Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Work Week Breakfasts

We all know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but yet it's the meal most likely to be skipped by most of us.  During the work week, most of us would rather spend a few extra minutes sleeping rather than making time to eat the first meal of the day.  I used to be really guilty about this, but over the past year or so I've changed my habits and it's made a big difference. Eating breakfast each morning has given me more energy and a less chaotic launch to my day.

Here are a few tips that might make eating breakfast easier:

Make it ahead of time
When you do meal prepping in advance, then you don't have to waste anytime in the morning deciding what to eat or cooking.  Try to plan out your breakfasts on Sunday night, so that you don't have to think about it during the week. On Sunday night you could even prepare a few breakfasts ahead of time.  Preparing breakfast ahead of time could be simply placing yogurt and fruit in a container as well as placing your granola in a zip lock bag, preparing overnight oats, pre-cutting the bagel you will eat. slicing fruit, or even putting all the ingredients in the bullet blender cup for your morning smoothie.

Establish a morning routine
Establishing a morning routine will schedule you time to eat breakfast regularly. Like I said earlier, most of us don't eat because we don't have time. If you allow yourself time, then you can definitely indulge on the most important meal of the day. Play around a little bit to figure out what works best for you. I personally have found that showering the night before gives me extra time in the morning to eat breakfast.

Make one morning special
Try to pick out one morning a week to treat yourself to a special breakfast. This might be stopping at Starbucks for your favorite latte, eating leftovers for breakfast, something that might not be as healthy, or taking extra time to make your favorite breakfast (waffles, pancakes, etc.).

On the go options
Stock up on a few items that you can always bring to eat while you're en route to your morning activity.  Some items to keep around might be fruit, granola bars, or dry cereal.

So now that I've shared some strategies that help me, let's chat about some things you could eat for breakfast.

Toast recipes// Bagel toppings// Instant Oatmeal
Yogurt ideas// Breakfast cookies// Smoothie recipes
Quiche recipe// Overnight oat recipes// Wraps

What are your go to breakfasts for a busy morning?


Saturday, September 17, 2016

Walk In My Week

Welcome to the weekend!
I don't know about you, but I was more than ecstatic yesterday afternoon to begin a new weekend. You may or may not have noticed that I've taken a two week break from blogging.  Life has taken me on a bit of an emotional roller coaster ride lately, and I need to take some time to take care of myself along the ride.  This weekend I'm hitting the reset button and getting back on track with everything. 

Last weekend we had to say goodbye to our family's fur baby.  The death of Riley has honestly felt as if we have lost one of our actual family members. He was twelve years old and the best dog we ever had. I got him for my tenth birthday after doing lots of research.  He was my sidekick and came almost everywhere with me (even our family vacation to Vermont). This week has been the first time in my life that my family hasn't had a dog. It has been quite strange and sad. My heart still hurts, and I my eyes still fill up with tears each time I remember he's gone.  No dog will ever be able to replace Riley, but I think our family is definitely in need of pup to make our house feel like a home again. 

On top of grieving the loss of my dog, I've also been sick for the past three weeks. I've had a cough, sore throat, congestion, and fatigue.  Tea with honey and lemon has been a life saver for me. I think I'm at the tail end of it all now, so I'm finally getting back to being my normal self. I'm looking forward to being healthy again and making an appearance at the gym this week after my month long hiatus. 

Student Teaching Updates
Week three of student teaching is complete. This week we had our first full week of school-five whole days. At the time, the week felt like it was moving in slow motion. However, looking back it went so quickly. I now know all of my students names and am getting more familiar with their learning preferences. I've had the opportunity to do lots of co-teaching and am beginning to do more planning. 

Food Favorites
I definitely haven't been cooking or doing as much meal prepping as I should be.  With all the chaos, I have been appreciating living at home and having my parents' help.  This week my mom and I made a yummy dinner together- zucchini noodles and quinoa with marinara. It was a simple meal, but it tasted so good! If you're looking for an easy healthy dinner recipe, then let me know! I'll have to add it to my Kitchen Adventures series soon. 

Current Obsession
Pumpkin spice.  Fall is my favorite season and along with this season comes pumpkin spice and everything nice.  This week pumpkin spice lattes gave me the extra boost of energy I need to keep me going.  I'm looking forward to trying this brie and pumpkin recipe soon. 

Weekend Reads
So enough with my ramblings. Here are a few things to get you through the weekend:
+Feeling Sick? Try this little concoction to help you sleep.
+Anyone else wishing it was chilly enough to break out the fall essentials?
+A dip recipe to much on during this weekend's football games. 
+Movie suggestion: Bridget Jones' Baby
+A comparison of the iPhone 6 vs iPhone 7
+Apparently you can now purchase Lilly Pulitzer wallpaper


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Making the Most of 8 Ams

It's safe to say that the average college student would say that they hate having 8 Am classes.  I mean nobody likes to wake up and go to class when they could sleep in and take that same class later on in the day. Unfortunately, the chances that you will encounter at least one 8am class during college is pretty high.  I think your perspective definitely determines if these early morning classes are a good thing or not. Believe it or not there are some people out there who actually enjoy waking up early and getting their classes done with earlier in the day. During college I had several early morning classes. I liked 9am classes better than 8 ams.  The hour makes a big difference! Since it's the beginning of the semester, I thought I would share some tips and tricks for making the most of these early morning classes.

Prepare the night before
Take ten minutes the night before to pick out your outfit, pack your bag, and make sure you have all of your assignments done. The more you do the night before, the less time you'll need to spend getting ready in the morning. You might even want to consider showering the night before, so that you can sleep in a little bit later.

Set your alarms
Yes, I meant to say alarms as in multiple ones. If you're like me, then you understand why I'm saying this. I have a fear of sleeping through my alarm, so I always like to set two or three alarms.

Get a good night's rest
Don't stay up incredibly late the night before an early morning class. It will make it even more difficult to wake up, and chances are you will be groggy during class. Try to plan to get 7-9 hours of sleep.

Eat something
Be sure to eat something before you get to class. This will give you energy. The last thing you want is to get hungry mid way through class and be distracted by your stomach growling. If you don't have time to hit the dining hall, then grab a piece of fruit or granola bar and eat them as you walk to class.

Reward yourself
During college, most of the campus is asleep while you're in this early morning class. Once you get to the real world this own't be the case, so reward yourself now. Treat yourself on these days.  After class, stop at your favorite coffee shop for a latte and your favorite pastry.

Wear your gym clothes to class
If you don't have a break in your schedule after this class, then plan to hit the gym afterwards.  You will already be up and out of your room, so why not take advantage of the day? Go to class dressed in your clothes for the gym, so then you can just head straight there.

Walk to class
If you are able to, then choose to walk to class. The early morning walk will help wake you up and prepare you to learn.  Studies have proven that doing physical activity prior to studying will help you learn better.

Be engaged during class
Try to hand write your notes rather than type them. This will force you to pay attention during class rather than mindlessly typing. It will also prevent you from browsing the internet.  It's also good to sit up front, so that you are not tempted to doze off during those boring lectures.  Lastly, ask questions during class. This will help you stay on task with what you are learning, and it will help you better understand the material.

Review your notes
After class, take some time to review the notes you took. This will help reinforce the content and ensure that you completely comprehended the lecture. This is also a great time to re-write or type any part of the notes that you took that were unclear.

I do have to say taking early morning classes definitely made me drink more coffee during college. Taking early morning classes might not be ideal, but waking up early and being disciplined will help make your transition from college to the real world much easier.  Most jobs require you to wake up and early and be productive. If you start forming good habits now, then they will follow you throughout life.  This semester I can definitely attest to this.  Waking up at 5am makes taking 8am classes seem like nothing.


Monday, September 5, 2016

September's Monday Motivation

It's Monday, which means it's the start of a new week. For some of us summer ended yesterday and for others it will end today or tomorrow. Labor Day Weekend seems to always resemble the ending of summer and beginning of fall.  By this time everyone has gone back to school and reality is kicking in.  We are preparing our fall bucket lists, establishing new routines, doing fall cleaning, and looking forward to a break in the hot temperatures.  

Mondays have their pros on cons. They are great because they present an opportunity for a fresh start.   However, they also are a downer because they represent another work and/or school week. I'm working to change my attitude about Mondays and go with the first option of looking at them like a new opportunity.  

It's definitely easier to be negative than positive in certain situations. I think Mondays can be a time when it's easier to look at all the negatives rather than the positives.  This week I'm challenging you to look at life on the positive side rather than dwell on all the bad things going on. 

Have a great week!


Friday, September 2, 2016

Walk In My Week

Happy Friday everyone! 
The four day weekend has finally arrived for me. This week was my first official week of student teaching, and let me tell you it was definitely an action packed week.  This week I'm just going to give you a brief synopsis rather than a window into each day's activities. 

Student Teaching Updates
I now understand why teachers begin school a week before their students do. The preparation week is definitely an essential for transitioning teachers from summer into the beginning of the school year. Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday I spent 9+ hours each day in the district that I will be spending the next few months in.  I attended several professional development workshops, grade level meetings, content meetings, and spent most of my time getting the classroom set up. I'm only one week in, but I've already learned so much.  This week my biggest take away was from my building principal. He said that teachers should never work harder than their students. By this he meant that students should be doing the cognitive labor of learning rather than teachers just giving them the answers. This is something that I intend to keep in mind as I become a teacher. 

Food Favorites
I made three dinners this week. I'm all about meals that are quick to make and healthy. This week's menu included Chicken Cesar Salad, Tortellini, and Baked Tilapia.  If you like fish, then I highly recommend this tilapia recipe!

Current Obsession
This JCrew bag. I've been wanting a good bag to use for teaching (transporting my teaching essentials back and forth each day). I had liked the transport tote and had been waiting for it to go on sale, but when the new Jcrew catalog came out I quickly changed my mind. I instantly fell in love with this bag. It was designed to be an everyday bag to get the working woman through an entire day (barre class all the way through lunch and the working day).  I was on the fence whether or not to get it, but I was quickly swayed to add the bag to my online cart. A few weeks ago JCrew had a big sale that included a discount and free shipping that I just couldn't pass up.  Monday afternoon I came home to the JCrew box on my door step, and I have used the bag every day since. Let me tell you it definitely did not disappoint! Check out the all day tote to see what I'm obsessing over. 

Other Ramblings + Looking Ahead
+This week I've truly appreciated being able to move back home and live with my parents. I came home Sunday afternoon to my laundry folded and a fresh bunch of sunflowers on my desk. It's the little things that just make me smile and realize how lucky I am. 

+Tuesday will be first day of student teaching with the students there. I'm excited to see how the week goes!

+Super excited that Nick was chosen to be the next Bachelor! I'm hoping his season will be better than the most recent seasons of The Bachelorette and Bachelor In Paradise.

+I'm looking forward to enjoying the last little bit of summer this weekend. I'm hoping to plan out my blog content for the month of September, so if you have suggestions I'd love to hear them!

Have a fabulous weekend!