Low Cal Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cup

Ack! I’m such a delinquent! I tweeted and instagrammed this all over the place the other night and then left you all hanging! 

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#rude

Yeah, that would be a homemade dark chocolate almond butter cup. Did I mention it’s rich and decadent?

Almond butter cup

And low cal? 

I wouldn’t toy with you about something like this . . . ;)

Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cup

Serves one

For the chocolate shell:

2 T. Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder

1 T. unsweetened vanilla almond milk (any milk would probably work)

1 T. sugar free maple syrup (or agave or regular syrup would probably work, too!)

Mix all ingredients in a small bowl until very smooth–no cocoa lumps allowed!!!

Spray a small ramekin with non-stick cooking spray and spoon about half of the chocolate mixture on top. Top with a tablespoon of almond butter, then the rest of the chocolate mixture. Freeze for at least one hour until set. <–I get that this instruction is incredibly challenging and unfair. Do yourself a favor and make this when you’re cooking dinner so it’s ready for you when that 8:30 PM sweet tooth kicks in. Don’t look at me like that. You know exactly what I mean. 

That’ll set you back about 120 calories. 

Go forth and make almond butter cups, my friends!!!

life.

Oh dear. It’s been almost a week since my last post. I know you’ve all spent a considerable amount of time sitting around and refreshing your browsers, chomping at the bit for a little somethin’ somethin’. ;) 

So, what’s been happening??? Life! It’s funny how much busier I am now that I live in DC even though, in theory, I’m new in town and don’t know as many people here as I do back in Michigan. The thing about being in a city is that there is always something going on. I have had so many invitations to do things that I’m constantly running here or there, much to the detriment of my apartment’s cleanliness and to the chagrin of one little girl. 

Roobear

I happen to see this WTF face quite frequently lately . . . but we have been going on lots of walks and a handful of trips to the dog park, so we’re making the most of the time I’m not busy doing 50 gazillion other things. 

Over the holiday weekend, I was busy practically every single second. For reals. I don’t think that has happened since college. Sadly, I took very few pictures, but I’ll do the best I can to make this somewhat entertaining. 

Friday night, I went out with my co-worker and a bunch of his friends to a couple of bars before landing at a DJ show featuring Lady Gaga and Madonna vs. Katy Perry and Britney Spears. It was exactly as fun as it sounds–and then some. 

Bffls

Me and my work BFFL Brian 

Several Ruby Red Absolut and soda’s were consumed . . . 

Which set me up perfectly to drink a whole lot of water and sit by the pool with my friend, Matt, from Michigan on Saturday. Even though I’m making lots of new friends and everyone I spend time with is really nice, it was good to see a familiar face and just relax. Plus, I got to wear my new bikini! 

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Mine is a lighter shade of blue, but you get the idea. I obviously look exactly the same as this chick in it.

Then, we grabbed subs at a place in Arlington named Earls that totally rocked my socks. I had some kind of grilled veggie concoction, and it was phenomenal. Next stop? A BBQ at Matt’s friends’ house where Roo was in her glory–a huge group of guys to play with and a big, fenced yard? What’s not to love? They even gave her a little swag.

Festive roo

Matt’s friend also made some amazing pulled pork that he slow-cooked all day. Bacon-wrapped dates were involved, too. Oh, and ice cream sandwiches. Yeah, I look exactly like that girl in my bikini. ;)

I made it an early night and got up on Sunday for a steamy 11-miler around the city. There was some kind of motorcycling event going on, which I didn’t realize. So to all the Veterans who got to see me running by in my sports bra and running shorts, I am mortified/that’s my way of giving back to my country???? Either way, it was a great run, and somehow I managed to bust out a 7:57 pace despite the humidity. 

Sunday afternoon, I had a very fun brunch date, then headed over to Capitol Hill for dinner with some girls, which included a white sangria filled with peaches and basil. 

Peach basil sangria

MUST get that recipe! 

Then, it started thunder storming. And I needed a cab. But if you know anything about cities, rain=no cabs. So I used a service called Uber, which, for the cost of your firstborn child, will send a town car to take you anywhere you like within about 10 minutes. My driver had absolutely no idea where he was going and I ended up using my phone to give him directions. Ahem. 

Then, I met up again with the aforementioned brunch date for a drink and late-night face-stuffing in Chinatown. General Tsao’s chicken at 2 AM? Don’t mind if I do! Like I said–haven’t done that since college! 

Most of Monday was spent recovering, thinking about cleaning my apartment, and grocery shopping, followed by a quick dinner with a friend on a cute little outdoor patio a few blocks from my building. 

Busy? YES. Worth it? YES. 

I’m finding that life somehow still goes on if I don’t do my laundry or clean my kitchen or run or blog . . . and the extra clutter in my life feels worth it because instead of obsessing, I’m actually living. And as it turns out, living makes me ridiculously happy. 

life. Who knew?

Stealthy

Today, we must discuss my most recent controversial behavior. Now, to some (namely men), they probably aren’t even aware of this issue, but it’s time it was brought to light and discussed. Openly. Here. So.

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Ladies, I need to know. When it’s that time of the month and you’re in your office or classroom or wherever you live the majority of your life, how do you handle the tampon issue? 

You know what I mean. You’re at your desk. You need to use the restroom. And a certain feminine product needs to come with you. But you wouldn’t normally drag your purse along. But you don’t necessarily want to carry a tampon out in the open, effectively announcing to the world, “Hey, I’ve got my period!!!” So what do you do? 

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The way I see it, there are a few options:

1. Take your purse with you.

In the interest of discretion, I suppose this is a viable option. But I find it annoying to haul all that with me when I’m just making a quick trip to the bathroom. Plus, if you never take your purse with you, but then you suddenly do, isn’t that a pretty obvious indication that you’ve got your period? Then again, something in me suspects the dudes of the world are completely oblivious to this behavior.

2. Tuck the tampon somewhere in your clothing.

I perfected this in middle school. When it was that time of the month, I would keep my stash of hygiene products in a special pencil case in my locker. Then, I would kind of stick my hip into the locker and sneak a tampon into my pocket or up my sleeve, then scurry to the bathroom hoping no one would see it. I have continued to do this into adulthood. In the name of discretion, of course. I feel like I’m smuggling something illicit when really all I’m doing is taking care of my lady business. Again, I feel the dudes of the world are oblivious to this sneaky type of behavior. 

Hiding tampon h5283. Carry the damn tampon right in your hand.

Instead of trying to be all stealthy or burdening yourself with the whole handbag scenario, you could just carry the tampon. I mean, would most men even know what it was if they saw it in your hand? And chicks clearly don’t care. Plus, it’s not like you’re waving the thing around. You grab it. You walk to the bathroom. You return to your desk. Not quite the mortifying scenario I’ve made it out to be in my head. Not discreet, but if we think men are paying this much attention to us, I’m pretty sure we’re mistaken. 

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So. Because I’m just over the whole “I’ve got to be discreet about my goddamn tampon” situation, I’ve just been carrying it along with me out in the open. I decided to do this the other day after I realized I was wearing a dress and had no real place to hide the tampon. I didn’t want to bring my purse along, so I just carried the stupid thing. I mean, is it that big a deal? Does anyone really care? Is anyone really paying attention? I decided the answer to these questions is a big, fat NO. So I did the damn thing. And the world did not implode. 

What do we think, ladies? How do you handle your hygiene products when it’s that time of the month? Are you a 1, 2, 3 or something else???

And dudes, do you have any idea this is going on? Would you even care? 

I’m desperate to know.

Now I’m a Lamp

This morning I woke up with every intention of running. My ankles were feeling a little achy, so I knew it was raining again.

What? You don’t get achy joints when it rains? Oh, it’s just my old ass that that happens to? Great. 

Anywho, I took Roo out to do her business, and sure enough, it was all drizzly and nasty out. It was the same way yesterday morning, but I ran anyway. And was miserable pretty much the whole time. So instead of punishing myself, I chose–yes CHOSE–to do a weights workout instead. 

I dont even know you anymore

This is what comes up when you google, “I don’t even know you anymore.” True story.

That’s right! I had a hot date with Jillian, and dare I say, I didn’t hate it! In fact, after over a month of not lifting anything but the odd moving box, it felt good to bust out my dumbbells.

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Yep, those beastly 3 pounders made an appearance this morning. 

I’ve been trying to figure out all day why I suddenly enjoyed this strength training sesh when I’ve vehemently despised anything weights-related for . . . well, always. 

Here’s what I came up with: 

1. Variety is the spice of life. 

Yes, I love running running running. But my body occasionally needs a break–probably much more often than I give it one. After a month straight of only running, I think the ol’ bod was looking for a change of pace. 

2. Doing a video forces you to workout

I didn’t phrase that well, so allow me to explain. When Jillian and her chicks are in front of you doing the reps at a certain pace and moving through the circuit, you have to keep up. Well, you don’t have to, but it’s a workout video. If I can’t keep up with that, I’m going to hate myself later. I do a lot of motivating self-talk like, “Don’t be such a wimp!” and “They’re not even sweating you weakling!” It should be noted that I’m only this hard on myself. I would cheer anyone else on through this with sincerity and enthusiasm. True story. 

3. You have to warm up and cool down

That’s right. You have to. It’s built in. And I can never fast forward or rewind on my DVD player very well, so I may as well do it. But it reminds me, too, that I need to spend 5 minutes before and after any workout stretching and getting my body ready to go. Good lesson there. 

Is this earth-shattering news? No. but it’s good for me to experience a strength workout and actually enjoy it. I have to remember this  next time I think I hate strength training. 

So Maybe I Won’t Be Single Forever . . .

Oh hey! Yeah, I’m still alive. But to tell you the truth, the last 10 days–the length of my residency here in DC–are kind of a blur. I think the craziness of getting a new job, training for said job, finding a place to live, moving, and settling in to a new city are kind of catching up with me. 

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The good news is, I really like my apartment, I’m learning my way around the city thanks to running, and I’m actually sleeping! That’s right, this insomniac has been beaten down by the chaos of life. I’m not complaining–not one bit! In fact, it’s been nice. The only problem is, I’m kind of exhausted all the time, but whatever. I’ll get caught up on my rest eventually, right?

The other thing that’s going on? Well, I’ve been dating . . . er, going on some dates. Or maybe just hanging out? I have no idea where we cross the line from casually hanging out to actually being on a date. Is it the purchase of food and drink that constitutes a date? Hand holding? Making out? All I know is that several members of my family and many of my married friends are breathing a huge sigh of relief at this news. 

Single forever

There’s hope for her yet! 

Maybe she won’t end up alone after all!

But as you all know, this is a bigger concern to everyone else than it is to me. I’m trying to just have fun and take it as it comes. This, of course, is never easy for me. I tend to get all bajiggity about the tiniest thing at the drop of a hat, so the possibility of a dating-related freak out on the blog in the near future is very real. Be on the lookout.

In the meantime, I will attempt to keep my cool. It should be noted, however, that I have absolutely no game. If you ask me out tonight and I’m free, I’ll say yes. There’s no consulting my calendar or washing my hair. Then again, if I’m not interested, I’m pretty sure I have to go home and feed my dog. 

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She’s laying on the sidewalk hunting birds. I never claimed she was normal.

I also don’t do coy or mysterious. If I like you, you’ll know it. If you’re not sure, that means I’m probably not. I’m really very simple. 

Don’t get me wrong–I’m sure I’m still a huge pain in the ass, but I’ll at least tell you why it’s so. I don’t expect anyone to read my mind or anything. See? Totally reasonable. ;)

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Anywho, I am rambling and probably being somewhat vague, lest one of my dates stalks me online and stumbles across my blog. Or remembers the name of it and finds it rather easily. Yeah, that could happen, too . . . 

Got any dating advice for me? 

I probably won’t take it because, as I said, I am a huge pain in the ass and very set in my ways, but it can’t hurt, right???

Life Changing

As of late, I’ve adopted the expression “life changing” as my favorite adjective. As in, “This guacamole and margarita is life changing right now,” or “My run around the city this morning was life changing.” Annoying? Probably, but there are some key items that are literally changing my life right now (<–not being dramatic at all). So of course I need to tell you about them. Duh. 

Nexxus promend

Nexxus Pro Mend Split End Repair

This stuff actually binds your split ends back together and makes your hair healthier. I got it at Target for $10. You should, too. Unless you’re into split ends. In that case, go on with your frayed self.

Rooftop view

The View from My Rooftop Deck

Right??? That little hazy tall thing out in the distance? That’s the Washington Monument. It’s only about 2 miles away, but I love that not only can I run to it, I can also see it from my roof any time I want. Pretty pretty.

Evernote logo

 

Evernote

Are you using this??? Why not????? I am pretty much obsessed with this app, which links your computer and phone so that you can make lists upon lists upon lists wherever you are! Want to make a grocery list at work? Jot it down on using Evernote on your computer. Then, when you get to the store, whip out your phone, and Evernote will have automatically synced up with the aforementioned list, giving you a handy dandy reference right then and there. Plus, you can make multiple notes–blog notes, shopping lists, work to-dos, errands, or just the name of that wine you don’t want to forget. Oh, and it’s free. Genius. Do it. 

 

Hr 129 dog harness

SENSE-ible Dog Harness

OK, I know if you’re not a dog owner, this is irrelevant to you, so feel free to skip ahead. For the rest of you, if you have a dog that likes to pull on her leash as much as mine does, you NEED this in your life. It has virtually eliminated Roo’s pulling problem. Now if she would only stop chewing through them. Damn dog. 

Roo harness

Yeah yeah yeah.

New bird

Twitter

Obviously, I’m not new to Twitter, but I’ve gotten so many new followers recently that I don’t know what to do with myself! Hi new followers! Let’s be #bffls!!! :) But besides that, I just adore how I can keep up with my sweet bloggy friends via twitter even when I don’t have time to write a full comment on their blogs. Oh–and I am reading your blogs, even if I don’t comment, so don’t you fret! ;) 

Polar Seltzer

Bubble Water

Or seltzer or soda or whatever you want to call it. I call it bubble water. Yummy and bubbly and flavored but without the calories and sugar of pop. I could drink this stuff all day long. Oh, wait. I do.

Anything currently changing your life? 

Stupidity

I want to blog–really I do! But there’s too much other stuff going on! Ugh. I promise that I’m going to take lots of pictures in the next few days so you guys can see my place and my neighborhood and all that. But today, I have to share this infographic that got passed to me at work today. It’s ridiculous and frightening and hilarious all at once. Awesomely bad, methinks. And also, it will make you feel smart. Enjoy. ;)

Darwin Awards
From: Best Nursing Masters