Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Our Wedding Album

We actually picked up our album a few weeks ago, but I kept forgetting to blog about it!

Our photographer, Debbie Brown, did an amazing job on not only our photos but also on the layout of our album, and we were lucky enough to receive an "upgrade" on our cover to an amazing wrap around photo cover! We love the way the album turned out and I look through it all the time!

The front of the book


The wrap around cover


The first page, with some of our favorite ring shots :)


All about me! With my dress as the background.


And, all about Jon! With his tux as the background.


Two full pages - kissing in the meadow


More meadow photos - luckily the rain held off so we could get these!


With my bouquet as the background behind the photos!


This is the photo we choose as our 11x13


With my shoes as the background!


A really great & fun shot!


My beautiful red shoes :)


Bridal party photos - with the bridesmaid dress as the background!


More bridal party shots


Our entire bridal party of family and friends


So happy in love!


Family photos!


All the parents & grandma!


More family photos!


Ceremony photos


"Now as an expression that your hearts are jointed together in love - please face each other and hold hands by first joining your right palms, then your left palms - forming an infinity symbol with your hands, which symbolizes a love that will go on forever"


More amazing photos!


Bouquet, cake, cake cutting/eating, first dance, soul train line!


The End

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Homeowners for One Year

We have officially been homeowners for one year!!!

Today is the one year anniversary of when we closed escrow
on our house and received our keys!

This is the most recent photo I have of our house --- with our new tree!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Meal Plan Monday (9/28)

My mom is staying with us for a few days this week! I'm excited to show her some of my new favorite recipes.

Monday - Mexican Pizza's

Tuesday - Crockpot Mexican Chicken

Wednesday - French Onion Pasta

Thursday - Zucchini Patties

Friday - Marsala Turkey Burgers

Saturday - Spaghetti with semi-homemade marinara sauce (carb-up before our Cowtown 5k tomorrow) & I plan to freeze half the sauce to use at a later date :)

Sunday - BBQ Jerk Chicken

Friday, September 25, 2009

Learning the art of sushi making

My sister-in-law hosted a sushi rolling night at her place a couple of weeks ago. It was not only a lot of fun but it was also very yummy!

I arrived a little late (after going to the gym for a run) so I didn't get any photos of the veggie cutting / rice prep. The veggies were cucumber, carrot, green onions, avacado and jicima (all sliced julieene style) and there was some salmon also. The rice was cooked in a rice cooker.

First, we were instructed to place our seaweed on our bamboo sushi rolling mats

Then we added rice, leaving a small section without rice (to "close" the roll better)


Then we added our veggies (and this is when everyone else also added their salmon, I'm not much of a raw salmon eater - love it cooked, though - so I had a veggie roll)

Then we rolled everything up, using the bamboo rolling mat, with the seaweed on the outside - we used a little water on the seaweed that did not have any rice on it (on the inside, see photo above) to "glue" the seaweed together to make it stay "shut"

The results were delicious!

The sushi rolling party was a lot of fun - and informative at the same time (good thing our "instructor" plays a teacher in real life, too). This was actually my second time making homemade sushi, my first time was a couple of years ago - right after I discovered that I love sushi - but it was not a success (edible, yes - pretty like photo above, no - stayed together and looked size appropriate, no again).

Has anyone else ever made homemade sushi???

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Hello fall

Today is the official first day of fall --- even if it feels like the middle of summer still here in Northern California! Today it was HOT. Definitely not "fall" like.

Fall is my favorite time of year ... well, actually is a tie between fall and spring, but since it's the first day of fall we'll say, for arguments sake, that fall is my favorite today! I love the crisp cool mornings and the breezy evenings. My birthday just so happens to be in a "fall" month (October, if your wondering) and Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I also love fall because I love to decorate with harvest type items --- pumpkins & gourds mostly AND I'm really looking forward to my husband getting my fall decorations down out of the rafters in the garage for me so I can start decorating now that it's officially fall.

All the reasons I listed above sometimes pale in comparison to one of my most favorite fall time activities ... FALL TV!!! I'll be the first to admit that I have a TV addiction. It's bad. We have two DVR's in our house and both are at or above 50% full at all times because I watch that much TV. It's not like I don't have a million other things going on (work, C25K, keeping a clean house, cooking new recipes, baking, gardening, reading, and numerous other projects) to keep me busy --- but I just really like to watch TV sometimes. It helps me relax and un-wind ... especially on days when I feel completely brain dead after a long day at work and a hard workout (my run today was not good, I felt sluggish and tired and my legs hurt before my warm up was even completed). Plus, there is something to be said about a good TV show that you can get caught up in the story lines/drama and get sucked in before you even know it. Fall TV is like the Twilight series ... I just can't stop watching! I'd love to list all the shows I watch ... but the list is quite long, and not all are "fall" specific. So, instead I'll just leave you with this tid bit of information: there's a lot --- so many that I need a spreadsheet (at the beginning of the seasons) to make sure I get all my series recordings set up so I don't miss a minute! It's okay. I know I have a problem.

Oh yeah --- and one more reasons I love fall --- the Run to Feed the Hungry! This will be my 4th year participating, and third year in a row with Jon!

Meal Plan Monday (9/21) - on Tuesday

Whoops! I totally forgot to post our meal plan yesterday! I guess I was just too caught up in celebrating our six monthiversary! The hubs came home yesterday and surprised me with a dozen red roses for me and a sweet card!


Awww ... then we headed to dinner at the restaurant where we had our rehearsal dinner. The weather was nice so we got to sit outside and just enjoy dinner and each other's company. Doesn't get any better than that on a Monday!

Monday - six monthiversay dinner at rehearsal dinner location

Tuesday - spaghetti with semi-homemade marinara sauce

Wednesday - Marsala burgers

Thursday - leftover spaghetti

Friday - sister-in-law's wedding rehearsal and dinner

Saturday - sister-in-law's wedding!!!

Sunday - BBQ chicken

It's a pretty laid back week in regards to meal planning since we have so much going on. Next week my mom will be staying with us for a few days (she'll be in town to attend some training classes for her job) so I hope to have a better meal plan put together to showcase some of our new favorites for her! She is always asking me about what I'm making so it will be nice to show her for once so she can try some new recipes out when she goes back home.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Six Months

Today is our six monthiversary!

Photo by Debbie Brown Photography


It's our half anniversary!
It's amazing how quickly time is passing.

Six months ago today we exchanged our vows
on the best day of our lives and became husband and wife.

The past six months have been amazing
and I'm looking for to all the many months to come!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

To have and to hold from this day forward
I give to you my infinite love and devotion
I promise to be true to you
To cherish you
And to share my thoughts
Hopes
And dreams with you
I look forward to
Spending the rest of my life with you
My best friend
The one I laugh with
Live for
Dream with
And love
With all that I am, and all that I have
I give to you my hand
My heart
My love
Forever

Saturday, September 19, 2009

W5D3 = 20 painful minutes

This morning I completed W5D3. Today's run was a brisk five minute warm-up followed by 20 minutes of jogging (with no walking) and then a five minute cool down. It. Was. Hard. A lot harder than I anticipated it was going to be. I totally felt ready, but then once I got started my legs felt like lead and the whole 20 minutes was pretty painful. Well, not painful, but definitely a challenge. I've been doing most of all my running in the afternoons/evenings and today's run was in the morning, right after I had gotten up. I've also been busting my butt this week (of course I waited until week 10 of our 10 in 10 challenge to get super motivated) so I think my legs were just overall tired. I did some stretching after the run and I feel great right now. Next week is W6 and its going to be a challenge. We'll be celebrating our Six Monthiversary on Monday and my sister-in-law is getting married next weekend so next week is going to be super busy, I'm not sure I'll be able to get three runs in, but I have already decided that if for some reason I don't then I will repeat W6 the following week, too.

Speaking of our 10 in 10 challenge, Monday will be our final weigh in --- but I can already let you know that I was a major slacker and I'm pretty sure I only lost 1 or 2 lbs total. I spent the majority of the challenge yo-yo'ing up and down on the scale and I spent the first 5 weeks sitting on the couch eating a ton of junk food without any motivation to do anything. Then I decided to start the C25k program and jump start my running again so I've been hitting up the gym and working out more the past 5 weeks --- but I've still been eating a ton of junk food. This past week I finally found the motivation I've been lacking for so long and I decided to start doing more cardio on my "off" days from running. I've been doing the elliptical trainer at the gym for 35 minutes on those off days and I've been riding my stationary bike at home and doing some cross training on my exercise ball. Now I just need to find the motivation to stop putting the junk food in my mouth! And I'll go ahead and confess right now --- I had 5 chocolate chip cookies from the bakery at our local grocery store for dinner. Yep, that's what I'm calling dinner because they filled me up and I need to squeeze into my skinny jeans tonight for my sister-in-law's bachelorette party! I think we'll be having a 10 in 10 re-do BUT we'll be starting the week after next (gotta enjoy our six monthiversary AND cake at my sister-in-law's wedding next weekend first --- then I'll try to stop with the junk food. Maybe I can convince my co-worker to hid the damn M&M's from me, that would be a BIG help).

Friday, September 18, 2009

The End of Summer 2009: Day Three (9/7)

When we first moved into our house my dad and step-mom gave us some bikes. Ever since then, almost a year ago, we've talked about taking our bikes down to the American River Bike Trail and riding them there. Well, we finally did it.

We got up Monday morning and had breakfast then packed a picnic lunch, some water bottles, sunscreen, the camera, and the bikes into the truck and hit the road. We paid and parked at Discovery Park and hit the trail at the 0.50 mile marker (the 0.0 mile marker is in Old Sac, if anyone is interested).



The American River Bike Path is a very nice, easy, smooth place to ride. It's quite & peaceful - even when lots of people are out there running, walking, riding. The views of the river were amazing and we thoroughly enjoyed our nice little morning ride.



Once we reached the Guy West Bridge at the CSUS campus, we crossed over and found a nice shady place under the Redwood trees for lunch.





During lunch we were entertained by a couple of squirrels on campus - something we were both use to as we both are CSUS alum :)


After lunch, we packed everything back up and headed back. Most of the way to CSUS was a gradual up hill climb, so I was looking forward to "coasting" most of the way back. I was tired and it was starting to get hot out.



CSUS is at the 8 mile marker, so overall we rode approximately 15 miles. Next time we hope to go 20+.

Once we got home from our ride, we were exhausted! We watched a movie, BBQ'd some Drunken Jerk Chicken and I made homemade scalloped potatoes. We relaxed and enjoyed the last of our three day weekend - and started planning for our next ride!

The End of Summer 2009: Day Two (9/6)

I got up early again on Sunday, wanting to get a head start on the day, and hung around the house until Jon got up. We started our morning off with some cleaning and then headed to the gym so I could finish up W3D3 of the C25k. After the gym, Jon helped me start spray painting a project I'm working on for his sister's upcoming wedding then he headed to his indoor soccer game, and I did some more cleaning around the house. We did our regular Sunday afternoon grocery shopping, watered the plants at Jon's mom's house, and then headed out to his dad's for dinner. Most of Sunday was spent cleaning and just hanging out - we knew we had a BIG day planned for Monday and that we would most likely be exhausted so we tried to get as many chores done on Sunday as possible. After a yummy polish sausage and rib dinner we headed back home to watch more movies and to rest up for Monday!


Jon's dad's house - the view from the *new* backyard

The End of Summer 2009: Day One (9/5)

Like I mentioned, Labor Day Weekend marks the "end of summer" for me and it's also a three day weekend! I love three day weekends. I often attempt to jam pack them full of activities to utilize them the most! This Labor Day Weekend was no exception!

Friday night was pretty low key, Jon had a soccer game so I hung out at home and watched some TV. We knew Saturday was going to be a busy day so we got to bed early.

Saturday morning we woke up bright and early and headed to the Farmers Market. After the Farmers Market we headed to the Elk Grove park and did a nice 2.88 mile run. After our run we headed home for some breakfast (turkey bacon, egg beaters, and Monkey Bread. Then we headed over to Jon's mom's house for an afternoon swim and to soak up some sun. After we had relaxed over there for a while and were starting to getting a little sun burnt, we headed back home to relax and cook dinner. Before dinner we made a batch of S'mores Cookies. For dinner we made Zucchini Patties and Microwave Potato Chips. After dinner we settled down to watch some movies! It was a great start to a long and happy three day weekend!

S'mores Cookies


Zucchini Patties


Microwave Potato Chips

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sac Valley Aids 5k Recap

This was our first time participating in the Sacramento Valley Aids Run & Walk. The race started at the State Capitol building and the course weaved though beautiful downtown Sacramento, mostly around Capital Park and the Capital Rose Garden. The weather was perfect for running --- it felt like a cool fall morning in Sacramento! I decided on Saturday, after not getting a chance to do a run, that I would make the 5k my C25K W4D3 and that worked our perfectly --- when I reached the end of my workout on my podcast, I just started it back over - skipping the warm-up. We finished in 39:25 and Maryann McClarry, from Good Day Sacramento, was doing a live shot at the finish line as we crossed and she was waving to us and cheering us on! Woo-hoo! She is my favorite Good Day celebrity! There were a couple of times during the race when I felt like I could have pushed harder, but since I was just finishing up W4 of the C25k I didn't want to push too hard because I know that W5 is going to be rough. I really enjoyed the race and will definitely look into doing it again next year. There was a great turn out, I love the State Capital Building and downtown Sacramento so any extra excuses to spend time down there are wonderful, and its for a GREAT cause!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Menu Plan Monday (9/14)

The weekends are just not long enough.

Monday - Caesar salad's

Tuesday - Jon is having quesadilla's and I'll be heading over to my sister-in-law's house for a homemade sushi instruction (and dinner, yum)

Wednesday - Burrito Bowls

Thursday - Taco Pasta

Friday - Zucchini Patties

Saturday - Mexican Pizza

Sunday - Crockpot Mexican Chicken

We are playing it a little safe this week and are not trying any new recipes. I'm sure your not surprised to see the Mexican Pizza. I doubt that will be removed from the meal plan any time soon. Crockpot Mexican Chicken is a recipe I discovered last winter and we had it a few times. It's super easy and very yummy! You should try it --- Heather has a ton of great recipes posted on her blog. The Zucchini Patties may or may not happen - we didn't get a chance to go to the Farmer's Market this past weekend and the zucchini in the grocery store was down right pathetic. Maybe we will get some ready-to-pick ones in our own garden or I might defrost some of the ones I already froze from our garden early last month. Burrito Bowls are super quick and easy to make for dinner --- a quick tip for you if you plan to make them: we buy the pre-shredded lettuce in a bag and it goes bad quickly so keep an eye on it! That's all for tonight. I really pushed myself at the gym today, and at our 5k yesterday, so I'm exhausted. I'll be positng a race recap soon!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

2nd Annual Alzheimer's Aid Society Memorial 5K Run/Walk

I just realized this morning, the day before our next 5k (Sac Valley Aids Run & Walk) that I never blogged about our last 5k (The Alzheimer's Aid Society Memorial 5k Run/Walk) that we did back in July.

We particapted in the 1st annual Alzheimer's Memory 5k last July. It takes place in East Sacramento, starting and ending at the East Lawn Memorial Cemetary. The course is mostly flat and goes through the Fab 40's neighborhood. Last year, I blogged about how I got to run along side Kevin Johnson, the mayor of Sacramento, for about 5 paces before he took off. This year, we started the race right next to him and ran along side him for the first mile! Maybe next year I'll be a strong enough runner to run alongside him the whole time! The weather was good and the race was nice and easy ... which was good considering we had not participated in a 5k since May and we had not been running very reguarly.

Tomorrow race is at the State Capitol and the course goes through downtown Sacramento. Weather is suppose to be nice and I'm really looking forward to pushing myself. I'm 4 weeks into the Couch to 5k Program and I plan to run W4D3 tomorrow at the race. I'll return with a full recap later this week, until then - here's a photo from after the Alzheimer's 5k: