Used up…

Hmm I just realized that the title could have negative connotations, but I do mean it in the most positive way. I was so proud of myself for using up some food purchases that I wasn’t super excited about.

I realized the solution to my dry Kodiak Cake waffles was mashing/placing some berries on top of the peanut butter for extra moisture. It also added a nice tart, juicy kick! I got through all 8 waffles 😀 and was super happy to be done and recycle the box!

The egg frittatas from Trader Joe’s I didn’t enjoy so much on their own, but wrapped up in a tortilla with veggies and cheese OR in a rice bowl (with more vegetables) gets a thumbs up from me! Also, box recycled and happy to be finished!

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Remember the Brussels Sprout Puffs? Hubby ended up feeling very snacky and finished them in a couple of nights and he actually enjoyed them! I love it when that happens 🙂

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I think I’ve mentioned on the blog that I use Coffee Mate creamer. I get the big momma version usually in hazelnut or vanilla (soo basic), but I really enjoy it! Over the years I’ve branched out and tried different creamers (Coffee Mate Naturals, plant based creamers, plain almond milk) and I have never enjoyed them as much as Coffee Mate.

I recently bought a Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce creamer and I was so excited, but upon first sip was so disappointed. It left my mouth oddly dry and it’s not a feeling that went away. I drank water, lemon water, had breakfast, had lunch, sparkling water and you guys the dry mouth stuck around.

This was one product I was unable to do much more with so I donated it to the work peeps and I am so curious to what they thought and if it had the same effect on them or if it was just me?!

Let me know if you guys have any “cleaner” creamers that you use and love. I love having more whole food items in my fridge and since this is something I use on the daily I would like it to have a “cleaner” ingredient list.

Thanks for sticking around for another post! I hope you lovelies enjoyed it! Till next time!!

Our weekend in San Diego

San Diego is definitely one of our favorite places to visit. It’s just such a beautiful city with incredible weather and delicious food! There’s been a lot of craziness and mis-matched schedule situations for B and I so we decided we were in need of a mini-getaway. This past weekend we drove ourselves to SD for an overnight trip.

We normally pick AirBnB for our stays because it’s cheaper and we are rarely ever there other than to sleep, but sweet hubs booked us a lovely little hotel close to Little Italy (our favorite little nook in SD).

We arrived around lunch time and went straight to Herb & Eatery after drooling over the Yelp pics. The restaurant is also a little mini store that sells drinks and kitchen goods. We both loved the fun decor and all the light that came in from the windows despite the grayish day.

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We ordered the curry chicken salad and the SD turkey. The curry chicken salad had just a hint of curry-enough to flavor, but nothing strong. The SD turkey was a solid turkey sandwich with the sprouts and the hearty bread! If we lived here I have a feeling we’d be coming here more often then not…

Afterwards we walked around a bit and then headed to our hotel. Hubby had also booked us massages so we dropped off our things, explored the hotel a bit, and headed out. I look so tired here!

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Post massage we were both so relaxed and exhausted so we tried taking a nap. I was on and off mostly because the same weekend we were here there was an EDM concert AND twitchcon. It was a bit noisy from outside the hotel, but lots of excitement and lots of people!

Post nap we left on HGTV and got ready to head out to dinner. We had decided ahead of time to just walk there. It was a 40 minute walk, but it was a lovely day and figured it would fuel our appetite. The walk was a little sketch for a few minutes, but we made it to Cucina Urbana with some time to kill.

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Our reservations were for 6:45pm, but we got seated probably closer to 7pm so we had some time to sit and look at the menu. It was restaurant week in SD too so the larger crowd may have been due to that. We were fine with it because it gave us time to ooo and ahh over the inside of the restaurant and people watch.

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By the time we got our table we knew exactly what we wanted and ordered the chicken liver pate, roasted cauliflower, and for our main got the pappardelle with short rib.

The chicken liver pate had barolo soaked fig on it and came with different kinds of bread. I am super happy about the fig situation because I am not much of a liver person and this pate definitely had an iron-y flavor. Even though this was not my favorite dish of the night it was one of those things you could tell was done really well and was good quality.

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Then they brought out the cauliflower which was dressed with fennel, pine nuts, golden raisins, mint and yogurt. My first bite was a bit sweet, but after that I got some salty goodness from the pine nuts possibly? It was a really incredible dish that gave you all the mouth feels.

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When the pappardelle came out with the short rib, mushroom, carrots, and topped with parm it looked like comfort in a bowl. It tasted like a Sunday roast but made better with the house made pasta.

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We both left full and happy and walked back 40 minutes to let the food settle and ponder our dessert options.

After perusing through some spots we went back to a classic and a favorite-Salt & Straw. I got the child’s scoop of cookie dough in a cup and B got a split scoop with the cookie dough and another flavor in a cone.

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We walked around with our ice-cream and then headed back to the hotel so I could change into comfier walking shoes. We were going to walk to Gaslamp, but after getting into the coziness of our hotel we both decided we’d rather just stay in and relax so instead we went and checked out the firepit/bar/outside balcony area of our hotel and sat around talking until we were both a little chilly and ready for some tele and bed!

On Sunday we woke up to sunnier skies and decided to do a quick workout and enjoy the free breakfast before heading back home. We literally had the quickest workout ever and headed to breakfast which was conveniently right next to the gym.

I had some eggs, spinach, and this biscuit which made the whole meal! I also have this thing for hotel waffles so I had to try this one. I will say it wasn’t the best, but it was okay. I think I may just enjoy the waffles where they give you the batter and you make it in the waffle maker yourself?

We showered and headed out to the Donut Bar before leaving SD. We had visited Donut Bar a few years ago and I remember loving it. We got the pumpkin with cream cheese icing, birthday cake, Boston cream (it was the favorite of the girl who was helping us), a nutella, and the creme brulee.

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Instead of just grabbing and going like we normally would we decided to try out a couple…we went for the pumpkin which was SO good. It was pumpkin spice flavored and the icing mellowed it all out with a good dose of sweetness. The creme brulee that we tried afterwards seemed underwhelming in comparison.

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The donuts here remind me a lot of the brioche type donuts we had in Maui when we went. They aren’t light, but dense and chewy for a yeasty donut.

We kept the rest for later that night and drove home. We had some errands to run in the form of grocery shopping so we did that, some laundry, and then prepped for our week ahead.

When we were ready to grab dinner we decided on Burger IM and ordered what ended up being a lot of food. We got their duo burgers, chili garlic wings, and their half and half side option of sweet potato fries and their special Burger IM fries which we had seasoned with Cajun seasoning.

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We got basic cheese burgers for our duos and they were like mini burgers (bigger than sliders, but smaller than a regular burger). These were just tasty cheeseburgers. We had no complaints!

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The wings were saucy, garlicky, and kinda sweet. They had great flavor! The fries were my biggest surprise. I didn’t think I would like the disc shaped potatoes as much as I did, bu they did a great job at keeping the outside crispy and inside fluffy. They were also a good thickness.

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We went for a really long 2 hour walk after dinner and when we came back we were ready for something sweet. Lucky for us we had some donuts left! The Boston cream had the same vanilla cream as the creme brulee and was again a bit underwhelming. The birthday cake was sweet and pretty close up there with the pumpkin for me. The nutella was also delicious, but I do wish there was more nutella on the donut.

We spend the rest of the night watching football and HGTV on Hulu until we got too tired and headed to bed!

We had a really great weekend of hanging out and eats! Have you been to SD? What’s your favorite place to go when you’re there? Let me know in the comments!

Potatoes Many Ways

Many ways might be a bit of a stretch, but I was on Pinterest and daydreaming about different lunch options and it hit me that a baked potato is the perfect vessel for ANYTHING. It’s also filling, counts as a starchy vegetable, and tastes delicious!

Before I jump into my potatoes I did learn that with a savory potato it is most important to oil and season the outside of your potato before throwing it in the oven. This creates that incredibly crispy skin. When you’re ready to open it up and dive in-salt and pepper go a LONG way in preventing a bland potato. Now that we got the technical stuff outta the way let’s jump into the “many” potatoes…

I started off pretty basic with a cheesy baked potato. I could only manage half the potato with each of these meals, but this meal was so simple even though I was full I didn’t feel very satisfied.

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The next time I got a little more creative with my potato. I got some beefless grounds, mini sweet peppers, and cheese and this potato was pretty spectacular. I loved that the beefless grounds got a little crispy, the peppers were a little charred and the cheese added some nice gooeyness. This was much more satisfying!

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I also enjoyed this version with some broccoli and cheese for extra veggie goodness and fiber. Even though the broccoli was just basic steamed broccoli I think the different texture goes a long way into breaking up the monotony.

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Out of all the potatoes though my absolute FAVORITE was this breakfast sweet potato. I baked it ahead of time and when it was time to prep it I would just throw it in the microwave for a bit, smash it up with cinnamon, microwave it some more and then shmear the heck out of it with PB.

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Hubby had talked about sweet potatoes and peanut butter and it always seemed like an incredibly delicious combo, but I never got around to it. After workouts I am ravenous so waiting an hour for a potato to bake was a no go. Having it prepped really helped and made it into a super fast, nutritious, and tasty meal!

Fried potatoes (as much as I enjoy them) don’t always leave me feeling my best, but I really loved having this root vegetable be the base for my dinner. I would love to know how you like to make your potato? What are your favorite toppings/mix-ins?

Thanks for reading! See you loves on Thursday!

Snacks I do like

After my post on snacks that failed me I felt a little bad…well bad enough to show you guys that there are some snacks I really like.

Some of these are old and have been in previous favorite posts and some are new, but they are all delicious to me.

These plantain chips are an old favorite…I feel like I’ve loved these for years now. They are crunchy and savory and I would pick these over potato chips for snacking. I do try to pair them along with something a little more filling like baby carrots since I could mindlessly eat the bag otherwise!

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I love these little granola bites. They say each pouch has the same nutrients has a serving of vegetables, but I like them because when I need something sweet but also a little more nutritious these fit the bill.

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Almonds are a great nut and have some protein, fat, and just taste delicious when roasted and salted. I like these particular ones from Trader Joes. They are so easy to stash in my bag or take in the car to prevent any hangry episodes.

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Speaking of Trader Joes, I discovered these grapes while doing some grocery shopping. They were sampling them and I was intrigued by the shape. I adored them because they were sweet and had to get some! Definitely a fun fruit to try out and we ate them up pretty quickly!

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I know I’ve talked about Mary’s Crackers, but these everything seasoning ones are new to me and I really enjoyed them. I love the garlicky flavor that it has and pairs well with any hummus. I haven’t tried it with cheese yet, but I’m sure it would be delicious…now that I say that a cheese board with these crackers seems like an incredible idea!

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This savory Tex-Mex trail mix from Target is not a new favorite, but I recently repurchased and remembered how much I enjoyed these last year. I don’t need to tell you guys how fun it is to eat trail mix-the different textures and flavors prevent boredom so a pretty great snack for me.

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What are some of your favorite snacks? Anything new you’ve discovered? Let me know in the comments!

 

Weekend Randomness

Weekends for me aren’t necessarily Saturdays and Sundays…they are basically any days that I am off and sometimes that falls on an actual weekend and sometimes it falls on a Tuesday. That is the beauty of inpatient nursing…that being said I did have an actual weekend, but a long one so I thought it would be fun to share that with you.

On days that I am off and hubby works I try to cook up something yummy, nutritious and different then our quick throw together stuff. Salmon is definitely one of those meals that gets thrown into rotation-hubby loves it when salmon is on the menu and it fits into that yummy and nutritious category.

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We had this piece of salmon with some roasted cauli and since we had a few carrots leftover I roasted those up too.

I’ve been enjoying rice bowls for lunches/dinners recently. I have honestly never been a rice person, but recently I’ve been craving it. I love throwing in whatever veggies we have on hand along with some beefless ground and this green sriracha from Trader Joes.

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When hubby and I finally had the chance to go out we hit up a Mediterranean spot, The Diplomat, to get in some good eats. To start we had the hummus, pickles, and falafel.

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We ended up sharing the lamb chops for our main. I think the hummus may have been one of my favorite parts of the meal. It was so smooth and creamy!

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On Sunday morning, post HIIT I toasted up a Kodiak Cake waffle (yes, still eating them!) and spread some peanut butter and mashed up some raspberries on top. Will be doing this again!

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During our grocery run we ended up hungry and found ourselves in the car eating rotisserie chicken and some cake we picked up from Porto’s. The carrot cake was my favorite outta the two and I will definitely be adding that to my list of items to get from there.

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We wrapped our weekend with In n’ Out and flan from Porto’s along with a nice long walk. I hope you guys enjoyed the post!

What’s your favorite weekend thing to do?

 

Loving

I have some very random things that I have been loving recently and some of them were inspired by some of my favorite blogs to read!

We are always running out to buy cards for birthdays, anniversaries, etc and recently through Mackenzie I discovered you could buy some gorgeous cards from Amazon. I took the leap and got a variety box of birthday cards and am absolutely obsessed with them! They are each a different design and are absolutely beautiful!

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I have a love/like relationship with this next item. I can’t quite decide how I feel about these cotton candy grapes. I can’t seem to eat a whole bunch of them in one sitting like I can most fruit, but at the same time they taste so good and do a great job at curbing my sweet tooth.

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Blaze Pizza is such a great option for a quick, yummy pie that has a great chewy crust and bubbly cheese. I always forget how much I love this pizza until I have it again and then I am obsessed all over again.

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I love a good french fry, but honestly I don’t always feel so great after eating them so when I discovered carrot fries on Carly’s blog I was super excited. I love roasting them up with some salt, pep, and chili powder. Hubby loves them more than sweet potato fries and that’s a big win in our house!

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We recently got Hulu and I have been binging on everything especially some HGTV. I used to love watching Fixer Upper, but at this point I’ve seen all the episodes and needed another bingeworthy HGTV show and found it with Good Bones. I love this mom and daughter duo!

I’m not big into energy drinks but this Alani Nu Hawaiian shaved ice is so yummy! I could kinda go for one right now…

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I could probably go on for days, but I will cut it off there and see you guys Monday! Have a lovely rest of the week and let me know what shows you’ve been binging in the comments!

 

 

 

 

Snack Fails

Happy Monday my people!

I am usually a pretty optimistic person and tryy to find the brighter side of things and as much as I don’t like starting the week with a “negative” post I thought this would be a fun one.

I don’t want you guys to make the same snacking mistakes I did and recently I’ve had quite a few fails!

The first and saddest are these Annie’s Crispy Snack Bars. They are supposed to be a “healthier” (read:cleaner) version of the beloved Rice Krispie treats, but alas they are not the same and I am not a fan. These seem almost too sweet and definitely don’t have that same vanilla marshmallow flavor as the other guy…if you have ever had a Rice Krispie treat and loved it-don’t bother with these.

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I actually don’t even have these in my house anymore because I took them to work and let everyone else eat them. The Bear Naked Peanut Butter and Honey granola bites…dry as the desert. I could only eat 2 at a time because it took so long to just chew one of these down!

I really enjoyed Vegan Rob’s Cauliflower Puffs so I was certain I would enjoy the Brussels Sprouts Puffs. I wasn’t exactly wrong, but I wasn’t 100% right either. They are enjoyable for a puff, but honestly I’d rather just eat Hippeas than these. I was hoping for a Brussels sprouts flavor and there is zilch. There’s nothing bad about them, but I would not repurchase because there are other puffs that I enjoy eating more…

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This next item is technically breakfast, but it could be a snack?! I enjoyed the Kodiak Cakes Pancakes so much I thought I would enjoy the waffles. One-hundo percento wrong! These are dry and lack flavor and I will definitely be finishing the box, but I will never get these again!

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I don’t want you guys to worry that I will be throwing all this stuff out because I won’t. I’ll take the Annie’s to work and have my work buddies give them a shot and the puffs and the waffles I’ll finish up myself. I always feel really proud of myself when I buy something I don’t like and still get through it-I think that’s a part of #adulting.

I hope you enjoyed this post and please let me know if you’ve tried any of these items and what you thought?! I would love to hear if you loved them or disliked them or even what snacks have failed you…let’s chat in the comments 🙂

Till next time!

Gobble

I’ve definitely done my fair share of food subscription boxes and have loved some and not so much others, but since we’ve been trying to cook more at home I felt like I needed some inspiration.

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I Googled some boxes and really enjoyed the options that Gobble had for the week I needed and decided to take the plunge. We definitely had to think about narrowing it down to three recipes because there were a few that sounded really delicious.

In the end we ordered the honey harissa shrimp, Souvlaki marinated salmon, and the channa masala with eggs.

The first dish we made was the salmon. I found the instructions extremely easy to follow and the whole dish came together quickly with just a little prep work. The marinade was something I hadn’t had before and found it to be really lovely and fresh on top of the salmon. The salad on the side included orzo, cucumber, tomato, olive, and feta and was bright and delicious.

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The second dish we cooked up was the channa masala with eggs. This was a different take on shakshuka (the tomato and egg dish). I know hubby was very excited about this one and he really liked it. I enjoyed it at the beginning, but for whatever reason as I continued to eat the texture started to bother me and started kicking my gag reflex into gear. I love channa masala and I love eggs, but together it didn’t work for me.

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The last dish of our box was the honey harissa shrimp. This is a great weeknight meal for us because it’s light and healthy! This came with a broccoli and cauliflower “couscous” that you sauté in a pan with golden raisins and almonds. I liked the shrimp, but I enjoyed the couscous the most. I didn’t think I would enjoy having raisins in the dish, but the sweetness was scrumptious with all the savoriness. There was an arugula “salad” that came with a garlic lemon tahini to toss it with and it added a nice bit of fattiness to an otherwise light dinner.

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Because of having the sauces prepared and in a package ready to go and having little prep work the dishes came together super quickly. There were very few things that we needed to pull from our pantry-just oil, salt, and pepper.

When B and I talked about Gobble I mentioned how this would be great for busy people who have a lot on their plate and just want a home cooked nutritious meal. Because it’s so fast, it’s easy to throw together with a small amount of time.

I enjoyed making and eating the meals, but I honestly did not feel very inspired after getting through our whole box. I don’t know if it’s because we didn’t really cook much more than the protein and the other components were mostly about mixing things together and chopping…thinking back it might be this.

I always love trying out a new box and getting a feel for what it’s all about so more than likely I will try another box at some point and see how it compares. I hope you guys enjoyed this post!

Let me know what you’ve been whipping up in the kitchen and what gives you cooking inspo when you’re running low. See you lovelies Monday!

 

Labor Day Weekend

The only thing I love more than a good relaxing weekend is a good relaxing weekend of good eats!

I actually have some eats from the week mixed in because good food is good food no matter when you eat it. Also, I think my brain is tired so forgive me if I say some off the wall things in this post 🙂

On Tuesday I had this simple breakfast of egg frittata from Trader Joes, a waffle and some blackberries. The egg frittata has been compared to the Starbuck’s sous vide egg bites, but this was not my favorite on it’s own. I did put it in a tortilla later in the week with some cheese and enjoyed it MUCH more that way.

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For dinner that night we had some leftover ground beef so hubby whipped up some burgers and we are still on the carrot fries kick!

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Fast forward to Thursday night our Gobble box arrived. Since we both had work and hubs actually had to work late we made a dish from the box on Friday night: Souvlaki marinated salmon…I’ll do a whole post about this later on this week!

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Saturday morning included workouts and grocery shopping! I was starving and decided to pick up a turkey pesto sandwich from Sprout’s. Sometimes a sandwich and some potato chips just hits the spot and it deffo did…noms! I was only able to eat half the sammie and half the chips before I was full.

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We made an early dinner (linner, really) of the baked eggs in channa masala from Gobble before hubby had to head out to a work thing. I ended up hanging out and binging on all the reality TV on Hulu.

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It was a little past 10:30pm when he was heading home and I was feeling the hungers again and Blaze sounded like a great idea so we picked me up a simple pie. I ate the whole things minus 2 slices. The hubs ate one of those….

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I ate the last slice with some tomatoes the next day (banana for dessert)!

Sunday was our first full day off together so we made the most of it and headed to Santa Monica. I really wanted Sidecar Doughnuts and went for their yeast glazed doughnut. They are just so good! You can’t go wrong with this place.

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We were both pretty tired as we walked around so we decided to grab a snack. I’m normally not an energy drink person, but I just felt like the day called for it. I saw this Alani Nu in Hawaiian shaved ice and felt like it sounded so incredible. The hubs found some gummies.

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The energy drink was DELISH! LOVED IT! The gummies were not great, BUT hubby totally enjoyed them. He loved them so much he bought a few more the next day!

We picked up a few baked goods and headed home to make some burgers (we have a serious problem with burgers).

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Burgers-delicious! Sadly dessert did not go as well…we had stopped by Milk Bar and Alcove. The cookie and birthday cake truffles from Milk Bar were good, but for whatever reason the cakes from Alcove were not.

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Alcove has been our go to cake spot and we were a bit bummed, but what is a girl to do?

The next day we did some more grocery shopping for the week and made our last Gobble dinner. It was a honey harissa shrimp dish!

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We finished up any left over dessert and called it a weekend!

How was your LDW? Let me know in the comments what you guys did!

 

Happy Labor Day!

Happy Monday and Happy Labor Day!

I love a good long weekend even if I don’t always get to participate (I do this time)! I hope you are all having a great weekend and start to the week. I am working on a couple of posts from this past weekend and those will probably be going up next week 🙂

Until then, enjoy this picture of a lunch I had! And yes, that lovely blob are sardines, and yes they don’t picture great, BUT they sure did make a yummy lettuce wrap 😉

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Enjoy the day and let me know in the comments what you guys got up to!