Deep Thoughts With Brittany

I think that life got the best of me the past few months (times a few more months). It seemed that at points I was not in control of anything I did. Not at work, my free time or even with my friends and family. Going along with the flow can be fun… but it ultimately led to questions of “do I even like what I’m doing?” or “do I really belong here?” It took me a while to realize this, but I was not happy. It was time to make some changes and focus on what I like to do and what makes me happy. I needed to declutter my mind and my life.

One of the most helpful things I’ve done for myself is take two weeks of between my old job and my new job that starts next week. Changing jobs alone was a scary step for me but I needed new people and experiences. Two weeks off has given me time to have some quality time with myself and really put my priorities in order and get my life organized. Oh, and I got a massage today, that helped as well!

So, maybe this wasn’t as deep as I thought, but I’m getting back to what I love which includes accounting, baking, running, crafting and then all oversharing it on the internet for the world to see. So here’s to starting fresh, starting over, and being what I want to be.

Talk to you SOON!

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Monday Motivation

Happy daylight! Driving home in the light was such a treat tonight. I could actually see the potholes before I ran them over. In other news, I thought I was going to have to take a nap on my desk at work. But spring is in the air, I can smell it! Makes me want to run around. I’m not sure if any of those sentences made any sense, I have no concept of time and I think I may have lost some brain cells with this time change… who knows. Maybe I’ll have better luck tomorrow.

Here’s motivation. I need it. daily-motivation-25-photos-214 da-mo-105

“Spring Ahead” calls for extra funnies this week. One thing that is not funny? Losing an hour of sleep.

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Oh happy week!

What’s Getting Me Through

Happy Wine Wednesday/Hump Day!! I hope everyone is having a great week so far. Today in New Hampshire the temp was above 40 degrees… heat wave!!! I’m looking forward to this weekend where it should be in the upper 20s and I can venture out on some long runs. More importantly, I’m counting down the days until April 15th (I think we’re at 43 now). I wish I had all these fun workouts to report and could give details of my long runs… but sadly the office is holding be captive 12-15 hours a day and with my added commute time and occasionally showering and eating, the wear of running on my body is not welcomed. Ironic that this is also the time of the year when I need running the most. Holy restless leg syndrome! Once the clocks change, I’m hoping to take a break at the office around 6 when it closes to the public and going on mini runs… something is better than nothing! Until now I’m living for the weekends!

As awful as I make tax season sound, I do love it. The work is challenging, but the days do go by fast and I love solving everyone’s tax puzzles. Every client I have is unique and no two returns are ever the same! Aside from that, there are still plenty of little things that help me get through my long weeks:

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PRO just released their new SOM today! You can find it here! Warning: if you are a popular size (S/M) they will sell out! I made the mistake with the last SOM and never got around to getting it. These are perfect for your St. Patrick’s day races and to give you luck throughout the year. I mean, they have clovers. You will get lucky in them (and get a PR… get your mind out of the gutters).

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This is probably the most random birthday gift I’ve ever received, but it’s also the most useful. I completely forget the name, but it’s this little clay pot with a dome lid on it and a handle. The lid has a hole on top and you can make delicious things in the microwave. It’s main claim to fame is poaching eggs. I have yet to try that but the other day I threw in a couple whisked eggs, spinach, tomatoes, cheese, and microwaved it with the lid on for 1:30 minutes. The results were this super fluffy and delicious omelette! On my yumminess. The booklet it came with had a bunch of other recipes I can’t wait to try!

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Like I said earlier, I live for the weekends. I can’t wait to get to Saturday where I can put on my favorite socks, lace up my shoes, and go tracking through mud season. Living on a dirt roads gets pretty nasty this time of year, but my running attire brightens it up a bit!

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Most importantly, whenever you are feeling down, there is a picture of a Corgi with a flower on it’s face. If I could have any dog in the world it world it would be a Corgi. Close to the ground, close to your heart. Life goals.

I hope everyone has a great rest of their week and I’ll keep reading all your running recaps and gym workouts and living vicariously through you until Saturday!

xoxo

Let Them Eat Cake

After this past Thursday, I’m pretty convinced that your birthday is really just a test to see how much cake you can eat in one day. Everyone knows that I’m slightly obsessed with cupcakes and cakes in general. I have no idea what it is. I have a theory that it is the fact they are normally associated with celebrations. I mean, I personally don’t know anyone who casually makes cakes and always has a dozen cupcakes to offer their guests.

Working on your birthday leaves a lot to be desired, but my day started out the right way: with a chocolate covered strawberry cupcake from one of my favorite bakeries. Chocolate covered strawberry included. It was a vanilla cupcake with a chocolate filling and light, fluffy strawberry frosting on top.

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No, I regrettably did not have the entire cupcake for breakfast. I only had a bite and made my normal smoothie. I figured I would need some nutrients for this day. I felt a theme coming on.

For my second cake of the day, my work surprised me with these beautiful cupcakes from a local grocery store. They were delicious! They were vanilla cake with vanilla fluffy frosting. For someone who likes cake as much as I do, I sure disappoint with my favorite. I like vanilla. Even more disappointing is that I like the lightest frosting you can get, something along the lines of whipped cream works best for me.

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There’s something about super sweet frosting I just can’t stand. It makes my teeth feel like they are decaying on the spot. But the frosting on these cupcakes did not disappoint. I could have eaten it alone with a spoon.

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After a dinner (yes, it was real food, not sugar based) I was surprised with a whole cake… yes I know this is getting ridiculous by now. It was around this time I decided it was a day to test how much I love cake. Added bonus: how cute are the safari themed candles?!

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The cake takes the cake…. haha? Like what is this post even about… This final one was vanilla cake with a whipped cream frosting and layers of raspberry jam. Like added, added bonus with this one: Champagne.

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I don’t even need gifts on my birthday. Give me cake, candles and champagne and I’ll be the happiest of campers.

Luckily, I had help to eat all of the above and my weekend following was full of running. But there is still some of that last one left…. that I should probably finish so it can’t temp me any longer!

Monday Motivation

Happy Monday! I’m really hoping this “never miss a Monday” gets me on the same track for blogging as it does running. So far I’m two for two! And as excited as I am to go to sleep and try out this new sleeping app… you know, one of those ones that is suppose to wake you up when you are in your lightest sleep… I had to get in my Monday motivation to keep me going the rest of this week!

So here we goooooo!

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And humor. Because the snow here in New Hampshire is a joke.

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Beware: this is about to get nerdy…

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Simple Green Smoothies

Hi there! I’m a big fan of making smoothies for breakfast. They are quick and easy to have on my way to work. The only problem is that I made the same one every. single. day. Occasionally I mix it up, but they all revolve around frozen fruit and almond milk. The other morning, I wanted to try something new. I googled “smoothie recipes” like a normal person and came across this site. Normally, when I try to find smoothie recipes they either make enough to feed an entire family, or involve 428 ingredients I don’t have. Simple Green Smoothies, like it’s name suggests, is full of easy smoothie recipes that are simple and delightful! The site in general is just plain awesome. It’s full of tips and useful information about smoothies. I’m impressed.

Here are a few recipes that caught my eye:

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Takes Two To Mango

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Raspberry Coconut Shortcake

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Almond Butter and “Jelly”

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Avo-Banana Kale

Happy Blending!

What’s Getting Me Through

Happy Wednesday! I’m not sure where the week is going… or if it is going by slow or fast… it’s hard to tell this time of year. The best news this week is…. IT HASN’T SNOWED ALL WEEK… Wait a second. it snowed last night… but we only on an inch so that doesn’t count.

This week I’m allowing myself to not think about studying for my CPA exams since I just took one last Saturday. Next week I’ll start up on the next one… maybe.

This week started out pretty well when I celebrated National Margarita Day with some chicken fajitas and fresh salsa on the side:

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I took the time to paint my nails on Monday (and they haven’t chipped yet!)

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I found an inside treadmill to use to get me through winter (and it’s only located a mile from my house!)

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And PRO is having a sale and a giveaway! Feeling lucky? 2 ways to enter… you don’t even need to make a purchase (but you should since 40% off is just as good as winning this contest… which makes everyone a winner)

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WHAAAAHHOOOOO WEDNESDAY!!!!!

Happy, Healthy Heart

February is heart month! Yes, I know February is almost to an end, but a healthy heart should be promoted all year, not just for one month. Did you know that 1 of every 4 deaths are caused by heart disease? Small changes in your diet and lifestyle can have a HUGE impact and help prevent heart disease. Simple things like replacing salt with seasonings on your food and having 20 minutes of physical activity per day can help your heart stay healthy.

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Cutting salt is one of the easiest things. You don’t even have to exercise for this change. Technically you have to do even less than you have to do now since you no longer have to reach for the salt shaker at dinner. Yesterday, Runner’s World posted this article providing 6 Super foods that can protect your heart. In summary (ok…mostly word for word… I wanted to get my facts right!):

SPRING SALAD MIX

These delicate salad greens are rich in phytonutrients and the B vitamins folate and B6. Together, these nutrients help protect blood vessels from damage that leads to clogged arteries.

Not a salad fan? Stuff greens into sandwiches and wraps or stir a handful into soup and allow them to wilt.

SOY MILK

Soy contains compounds called isoflavones that studies show help lower blood cholesterol. Additionally, people who regularly eat soy have a lower risk for heart disease.

Put it in what you already eat: Use soy milk in your morning cereal, blend into fruit smoothies, and substitute it in recipes calling for regular milk.

NUTS

Pistachios, almonds, walnuts, and the like contain heart-healthy fats that won’t elevate circulating cholesterol levels. Nuts are also rich in an array of phytonutrients that help lessen the inflammatory response in arteries that may lead to the progression of heart disease.

Eat it Aside from eating nuts as a snack, they add delicious crunch to salads and yogurt (including frozen yogurt!). BONUS: Throw them on your spring salad mix.

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FISH

From canned tuna to fresh salmon, seafood contains essential omega-3 fats. These fats help moderate the inflammatory response that occurs inside arteries, which is one of the reasons why eating fish twice a week has been shown to lower heart disease risk.

Eat it Canned salmon is an easy way to boost the protein and healthy fats in any meal. Add it on top of a salad or stir it into a soup for a quick “chowder.” SUPER BONUS: Eat with your spring mix salad with nuts.

POMEGRANATE JUICE

The rich red color of this fruit (and juice) provides protection to your heart by lowering the likelihood that circulating cholesterol will clog arteries. One study showed that drinking pomegranate juice daily improved blood flow in heart disease patients.

Drink it Mix with sparkling water as a refreshing, re-hydrating drink after a run. This of it as a heart cocktail.

OATMEAL

This super cereal is rich in soluble fiber that helps block cholesterol absorption. Studies show that simply eating a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast can significantly bring down cholesterol levels.

Eat it Oatmeal makes a great recovery meal any time of day—add savory flavors, like herbs, vegetable broth, and a sprinkle of nuts or Parmesan to tailor it for lunch or even a quick dinner. Or try adding a scoop of protein powder and Greek yogurt, along with a piece of fruit to round it out. HELLOOOOO OVERNIGHT OATS I LOVE YOU.

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The best part about this list? For me, I eat half these things daily. However, if you are a picky eater, you can hide almost all these items in other foods. It’s like magic. Be a wizard.

Pancakes, Two Ways

Lately, I have been craving pancakes. Maybe it’s been the cold weather we have been having lately. Nothing seems to represent a snowed-in weekend morning better than heating up the griddle and brewing a hot pot of coffee. After many experiments, I have come up with two recipes that are going to be my “go to” recipes from now on. The first one is a classic fluffy recipe. This one is perfect when you want a relaxing Sunday brunch or are looking for a crowd pleaser. The second one is a heartier pancake that would be the perfect fuel before heading out on a long run. They will stick with you and provide plenty of carbohydrates.

Fluffy Pancakes

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  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • cooking spray
  1. Combine milk with vinegar in a medium bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to “sour”.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Whisk egg and butter into “soured” milk. Pour the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and whisk until lumps are gone.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, and coat with cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cupfuls of batter onto the skillet, and cook until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip with a spatula, and cook until browned on the other side.
  4. Serve with toppings of your choice. Special points if you serve with bacon.

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Multigrain Pancakes

(adapted from the Runner’s World Cookbook)

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  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 4 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup low-fat milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • toppings of your choice (I like to go with a variety of smooshed and warmed fruit or a nut butter!)
  1. Combine the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, oats, sugar, salt, baking powder, and soda in a bowl.
  2. Pour the buttermilk and milk into a 2-cup measuring cup and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Which together with the eggs, oil, and vanilla extract. Pour into the dry ingredients and which until just combined
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium heat, and coat with cooking spray. Pour 1/4 cupfuls of batter onto the skillet, and cook until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip with a spatula, and cook until browned on the other side.
  4. Cover in toppings of your choice.

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Happy flipping!

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Monday Motivation

Greetings! I hope this Monday finds you well. I think my past week of an average of four hours of sleep a night finally caught up to me and I’m looking forward to going to bed as soon as possible. Hopefully I can make it through this post. Originally, I thought I would make it for a run this evening, but I think sleep is more important at this point. i wouldn’t want to be getting sick for my birthday week!

Here’s some motivation for your Monday:

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And some jokes. Because laughing is good for you.

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