Scenes From My Weekend

What is going on with this winter weather we are having?! Usually at this point in December we have already had one great snowstorm, with temps constantly freezing, yet so far New Hampshire wants to act like it’s more of a southern state. I’m not complaining one bit. 55 degrees on the weekend? I will take 20 of those please!

Warmer weather makes holiday shopping so much easier, and since I overheat like a wild woman when I shop, it’s nice not to have to layer up in a big, winter jacket. Speaking of overheating and sweating, today is the last day to enter the Dove/Degree giveaway pack. Head on over to last Friday’s post and simply leave a comment to be entered. There are 10 winners, so you have good odds!

Saturday morning started my favorite way; with a shoulder workout. I’m in the process of creating my own workouts instead of using pre-programmed ones from Bodybuilding.com, so be on the lookout for those in the coming weeks, as I want to start sharing more of my workouts with all of you!

Post-workout and pre-Christmas shopping fuel.

Whole30-Breakfast-Eggs-Veggies-Chicken-SausageAdditional fuel. I could eat cashews for breakfast, lunch and dinner and die a happy girl.

Whole30-Trail-Mix-SnackAlmost all of my gifts are wrapped and already under my parent’s tree. It’s so much easier to wrap and stick them under the tree now rather than lugging 100 gifts and all of my bags on Christmas Eve.

Tree-Gifts2The 2nd best Christmas CD of all time is now on repeat in my car. This brings back so many high school memories, which I’m sure most of you can relate to!

imageDinner at Agave Mexican Bistro.. just kidding, they closed at 4 pm. I’ll just have to continue day dreaming about the steak salad I had my heart set on.Agave-Mexican-BistroHipster cafe bathroom wall art. I hope I always stay feeling as bright as the sun.

image10 shades of “I’m tired and don’t want to do this,” but I did it.

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What’s your favorite Christmas CD?

NSYNC is up there too!!

Do you have all of your holiday shopping complete?

Almost!! Just one little pipsqueak left to buy for. <3

Whole Foods Nashua Tour. Open Today!

To all my fellow New Hampshire residents, today is a haugeeee day in the state. Today is the day that our very first ever Whole Foods opens in Nashua at ten!

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About a month ago, the marketing team at Whole Foods reached out to a handful of NH bloggers, and invited us to get a sneak peek and tour the brand new store before it opens today. We all met at Whole Foods in Nashua, NH last Thursday afternoon for the special tour!

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There was a Whole Foods near my internship in college that I would occasionally stop into after work, but I haven’t stepped foot into one since 2010, so I am just so excited that we finally have one!

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I loved getting to spend the afternoon with some of my favorite bloggers {Emily, Janine, and Alison}, along with meeting new ones, especially Ruthie!unnamed-118 WholeFoods_Nashua

Whole Foods gives you the option of buying fresh fish, or stocking up with so many frozen selections, all at some really great prices.
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Cedar plank salmon, on the cheap! This has to be a deal and a half. Oh, and bacon wrapped scallops in the back. I am so hungry just talking about and looking at this picture.

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A fitness freak’s dream: bulk protein! This is such a great way to try different proteins, especially if your stomach is iffy with certain proteins.WholeFoods_Nashua

For my CrossFit peeps, they carry Stronger, Faster, Healthier protein, although it’s $66, so you’re still getting a deal with Mat, but still, it was so cool to see a local company in there!

WholeFoods_Nashua_SFHWhole Foods has some really great deals, and I learned that it is easy to get out of the store for a low dollar amount. If you learn how to spot the deals, then it’s not as expensive as most make it out to be.

Oh, and I got this pancake mix in my swag bag. It’s not as good as ProCakes protein pancake mix, but it still made for delicious pancakes!

IMG_0405 wholefoods_pancakesWhat is your favorite aspect or item to buy at Whole Foods?

I can’t wait to check out their meats and just explore it all in depth on my own time frame!

 

 

I Am Not Sexy.

On Sunday I had the biggest realization of my life. I am not sexy. I give sexy an embarrassing name. I am cringing over what happened. You see, Sunday morning, our Blog & Tweet NH event of the month was… pole dancing. Ugh. Fml. Wahhhh.

Let me be sporty and pretty, but please don’t make me be sexy. This was one event I really, truly, deep heartedly didn’t want to do. Like, not at all. Like, I would have eaten 5 cans of sardines instead of this.

At 10 am, I met up with my favorite NH bloggers at New Perspective Pole and Aerial for our private class. I made sure to partner with Emily on a pole, and literally made her do all of the moves first, and do them more than me. The class was taught by owner and instructor Juel Sheridan.

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We were lead through a series of different moves, all increasing in difficulty. There’s Emily, practicing pole dancing for her future firefighting hubby.

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Juel was amazing, and I have such respect for her skills and pole dancing, but I am just going to stick to what I’m good at… like CrossFit, running and eating.

Yesterday, CrossFit kicked my butt. My body was just so incredibly sore, and I’m really not sure if I should have worked out. It might have been smarter to take a rest day, but I just wanted to see everyone. Starting my day with those fine people are how days should be started.

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Seriously though, it kicked my butt. I couldn’t lift as much as I wanted… well I did, but it was a struggle. And burpees, oh my gosh, burpess. I hope to never do burpees pregnant. Burpees on your period while weighing probably 10+ pounds more than normal isn’t fun. Another workout that I wanted to vom during.

Today I skipped working out and slept from 8:30 pm until 7 am. It was so glorious and by body definitely needs a rest day today.

Sarah sent me this last night to motivate us for our race on Sunday.

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Who or what would you run for?

I will run for: Bradley Cooper, Patrick Dempsey, Keith Urban, Ryan Gosling, frosting, cookies, peanut butttttttter, and cashews!

Good Food & Hard Workouts

My Monday started with burpees and thrusters, so your morning already wins.

Friday

Friday was one big party which started promptly at 6. I met my cool CrossFit friend, Paul, for my first ever Chipotle experience. I knew going in what I was getting. I did my Paleo research, and ordered the salad with mild salsa, guac and carnitas. I cannot believe I have lived under a rock for 26 years without trying Chipotle. I will not go another 26 seconds without another bowl of this goodness.

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Saturday

Chipotle fueled me for 14.4 of the CrossFit open. I signed up for heat 1 of 6, which started around 8:20. Ugh. Hardest CrossFit workout I’ve ever done. Hands down.

14.4: AMRAP 14

  • 60 calorie row —- which took probably 3-4 grueling minutes
  • 70 knee raises
  • 40 wall balls — 20# (lbs)
  • 30 cleans — I only got through 10
  • 20 banded pull-ups & 20 push-ups

I participated in the scaled version, and only got through 10 cleans before the 14 minutes ran out. By the time I got to the knee raises, I absolutely wanted to and thought that I was going to hurl. I really hope I never have to do this again. My under-armpit/boobage area hurts from those damn knee raises!

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I rarely get to see my coach workout, so I’ve really loved that he does the Open workouts with us. It’s one thing to be coached by someone who knows his stuff, but to then be able to see them in action, well that’s just a different kind of awesome. {He is the shirtless beast below}
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I couldn’t stay for heat 6, as I had to meet my Dad and Uncle at my apartment to load up my Uncle’s truck with my furniture. I used about 3 of my lunch hours to pack things up and bring home after work, over the last month, and that really made my move so easy. We were in and out within 20 minutes.

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I spent the rest of my afternoon reorganizing my room, running errands, and just relaxing. I started watching American Hustle and was not impressed. Am I the only one who couldn’t get into it? I did enjoy watching Bradley Cooper dance at the disco club though. Boy has moves.

Sunday

Breakfast on the couch while catching up on How I Met Your Mother. This is the worst season ever, and I am so bitter and mad that this entire season is literally like the span of 2 days.
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Life is good as a cat. I wish I could sleep and eat all day.

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After breakfast, around 9:30 I headed out to meet up with some of my favorite NH bloggers for one of our Blog & Tweet events. I was dreading this one. Pole dancing. No, just no.IMG_7215I spent the rest of my afternoon going for a chilly 2.8 mile run, with a few mailbox sprints in there (gross), and then spent a few hours cooking some meals for the first half of the week.

My birthday is officially over. Went out for my birthday dinner last night with my parents. Murphy’s Diner obviously for some Paleo breakfast. Life is perfect.

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And then, at 7, I crawled into bed and watched The Walking Dead before passing out a little after 8.

Best part of your weekend?

Mine was that I’m finally moved home and spending lots of time with my favorite CrossFit peeps. 🙂

Blog & Tweet NH: You’re Fired Pottery

Last Monday I did one of the coolest things ever with Janine and Emily, from Blog and Tweet NH. We went to You’re Fired, a local pottery painting studio.

When we arrived, Kristen, one of You’re Fired’s awesome staff members, told us to look around at the pottery pieces to get an idea of what we wanted to paint. There was everything from mugs, bowls, plates, ring holders, animals, and pretty much everything under the sun.

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After we chose our piece, Kristen walked us through the process of choosing colors. Under each bottle of paint is a tile that shows what 3 coats looks like. She gave us recommendations on the paints and the best methods to use.

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There were way too many colors to choose from, and I totally felt overwhelmed, but mainly because I am so indecisive and can’t make a decision if my life depended on it.
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There were also mini bottles for drawing shapes, writing, or for outlining. The name of the paints are so fun and cheerful!IMG_5985 IMG_6015

We spent about an hour and a half specifically painting, but about 20 or so minutes was spent trying to figure out colors and designs.

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I chose 3 different shades of mint green for my background colors, and then chose complimentary colors for my polka dots. I came to You’re Fired probably 3 year ago and painted a frame, and that time I did polka dots as well. I just like the p.dots!IMG_5986After completing my design, I decided that it would look really, really good, or look like throw-up. The only kicker is that you have to wait about a week, because first, the paint has to dry, and then it goes in the kiln, where it gets its glossy finish.

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And the outcome? Not what I was deep down looking for, but I like it!

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The bottom is a fun, speckled paint. LOVE the bottom!IMG_6033In addition to regular walk-ins, You’re Fired also hosts birthday parties, bridal and wedding showers, bachelorette parties and ladies’ nights!

Have you ever gone to a pottery studio?

*You’re Fired offered us all services free of charge in exchange for review. All opinions and reviews are my own.

Blog & Tweet NH: Strength In Balance NH

This entire week has been a complete shock for my body. I started the week not being able to move, and I am rounding out the week the same way. We all know that those ring rows, box push-ups and air squats that I dominated on Wednesday have left me feeling achy all over since Wednesday, but I didn’t even hint at what kept me sore the beginning of the week.

On Sunday, I headed into downtown Nashua for a Blog & Tweet NH event. Located in a historic mill building was Strength In Balance NH, which is the only Barre fitness studio in NH! I instantly fell in love with not only the charm of the rustic building and its beautiful views, but also of the atmosphere in owner Becki Somers’ studio.

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Becki lead the class by giving us a little idea as to what Barre is. Don’t know? Barre is a combination of yoga, pilates and dance moves, and when she said she was going to make us work up a sweat, I honestly thought she was joking. In my head, I told her, “good luck with that” (coming from the girl who sweats 38 seconds into a run). I didn’t expect a hard workout, even after Janine told me multiple times it’s brutal.

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At each section, we all had a yoga mat, 2 lb weights(ha!), and a ball. Bring it on Becki!IMG_4717

And bring it she did. Throughout various minuscule moves with the weights, I was looking at Janine and Amber with pain in my eyes. The burn was unreal. My thighs were shaking, and my arms were about to fall off.

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We started with the weights, and from there, we moved on to work on the bar, which was incredibly hard, especially for someone as inflexible as myself. Becki wanted us to lift our legs and point our feet. I cannot multi-task my flexibility. Lifting and pointing wasn’t happening for me, so Becki would come over, politely ask if I minded hands, and helped me achieve the point. Good thing those legs were shaved!

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Once the weights and the bar work were complete, we focused on this little blue ball of death. Squeezing this in our thighs and hamstrings was out of this world flattering. I can’t tell you which hurt the most, but that ball did a number on me.

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The girls all said that they haven’t been able to move their lower half like a normal human being, and are in immense pain. Maybe I just have legs of steel, or I took too many pictures during those hard moves 😉 but the part of my body that hurt the most for me was from the hips up. Waking up Monday morning I felt like my body had been twisted in  32 different directions, which resulted in me skipping those 7 minutes of burpees at CrossFit.
IMG_4713The class was so much fun, and I really loved how personable and funny Becki is. Becki blasted music during the class and got all club-esque with her hands during several moves. Becki offers a variety of classes, ranging from Barre Toning, Ballerobica (so want to do this!), Booty Barre, and also Open Barre (ha!). Classes are $12 per class, but your first class is free, which is a great deal!

Want to know how each girl fared? Amber. AmyCandraJanine.

Ps. 2 lb weights are no joke!

Blog & Tweet NH: Pilates & More with Elina

Last week, as I was battling my never-ending sickness, I trucked on over to downtown Manchester, right where I work, to meet up with the Blog & Tweet NH girls for our October event with pilates instructor Elina Davis.

Amy, Amber, Sarah, myself, Kathi, Karlene, Elina & Janine.

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Before we started, I caught Janine goofing off, per usual. This girl seriously makes my life so much better, and since we were the sick kids, we quarantined ourselves in the back corner.

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The first thing I noticed upon walking into Elina’s studio was that this girl loves pink. The second thing was that she is overflowing with energy and such a positive attitude. She made us feel so welcome and at home, and quickly fit into our quirky group.

We began with several warm-up poses, which killed me. {Geez, I’m more out of shape than I thought I was!} What I loved so much about Elina’s way of teaching was that she always asked if we were okay. She wanted to make sure we were feeling alright in the poses and didn’t have any difficulties or pain. That’s one of the things that makes me want to keep a fitness instructor/coach around!

During several of Elina’s poses, Janine and I found ourselves laughing with each other, which earned us the title of the “school children laughing in the back.” Since I was sporting a 101 degree fever, I just chilled on my mat and did the “easier” poses.

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What is so great about Elina’s studio is that she offers a wide variety of classes, including beginner’s mat workouts, bandilates (resistance bands + pilates), cardilates (pilates + low-impact cardio, and a rehabilitation class. During our class, Elina focused on a lot of rehabilitative moves, but also threw in some killer poses just to show off (in a good way).
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Even in yoga I could not master this move, so instead, I documented this pose. Sarah was wiggling around a lot during this one, but she finally nailed it!

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This is what I love. After a week of running and CrossFitting, having a workout that allows me to just lay there. Now that’s my kind of recovery workout!
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Towards the end of the class, we just layed there, and I felt like I was at a slumber party with a bunch of my girlfriends.

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I honestly did not want to be at the event because of how crappy I was feeling, but I’m so glad I went. This was my very first time trying Pilates, and I’m really glad Elina introduced me to her class. This would be such a good workout to throw in towards the end of my week to really let my body unwind and recover. Plus, seeing my girls always makes me a happy girl.

If you’re from the area, I highly recommend checking out Elina’s website and even dropping in to one of her classes.

Have you ever tried pilates? What are your thoughts on it?

Blog & Tweet NH: CrossFit Ad Finem

For the past 2 years, my cousin Jenn has been begging me to try CrossFit, and I’ve always sternly said no, so when Sara mentioned having a Blog & Tweet NH event at her CrossFit box, I jumped at the idea. I figured trying CrossFit out with a group of girls who had never done it before was a great way to try it out. Mat, the owner and coach at CrossFit Ad Finem was on board.

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Over the next month leading up to our event, I found myself tweeting with Sara and Mat about CrossFit. I instantly became more and more excited to try CrossFit, and as you all know, he got me into his box way before the event, and got me hooked.

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Needless to say, I was extremely excited for our Blog & Tweet girls to come meet Mat and try CrossFit out. Side note: I posted this picture on Facebook, and all the ladies were loving him. I believe he was called Justin Timberlake, sexual, and Mr. Delicious. I am pretty positive that this picture was enough promotion for him, and our event wasn’t even necessary.

We had a smaller turnout than originally planned, which was definitely frustrating, but I think that worked out great, workout wise. Silver linings in everything.

Sara, myself, Mat, Emily & Kristen.

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Mat used to be the Head Trainer at Gold’s Gym. He loved sports and fitness, but got bored fast, as he felt he wasn’t able to do enough. Mat has been a certified coach for 2 years, but has been involved in CrossFit since 2008, when he started trying crazier workouts. He got that competitive urge back, and once he got his Level 1 Certification, he was hooked, and “drank all the kool-aid.” It was him against the clock, and it just clicked for him.

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At Ad Finem, Mat firmly believes in a few things, 2 of which being the community and mobility. Mat starts every class 5 minutes late, as he loves everyone to chit chat before sweating their asses off. At Ad Finem, and every other box, it’s all about the community, and that’s what makes people stay. When I first started at CFAF, I immediately felt welcomed and comfortable from day 1. The people at Ad Finem are basically amazing, and that’s all you need to know.

We started off our workout with mobility, which is strongly emphasized by Mat, as he focuses on mobility exercises that correlate with what you will be doing in your WOD.

After that, Mat ran us through our WOD, and always takes the time to run us through each movement before we start.

Shawty got low & taught us the proper squat technique. Mat knows squat.

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Then it was time to run through Wall Balls. Lesson learned: never do wall balls with a hat on. You can’t see it coming down.

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And then it was on to the banded pull-ups because we all have shrimp muscles and can’t do a pull-up… yet.

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And then our WOD began.

 

3 RFT (Rounds for Time)

 

  • 400 M run
  • 15 Wall Balls
  • 10 Banded Pull-Ups
  • 5 Burpees… my favorite part!

The workout was a freakin’ killer, and my legs were hating the running.

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I actually enjoy burpees (read: most of the time), and it was actually my favorite part of the WOD. I would’ve preferred 15 burpees over 15 wall balls any day of the week.
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Emily and Kristen both said they loved the event and wish they had a box closer to them. CrossFit is truly the only way to get in the best shape of your life, and you have to do things you don’t love, to be better.

At CrossFit Ad Finem, every workout can be scaled based on any injuries, age, and physical strength. Mat has members ranging in age from 21 to 82. Pretty impressive & motivating!

Mat’s parting words were, “this is for everybody. All you need to know is CrossFit. Why? Just do it.”

If you’re living in the Manchester/Bedford area, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Mat, Sara, or myself. Mat welcomes anyone to come watch a class and to try one out for free. You’ll never know if you’ll love CrossFit if you don’t try it! Oh! And his next beginners course “Elements,” starts up Monday, September 30th, so if you’re interested, do it!

Plus, Boone is the perfect mascot. 🙂

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Thanks for an awesome event, Mat! 🙂

Blog & Tweet NH: Stonyfield Yogurt

On Thursday night, Janine and I were lucky enough to get Stonyfield Yogurt to host our July Blog & Tweet NH event.

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We had a solid group for a weeknight, and 8 of us bloggers took Stonyfield by storm.

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Emily, Sarah, myself, Janine, Sarah, Amy, Kathi and Megan.

Stonyfield is a yogurt company based out of my home state of New Hampshire. Stonyfield’s products are organic, and they offer a vast variety of yogurts: blends, fruit on the bottom, greek, soy, and smoothies. They also offer, my favorite, the ONLY organic frozen yogurt!

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Stonyfield has 2 missions; to make the healthiest best tasting yogurt on Earth, and to help the Earth. As the leading yogurt producer in the world, that must mean that they use a lot of energy to create and package their product, right? So how do they help the Earth?

For starters, they have solar panels on their roof to cut down on global warming, and secondly, after taste tasting their yogurts to make sure they are at the right temperature and taste, they give those remains to local farms to feed their animals.

What a life for those pigs! 😉

Stonyfield is all for making sure their products are of the highest quality. They get roughly 8-10 trucks a day of milk, and they test every truck of milk for quality. They also check the temperature quality of the seals on the yogurt before they’re shipped, making sure that each container we dig into is perfect.

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We started off our event with watching a video to understand the history of Stonyfield and how yogurt is made, and after that 18 minute video, the real fun began!

Stonyfield has a row of freezers containing all of their products, and we were told to start by picking a “Blends” yogurt, and a Greek yogurt.

The greek yogurt I chose was the caramel one, and holy crap it was the best thing that I’ve ever tasted.

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There was a plethora of caramel underneath the yogurt, and when mixed in, it tasted like the perfect dessert.IMG_0952

My 2nd favorite yogurt is one from their sister-company out in sunny California, Brown Cow.

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The Brown Cow yogurt is a cream topped greek yogurt, that is more of a dessert yogurt like the caramel.

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Underneath that thin cream layer is a pool of chocolate and fresh cherries. A lot of us girlies said we weren’t cherry fans, but this combo was out of the world!IMG_0957

After trying the yogurts, Christina and Chandra, our marketing hosts for the night, allowed us to try any and every frozen yogurt in their freezer.

Janine brought over honey, blueberry, and super fruits.

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We all dug in and passed the fro-yo around the table multiple times, but because I’m not a fan of honey or blueberries, I went up with a few other girls to grab 3 more flavors. We came back with Vanilla Fudge Swirl, Gotta Have Java, and Minty Chocolate Chip. I wanted to grab the Creme Caramel as well, but figured 3 would be best.

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This guy right here, he’s my favorite.

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Ermergherd the fudge swirls! You can bet he came home with me. No really, he did. 😉

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By the end of our taste-testing, we were all stuffed beyond capacity. I mean, look at the carnage.

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Stonyfield was awesome and event sent us home with a swag bag that included a box of 12 of the Brown Cow Dessert yogurts (omg!), and let us grab other yogurts to take for the road. We were also given free coupons, the Stonyfield cookbook, their chapstick which is amazing, and a pencil (yes, grandma status!).

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The event was awesome and it was great seeing the girls again, especially one in particular. Years ago I played in a pick-up dodgeball drinking league with Sarah, and I honestly haven’t seen her since. It was so great to reconnect with her and I cannot wait to spend more time with her!

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A big thank you to Stonyfield Yogurt for being beyond generous and allowing us to pig out on our favorites!

Check out your local stores to grab the yummy yogurts I highlighted, you won’t be disappointed!

Blog & Tweet NH: Go Ninja Aerial Fitness

On Sunday afternoon, Janine, Jaime, Annmarie and myself headed to Bare Knuckle Murphy’s Boxing Gym for our June Blog & Tweet NH event.

Our June event was with Go Ninja Aerial Circus Fitness, which was focused around workouts on silk ribbons.

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Taken from their site, Go Ninja’s Mission is:

to provide an artistic form of movement and music to the little artist inside of EveryBody! Go Ninja was founded by teachers who love aerial circus arts, dance, martial arts, and music. We combine these arts to develop a challenging and beautiful form of movement that promotes grace, flexibility, strength, and confidence.

The gym is owned and run by Linda Murphy Park McIntosh and her daughters, Heather and Shaunna, and has been around since the 70’s. Girl power! Heather, the most flexible and funniest chick I have ever met, led us through our 2 hour class, and the first memorable things she said included, “I will make you vomit,” and, “I won’t be offended if you edit my swears for your posts.”

Heather started by giving us the down low on Go Ninja, and then put us through a warm-up, that included stretching, jogging, loosening up our arms, somersaults, and per my request, handstands.

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Jaime nailed her handstand.IMG_0526

After our warm-up, we were gradually introduced to the silk ropes.

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One of the first moves we learned, was this one, which I don’t even remember what it was called, but it was my favorite since it was so easy.

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Jaime’s height put her to an advantage and got high on her move. I, on the other hand, was approximately 7 inches off of the ground, ha!

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Heather told us you can do each move slow or fast, and can add emphasis to it. I went for the dramatic pose. Naturally.

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I lied because this was my favorite pose. Just hanging around upside down in the air. (Yes, I was so terrified that I wanted to $hit my pants.

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 The ribbons were kind of painful as they dug into my hips, but Heather said after several classes, you don’t even notice the pain.

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The pigeon pose stumped me because I have stumps for legs and arms, but Jaime and Janine have arms and legs of the Gods, so they could easily complete it. Maybe not easily, but nonetheless, they did.

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One of the last moves that Heather had us try included hanging sideways in the air. While I struggled, Janine nailed it. This is one of my favorite shots from the day. How beautiful and happy does she look?!

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I honestly have to say that this was the best class that I have ever taken, and am planning on going back again.

Go Ninja offers Level 1 and Level 2 classes, and also offers an array of options, including boxing, boot camp, pilates, yoga, kickboxing, and also jiu jitsu. Bare Knuckle Murphy’s is actually THE place to train if you’re a boxer… and they’ve trained Olympians!

Go Ninja offers single classes at a drop in rate of $25, or you can buy an 8-class package for $120. If you’re in the area, and want to take the 90 minute orientation class, there’s a deal on Groupon right now for only $19!

Go buy it so that we can then take the Level 1 classes together.. hint hint Janine, Jaime, Annmarie, SaraEmily.

Thanks again for the awesome event, Go Ninja!

Have you ever taken an aerial class before? If not, would you?!