the tram was pretty.


You know it's a fancy restaurant when the waiter brings out a sample size bisque to welcome you and when your actual soup has a caviar topped scallop anchored by other seafood.

An edible anniversary banner might be another give-away.


The dessert was beautiful but not very tasty which played well into Nathanial's suprise for me after dinner.

I was a little disappointed going into the weekend that we wouldn't be able to participate in the tradition of eating our wedding cake as we left it in the safe protection of my grandma's freezer when we moved. Unbeknowst to me, my amazing husband had one of our friends with a cake business recreate our top tier.  It took some major planning on his part as she was going out of town and he needed to transport it and keep it refrigerated without me knowing.

I have to admit when he brought it out along with some sparkling cider (and even the plates he thought to bring) I started to cry. I am blessed beyond measure to be his wife. He even had her include an orange filling like we had on our original cake.


He also brought our wedding DVD and photo album.

He put so much thought and effort into making me feel special on a weekend that was about both of us.  I am so lucky!

We finished out the weekend with a fantastic couples massage. It was the perfect relaxing end to a wonderful trip.

It was sad to leave but the drive home wasn't so bad because it looked like this.