Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I Love Boston Project: Yard House

In between the shower marathon that has been the last two weeks (and to continue this weekend), I managed to fit in a little I Love Boston Project. I'll give you a clue, it was in my favorite area of Boston, well at least one of my favorites...


Yup, that's Fenway Park. I'm not often in this area when it's not for a Red Sox Game so it was fun to see it a bit more quiet. The Kenmore Square area is home to more than just Fenway Park though, including Boston University (a school that holds a special place in my heart after I spent a summer taking classes there- but I won't forget they are my college hockey rivals too so it's a love/hate relationship), and many, many restaurants and bars.

This weekend Eric wanted to try a restaurant called Yard House, which he had heard has the most beers on tap in the world... whether or not that is true was really not a concern of ours, at least we know it has a lot, right?


Yard House is a quick two minute walk down Brookline Avenue from Fenway Park and I can only imagine how packed it must be before games. It's a huge bar/restaurant and probably has at least 15 big screen TVs up on the wall. They also have an outside patio and a section of the restaurant that can open up during nice summer nights. While we were there, my college hockey team BC was playing on some of the TVs and March Madness was taking up all the other TVs.

Eric and I started off with some drinks- Eric ordered a 6 beer sampler and I got a Thomas Hooker Blonde Ale.


I have to say that I am overall a big fan of big pub type atmospheres with good beer. However, I'm usually not a fan of the food since it's usually greasy and makes my stomach unhappy. Well, Yard House was not your average bar food. I ordered an amazing veggie sandwich with mushrooms, eggplant, zucchini, red peppers and basil.


If you are wondering why this restaurant is called Yard House, it's because of their 1/2 yard beer glasses, of which Eric so nicely ordered next- for blog purposes of course.



Okay fine, it was fun to play with.

After dinner I was going to stop to take some pictures of the other side of Kenmore Square where you can see the Charles River, but I couldn't find a good place so you'll have to wait to get that another time. I will definitely be back to Yard House. It's also worth noting that Yard House locations can be found throughout the country, so you may want to check if there is one near you!

Do you tend to like bar/pub food? What's your favorite random kind of beer? Do you like to try new-to-you restaurants?

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Say It, Do It- Baby Take Over

I've just completed my second weekend in a row of baby showers. Next weekend I have a bridal shower and engagement party so I'll be back to weddings, which is a little more where my mind belongs these days. Babies freak me out. But, man are their clothes just SO much cuter than any wedding present could ever be. Thank goodness for that.

Yesterday was Tiff's bridal shower- one of my longtime friends and bridesmaid. She looked beautiful! Definitely one of those lucky pregnant people who is all belly.



My mom and I got Tiff a bathtub (shaped like a whale), some bath towels and toys, books and a pink Snuggles. Snuggles is actually really named Snuffles and he is made by Gund. My aunt Laurie got me a Snuffles which my mom renamed Snuggles for my first birthday. I carried him around and slept with him every night until college (and would still now except he was lost, sob story for another day). Here is me + Caroline + Snuggles:


I have decided I am going to bring back the amazingness that is Snuggles by giving a Snuggles to all of my friends who have babies, and Tiff is the first one. This is fitting since she is probably one of the only ones who needed no explanation when she pulled Pink Snuggles out of the tissue paper. She and Snuggles enjoyed much time together in the middle school days. Clearly I was never ashamed of my teddy bear...

For those of you who may have baby shower or birthday parties to attend in the future, the books I got were Goodnight Moon, Pat the Bunny, Ten Little Ladybugs and We Are In a Book (Elephant and Piggie). The kindergarten teacher in me was on excitement overload buying these books. Thanks Lisa for giving me the idea to buy books!

Anyway, time to recap last week's workouts and set my goals for this week. Last week was a great week in life. The weather was BEAUTIFUL, work somehow did not stress me out at all and I ended up being more social than usual during the week. Let's see how I did with my workouts.

Last Week's Workouts

Monday- Ran 2 Miles

Tuesday- off

Wednesday- Swam 32 laps

Thursday- off

Friday- Ran 2 Miles, Eric's crazy ab bootcamp

Saturday- off

So, not my best week, but not my worst either. The weather was so nice that Eric and I went on several walks, so at least even with those days off I was still moving a bit. I'm definitely happy with how my running and swimming is going right now and I hope to get my biking in the same place shortly.

This Week Plans

Sunday- Swim

Monday- off

Tuesday- Spin class

Wednesday- Run

Thursday or Friday- swim

Saturday- off or maybe run depending on how the weather is

It's going to be a busy week so hopefully I can get everything in that I want to!

In other great news this weekend, I booked my flight to Seattle this summer so Eric and I can see the Pacific Northwest and go to Amber's wedding! SO excited.

What are your workout plans for the week? What do you like to give for gifts at baby showers? Were you attached to a stuffed animal or dog?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Say It, Do It- Still Truckin'

A Look At Last Week...

Sunday March 11th- Run 2 miles

Monday March 12th and Tuesday March 13th- off, but I did go on nice walks at night- enjoying the sunlight later in the evening!

Wednesday- Swim 30 laps

I had another dream swimming session at the gym this week. When I arrived at the pool, it was so empty I had a lane to myself for a couple of laps and then someone joined me. I was so "in the zone" swimming that I actually thought to myself that Wednesday was a great day to swim because I thought the place was so empty. When I stopped to take a break and the water was finally out of my ears I realized it had actually become SUPER busy while I was completely zoned out. The last few laps I had to circle swim which was a bit interesting with the group I had, but I was just so happy that I was able to do 30 laps without really killing myself that I didn't even mind.

Thursday- Run 2 miles

Friday- Eric's crazy ab bootcamp

Okay fine, this was basically an off day. I wasn't feeling the best and my knee was acting up a bit when running on Thursday so I planned to do nothing. Then Eric asked if I wanted to do some abs so I headed down to the basement to get my ab muscles killed by my husband.

Saturday- 1 hour Circuit Training class

I joined one of my friends for a Saturday morning Circuit Training class at the gym. The best way to explain this class was a mix between step aerobics, kick boxing, boot camp and some kind of weight training class. I liked this class because it was always changing and felt like a good work out. The only part that was really tough was when abs were involved, mine were less than impressed to have to be in a 90 second plank after the day they had on Friday...oops!

This Week Plans

Even though it's already 3 days into the week, I'm still not sure of my exact days for everything but I'm hoping to get in 2 runs, at least 1 swim and at least 1 bike. This means I'll be getting up tomorrow morning for my first morning work out in a long time. However, I'm going to swim so hopefully the cold water will wake me right up!

If you can't tell by my work outs right now, I'm really hoping to do another sprint triathlon this summer if my knee will allow it. I'm not sure which one yet, so if you have any recommendations, let me know!

What are your work out plans for the week? Have you been getting the summer weather we've been getting?

Monday, March 19, 2012


I got a new best friend this weekend...


His name is Benson and I love him. Although he is my BFF, he is not technically mine... he is really Eric's mom's dog. To me this is kind of like being an aunt to a cute kid, I get to enjoy him but I don't really have the responsibility of taking care of him all the time. We all know how much I dislike responsibility.


Benson was adopted from a shelter in South Carolina, and we met up with him in New Hampshire on Saturday. We immediately loved him. You are probably going to be seeing a lot of pictures of him in these parts. We don't know much about Benson's past or even what kind of dog he is, but he is probably about 3 years old.

After we tired the poor dog out, we left him to grab some dinner. I had been sort of looking forward to a low key St. Patrick's Day this year, and by that I mean not celebrating at all (other than wearing a green shirt to a class at the gym and to get the dog haha). So, I was not 100% impressed when we pulled up to one of my favorite restaurants and they were having a big St. Patrick's Day celebration. They even had attached a huge tent to the restaurant and had a live Irish band. Luckily I was easily persuaded to celebrate by green beer...


Somehow despite my many years of St. Patrick's Day shenanigans I have never had green beer before. A couple of these and I immediately forgot that I was not celebrating St. Patrick's Day :) Plus on the way home I found a newly opened frozen yogurt store... triple score.


Saturday was an ideal day, but Sunday was a bit less in my mind... though I have to admit I did go back to the frozen yogurt place. Sunday morning was spent getting work done and then I had to go to the first of 3 weekends in a row of showers. It was a Jack and Jill baby shower so Eric had to attend as well. I thought that would make it better but it turns out there aren't too many ways to make being stuck inside on a beautiful day watching someone open presents exciting... though green beer may have helped...

This time of the year in kindergarten things slow down a bit and I'm hoping to have some time to focus on things I want to at home. Here are some things I'm working on:

1. My Family Blog: I think I mentioned to you guys before that I started a blog to record family stories and history. I'd love to be someone who would make an awesome scrapbook but I know I'm more likely to stick with a blog. I've heard some awesome stories from my grandmother and others, and I found out last weekend that my grandparents were married in 1950 in the same town I live in, and I found some cool pictures of what the street looked like back then, completely different than it looks now!

2. Workouts. I owe you guys a recap of last week, but working out continues to go well- the weather has been perfect for outdoor workouts and then gym has really helped me change things up.

3. Wedding stuff. Guess who still has not done her wedding album? That would be me... finally started working on that process last week. I am also doing a lot of planning for other people's weddings because we have 7 this year! I sent out of my passport application (I need a new one because I changed my name) on Saturday so I can go to Canada this summer. My goal is also to book hotels for a May wedding in Vermont and a June wedding in New Jersey as soon as possible.

How was your weekend? What is going on in your life- catch me up :)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Say it, Do it- Swimming Love

In case you missed it last week, I decided to participate in Jess' weekly Say it Do it posts. I'll be recapping my previous week of working out and planning for the next week.

A Look At Last Week...

Last Sunday I rejoined my old gym, meaning that I participated in a couple of things I had not done in years. I feel like overall this week was a good mix of trying new things but also balancing my knee's need for not doing too much at once.

Sunday March 4: Swam-20 laps

This was my epic return to swimming after an over 2 year hiatus. My original goal was to make it 16 laps, but I made it to 20. I enjoyed some pretty sore arms on Monday after this work out!

Monday March 5: Off

Tuesday March 6: Spin Class- 50 Minutes

I wouldn't call my return to spinning epic, but it was a return nonetheless. I love spinning, but my knee is less of a fan. Therefore I spent the entire 50 minutes trying not to piss it off. This included but was not limited to completely ignoring my teacher's speed and resistance recommendation. For future reference, keeping your bike on a resistance of 3 makes 50 minutes pass very slowly.

Wednesday March 7: Run/walk- 2 Miles

Yes I realize if I am trying to NOT piss off my knee, a biking session followed by a run the next day was maybe not my best plan. However, if you saw the weather last Wednesday you'd know I couldn't pass it up. I took it easy on this run so my knee seemed to tolerate it okay.

Thursday March 8: Swam- 20 laps

Friday March 9 & Saturday March 10: Off

I'm very happy with how last week went, and I'm hoping future weeks can look similar to this, with maybe some yoga thrown in when I can fit it in. My main goal in all of this is to be able to do everything I want to do (read: run, bike, swim and yoga) without upsetting my tendonitis in my left knee. Sadly, this is not an easy goal and will probably always be a work in progress. Last week my knee handled things pretty well. I was aware it was there, and there was some slight pain at times but nothing I could not handle. It's always a great balance between tolerating some small uncomfortable feeling and stopping when it gets uncomfortable so it doesn't get worse. It must be fun to be a person who has a normal body... no?

One thing that has been interesting about rejoining the gym has been how much I have loved getting back to swimming. When I trained for a triathlon in 2009, there was a lot about swimming that annoyed me. I hated smelling like chlorine all day even after taking a shower. I hated the dirty looks people would give me when I needed to share a lane with them at the pool (god forbid!). I hated the process of swimming, making sure I had my goggles, my bathing cap, towel, getting dry again after- etc! This time I have a completely different opinion about it. I am actually kind of enjoying the chlorine smell a bit, and people have been super friendly about sharing lanes (as they should be!). Plus I've realized that even though it's a process, it doesn't take much longer than a run day because it only takes me about 15 minutes to actually swim 20 laps, and I get a pretty good work out in that time. My only real complaint about swimming is that I have to pay close attention to the schedule to make sure lap swimming is available when I want to go, but since I have two Y's near me that opens up the possibilities a lot. Yeah, I kinda love swimming this time around.

This Week Plans

Sunday: Run 2 Miles

Monday: Swim 22 Laps

Tuesday: Off

Wednesday: Spin

Thursday: Swim 22 Laps or Walk

Friday: Yoga or Off

Saturday: Walk/Run or Swim (depending on Thursday)

Things are a bit up in the air mainly because it's supposed to be ridiculously nice weather in Boston this week and I may want to go for more walks and less inside gym days. That's okay if i do though :)

What are your workout plans for the week? Or... what was the best part of your weekend?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I Love Boston Project: College Hockey

Welcome to the official start of the I Love Boston project. Eric and I went to a college hockey game! But before I get to the activity itself, let's listen to a funny story about kindergarten and hockey.

So last week I was reading with one of my little students. He is enthusiastic about many things at school, but reading is really not one of them. We were reading a book called "Canadian Animals" and each page had a different animal that lives in Canada. So in an attempt to get him to care about the book even slightly, I asked him if he knew where Canada was and anything about it. He knew where it was, but didn't offer up anything about it. Again, I'm trying to get him excited about the book so I tell him, you know what Canadians love? HOCKEY! His favorite sport his hockey so he was immediately psyched about this. "ALLLLL Canadians love hockey?" he asked. "Most!" I replied. I don't make a practice of stereotyping, but my goal was just to get the kid to read the book. So, fast forward a few days one of my other boy's mom was coming in to be a Secret Reader. Her clues about herself were she was born in Taiwan, grew up in Canada and her favorite sport is hockey. What does my first student say but... "Ms. _____ said EVERYONE in Canada loves hockey!!!!" She was like hmm... well not everyone...

+1 in the Kelly rocks at teaching column. Hopefully Canada will still take me this summer. Please?

Anyway, hockey! Eric and I went to see my college hockey team, the Boston College Eagles!



Like so many others in Boston, Eric and I love to go to sporting events. However, going to professional sports can be a bit of a production. It's actually an accomplishment to get tickets to the Red Sox, Patriots, Celtics or Bruins game for less than $100... seriously. Plus, don't get me started on the parking at any of these games. College hockey is a completely different story. I can't really get into the parking situation since my Dad has managed to get probably the best parking on the entire campus. However, I squeezed my car into some questionable locations at BC while I went there and I can tell you even on it's bad days (other than football games), it's easier than any professional sporting event. Plus, you can get tickets to a hockey game for $10 or $20, which is a huge steal in my opinion for a fun night. It's a real family friendly environment and kids are constantly dancing and making faces up on the big screen.


Plus, BC hockey is good (even if I wasn't biased). They won the Beanpot this year, which is a special hockey tournament that features 4 Boston schools: BU, BC, Northeastern and Harvard. But even more importantly, they have a record of 25-10-1 and they are currently ranked #1!!!! Yes, you read that right, you can watch the #1 team in college hockey for $10. Have I convinced you yet? If you want more information or to buy tickets, visit the BC Eagles website.

Time for more Boston adventures! Well, probably should get through the work week first...

Do you ever go see college sports? Tell me what your favorite college team is!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Say it, Do it- Changin' it up

Do you guys read Jess from Fit Chick in the City? If not, you really should. Back when I first started blogging, I used to read almost exclusively healthy living/fitness blogs. In the last year or so I've cut down the number of blogs I read a lot, and mostly my blogging friends and a few photography, budget-living and life blogs have remained. However, I still read a few fitness/healthy living blogs and Fit Chick in the City is one of them. Every Sunday Jess posts "Say it, Do it" where she declares her workout plans for the week and encourages everyone to join her in committing to the week's workouts. I love this idea so I'm going to steal it, at least temporarily. Hopefully it's not stealing since I'm giving her credit...

I don't need a ton of motivation to actually work out. For me, that has been a habit for so many years that when I don't work out at least a few times during a week I feel immediately terrible and just overall weird, like I have way too much free time on my hands, ha. However, lately I've been feeling myself getting too comfortable with the zone out on the elliptical/treadmill routine, with an occasional good run thrown in the mix. I know zoning out on the elliptical is better than not moving at all, but it just gets boring for me and I'm sure it's not doing a ton for my body. So, today I took the plunge I've been thinking about for awhile. I re-joined the the gym! I quit approximately two years ago and have been running, walking, ellipticalling etc at home since. However, I'm ready to give spinning another try (I took a break for my knee, but it's been two years so I'm hoping my knee can handle more these days) and I want to swim again. Plus, the gym added a "young adult" rate which will save me over $10 a month, wahoo. Well, technically I was saving more by not being a member of a gym but you know I'm not a detail person. Going back to the gym this morning was one of those weird experiences where as soon as I walked in, I felt like I had not been gone at all.

So, in addition to joining the gym I'm going to try to recap my week's worth of workouts and post my plans for the week. Hopefully you will join in the comments! I love to get new work out ideas and just hear what you guys are up to.

Last week's goal was to squeeze in 4 workouts despite a crazy week. I managed to get three in, which I'm okay with. I would've made 4, but somehow Thursday-Saturday ended up being one giant fail after another, ending with Caroline and I having plans to go to yoga and her having to do something work related last minute. Clearly I could've still gone to yoga but since I was already at my parents house I decided to just chat with my mom for the hour instead. Worth it? Yes.

Last Week:

Sunday: Walk/Run on treadmill 35 minutes

Tuesday: Run 30 minutes outside

Wednesday: Walk 30 minutes outside

This Week Plans:

Today I went swimming for the first time in over 2 years! I set a goal to do 16 laps, and I actually made it to 20 laps. I probably could've done more but I didn't want to push it on my first day. It went significantly better than my first day of swimming at the Y almost THREE years ago, which you can read about in my 2nd blog post ever. Crazy! I actually made it to 23 laps that time, but my thoughts were much more negative. This time I was super psyched to be back in the pool and I got to watch adorable mommy and baby swim classes when I took a couple of short breaks. Additional plans for this week include:

Sunday: Swim- 20 laps

Tuesday: Spin class- 45 minutes

Thursday: Run- 2 miles

I also would like to get in a walk or elliptical workout and possibly another swim, but due to some unknowns in my schedule this week I'm not sure what day those will be on. I'll let you know in my recap next week. I'm so excited to get back to spinning on Tuesday. Fingers crossed my knee agrees! I'm going to take it very, very slow. Oh and, I am NOT going to get in trouble for talking, my lips are zipped.

What are your work out plans for the week? Do you tend to plan your work outs ahead of time or just wing it?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Wine and Love

It's time for another week of Wine and Love, brought to you by Nora <3



1. It's always a bit depressing coming back from vacation... or should I say going from sunny red rocks to gray snow...

IMG_0432.JPG IMG_0470.JPG

2. It was time for parent/conferences this week. I do like my parents this year, and I like the second conference because I get to show off all the progress of the kiddos, but it just makes the work week soooo crazy that I have to wine about them.

3. My tutoring kiddos are making me crazy right now. Two of them in particular are just checked out and no matter how much time I spend planning a fun things for them to do they are just not having it. There is a LOT that I prefer about older kids, but it can be said about kindergartners especially in the group environment it is not hard to get them excited about something. Sometimes I wish my older tutoring kiddos were the same way...


1. I told myself on Sunday that no matter HOW busy this week got, I had to make sure I still had time to work out at least a few times. I am happy to say I was successful with this plan even when it meant a bit of a rushed run outside on Tuesday afternoon.

2. On Wednesday I had my yearly dermatologist appointment and it was SO fast. It was snowing out so I think some people did not show up because the doctor took me on time to the minute, and I was in and out in 15 minutes. I got home so early I had time for an unplanned walk in the snow (see love 3).

3. Eric and I went for a lovely walk in the snow on Wednesday. Sure I'd rather it be a walk in beautiful spring weather, but I'll take the walk.


4. The snow that began yesterday has continued today, so both Eric and I had class canceled tonight. I was originally a little bummed because it's my photo class, but Eric and I decided to use a Groupon to get some Mexican food which ended up being a nice end to a long day. Plus, the Groupon was for $30 which we never spend at this restaurant so we got dessert too. Yum... my first time tasting churros!


I have to say, I was really dreading this week on Sunday night... a lot going on at work, coupled with a dentist and a doctor's appointment- I was just not excited. I have to say, it was a lot better than I expected! Wahoo!

What are your wine and loves this week?