Tag Archives: Friday Favorites

Friday Favorites

Last time I did a Friday Favorites post we were in the midst of some pretty awful winter weather. But I’m happy to report that it’s starting to feel like spring around these parts. We’ve had some days in the 50’s and 60’s, we set the clocks ahead so there’s more daylight, and it’s officially spring! So without further ado, here’s what I’m currently crushing on.

Love & Toast Clementine Body Lotion

This winter has wrecked havoc on my skin, as I’m sure it has for almost everyone. My skin was always dry and itchy during swimming season, which I learned to accept as part of the territory. But this past winter my skin was the driest it’s been in years and I couldn’t seem to find relief. So after trying a bunch of different lotions, I saw Love & Toast at Marshall’s and grabbed a bottle. I figured that at the discounted price of $3 it wouldn’t be such a loss if it didn’t work.

Love & Toast Clementine Crush

Well let me tell you – it was the best $3 I’ve spent in awhile! The lotion smells like you’ve just bathed in fresh orange juice, and it actually left my skin soft and flake-free. It’s parabens, phthalates, petrolatum, mineral oil, propylene glycol, retinol, sulfates, and synthetic color free, never animal tested, and has no animal ingredients. What’s better than that?! I’ve since bought their body wash, and it is equally impressive.

Cookie Dough Oreo’s

I don’t remember where I first saw these or heard about them, but once I did, I knew I had to have them. When Oreo had their limited edition birthday cake filled cookies I bought them, and was pleasantly surprised. I was a little weary of the cookie dough “flavor” that the cookie boasted, though. I mean, could it really taste like cookie dough in between those delicious chocolate wafers? I’m so ashamed for ever doubting Oreo, because they are seriously amazing.

Oh yes

Oh yes

I bought them when I was at the grocery store two weeks ago, and they were gone within a matter of days. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to find them again at the store, but I’ve been looking every week! If you haven’t tried this yet, you really need to. I’m yet to talk to anyone that has tried them and hasn’t fallen in love! Now I just need them to make a speculoos version…

Single Serve Deep Dish Chocolate Chip Cookie

I love baking, but skip out on it a lot because it makes too many servings. I’m all for having leftovers and like to think I have enough self control to enjoy a cake throughout the week, but a lot of homemade desserts just don’t taste the same as the week goes on… so I don’t make anything. I’ve seen recipes for single serve desserts before, but by the time I am ready for dessert and want something it’s usually around 9pm, and I’m too lazy to get up and put something together. But when I found a recipe for a single serve deep dish chocolate chip cookie, I had to make it.

Deep dish chocolate chip cookie w. cookies & cream ice cream. Yup.

Deep dish chocolate chip cookie w. cookies & cream ice cream. Yup.

This is basically a warm and gooey chocolate chip cookie… which is one of my absolute favorites. Oreos are actually the only type of “hard” cookie I like, as I generally prefer soft cookies. Putting all the ingredients together is really easy; the hardest part about the whole process is waiting for it to bake in the oven! But it is totally worth the wait. I’m definitely going to be making this a lot more.

Motown / 60’s Music

I grew up listening to Motown (and the like) music on Saturday mornings. My dad always had the same radio station on, the Rhythm Review with Felix Hernandez, while he would clean around the house. I have fond memories of dancing around with my sister (she had special pink rain boots that she’d dance in; when she was really little, they oftentimes were on the wrong foot), and loving every single song that came on. So when my mom, sister, and I went to see Motown the Musical a few weeks ago, I was reminded just how much fun that era of music was. The Chiffons, The Marvelettes, Diana Ross & The Supremes, Smokey Robinson, The Miracles, The Four Tops, The Temptations… you get my drift.

Motown Record

I’ve been listening to it non-stop since last Wednesday, and can’t help but dance in my seat or smile when some of my favorite songs come on. I also love recognizing a song and knowing the words when no one else around me has any idea what it is. If you’re ever in a bad mood or need a pick me up, or just feel like a departure from current music trends, I highly recommend finding yourself a Motown or 60’s music station on Pandora, iTunes Radio, or Spotify. Your mood will instantly improve.

Fancy Oatmeal

While I’m sure there are “fancier” variations of oatmeal out there, I’ve been really enjoying  oatmeal for breakfast recently. It’s perfect to eat before a mid-day run; it keeps me full so I don’t feel like I’m starting my run hungry, but I also don’t feel like I’m going to throw it up while I’m running. And, the possibilities are endless when it comes to combinations! I’ve been enjoying it on the sweet side recently (chocolate chips, shredded coconut, peanut butter, and a dash of cinnamon), but I’ve also had quite a few savory versions, my favorite being with eggs, tomato, onion, and curry powder.

Fancy oatmeal

Fancy Oatmeal

So tell me…
What are you currently loving? 

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Filed under Food Blogging, Food Review, Life

Friday Favorites

Welcome to another installation of my Friday Favorites! I realized as I was thinking about this post that I’ve done a bunch, and the titles of each blog post are all the same. Whoops! But this post is no different from any of those other posts – it’s a whole bunch of random things I’m currently loving.

Bodum Bistro Coffee Maker

This coffee maker is awesome. You may be wondering why I bought a new coffee maker when the one I had was fine. Well, this bad boy was on sale, and after reading a few reviews, I knew I had to have it. I mean, just look at it!

What a beaut

What a beaut

I’m no coffee connoisseur, but I’m an avid coffee drinker and appreciate a good cup. I have a French Press and love to take the time to use it on the weekends, and I also love getting pour-over coffee when I’m out. This coffee maker gives me a similarly flavored cup of coffee, and all I have to do is grind some coffee beans, fill it up with some water, and press a button. And another bonus is the carafe that the maker comes with; it’s insulated so you can take it from the kitchen to the table so you don’t have to keep getting up during your lazy weekend breakfast (and it isn’t glass, so you don’t have to worry about breaking it, like I’ve done before).

New Balance 1400s

I’ve wanted a pair of lighter sneakers for awhile; a pair that I can run workouts and shorter races in, and as I get stronger, longer races. A lot of my friends wear New Balance 1400’s or 1600’s, so I figured I’d give them a try. I’d be lying if I didn’t say that a big draw to these particular sneakers were the colors. I’ve always been obsessed with bright and bold colors, and New Balance has been delivering on that front with their running sneakers for quite a few years. I tried them on before ordering them, and am happy to report that in addition to the sweet colors, they fit great and are perfect fast(er) running sneakers for me.

So bright. So awesome.

So bright. So awesome.

It was tough to figure out what color scheme I wanted, but eventually I settled on the glow in the dark 1400’s! They’re perfect because I can wear them when I have to run after work, and if you throw them under the light for a few minutes before you head out the door, they actually glow. I like the idea of having a little extra visibility (in addition to my reflective vest, and knuckle lights), and these provide that. Plus, they have just the right amount of cushion while still letting me feel the ground; and they’re super light weight. I’m looking forward to working them into my shoe rotation on a more steady basis… I’d love to be able to use them as my racing shoe for my PR half marathon attempt!

Oiselle Spring Funnel Neck 

I knew as soon as I saw this top that I had to have it. The gray color with a pop of fresh green on the sleeves and the ever-so-slight turtleneck were just what I needed to help get me through the last few months of winter.

A Polar Vortex Selfie, brought to you by the funnel neck, a long puffer, and serious snow boots

A Polar Vortex Selfie, brought to you by the funnel neck, a long puffer, and serious snow boots… with a creepin’ cat

Unfortunately it’s still too cold for me to wear it while running, but I’ve been loving it as a layering piece for everyday wear in the meantime. The beauty of a lot of Oiselle‘s clothing is that while it’s made for running, you can easily get away with wearing it out in public without having that “oh, you just worked out” look. Plus, since my office is casual (they let us wear shorts in the summer), tops like this are perfect for work… especially because it’s always cold in my office and the thumb-holes help keep me warm!

Reading for fun

This might sound silly, but when I was in college I couldn’t wait to “not have to study and do homework” so I could read books that I wanted to read for fun. As an English major I did plenty of reading, but it was almost always assigned reading; I think I had maybe one class that incorporated some outside reading. So when I first graduated I did just that – I tore through quite a few books and was loving it. But as the years passed and I got busier with that little thing called being an adult (and the introduction of running and marathon training), reading for fun fell by the wayside. I recently changed that, and have been loving it so far!

Reading by candlelight is my jam

Reading by candlelight is my jam

During the Holidays I read Everything Is Perfect When You’re A Liar by Kelly Oxford, and often found myself giggling while reading. It’s absolutely hilarious and a fun, lighthearted read. On my trip to Brussels I read Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell and devoured it in a matter of hours. It’s technically a young adult novel, but I think people of all ages will absolutely love it. It takes you back to high school and reminds you of those gut-wrenching feelings you had for that boy or girl that caught your eye. I’ve also been slowly going through Jay Dicharry’s Anatomy for Runners, but it’s a science heavy book so I’ve been taking it piece by piece and isn’t really a “fun” read so much as an “I need this so I can figure out how to stop getting injured so much while running” read. I also just downloaded The Fault In Our Stars by John Green at the recommendation of many (though those recommendations have also come with a sadness warning). I’m hoping 2014 is the year of Danielle being well read!

Supporting Others & Causes

While this doesn’t necessarily fit with the whole “material things I love right now” theme of the post, I wanted to take a minute to point out two special runners that have gone from Twitter and blog friends, to teammates, to real life buds. I am so inspired by both of these ladies on a daily basis – from their amazing positive attitudes, to their insane and speedy mileage, to the support and FUN they bring to the running and blogging community. Currently, they’re both fundraising for separate, but equally important causes, and I wanted to highlight them in hopes that you will think about making a donation to help them reach their goals!

Hollie – Fueled by LOLZ
Hollie is currently fundraising for Ophelia’s Place, a center that provides information about eating disorder prevention, intervention, treatment, and education. She’s running the Lake Effect Half Marathon in Upstate New York at the end of February (I’m cold just thinking about it) and hopes to raise $2,000 for the cause. I hope you’ll take a moment to think about donating!

She also posts amazing memes everyday... I mean, how could you note vote for THIS?

She also posts amazing memes everyday… I mean, how could you note vote for THIS?

That being said, Hollie is also campaigning this month for an all expense paid trip to Napa to run the Zooma Half Marathon, and she’d love to have your vote. You’re supposed to vote for a blogger that embodies the Zooma mission – inspiring women to lead healthy, happy, and active lives. It seems pretty clear to me based on Hollie’s dedication to being a healthy runner – and in the process is fundraising for eating disorder awareness – that she does in fact embody the Zooma mission. Not to mention she’s hilarious and a lover of New Jersey diners, and my Oiselle teammate. So let’s help get her to Napa (you can vote once a day until the end of February)!

Krissy – Shiawaselife
Krissy was one of my first Twitter/blog friends turned real life friends, and I’m so thankful that she’s also an Oiselle teammate who is equally (and possibly even MORE) obsessed with Disney as I am. I’ve had the pleasure of hanging out with her in Disney World, Disneyland, and running the Nike Half in D.C. last April with her and Ashley.

Runnin' with KMurph & Bun in DC... having SO MUCH FUN

Runnin’ with KMurph & Bun in DC… having SO MUCH FUN

I wish I could get across on paper (or in this case, computer screen) how awesome I think Krissy is, but I don’t think there are words that can adequately describe just how enthusiastic, positive, and supportive she is. So naturally when I found out she was going to be running the Run Donna 26.2 at the end of February as her redemption race in hopes of a (well deserved) BQ and would be fundraising in the process, I knew I had to donate… and I hope you’ll consider donating as well.

And with that, all I can say is happy Superbowl weekend!

Tell me…
What are you loving this week? 

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Filed under Life, Running

Friday Favorites

I’m currently on my way down to Richmond for the weekend to run the Richmond Half Marathon and spectate the full! While I was hammering away at work yesterday to make sure I had everything in order for the long weekend I was taking, I found myself also thinking about some things I’m currently loving. And obviously, that makes for an excellent blog post.

So without further ado, here’s what I’ve been loving lately!

Candy Crush
I’m kind of embarrassed about this one. But obviously not embarrassed enough to not share it. After months and months of resisting, I finally gave in and downloaded the app about two weeks ago. Well, it’s safe to say I’m obsessed with it. I’m currently stuck at level 35, battling my way through some extra “quests” to earn the right to carry on past Lemonade Lake.

The Cinnamon Snail
If you live in the New York/New Jersey area, you NEED to try Cinnamon Snail (known as @veganlunchtruck on Twitter). They are in NYC most week days at various locations, Jersey City on Thursday nights, and Red Bank, NJ on Sunday mornings. I am yet to have something from this delicious food truck that I haven’t been in love with. My favorites (if I had to pick) would be the Chipotle Breakfast Burrito, and any of their doughnuts.

Blue Corn Crusted Tempeh

Blue Corn Crusted Tempeh

I mean, just look at that! So far I’ve had the breakfast burrito, Korean BBQ Seitan, Blue Corn Hempseed Crusted Tempeh, and one of their specials, a Red Curry Tofu Bahn Mi. All magically delicious, vegan, and served up with a smile. Can’t beat that if you ask me!

RAC’s Chapter One
I suppose it isn’t really fair to include this on my list since I just discovered the album yesterday, but it’s been on repeat ever since. Thanks to Spotify and its ability to creep on what other people are listening to, I found the album by accident. I saw Sarah had listened to a track on it, and decided to see what it was all about. After listening to that track, and all subsequent tracks, I was hooked. Remixes of some of my favorite artists that are workday friendly? Yes please.

Oiselle Runfinity French Fleece Scarf
I love a good infinity scarf (or any scarf for that matter) and seem to hold the mindset of “bigger is better” when it comes to them. So, when I saw this scarf on Oiselle’s website, I knew I had to have it. Not only it is big and cozy, but I’m obsessed with anything French fleece.

A little French Fleece #FlyStyle

A little French Fleece #FlyStyle

I got bold and ordered it in ghost, so it’s only a matter of time before it’s covered in food and coffee (that’ll add character?). I found myself wishing it was cooler so I could wear it in the early days of November, but then when it dipped below freezing this past week, I was singing another tune. But at least I had this big and cozy scarf!

Erica Sara Designs “Run” Ring
I had been eyeing this particular ring since it was introduced, and had it on my “Giftables” Pinterest page for ages. For whatever reason, I never bought it for myself, and no one else seemed to be interested in getting it for me either. About a month ago, I finally decided it was time to treat myself, and I ordered one. And now I’m kicking myself for waiting so long.

Married to the run?

Married to the run?

This is the second Erica Sara Designs piece I own (the first is a Say It Do It bracelet I got earlier this year) and I absolutely love it. It’s small and delicate, yet represents something that is far from small and delicate. The best part is that her ring sizing starts small, and as a 4.5, I always have trouble finding fashionable rings that fit my fingers. I’m already thinking about ordering some stackables to add to the collection, and I’m looking forward to her small wrist friendly bangles that will be coming out in the spring!

So there you have it, the things I’ve been loving lately. I’ll be in Richmond this weekend running the half marathon and then cheering for the full with some Oiselle teammates, and enjoying delicious food (mac ‘n cheese specifically) with Dori! I’m not planning on all-out racing the half marathon, but running it at about 90% so I can use it as a starting point for potential spring marathon training. It should be a great running, friends, and food filled weekend.

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Filed under Running, Vegetarian/Vegan

Friday Favorites

Another installment of my (current) favorite things! Per the usual, it’s a hodgepodge of things that I’m currently loving. They follow absolutely no theme, which seems to be a theme in itself for these posts, and are in no particular order.

Toddy Cold Brewing System

As I mentioned earlier, I’m currently on a cold brewed coffee kick. I’ve seen “cold brewed” coffee before, but never had the opportunity to try it from a store, and was too lazy to try it at home on my own. The difference between cold brewed coffee and “traditional” coffee is simply the lack of heat. Instead of heating up the water (in a coffee maker) and having it flow through the coffee grinds, a cold brew uses regular water. Because it’s cold water the process takes a little bit longer, but what you get is basically coffee concentrate, meaning in order to enjoy it you need to mix it with water or milk. Since I’m an avid iced coffee drinker, the idea of already cold coffee that I don’t have to cool down and subsequently water down with ice cubes was appealing.

Toddy Cold Brew

I had seen the Toddy online, and added it to my Pinterest board of “Gift Ideas” (don’t judge me, it makes it easy for people to see things I’m not going to buy for myself, but would like as a gift when the occasion arises), and got it for my birthday! The instructions are simple (grind up some coffee, pour in water, pour in grinds, repeat, let sit and then filter), and it produces a decent amount of coffee concentrate that can last for up to two weeks in the refrigerator. I’ve enjoyed it a few times now, mixed with both water and milk, and LOVE it. I use about half the amount of ice cubes I used before, and the flavor is awesome (hard to describe, but definitely “smoother”). I definitely recommend checking this out if you’re an iced coffee fan!

Hydroxatone CC Cream

I don’t usually wear makeup, and even when I do it’s definitely on the minimal side. So when the craze of BB and CC creams started, I figured these would be a perfect addition to my morning routine, as I could kill multiple birds with one makeup stone. Since I don’t wear makeup often, I really don’t know enough about the differences between primer, moisturizer, tinted moisturizer, BB cream, CC cream, foundation… the list goes on. I have an elementary understanding, but that’s where it ends, and is a huge reason why I don’t wear makeup. The other reason is that I have what I’d like to refer to as the ultimate combination platter of skin – dry, oily, acne prone, dull, bright…. I’m really not sure how I have it all, but I do. So naturally I’m wary when it comes to my choices, as I don’t want a product that will accentuate any of my “problems.”

hydrox

After trying a few free samples of BB and CC creams (gotta love the Ulta and Sephora samples that come with your orders), I realized that there were only a few things I needed in my “everything” cream. I need it to: moisturize, mattify, and balance my skin without clogging it up. I didn’t think I was asking for much, but apparently I was! A lot of the creams were either the wrong tint, not oil-free, or left me glowing (and not the ‘dewy glamorous’  kind). Enter Hydroxatone’s CC cream! This cream has all the benefits of a typical CC cream (color corrects, smooths out your skin, etc.) but it also has salicylic acid to aid in mattifying your skin and also prevent break-outs! Of course I thought it may be “too good to be true,” but after a few days of using it (in translucent), I couldn’t be happier. It leaves my skin feeling fresh all day while moisturizing and not leaving me a ball of shine by the afternoon. Now I just need to find the right kind of makeup to wear over it for those rare makeup days!

Oiselle Mio Mesh Tank

I don’t know why I waited so long – I think I tried to convince myself that I wouldn’t like it because 1. it was too “everyday wear” for me, and 2. the mesh would be more annoying than not. I suppose the first reason I didn’t think I would like it is the same reason why I’m yet to try a running skirt. But eventually after seeing so many awesome reviews by people who generally enjoy the same things as I do, I ordered it. I mean, with the summer heat and my timidness for sports bra running, I figured I would try this ‘light as air’ tank top.

Mio Mesh with the Strappy bra & Rogas

Mio Mesh with the Strappy bra & Rogas

Well, I’m kicking myself for not having ordered this top earlier. I should have known better than to doubt Oiselle! I now want one in every color, and then some. I’ve worn the top a few times since getting it last week; once in the pouring rain, and once on a super hot long run. By the end of both runs my shirt looked the same – completely soaked! Despite the fact that the shirt was really wet, it didn’t feel heavy or cumbersome to be wearing on either run, which is rare. Also, because it’s mesh, it breathes really well allowing for some airflow (even if it’s just a hot air breeze), which is always welcomed on a soupy hot day. I really wish I had more than just one mio mesh tank, but at least I have the one!

Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi

This is a cookbook I actually ordered quite a few months ago, but only recently started cooking from it. I’ve been so wrapped up in Pinterest recipes lately that I’ve really neglected my cookbooks. So, I’ve recently been trying to get back into “use the cookbooks you already have” mode, and found that this particular book pairs nicely with my weekly fresh box. I think I’m often intimidated by vegetarian cookbooks because the recipes have a lot of ingredients, and a lot of times the things they call for aren’t easily found at my local grocery store. But thanks to the fresh box program I’m signed up for in the summer, the fruits and vegetables I have are not only fresher, but I also get things that my grocery store either doesn’t carry, or rarely has.

Snack plate with leek fritters, tabbouleh, & hummus

Snack plate with leek fritters, tabbouleh, & hummus

I’ve made a few things from the book so far, but my favorite has been leek fritters. At first glance they don’t seem to be different from any other fritter recipe, but the addition of cinnamon to the mixture was a pleasant surprise. I wasn’t really sure what the sweetness would bring to the table, but I absolutely loved it. I served the fritters with homemade tabbouleh and hummus for a dinner “snack plate” and really enjoyed it. I have a bunch of other recipes bookmarked to try – I just have to remember to open up the book and step away from Pinterest!

So those are my current favorites… what are some of yours?!

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Friday Favorites

From time to time I like to share things I’m really loving at the moment. If you hang out with me in person, you’ll likely hear me refer to these things as “my jam.” I guess it isn’t as bad as calling them epic? I don’t know. But anyway, here are the things (completely unrelated) that I am currently enjoying.

PicMonkey Collage

Jack Rogers Sandals

I’ve had my eyes on these sandals for awhile, but never knew the brand, or where to get them. My sister (who is very fashionable, but is picky) refers to these sandals as “preppy Southerner shoes,” and while I am neither of those things, I liked them. So when I saw that RueLaLa had them on sale, I figured I’d grab myself a pair, because I’m not really willing to spend more than $100 on sandals.

You can typically find me wearing flip flops or basic (read: cheap) sandals in the summer, so these were a nice change of pace. The construction of the shoe is serious, and its obvious that you get what you pay for. I bought them in white so I could wear them with pretty much anything (and they have a little sparkle!), but I love a lot of the colors they offer.

Local CSA – “Fresh Box”

This is my second year participating in the “Fresh Box” program with a local fresh foods grocer, Alan’s Orchard, and my love for it grows each week. I really love getting a fresh box of produce every weekend and figuring out my meals for the upcoming week based on what I have. The grocery stores by me don’t always have the freshest produce, so it’s nice to know that I’m getting something that is from a local farm. My only complaint is that things can be really dirty (which I would expect considering they literally pick it out of the ground, and bring it to the store!), so it takes some extra time to wash things. If you have a CSA program near you, I definitely recommend checking it out!

Trader Joe’s Soy Chorizo

This stuff is the bomb.com. Seriously. (Yes, I’m aware of what I just said). I actually tried this for the first time before becoming a vegetarian, and was really impressed with the flavors and texture… so naturally once I became a  vegetarian I continued buying it (it’s actually vegan!). While I’ve only had real chorizo a few times so I don’t think I can compare the two fairly, I can say that regardless of it’s close proximity to real chorizo taste, it’s awesome as it’s own product. I’ve used it in burritos, casseroles, grilled cheeses, omelets… the list goes on and on! I’ve found that both vegetarians and carnivores really enjoy it, so if there’s a Trader Joe’s near you, I definitely suggest giving it a try.

Nathan “Power Shower” After-Run Wipes

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I sweat a lot. So naturally I’m drenched after each summer run (whether it’s a speed workout or an easy run). So if I don’t have the opportunity to shower right away, having a wipe available is a great “get me a few extra hours” option. These wipes were particularly handy last weekend when I “ran” a color run with a bunch of my college friends. I wound up using two wipes, but was able to get all of the powder and color off of me, and I didn’t feel grimy and gross.

As  I was using them I noticed that there was a little soapy film, which I appreciated, since I definitely needed something substantial to get all the color gunk off of me. I just wish they came in bigger packages – I’m almost through the package I bought not too long ago!

How To Be A Heartbreaker, by Marina & The Diamonds

I don’t remember how or why I happened upon this song, but it’s been constantly stuck in my head since. I play it while I’m sitting at my desk at work, if I’m cleaning around the house, and even though I don’t listen to music while I run, this would be a perfect workout song too.

Hope everyone has  a great first official weekend of summer! Any big plans?

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Filed under Life, Vegetarian/Vegan

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! And for those of you in the good ‘ole U.S. of A, happy Memorial Day weekend! I’m pumped to unofficially kick off summer, since it’s been oppressively humid the last few days.

Thumbs up! This is how I feel about Holiday weekends.

Thumbs up! This is how I feel about Holiday weekends.

There have been a few things I’ve been absolutely loving lately that I’ve bought with my own money, and wanted to share it with you. I always enjoy posts from people (that aren’t sponsored or full of affiliate links) sharing things that they really like – recipes, clothes, fitness products, etc. I think the blogging world gets a bad rap sometimes, and people assume that if you’re writing about it, it’s because you either got it for free or are being paid to say so. While that may be true for of some bloggers, it definitely isn’t the case for a lot of other bloggers. So I’m here to be the “you should think about buying this because I bought it and I think it’s awesome” voice of information!

This particular post doesn’t follow a theme – everything from running shorts to face moisturizer, but I think they are equally important!

Daily Writing Tips

If you are a blogger, consider yourself to be a writer, or heck, just want to write cohesive and grammatically correct e-mails, you need to read Daily Writing Tips. Sure I was an English major in college and am even certified to teach English Language & Literature to the children of America (well, at least in New Jersey), but I learn something every single time I read this blog. Seriously.

I often find myself cringing at grammatical errors in blog posts, professional e-mails, and even (generally) professional websites. I realize that mistakes happen (they all do, no matter how great of a writer you are), but some of these things should easily be caught with a simple once-over. I’m obviously not here to preach grammar and writing tips, because I know my blog posts are far from eloquent and profound, but in a world where so much of our communication is now through writing, it can’t hurt for us to all brush up on the rules now and again!

Yes To Tomatoes Moisturizer

It’s no secret to anyone that knows me that I have (and still do) struggle with my skin. I have a combination of super oily (thanks, dad) and super dry (thanks, mom) skin that is also extremely sensitive. So if I attempt to treat one side of the problem too much, the other one flares beyond belief. And, both oily skin and dry skin can cause breakouts… resulting in me usually at a loss when it comes to products.

Yes To Tomatoes

I first discovered the Yes To products when they were first starting out as Yes To Carrots, and hadn’t yet introduced other vegetables. After getting a pack of their Yes To Cucumbers face wipes to use after runs, I decided to try some of their other products, starting with the tomato moisturizer. It’s awesome. First of all it smells great; something I was skeptical of considering it’s made with tomatoes (I don’t necessarily think tomatoes smell good). Also, since my skin is oily yet dry, it manages to provide the right amount of moisture without being oily, something I’ve struggled to find with moisturizers in the past. I’m still shiny hours into the day, but I’m yet to find a product that prevents it (so I just own stock in blotters).

Oiselle Stride Shorts

I don’t know why it took me so long to try these Oiselle stride shorts, because they’re great. When I started running I wore cotton Soffe shorts from my high school days, and let me tell you, that got uncomfortable quickly. So I wore “typical” running shorts, and we know how most of those wind up – puffy front, riding up, chaffing, you know the drill. I discovered spandex shorts a few years ago, but it seemed like all of them were more like booty shorts on me… and the last thing I want to be worrying about while running a race is pulling down my shorts because I may be showing some cheek. I eventually abandoned the idea of spandex shorts because I couldn’t find any at the perfect length (others were too long and reminded me more of biking shorts) and settled on Oiselle’s Distance and Roga shorts (which are also awesome).

So magical they deserve a lime green background!

So magical they deserve a lime green background!

Eventually I decided to give spandex shorts another try, and went with the Stride Short. They are the perfect length! I don’t have long legs by any means, but I do have a long torso which means I naturally like to have my shorts sit a little higher since I’m not interested in a muffin top. These shorts fall in the perfect spot for me – long enough to prevent any free shows, but short enough so they don’t gobble my entire leg and make me look like a stump. And they don’t ride up at all. I need to buy these in every color possible.

Nuun

Maybe I was late to jump on the Nuun train because it seemed like everyone was singing its praises, and I am a natural skeptic. I mean could hydration tabs really be that great? Growing up swimming you could usually find me guzzling Powerade or Gatorade – I wasn’t picky and just drank whatever my mom bought at the store… though it always seemed just a little too sweet, and a little too syrup-y for me. When I was in college, we had powdered Gatorade at practices and meets which I liked a lot more because it was usually watered down. After I graduated, though, I stuck to just water for my hydration needs, even after I started running. 

My favorite Nuun flavor, Cherry Limeade, and a surprise visit from a Picky Bar ;)

My favorite Nuun flavor, Cherry Limeade, and a surprise visit from a Picky Bar 😉

Finally after seeing enough tweets and hearing enough people talk about it, I decided to give Nuun a try. I picked up a bunch of single tubes at REI in case I didn’t like some (or any) of the flavors about a month and a half ago, and have gone through three 12-tab tubes, and ordered 7 more tubes since then. So I guess it’s pretty safe to say that I love it! My favorite flavors are Cherry Limeade, Lemon Lime, and Watermelon. I just recently purchased some new flavors that I’m sure I will love as well (they even have cola flavored tabs, which I’m sure would go great with the cherry). I absolutely love how convenient they are, and that I can just throw a tube in my purse or spike bag and have it any time I’d typically have water. The fizz that the tab creates is an added bonus to a seltzer lover like myself.

The Run of the Year!

runoftheyear

Well, at least that’s what Jocelyn says it will be! But seriously, if you’re a runner in the general NYC area, you should clear your morning schedule for next Saturday, June 1st.  At 8:30am there will be a fun group run (4 and 8 mile options) from Greatist’s headquarters, with Oiselle, Nuun, and Picky Bars as sponsors (meaning samples)! You can sign up and get free tickets for the event here. I’m super bummed that I won’t be able to make it because a friend is getting married that weekend, but I know it’s going to be awesome, so you have to go for me!

Any big plans for the weekend?
What are you loving lately?

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Filed under Life, Running

Friday Favorites

You won’t usually find weekly wrap-up or list posts here, but every once in awhile I like to share what I’m in-the-moment loving; I generally love when other bloggers do them (though I don’t like “best of what I’ve written over the last month” posts) since I’m almost always introduced to something new. I’ve done a few “This Week in Yum” posts which I enjoy, but today’s is going to cross a few different subjects.

Picky Bars
First up relates to both food and running – two of my most favorite things. I already talked about my running fuel of choice, but now that I’ve had the chance to devour almost all of my first month’s supply of Picky Bars, I figured I’d throw them another shout-0ut. Seriously guys, these bars rule. And I’m not just saying that because the amazing Lauren Fleshman is now my Oiselle Teammate… I mean it!

pickybars

These bars have come in handy a lot over the last month – pre and post run fuel, mid-morning and afternoon snacks, and even on the slopes while snowboarding! They definitely have more substance than the little granola bars I was trying to eat as a snack (that would just leave me hungry), and I like to think they’re way better for me. Plus, who doesn’t like supporting a small business that loves sport just as much as you? I am so glad I found these bars and am able to participate in their monthly club.

Oiselle Distance Shorts
When it comes to running shorts, I’m more often unhappy with them than I am happy. Whether they’re giving me a wedgie, getting stuck in between my thighs (which I don’t think are THAT big), are too short, or just generally uncomfortable, I’m picky when it comes to running shorts… especially if I’m going to be spending a long time in them. I converted to the (longer) spandex short not too long ago and was content with them; but truth be told I longed for that “runner’s shorts” look. You know, the parachute-esq shorty short that for whatever reason, to me, makes you look like a “real” runner.

Look at those shorts! So awesome.

Look at those shorts! So awesome.

I had all but given up on the dream until I got my first pair of Distance Shorts from Oiselle. Sure I had a pair of the famed Rogas, but still wanted to give their other shorts a try. I decided to wear them for the Disney  Marathon, and was pleasantly surprised. I had zero chafing, no uncomfortable fabric bunches, and despite being soaked with sweat by the end, were really comfortable. And the bonus? They have two zippered pockets (one on the side and one in the back) in addition to your typical waistband pouch. Talk about love at first run.

Hot Chocolate Pop-Bars
These little treats came to me in my PopSugar “Must Have” box for January. At first I thought they were just pieces of chocolate on sticks (more eloquently called a lollipop), but after inspecting the packaging I realized they were meant for hot chocolate. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for powdered hot chocolate (hello convenience), but there was something so decadent about heating up some milk and watching good quality chocolate melt as you stir.

Gourmet style hot chocolate at home!

Gourmet style hot chocolate at home!

They have a store in the city (on the corner of Carmine St. & 6th Ave.) where they sell gelato and sorbetto bars; and you can create your own! I’ll definitely have to check them out next time I’m in the city.

Timehop App
For anyone that has social media sites (i.e. Facebook and Twitter), you need this app! The concept is really simple, and totally awesome. Each day the app looks back within each of your linked social media sites to see what (if anything) was tweeted, posted, or shared on that same date in years past. It’s really fun to see what pictures were posted of you on Facebook 6 years ago (hello college nostalgia) as well as the types of gem Tweets you shared.

Senior meet... can't believe that was 5 years ago!

Senior meet… can’t believe that was 5 years ago!

It’s provided some serious laughs for me and nice little reminders almost every single day. You can even share what’s posted within the App, as well as tweet, e-mail, and Facebook it out so others can see what you were doing, too!

So that’s what I’m loving right now. How about you?
Anything you’re currently obsessing over that I should check out? 
Do you have any of the things I mentioned above? 

Disclaimer: In case you thought for any reason I was getting these goods for free or being compensated in any way for this post, rest assured I’m not. I am talking about these products and the companies on my own, because I think they rock!

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Filed under Food Review, Running