Mondays.

Does anyone like them? i’ll be honest, I don’t really!  The only upside about Mondays for me is that because of the nature of my job- they are not the most taxing, long days.  They are shorter and a little more laid back so I can ease back into the work week.

Obviously I dislike Mondays because they mean Jason has gone back to work too and I won’t see him again until Friday.

Today is MLK Day.  I am thankful for a man who stood up and put his life on the line for what he knew was right rather than going along with what was most popular.  We could stand to benefit from a few more men like him in our culture.

Today my trainer cancelled my after-work sessions in honor of MLK day- so I had to hang out with this chick for 45 minutes:

jillian michaels

 

I decided about 30 minutes in that if I had to rely on workout videos for my exercise- I would never work out.  I can’t handle the boredom and jumping around my living room. I missed my running buddy today : ) Jason has been feeling a little pain from running lately and wanted to know if I wanted to do the video over Facetime. #NO
Speaking of running, we ran on Saturday+Sunday.  Due to a family birthday party, we didn’t get to run together until dark on Saturday.  It was about 28* and dark and super foggy.  Well that was a disaster of a recipe for this girl— who biffed it.  Jason was very concerned and attentive and made me stop at Walgreens on the way home so he could buy me some Neosporine 🙂  Sweet boy.

Jason has been such an inspiration with his diet+exercise goals that I have gotten on board with him.  We are using the My Fitness Pal App on our phones.  If you haven’t used it before, I really recommend it for tracking your food and exercise.  It’s been good for me to see the breakdown of nutrition in my diet, and it is surprising how many restaurants’ calories are in there.  It’s a great resource for those trying to get healthy.

I am really excited for my volleyball game tomorrow! We have had two games so far, and we have improved a lot already.  It is just such a fun thing to look forward to in the work week.  Plus my #1 Fan will be in attendance! ; )

 

 

Five Friday Faves.

1. It is Friday! And #datenight.  If you are reading this you already know about my subtle enthusiasm for the start of the weekend.  Weekends are the best! Jason and I are going on a double date with our friends Tim and Karen who have the boat we go out on all summer.  I am excited because we haven’t seen them since our last boat day (oops)– except Tim and Jason do go to lunch from time to time.  We are going to the Cheesecake Factory and it should be so much fun! I am excited to have a little splurge after eating healthy all week. (considering splitting this)

cheesecake

We even get to use a giftcard that I got for Christmas. #giftcardforthewin!

2. Tomorrow is my “rest day.”  Thank the good Lord.  My knees are making me question the aging process.  Too many squats?  I don’t even know, but I’m ready for a rest and a break.

3. These little suckers.

MorningStarFarmsBuffaloWingsVeggieWings_317

 

Listen.  I know they are “processed food.”  I know they have a little bit of sodium.  But people, trust me on this.  They are out of this world amazing.  You need to try them.  They are only 200 calories for 5, and are a great source of protein.  I may or may not eat them 4-5 days a week.  And I don’t even feel bad.

You know it’s serious when I have Jason eating “fake meat.”  And liking it!

4.  A freshly-detailed car.  Is there anything better than this?  I’m not sure that there is.  I love the just-vaccummed, airfreshened, armor-alled feeling.  I wish it would stay nice forever.  Also, thank you, my dear Job, for buying me a car wash twice a month.  I am grateful.

5. New shoes.  That were a steal.  My old purples Nikes are starting to look a little pathetic.

nikefrees

 

Per usual, I am so stinking excited for my jumbo Starbucks in the morning that I can hardly stand it.
Have a great weekend all!

 

New Year Fresh Start

Well if this first 10 days of 2013 are representative of what this year will be like, I can say the themes would honestly be:

-running

-non-stop time with Jason

-organization

Seriously 2013 could not be off to a more fun start. Usually I am so in love with Christmas that I experience some post-New Years blues.  Well not this year.  Jason and I were together almost constantly from December 29th on.  It has been absolutely incredible.

Why is he so cute?

Why is he so cute? He got me the New Years party hats and light up champagne flutes as a surprise, I got him the cupcakes ❤

photo-55

We have cooked and cleaned together, ran together, shopped, gone to church, had some fun meals, and did I mention running?  I am so proud of Jason and excited about all the running we have been doing! Remember those 36* days? Oh yes, we ran then too!  He has only taken 1 day off since New Years.  Boy’s on a roll!  and I am back to Bootcamp 4 times a week, and running with him on the weekends.

I have done quite a bit of organizing projects during all the time I had off for Christmas break.  I cleaned out my home office and I am so much happier with it being organized! It was that room where I threw stuff in there and closed the door quick.  There is so much paperwork for my job and I had no system for managing it.  I used to get so embarrassed when a friend would go in there to change clothes or Jason would put something in there.  I prayed they never really looked  around ; )  In addition to the office, I also cleaned out and organized 2 closets and my pantry.  I am so happy with the little improvement it makes and the joy it brings me to be in an organized space.  The best thing for my pantry was the purchase of two 84 cent plastic tubs from Target that I used to organize my vitamins (chronic pill-popper) and then my first aid/medicines.  It keeps everything so neat to have things in bins.  I am looking to incorporate this more in other areas too.

I am missing Jason hardcore with him being back in Portland this week- but already looking forward to getting together again! : )

Do you ever make a recipe for the 1st time and have literally no inkling if it is looking like it will turn out or flop?  That is me right now.  I have these Protein Cheesecakes in the oven right now (someone posted eating 1 for breakfast on Insta this morning, so I went with it)…

http://mealsandmovesblog.com/2012/02/03/pumped-up-protein-cheesecake/

I’ll let you know.

Blog challenge.

Recently a dear friend of mine informed me she was doing a December blog challenge- to blog every single day! She informed me my best version would be blogging once a week.  Love real friends.

I am a #sporadicblogger, but maybe someday it will stick?

What’s been up lately?  I like recaps best when they’re by photos.  Instagram is more my speed and something I can typically keep up with.  [Also, does anyone even remotely like facebook anymore or is it just me annoyed with what it has become lately?]

Here’s what I feel lately: grateful.  This is a crazy fun season of life.  Friends getting engaged, friends getting married, buying houses, having babies.  I am so happy for all of the joyful announcements and celebrations all around.  God is good and faithful, and He answers our prayers.  For a long time, I thought I could settle for less than God’s best and be happy anyway.  I don’t think so anymore.  Mostly I just thank Him that He has brought me to where I am today.  It makes me want to cry how undeserving I am but how loving and gracious He is in spite of my weakness.                                                                  Enough with the watery eyes, let’s photo bomb!

August.

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Fallin in love in the sweet heart of summer.

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On a date at the Oregon State Fair.  This day was so fun, and Jake Owen put on a great show.  It is my personal belief that you cannot go to the fair without ending the night on the ferris wheel.  Turns out I found someone who agrees with me.

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September brought 1 last boat day and then all of the fun of football season!

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On to October.

Image                      My childhood bestfriend got married. So happy for her.Image                              Fun at the Pumpkin Patch #rainy

Image                                    Jasons first Beaver game ever. He is a good sport.

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Sometimes I think he is so cute I have to sneak a picture of him.

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November brought this boy’s birthday!!! We went to the beach with his family for the weekend.Image

I love #datenight.  The best thing about living in different places is how excited we still get for every Friday night!Image

Another place I have been spending a good amount of time in the last month: the gym.  I joined my Mom’s bootcamp class after attending on a whim and a 2 week free trial.  I have never felt so sore/strong/hurts so good.  If you’ve seen me in the last couple weeks, it’s quite likely I’ve made you feel my bicep.  #normal  I really am enjoying it though, and the fruits that come with the labor ; )

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This might be my new favorite picture of us…except for how classy that dusty mirror is.  Oops.  This was our pre-Thanksgiving date night.  I decided to dress up for fun, and unbeknownst to me, Jason did too.  He wanted to keep it a surprise where we were going and Homeboy hit a homerun when he took me to Rudy’s.  We had the best time!

ImageMy cousin’s sweet baby in the jam jams I got him at Thanksgiving.  I love getting together with all of our family.  It goes too fast, but is such a sweet day.

December so far ; )

This weekend we went to the Zoolights (thank you, Boeing!) with Jason’s roommates and their girlfriends.  It was a cold and rainy night, but we had hot cocoa and an umbrella.  Afterward, Jason took me to Portland City Grill for dinner.  Such a fun night!

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This month is off to a VERY wonderful start, and I cannot wait for all of the great times ahead with family and friends for Christmas!! Christmas, you are my favorite!!!!

Long time no blog.

hmmm. It doesn’t really even make sense to try to summarize the months of May and June because it wouldn’t do them justice.  There was lots of fun to be had!

There were many dates.  Lots of ice cream eaten.  And some days on the boat.

This was my very favorite weekend:

[Memorial Day]

At the Civil War game in Corvallis.  Let’s put it this way: only one of us could be very pleased with the outcome of this game and that was me.  Beautiful day for baseball : )

I took this photo from our dinner table on the Seattle Waterfront. I love food, don’t get me wrong, but I am a total sucker for good atmosphere. And this one was pretty amazing.

Also:  I experienced this place for the very first time.

http://www.papahaydn.com/

I told Jason that night that I thought I could die happy 🙂

Dessert might be the way to my heart.

 
June was very full too.  More of the same with dates and dessert, but some very special additions too!

There was some running happening: (in the rain no less)

I got to meet a just-born baby (and then I cried like one, naturally):

Then a very very special thing happened: Two of the dearest and sweetest tied the knot.  God could not be more honored by their love and relationship.  The wedding was a beautiful, sacred, holy day that many have prayed for for a long time.  (Some people get tears in their eyes just blogging about it, ahem)

God is so good and faithful.  Sometimes I feel like we rejoice even more knowing the long road that led to this moment.

 

I was very honored to play a tiny role in their special day.  This was so much fun.  There were a lot of precious practice sessions with the sweet bride leading up to her big day. Loved that.

 

We had a lot of fun at their beautiful rehearsal dinner at the Wild Pear.

I felt it entirely appropriate that “the camo dress” make a reappearance in honor of its previous debut at a VanDyk Family event. ; )

 

 

Finally, the 30th was also this little lady’s birthday!

 

Happy Birthday, Mama!

 

 

 

Sunny Days.

My Word. The sunshine this weekend was just unreal.  I enjoyed myself to the max.  One of those weekends where you feel like … I did that to the fullest, I didn’t waste a minute and I would like to do that again 10x over. : )

Saturday looked like this:

 

 

Gosh I just love these boys.  They played unbelievably well and it was a wonderful game.  We went with our Pastor of my parents’ church in Stayton, plus his wife and daughter.  It was such a great time, and some of us may have come home with pink shoulders. Ahem. : ) Plus clearly Benny is my boy ; )

Did anyone catch the sunset on Saturday? It was gorgeous and I caught it while driving home at the end of the night. Like most things God made, this photo will not do it justice.

*Also an expert eye may notice a little bit of Instagram-ing going on.  After some subtle encouragement from a strong and sweet friend, plus a little lesson from a boy- I joined the ranks and I’m working on it.  Follow me if you wish : )

On Sunday, I slept in and went on a little hike with a boy.  We started at Marquam Trail and ended at Council Crest- which is the highest point in Portland.  It looked like this:

It was really fun to be out in the sunshine all day long, and to enjoy the beautiful weather and views!

From our hike, we went down by the waterfront to walk and have dinner at McCormick and Schmicks.

Then we went to church here:

http://www.ajesuschurch.org/

and ended the night with this:

uhhhhhhhh dying.  We have had this twice already together.  He likely did not know what a test it was when I asked: “What kind of cheesecake is your favorite?” (while on our way to the Cheesecake Factory) Lucky for him he came up with the right answer.

Hope everyone had a great weekend and enjoyed the sneak peak of summer as much as I did! ; )

 

 

Mondays.

So last night I had a fun little bout of insomnia.

After about an hour I decided if I was going to be awake, I might as well enjoy myself. Aka Downton Abbey Marathon in the house.

There’s lots of hype around this series. At first I didn’t get it, but after 3-4 episodes I was hooked. Mary is just my favorite. Anyone else as into this as I am?
In other news, tonight is Bunco night. YAY! I am so excited for the fun girl time to come. I really enjoy the group of women that I play with. If I happen to win a little something– even better 😉

And speaking of girl time- of course we can’t forget THIS GIRL tonight…

I know I know. Guilty pleasure. I really like her husband a lot. She is total crazy-pants control freak. He is the voice of peace and calm and keeps her feet on the ground. Me acting like we are close personal friends with this analysis…

Finally, a snapshot from first thing today. This little reminder is how I roll lately.

Couldn’t we all use a little extra dose of truth in the morning?

Peace.

It might be a little bit KLove 1996, but I have found myself praying this song over and over the last few weeks.

Let the Peace of God Reign

Father of Life Draw Me Closer
Lord, My Heart Is Set On You
Let Me Run the Race of Time
With Your Life Unfolding Mine
And Let the Peace of God
Let It Reign

Oh Holy Spirit You’re My Comfort
Strengthen Me Hold My Head Up High
And I Stand Upon Your Truth
Bringing Glory Unto You
And Let the Peace of God
Let It Reign

Oh Lord I Hunger For More of You
Rise Up Within Me Let Me Know Your Truth
Oh Holy Spirit, Saturate My Soul
And Let the Life of God
Fill Me Now
Let Your Healing Power
Breathe Life and Make Me Whole
And the Peace of God
Let It Reign