Confessions: Life, Lately

This weekend went by entirely too fast… that seems to be the story of my life for the month of August… So, here’s a random update, Noelle’s Notebook style….

We found this little guy in the pumpkins on Sunday. He even held a pose for me!

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Speaking of the garden, you’ll be happy to know that I’m still on my giant salad kick.

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Lettuce, radishes, cukes, tomatoes (!), adzuki beans, carrots, avocado, scallions, rice, cheddar and a chipotle yogurt dressing

I bought a bathing suit this weekend for the first time in about 2 years…it was on super sale. I also bought a cute summery dress. Yay for end of season savings!

Like a BOSS

Like a BOSS

I got a grand total of 12 hours of sleep between Saturday and Monday morning (between a bachelorette party, long run, church, work and watching old movies). This makes for a very grumpy Noelle…my apologies.

In spite of a serious lack of sleep, I managed to come into work very early yesterday … I broke my streak of not buying coffee and treated myself to Starbucks during lunch. Unfortunately they messed up my order. S-Bux FAIL.

I tried to get up early and run THIS morning…but I failed miserably and hit the snooze button a few more times than necessary. This means that I will have to go for a run tonight when I get out of work…oops.

Also, PSA Time: PLEASE Pay attention to the road when you are driving. I was almost in a major accident yesterday because of someone not paying attention.

Allow me to explain;

My company is located on a pretty busy road, the highway entrances/exits, 3 gas stations, the state police station and an airport are less than a mile down the road in either direction, along with several businesses.

I was coming back from lunch and put my signal on to turn left into the parking lot. There was on-coming traffic. As I am waiting to turn, I see a car speeding up behind me…my car is obviously not moving and the other car was NOT slowing down. Unfortunately, there were still cars coming and I was starting to get very nervous because I had nowhere to go.

Long story short, the other car got very close (to the point that I could see the driver’s face in my rearview mirror!) before the driver slammed on the brakes. To–BARELY–avoid hitting me, she had to veer to the right (cars were still coming the other direction). She hit the brakes so hard that she not only went completely off the road into the grass, but she also spun completely around. I was able to turn at the last  possible second and pulled into the parking lot (I HAD to get off the road).

I stopped to make sure the other driver was okay and what did I see? She pulled back onto the road and sped away–without even looking to see if there were any cars coming…SERIOUSLY?!

Anyway, I don’t know what she was doing, but again, PLEASE pay attention to the road. IF not for your own safety, then for others on the road.

End Rant.

On a brighter note, some really great things are happening lately!

1. I signed up for August’s Foodie Penpals after taking a long hiatus and I am pretty pumped. I got two awesome match-ups.

2. I had a really honest and encouraging email discussion with a company that makes a running fuel. I learned a lot of interesting information about the manufacturing process and was able to give them some feedback.

2a. I ordered a sample pack of this product to try…it should be here soon…can’t wait to try it on this weekend’s long run! I’ll be sure to let you know how I like it.

3. I won a giveaway! I NEVER win anything so you can imagine that I was not only shocked, but pretty darn excited! Brittany was hosting a Simone France giveaway and I entered on a whim…so glad I did!

4.  The hubs and I went on a late night Price Chopper run… we picked up the essentials: Annie’s Mac & Cheese (there was a 10 for $10 sale!), Chipotle Tabasco sauce and cottage cheese (Tabasco, cottage cheese and black pepper is one of my favorite snacks in the world).

I don't know how to feel about this.

I don’t know how to feel about this.

5. This weekend is my 20-miler! Yes, I’m a little nervous…but I feel ready.

6. Speaking of running, my foot and tendon pain have almost disappeared. I still notice it if I have a super busy night at the restaurant, but otherwise, my feet are feeling pretty good.

7. Next week the hubs and I celebrate 2 years of marriage. Time flies!

8. Our dear friends are tying the knot on the 24th. I am so excited to share in their special day…AND to show you what they chose for a wedding dessert.

9. One of my sisters will be in town next week. HOLLA!

10. We have tomatoes… Another week and they will be coming out of our eyeballs. I CANNOT WAIT! This is not one of our tomatoes, but ours are/will be similar

Can't wait!

Can’t wait!

11. Fun fact: I am currently the same weight that I was my junior year of high school…weird.

 
What are you up to this week? Ever won a giveaway? Favorite wedding dessert? Worst driving pet peeve?  How about your favorite snack?

Happy Tuesday!


What to Expect…Part II: Rumor Has It

Remember how someone asked me that question about a month ago? You know, THAT question?

Well, guess what.

No, I’m still not pregnant.

But it happened again.  No, I’m not kidding.

I wish I was.

The thing that I find incredibly unsettling? It was an assumption. No question.

Picture it.

Farmer Ben and I are sitting in church, our pastor signals that it’s time to say good morning and say “hello” to those around us.

We turn around to an older couple who sits behind us every Sunday.

We say good morning.

The wife, a sweet older lady, takes a hold of my hands and says “By the way, congratulations.”

Farmer Ben and I respond, “What? Congratulations on what?”

“On the baby! Congratulations on the baby! How exciting!” she said.

Our jaws dropped.

“Um… pardon? We’re not expecting. No…no.”

Similarly to the first time this happened, there was an awkward pause. And then profuse apologies.

Ben and I quickly turned back around. I whispered in his ear, “Someone started a rumor. And I am NOT happy about it.”

Source

Source

So, I ask you, how do I respond to this? Should I just do nothing? Should I laugh it off? How would you react?

I am at a loss.

 

 

 

 


Real Talk: Hot Mess Addition

I can’t function today.

Let’s be real, I can’t  function this week.

I am a hot mess. Scratch that… I am THE Hot Mess.

The last 24 hours have been full of bruises, spills, and mishaps.

I have managed to do the following:

  • Bang my head on a countertop and now have a lovely giant bump on my forehead.
  • Run into a desk, leaving a nice thigh bruise.
  • Bang my arm against a shelf, another bruise.
  • Spill soup
  • Almost drop a tray of food
  • Spill a container of ketchup.
  • Get a teeny tiny, miniscule shard of glass in my foot while getting ready for work (how does that even happen?!) …and then spend ten minutes trying to get it out with a pair of tweezers…

And for the grand finale?

During lunch, I was opening a bottle of delicious (homemade) roasted garlic vinaigrette to pair with my giant salad… and well, instead of dressing my greens, I managed to violently spill half the bottle all over my desk, my phone, my chair, the floor (carpet) and my pants in the process.

OHMYWORD.

Is this real life?

Anyway, I happened to have an extra pair of pants in my bag…otherwise, it would have been a rough rest of the day..

 

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Casual Wednesday?

So… I’m rocking jeans at work….sigh.

Is it Friday yet?

What are some of your hot mess moments? Are you having a better week than me?


You’ve Got to be Kidding Me

So, you probably know that I am semi-obsessive about reading ingredient labels and doing research on food…

You may not know that I don’t much pay attention to the actual nutrition label: fat content, carbs, etc.–unless it’s the vitamins and minerals portion–Instead, I try to eat whole foods, meaning that I try to know exactly where my food came from and exactly what I’m eating.

In the summer, most of our meals come straight from the garden.

Don’t get me wrong, I still eat cheeseburgers and drink a beer now and then, but I pay attention to where it’s coming from. This doesn’t mean I have free reign, and I try to eat what’s best for my body…it’s about balance… you get my drift.

So allow me to vent for a moment…

I work with mostly males at both of my jobs.

Needless to say, the girls are a pretty close-knit group in both places, so as you can imagine I always sometimes notice what they eat. I also know when one of them is looking to lose a few pounds.

There are two women in particular that seem to be on the diet cycle at one point or another (also, can we talk about how I hate the word diet?).  Because I am “healthy,” they’ll talk to me about what I eat–mostly because, I’ve managed to lose a few pounds.

I always tell them the same things; stay away from diet anything, use real ingredients, don’t buy pre-packaged items, cook at home,  you get the idea.

They nod their heads in agreement.

But then… I see what they’re eating.

One of them drinks a daily Slim-Fast, eats a fat-free yogurt chock-full of fake sugar and artificial flavors and then goes out for fried food on Fridays. This makes me want to bang my head against the wall.

The other visits the vending machine for a bear claw. FROM THE VENDING MACHINE! It probably doesn’t even taste that good…but the thing that really kills me? It’s not once or twice a week, but EVERY DAY. EVERY SINGLE DAY!

And then… they wonder why they don’t feel good…why they’re tired, why their clothes don’t fit.

Call me crazy, but eating a giant fried pastry everyday can’t be good for you.

Again, I do not claim to be an expert in this area, and I am far from perfect. But I’ve found that eating well works. Period. I don’t eat well 100% of the time, but I do more often than not… I’m not a size 4, but I’m healthy.

Seeing this constant food craziness gets to me.

End Rant.

What are some of your “diet” pet peeves?


What to Expect…

You know that question you should never ask a woman unless you are completely sure?

You know? THAT question?

Well, this woman was asked that question yesterday.

I don’t know what to think about it, but here’s what happened:

I was at church. The hubby and I were sitting on a couch in the lobby, waiting for the teens to show up. An older gentleman that we see every week sat down and started chatting with us.

I mentioned that I was feeling tired (I had worked on Saturday night and didn’t sleep well).

His response?

“Oh, you’re tired? (He grinned) Are you going to be giving us some news?”

I didn’t get it, “What? What kind of news?”

“Oh,” he said, “well, my wife and I have been talking and she was saying she thought you’d be telling people that you were expecting soon.”

My response?

“Um… well, not that I’m aware of.” (Insert my jaw hitting the floor)

“Well, I thought you were saying you were tired because you were dropping a hint,” he said.  “You know, you don’t want to say anything too soon…so I thought you were trying to give me a hint.”

Nervously laughing, I replied, “Well… If I was expecting, I think it would be a pretty big surprise to Ben and me… I’m just tired because I worked late last night.”

*Awkward Silence*

“Oh.” He paused for a moment, unsure what to say, “Well, when the time comes, at least you’ve been blessed with a great husband. That’s a huge thing.”

Source

Source

Nice save with the husband comment. Totally true. And I can imagine he was as mortified as I was for that mistake.

But I have to ask….

1. Why do people expect couples to start having babies right away?

Ben and I have been getting “so, when are you going to start a family?” for a long time (funny enough, this question comes from everyone but our families). Why do we have to rush? We haven’t even been married two years!

Honestly, it wouldn’t even be on our radar, except we’re asked this question all the time!

To put it simply, we aren’t ready. The fact that I even have to explain that is frustrating.

2. Does this mean I look like I am starting to show? Or is it ….something else?!

A few friends assured me it was the latter, but I’d be lying if I said that this didn’t bother me some. I’m going to chock it up to the age of the parties involved.

Let’s chat, have you ever gotten THAT question (or worse, made that mistake?!)? What did you do? What are your thoughts on marriage and babies?

PS. Second funny story: the same day, another man (who we see weekly at church) asked if I was the wife of Ben’s best friend…while Ben was standing two feet away…Really?!

 

 


Biting the Bullet

Well, I guess it’s official….

marathon

Don’t mind my awesome paint skills…

I’m doing THIS RACE!

Training starts now!!!

Happy Running!


Life (mostly Food) Update In Photos…

Hi there!

I know… I have so much to catch up on in the blogging aspect of things. This weekend was Strides for James and it was so much fun! I’ll be doing a post that details a little bit of everything… but I honestly haven’t had a moment to sit and collect my thoughts. So, to keep you until then, it was awesome. Our first year was a success.

So, I’ve been taking a lot of random pictures on my phone lately. Mostly of food and some other things…but mostly food.

So here’s a look at what I’ve been eating and doing lately. 

I have a serious weakness for scallops…and margaritas.

Cinco de Mayo Seafood Paella...totally not local, but so good. I have a serious weakness for scallops...and margaritas.

Cinco de Mayo Seafood Paella…totally not local, but so good.

I’m seeing a food theme here…

I'm seeing a food theme here...crockpot Mexican chicken over rice with avocados, sour cream and NY Cheddar.. Yum.

Crock-pot Mexican chicken over rice with avocados, sour cream and NY Cheddar.. Yum.

This is what happens when you are planning a fun run and go to the grocery store at 6:00 am…you leave with two cases of free bananas and one discounted case.

This is what happens when you are planning a fun run and go to the grocery store at 6:00 am...you leave with two cases of free bananas and one discounted case. Winning!

Winning!

After the race…we had a lot of leftover bananas…so I’ve baking a ton of banana bread (gluten-free–recipes coming!) and making things like this (sorry the picture isn’t great)…

Banana Split Ice Cream Cake!

Banana Split Ice Cream Cake!

Speaking of baking banana bread, I was checking to see if one of the loaves was done…and stupidly burnt the tip of my finger, through a towel. Only me…

I’m also happy to report, after taking home about a half case of bananas, we are down to seven. Farmer Ben and I are a great team in the kitchen!

A mid-week run past a neighbor’s house… somehow we came home with two dozen eggs!

What?! It's warm enough to wear shorts?!

What?! It’s warm enough to wear shorts?! And we got free eggs?!

Another sunny day was spent out working in the garden (a week later, it went down to 28 at night… gah!)

Tomato cages are serious business

Tomato cages are serious business

And this last piece… just made me chuckle.

saw this on Facebook...

saw this on Facebook…

Happy Wednesday!

What have you been up to lately? 

Eaten anything exciting?! 


Mischief Managed

So… things have been a bit nuts lately. For real… This post is, for lack of a better word…a mish-mash of everything.

Race planning is still going strong. We’ve gotten even more sponsors and are getting more registrations… have you signed up yet?!

We also put up our really sweet banner.

Donated by Loreman's. Pretty sweet!

Donated by Loreman’s. Pretty sweet!

Check out our Facebook page to see some really awesome prizes!

I’m taking a really cool class through the University of Florida, but it’s got bonkers forum posts. Seriously…every morning I have approximately 27 new emails notifying me that someone added to a thread. I think it’s time to update my subscription settings….I just can’t keep up. Per my usual fashion, I am behind on my journal posts (whoops!) but will be catching up this weekend. The good thing is, I am getting a refresher on economics.

Our home has turned into a chicken sausage test kitchen. Really delicious… but holy cow (ha ha! Get it?) , I’ve been getting so much protein lately! My body is so…confused!

Here’s what we had for dinner last night:

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Spaghetti with Chicken Meatballs.

I’ll call it a win.

Tonight, I’m making this sauce…partly because I need to use up the cauliflower that has been hanging out in the kitchen for the last week and partly because it’s delicious….and pretty good for you.

I have cookies to bake for people who have been pretty awesome lately.

I really want it to start getting warm outside. Why do I live in Upstate NY again? Also, why does everyone have their cranky pants on today?! Geesh!

Also, I made a really awesome (slightly crazy) decision the other day and cut my hair… super short. I love it! Thank you, Lianna!

Mischief Managed.

Mischief Managed.

Happy Friday!


The Art of Photo-Bombing

Not too long ago,  I had the opportunity to go and celebrate the marriage of one of my closest friends. It was so wonderful to see Kim, the bride, so happy and in love.

I’m a sucker for happy endings.

It was also pretty amazing to see some of my other college friends. We don’t get to see each other that much, but when we do, we know how to have fun.

We like to dance, shout across packed rooms at each other and just let loose. No big deal…well…kind of a big deal.

Anyway, for whatever reason, when I get with this group of women, I have a tendency to ruin photos…sometimes on purpose.

This event was all about photo-bombing. I’m pretty impressed with myself…and a few of my friends even joined in (trend-setter alert!).

Here is Noelle’s Notebook’s  fool-proof plan for amazing photo-bombs.

Step 1: Sneak into the background unnoticed. This can include casually dancing up behind the group being photographed, tucking and rolling, or just popping in unexpectedly. 

Step 2:  Pick your approach: You can be the creep, the funny face, the vixen or surprised ghost. Pick what works for you. 

Step 3: Run away or turn around immediately after the photo is taken. Or start laughing hysterically… whichever.

Step 4: Act natural. Or don’t. 

Step 5: Have fun. 

Bonus points if it looks like you are supposed to be there.  OR if it takes a moment to realize someone else is in the photo.

Be a tiger!

Thanks to JT for the photo!

Happy Tuesday!


When did L-O-V-E become a Four Letter Word?

It never ceases to amaze me that we, as humans, can be so hurtful. Consciously hurtful.

Allow me to vent for just a moment:

Today, I had a conversation. A very short conversation (if you can even call it that!). I received the g-chat version of the phone slamming down in my ear.

Basically, I reached out to someone close to me. I admit, it had been longer than it should have been since we last talked, but not for lack of trying on my part…perhaps I should have tried harder?

I contacted them to ask a question and instead of an answer, I received a very nasty, downright rude response. And then, they were gone. I was left with the notification that they were offline.

I allowed myself to get angry, but upon closer inspection, I realize that I am just hurt. I waited a few minutes, then I typed out a short response–an apology, even–and sent it into cyberspace.

It breaks my heart that people use their words as weapons. What happened to respect? To treating others how we would like to be treated? When did being hurtful, manipulative and downright mean become acceptable?

I will be the first to admit that I am NOT perfect. I have a temper, I take things the wrong way and I often jump to conclusions and get bent out of shape about silly things.

But I try to show respect for every person I come into contact with, regardless of who they are and the medium by which we are communicating. I try to think before I speak and weigh the impact that my words will have.

I look to my faith for guidance and try to do what is right.

I haven’t always done this and I still screw up. But I try.

I’ve been stewing about this all day and wasn’t sure if I should post this or not…but, to be perfectly honest, I really need to get it off my chest.

When did it become so difficult to be kind? To forgive others? To be respectful?

What happened to loving others?