Thursday, March 31, 2016

Resolution and Goal Update : March

Happy April everyone! It's already time to go over my goals and how I did this month.  To be honest, this month I didn't really pay attention to my goals that much.  It was a stressful month and I felt like I always had my mind on other things and was running around a lot, so some of my numbers are a little lower which is fine. I can't expect every month to be fantastic!  Let's just hope that April is a better month :)

Each month, I'll go through each goal area and talk about my progress on each resolution.  If there's a "+" by the resolution- that means I was successful that month!  If there's a "-", unfortunately I missed the mark.  Some of my goals are more of a year-long thing, so until I complete the entire goal (for example saving $15,000) I'll have a "-" (which is why none of my fitness goals have a "+").  I'll give you a quick update on my progress though, and hopefully there will be a "+" before the end of 2016!

Enough chatting for now, let's get to my monthly resolution update for March!  Let's start off with a visual of my goals, then move into the detail.






Financial Goals

+ Spending freeze until my birthday (June 28)
Still going strong - halfway there!

+ Save reward money (Discover, EbatesIbotta) for entire year


- Save $15,000 in my joint account, $6,000 alone
saved $1640 in joint account, $500 in personal account.
for the year, I have $7619 saved in joint account (50% of the way to my goal!), and $1500 in personal (25% of the way to my goal).

- No fast food, coffee shops, restaurants, bars
broke twice this month :(

+ Get a library card

+ Run commute at least once a week when it's warm
I went twice in March!


Fitness Goals

- Run 1200 miles
January miles : 95 miles
February miles : 122 miles
March miles : 102 miles

+ PR in two distances
15 miles : 2:13:46
Half Marathon : 1:54:34

- Run 20 races
0 races in January
1 race in February (read my recap here)
1 race in March (read my recap here)

- Swim 1,000 yards without stopping
I ended my gym membership in March, so I'm going to put this goal on hold until I get a new gym membership!

- Bike 20 miles without stopping
No biking this month

- Try out 4 new workout classes
#1 - Group Core


Health Goals

+ Get regular check-ups
Had my annual physical and biometric screening in March!

- Clean up eating habits
Not a very good month for healthy eating in March.  Time to get back on track!

+ Take vitamins and supplements
Calcium, Vitamin D3, Omega3 Fish Oil


Personal Goals

+ Declutter 10 items each month
March items : 2 pairs of shoes, 3 belts, all of my nail polish (don't even remember the last time I painted my nails!), sent a bag of clothes to Thred Up (referral link)

+ Set up cleaning schedule
See my post here!

I also added this to my Bullet Journal which has made the process much easier to stay on track.


+ Monthly cooking challenge
January Whole30

February : 4 Ingredients Gluten Free

March : Share 4 recipes on blog
Spring Rolls
Avocado Egg Salad
Brownie Batter Energy Bites
Turmeric Tea 

April : Spend less than $200 on groceries
This is going to be a big challenge, but I want to cut my grocery bill a lot this month!


Blogging Goals

+ Improve photography
Working on it!  Here are shots from my energy bites post
and my S'mores post.  I can already see a huge difference!


- Write an e-book
In progress!

- Get over 15,000 40,000 views in a month
January views : 12,797 
February views : 36,828
March views : 15,500

+ Start to earn money
January : $22
February : $31.22
March : $20

Start a newsletter
Subscribe here!



Other accomplishments this month:

+ Got an offer accepted on a house!  Whoo!

+ Started a bullet journal





How are you doing on resolutions?
Did you have any major achievements in March?
Any big plans for April?

linking up with Amanda

post contains affiliate links.  Thank you for your support!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Spicy Turmeric Tea

Happy Wednesday everyone!  I'm really excited to share a recipe with you that is perfect for this time of year.

A few months ago, I met up with Alexa, the amazing blogger behind Fooduzzi.  We met at a local coffee shop called Big Dog Coffee in the Southside.  She suggested that I get her favorite drink- a turmeric tonic.  I've never had turmeric in a drink before, so I was definitely intrigued and followed her advice.  I'm so glad that I did, because the tea was amazing and has been on my mind ever since!

I have been trying to come up with a recipe that is close to the original drink that I had, and I think this one comes pretty close.  It's spicy and sweet and can be enjoyed hot or cold.  I can't get enough of it, and I hope you enjoy it as well!  Before I share the recipe, I wanted to give you a few facts about turmeric.  This is a popular ingredient lately, and for good reason!  There are tons of benefits of this plant, which I want to share:

Health benefits of Turmeric:

- Turmeric (and ginger) can tame heartburn and an upset stomach.  This is caused by the plant's ability to fight inflammation.  I love to drink this at night if I have an upset stomach, and it helps me sleep much better!

- A compound in turmeric may help ward off heart attacks, delay diabetes, and fight cancer.  The compound is called curcumin, and is what causes the beautiful yellow hue of turmeric.

- Since the plant has anti-inflammatory properties, it also helps relieve joint pain.  I might have to try this as a natural pain reliever after races rather than taking ibuprofen!
(source for these benefits come from Huffington Post)

- Curcumin has also been proven to boost brain function, and lower risk of brain diseases.  There's a growth hormone in the brain that multiplies and increases the amount of neurons in the brain (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor).  Some brain disorders like Alzheimer's and depression are linked to a decrease in BDNF, and curcumin can actually increase these levels. 
(source - Authority Nutrition)

- Turmeric can also be used for a variety of ways in your beauty routine!  I think I'm going to try out a few from this list - who doesn't want glowing skin!?


Pretty amazing, right?  Now, let's get to the recipe!

Spicy Turmeric Tea

inspired by Big Dog Coffee

2 cups water
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 inch ginger, peeled and grated
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon honey (optional)
1 lemongrass tea bag (I use this one)
ice (optional)


In a small saucepan, combine water, turmeric, ginger, pepper, cinnamon, and honey (if desired).

Bring to a boil, turn down heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Turn off heat, add teabag and steep for 7 minutes.

Strain into a mug.  If you prefer iced tea, fill a glass with ice and strain mixture over ice.

Enjoy!



Have you tried turmeric before?
What's your favorite coffee shop?
What are some of your natural beauty hacks?

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

21 Question Survey

Hi everyone! How's your week going so far?  I can't believe it's the final week of March, and I'm really excited because April is going to be a HUGE month for me.  It's been really crazy around here lately, and I had originally planned on sharing a new recipe today.  

Unfortunately, I had the post all drafted out and went to take pictures (last minute of course because I've been rushing around like a crazy person) and they did not turn out well at all.  I'm going to try again today and hope that I can share the recipe tomorrow because it's a really good one!  

In the meantime, I'm happy to be doing a fun survey today.  I was tagged by Emma and JW, and loved the fun questions!  I hope you enjoy, and I tag all of the bloggers out there to do this survey next!


Are you named after anyone?

Nope!  I do have an interesting story about my middle name.  When my mom was born, nothing sounded good with her first and last name, so my grandparents left out the middle name.  My mom passed that down to my sister and me, and neither of us have a middle name either!  So, I guess you could say my middle name is "named" after my mom!


When was the last time you cried?

I don't really cry very often, especially out of sadness or negative emotion.  I mostly shed a tear (just a single tear) when I hear a beautiful song or watch an emotional scene of a movie.  A few weeks ago when La'Porsha sang No More Drama on American Idol- I just busted out in tears.  It was an incredible performances that ended in everyone bawling their eyes out.  


Do you have kids?

Nope!  Dan and I both want to focus on getting married first ;)


If you were another person, would you be a friend of yourself?

I think about this question a lot.  I always want to have the qualities that I look for in a friend- interesting, kind, trustworthy, honest, generous, funny.  I hope that I am some of those things!


Do you use sarcasm a lot?

I'm not sure if I would say a lot...it gets me in trouble sometimes so I try to dial it back!


Will you ever bungee jump?

Already did!


What’s your favorite cereal?

To be honest, I'm not a big cereal eater.  I don't even know the last time I bought cereal!  Whoops!


What’s the first thing you notice about people?

How they greet me.  I feel like you can tell a lot about someone by the way that they greet you- by their handshake, smile, eye contact, etc.  In college, we learned a lot about how to make a great first impression before even saying a word, so now I notice that about other people!


What’s your eye color?

I think they're blue, Dan thinks they're green, and they change shade depending on the weather and what I'm wearing.


Scary movie or happy endings?

Happy for sure.  I always wished that I could handle scary movies but I get way too scared.  It's kind of sad!


Favorite smells?

Coffee, Marshmallow, Fire, Bath and Body Works Candles


Summer or winter?

Summer all the way.


Computer or television?

If Hulu and Netflix are counted for television, I pick that.  I work on a computer all day, so when I'm out of work I don't want to look at a computer any more!  I like to just relax and have something playing in the background while I cook or work out.


What’s the furthest you’ve ever been from home?

I think Sweden?  You can check out everywhere that I've been on my travel page!
 

Do you have any special talents?

I'm good at picking up instruments quickly.  I've played the violin and saxophone, but can also play the trumpet, guitar, piano, clarinet, and viola.  I'm not good at all of them, but I can at least pick them up and play!


Where were you born?

Pittsburgh!  Born and raised!


What are your hobbies?

Running, cooking, arts and crafts, traveling, reading, anything outdoors.


Do you have any pets?

Yes!  Selma, the (other) love of my life.


Favorite movie?

To be honest, I'm not a big movie person.  I don't really understand the point of re-watching them and don't really own many!  I do watch Spirit of the Marathon before every single race that I run though, so I guess that's my pick.


Do you have any siblings?

Yes, one sister named Kirsten who's two years older than me.  She also went to Penn State and moved to California for a few years.  Last year she moved back to Pittsburgh with her husband!


What do you want to be when you grow up?

If money were no object, I would want to be a world traveler and write travel guides on every country in the world.  Or be a musician that gets to travel the world playing in amazing locations.  Or a world-class chef who gets flown around the world to cook for important people and events.  Basically, I just want to get paid to travel!



Ok- your turn!  Answer a few questions :)
Thank you to Emma and JW for tagging me!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Weekend Highlights

Hi everyone and Happy Monday!  I hope you all had a great weekend and Easter holiday.  Dan and I spent the weekend in Carlisle with his family to celebrate his birthday, so I wanted to give a little recap of what we did!  My week of running was boring and mostly recovering from my half marathon, so I thought it would be more exciting to talk about my fun weekend.  Enjoy!

The weekend was all about dogs!  Dan's dad has a few acres of land, so Selma and her best friend Lily ran all around.  The weather was absolutely perfect all weekend, so we spent a lot of time outside with them.


Happy dog = Happy life :)


How adorable is Dan's mom's pitbull!?  I love him!


I think Lily was a model in another life...she's always ready for the camera!


We took a trip down to Gettysburg to check out the museum and some battlefields.  I also got to see part of the marathon race course!  It was so beautiful down there.


So many open fields!


In the museum, we watched a short film about the Civil War and went into a room that had a 360 degree view of the battle grounds.  This is actually the largest oil painting in North America!  It was so incredible to be surrounded by such a powerful image.  You actually felt like you were in the scene because there were real props set on the ground to make the image appear 3D.


The amount of detail in this painting is insane!


Later that night we went cosmic bowling which was a lot of fun.  I'm not very good at bowling but Dan and his dad are amazing.  They both crushed me but I had fun singing and dancing to all the old rock music!

We also went to a Hershey Bears game!  We bought two sets of seats and swapped in between periods with Dan's dad and brother.  Our first seats were in the second row which was crazy to be that close to the action:


The other seats were on the other side of the ice and about halfway up:


It was a great game and went into a shootout!  I love overtime and shoot outs because they're so intense, so I was so excited.  We ended up winning!


Overall, it was such a fun weekend.  It was great to just relax and do all of Dan's favorite things to celebrate his big day.  I couldn't ask for more!

How was your weekend?
What does a perfect day look like for you?
Have you ever been to old battlefields?
linking up with HollyTricia and Katie

Friday, March 25, 2016

Top Five Friday : All About Dan

Happy Friday everyone!  Today is a very special day, because it's Dan's birthday!  I have a different Top Five Favorites planned for today, to honor my all-time favorite.  Instead of talking about myself like usual, I'm going to be sharing a few of Dan's favorite things, some songs that he's loving lately, and his favorite shows.  I hope you enjoy a closer look at what he's into!


541 Levi's

Sneaky shot of the jeans!
As long as I've known him, Dan has been a Wranglers and plain t-shirt (usually with Penn State or another logo on it) kind of guy.  I've been trying to inject some style into his life without much success, because he finds most jeans really uncomfortable, too restricting, or "scratchy".  I finally got him to try on some Levi's when we went up to Tanger Outlets a few weeks ago, and he actually liked these jeans!  These are the 541- Athletic Fit Stretch Jeans, which are relaxed in the waist and hips, but are tapered slightly so they're really flattering and stylish.  He also said that they are the most comfortable jeans he's ever worn!  I'm a huge fan of these too and kind of want to buy him a pair in every wash!


Star Talk Radio

Neil DeGrasse Tyson is one of Dan's favorite people in the world (if you remember, I "invited" Neil to my ideal dinner party for his benefit).  He hosts a daily talk show and podcast called Star Talk, where he talks with different comedians and actors about space.  It's actually a really interesting show and explains some pretty complex topics in an entertaining way.  Dan is way  more into space and astronomy than I am, but we both enjoy listening to this show on Sirius!


Hershey Bears

Dan is a huge hockey fan (and I'm not at all, which might be one of the only things we argue about!), and his favorite teams are the Pittsburgh Penguins and the minor league Hershey Bears.  He also plays ice hockey for a team at work!  This weekend, we're going to celebrate his birthday by watching the Bears play.  We went a few years ago and it was a fun experience even for non hockey fans like myself!  Maybe I can get him to go to Chocolate World with me while we're in town...


Lil Wayne Commercial

This is a really random favorite, but Dan and I saw this commercial the other day while we were watching some show on Hulu, and could not stop cracking up!  If you're looking for something to make you laugh- watch this NOW!


Music

Ludovico Einaudi - We are both huge fans of classical music, and Dan is especially drawn to piano music.  He's an amazing musician and wants to start writing music when we have more space to set up a piano.  Einaudi is one of his big influences for his simple but beautiful music!

Jesse Cook - If you're looking for a great nuevo flamenco / jazz guitarist to listen to- look no further.  How can you not fall in love with this music?!  It's so good!  Jesse Cook is always playing on Dan's favorite Sirius station

Limelight - Rush - Rush is Dan's favorite band, and he's seen them in concert a few times.  It's kind of interesting that this band made music when Dan's dad was around our age, and they're still around today coming out with albums!  That's longevity!

Themata- Karnivool - Definitely a different song that has so many styles of music packed into 5 minutes of music.  Dan love experimental music, and I'm into this as well!

Lost - Riverside - This is another experimental rock band, and this one has a more chill vibe.  Dan found both of these two new bands by looking for some vinyl records to buy for his brother's birthday, and ended up finding new music for himself too!


Shows

The Office - Oldie but goodie, this is what Dan always has on in the background when he's working on grad school homework or hanging out.

Friends - The first show that we watched from beginning to end together!  I love how consistently funny this show has been all the way through.  We still watch it and it still makes me laugh out loud!

Quantico - We're both obsessed with this show!  It's really intriguing and keeps you on the edge of your seat.  If you're looking for a new thriller to get into, I highly recommend this show!

11/22/63 - Dan has always had a fascination with JFK and has watched tons of documentaries and read stories about his life and asssassination.  When this show came out (which is based on a book by Steven King and is fictional) he was immediately intrigued.  I haven't watched any of this, but Dan really enjoys it!

How To Get Away With Murder - We started watching episode 1 together, and still tune in every week to catch the newest episode!  After season one, I wasn't sure how they could top the drama and suspense, and wondered how the show would continue.  I feel like season two is even better, and Dan agrees!

Linking up with MarCynthia and Court 
P.S. Congratulations to Amanda for winning the phone case giveaway!  I'll be emailing you shortly :)

When's your birthday??
Any favorites from this week?
What are your plans for the weekend?
post contains affiliate links.  Thank you for your support!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

One Powerful Statement

Happy Thursday everyone!  As usual, I'm going to be joining in the Thinking Out Loud linkup today.  Instead of having a structured post like I usually do, I wanted to share my thoughts about a podcast that I recently listened to- a specific episode of the Lively Show with Brooke Castillo.

The entire episode was really powerful to me and I took down a ton of notes while I listened.  Then, about halfway through the episode, Jess shared a quote by Joyce Meyer that made me drop everything and rewind to hear the words again.

Worry is a down payment on a problem you may never have.


I've always been a pretty anxious person.  It seemed like there was always something for me to obsess over, and worry about the worst possible outcome-  

What if I give my speech in class and completely forget every word and everyone laughs at me?
What if I get lost on my way to my new classes and I end up being late and get in trouble?
What if...?

This would translate into staying up all night, tossing and turning while I imagined all of these insane and unrealistic situations.  It didn't matter what was going on in my life, there was always something to worry about and have anxiety over.

Malmo, Sweden

My anxiety came to a head when I left the country for the first time.  As you can imagine, that was the most terrifying experience of my life. So many more "what ifs" crossed my mind in the weeks leading up to the trip- my passport could evaporate before I made it to customs or I could lose my boarding pass and be stuck in the airport!

Murren, Switzerland

All of these situations kept popping around in my head as we flew from Pittsburgh to Madrid.  I miraculously made it to another country in one piece, not losing anything or getting kicked off the flight.  Once we landed and made our way around the city, I noticed how different everyone acted.  People were outside in the middle of the day, not rushing around or looking stressed, but were enjoying a glass of tinto de verano or a plate of tapas looking happy and relaxed, and generally peaceful.  I came to realize that being stressed and worrying about all of those "what if's" was stopping me from being happy and enjoying the present moment.

Barcelona, Spain

On that trip, I stopped worrying about what could happen and started to enjoy what was happening.  In Barcelona, one of my travel buddies got pick pocketed.  In my mind- that was one of the worst case scenarios of what could happen.  And you know what?  We made it through and still had an amazing trip.  That showed me that you can't prepare for every bad thing to happen and it's a waste of time and energy to worry.  

Rome, Italy

note-

I've been planning this post for a few weeks now, and had it written earlier this week.  After the terrible tragedy in Brussels a few days ago, I feel like this message is even more important for me.  Any time that I go on an overseas trip, my family and friends are always nervous and ask if I'm worried about something happening on the flight or on my trip.  The answer is always no.  Bad things happen all the time, but I've learned now that no one can predict tragedy, and no one can predict something going wrong.  I'm happy now to live in the moment, hope for the best, and not worry about the worst.  My thoughts are with all of the victims and their families- and hope that these awful events inspire you to take advantage of your life and live every day to the fullest.



I would love to hear your thoughts!  
Are you a worrier?  How have you overcome that?

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Brownie Batter Energy Bites

Hi everyone!  Today is a very happy Wednesday, because I have a great post lined up for you today.  You all know that I have a thing for energy bites, and today I'm sharing another version of my favorite treat.  These delicious treats are so decadent and incredible- but they're Whole30 compliant!  That pretty much makes them a health food, right?


I love to make a big batch of these (this recipe will make two dozen) and grab a few when I can sense that rungry feeling coming on (which seems to be all the time now.)  Is anyone else in that part of their training where you're hungry all. the. time?!  Luckily, these are really quick and easy to whip up, and have been my saviour at work or before I head out for a run.  They honestly taste like brownie batter, and I couldn't be happier with how these turned out.  My sweet tooth and stomach are both very happy with this one!

Brownie Batter Energy Bites


1/2 cup walnuts
1/4 cup cashews
1 cup of pitted dates
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 heaping tablespoon coconut oil
1/2 tablespoon instant coffee

In a food processor, finely chop both nuts.  Move to a mixing bowl.


Next, chop up dates and dried cherries in food processor until they form a paste. (note- make sure all of the pits are removed from the dates!)


Add cocoa powder, coconut oil and instant coffee to food processor.  Mix until well combined.


Add dried fruit mixture to nuts in mixing bowl.  Mix well with hands.


Form mixture into balls or bars.  Refrigerate at least 1 hour and enjoy! (I used a 1/2 tablespoon to measure out the dough and ended with 24 balls).


What's your go-to snack to tackle the runger?
What flavor combinations do you like in your energy bites?



Pin for later!


linking up with A Pinch of Joy x Melt in Your Mouth Monday x #Recipe of the Week x Meatless Monday x Foodie Friday  Handmade Tuesdays x TastyTuesday x Week End Pot Luck  x What's Cookin' Wednesday x FoodFriDIY Link Love x Thinking Out Loud

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Soundtrack to my Life

Hi everyone!  Today I'm going to be joining in the Show and Tell Tuesday linkup and sharing a more personal post.  The theme for today is Soundtrack of My Life, and I'm going to share a song that either meant a lot to me during different times of my life, or the lyrics highlight important events in my life.  This is going to be sort of a cheesy post, but I hope you enjoy a more personal post!


Birth

Step By Step - New Kids on the Block
I was born on June 28, 1990 in Pittsburgh, and this was the #1 song at that time!  It sounds so 90's..right?  


Elementary School

Born This Way - Lady Gaga

Early on in elementary school, I was tested for the Gifted Center, which was a program in the Pittsburgh Public Schools for people that tested above a certain IQ.  My mom always knew that I was different and actually thought that I was being tested for emotional support.  She could tell you a lot of stories about how I was always slightly off as a kid, so she was relieved to hear that I was actually gifted.  

Being in that different environment from a young age definitely challenged me in so many ways. Once a week, I was taken to a different school and instead of a normal science and English class, we had Medieval Studies, computer programming, Think-a-Thon class and more.  Gifted Center day was always my favorite day of the week because I was with other people that were like me, and I had work that was really interesting to me and pushed me both creatively and intellectually.  

At this time I also started to play the violin and fell in love with music.  I loved to play so much and eventually auditioned for the Center for the Musically Talented.  On the weekends, I would go to a city high school and play in different ensembles and groups.  I also got the chance to play in district orchestra and the All-City orchestra throughout elementary, middle and high school!

Middle School

Heart of a Champion - Nelly

Middle School is where I started to run.  I joined the cross country team at school and also ran in a few local 5ks with my dad and sister.  I used to win a lot of races when I was young (the level of competition wasn't the same as it was today!) and I set the middle school record for cross country!  I think that those years of running really cemented my love for the sport, so every time I hear this song it reminds me of middle school and all the great times I had running and winning races.  In fact, I usually add this song to my race playlists to help inspire me!


High School

Enter Sandman - Metallica

I actually really enjoyed high school.  I continued going to the Gifted Center all throughout elementary and middle school, and that fed into the Center for Advanced Study at my local high school.  The group that was in CAS was really close and we did a lot of activities together, like musical, orchestra and student council.  I also ran cross country and was on the indoor and outdoor track team.  


I was still playing the violin, but when I got to high school there wasn't a string program.  The band director came up to me sophomore year and asked if I could switch to the saxophone and join the marching band.  He pretty much handed me a sax at the end of the school year and told me to come back for band camp.  I practiced all summer long, and when I got to band camp I realized that I learned all of the keys wrong and had to re-train myself how to play while I had to learn all of these new songs!  I always loved playing the sax though, and Enter Sandman was the very first song that I learned how to play. 


College


This song is really meaningful to me for a few reasons.  I was in the Blue Band at Penn State which really changed my life and shaped who I am as a person.  I started out as an alternate for the pre-game show (which is what the band is mostly known for) and eventually worked my way up the ranks to be the leader of the sax section in my senior year.  I also met Dan through the band, so I can't imagine how different my life would be if my high school band director never asked me to switch instruments!  This song was one of the main songs that the band would play and the stadium would play to get the crowd excited.  Any time I picture college, I always think about playing at football games and singing this song along with 100,000 other people! 


I also took the words in this song literally and in college never gave up on myself.  I was in the college of Information Sciences and Technology, which is a male-dominated major.  There were only a handful of women in my class, and it was a struggle to prove myself.  During class projects or team work, the guys would always give me the job of "recorder" or some other easy task, so I always worked on being a great leader and gain their respect.  I ended up becoming my college's delegate in the University Student Government and Faculty Senate and made Dean's List every semester of school.

Sometimes at parties or when I would talk with people for the first time, it would come up that I went to an inner city school and occasionally I would get rude comments about how surprising it was that I made it to main campus or they were shocked that I didn't drop out of college already. I always wanted to prove those people wrong and show that no matter where you come from (or what gender you are), if you don't stop believing in yourself you can achieve anything (I told you this post would be cheesy).


Graduation


I did end up making it to graduation, but skipped it to complete my first full marathon.  In college, I pretty much stopped running because of all of the activities I was involved in.  I missed the sport a lot and really wanted to get back into it, so I decided it would be fitting to run a marathon to signify the next chapter of my life.


I always had a big desire to travel and see the world, so after I graduated (and completed my race), I went to Europe with my high school best friend and her brother.  We spent almost a month traveling around, and made stops in Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and the Czech Republic.  It was such an eye-opening and life changing trip!  Traveling has definitely become a big passion of mine, and I've actually made it out of the country every year since I've graduated college.


Now

Good to be Alive - Andy Grammer

Yes, this is a super cheesy song, but it's really applicable for how I feel at this point in life!  I know that I've been lucky a lot of my life and have so many blessings.  I've also worked hard to get to this point in my life and try to live every day to the fullest!  I can't wait to see what the next chapter in life holds for me.  Plus, Dan's been singing this song a lot lately so I had to include it as the REAL soundtrack of my life right now ;)


Your turn!  What would be on the soundtrack of your life?
What is one of the most memorable years of your life?
Did you ever feel like you had to prove people wrong in your life?