Ice Ice Baby…

Okay, so I was going to write a post about Restaurant Etiquette… and don’t worry, I will… after this. I just need to share a few fun tidbits from my weekend/day.

1.  I am super happy to report that ice skating, Take 2, was a success. We went to the rink on the other end of town and were pleased with the results; not only did they have the right size skates, but the ice was mostly smooth, the blades were sharp and people were paying attention. It was also a whole heck of a lot less crowded-perfect learning environment-I was even able to work on some spins without fear of taking out a five year old.  We were both able to get in a pretty good workout.

2. We made gluten-free pizza yesterday. Usually we make our own crust, but after work on Saturday night, Ben decided to sleep instead of starting the dough-not leaving enough time for it to rise. We decided to chance it and went to our co-op in search of frozen dough. They had a limited selection and only gluten-free. Not ready to give up, we went to a nearby grocery store to continue the search.  No luck. Maybe a mix?

After perusing the labels from Pillsbury, Jiffy and Betty Crocker, we were starting to feel defeated (let’s just say…EW!). But then I remembered that this store had a gluten-free/organic section. I picked up a box of Hodgson Mill and the search was over. The mix was still gluten-free but it had real ingredients and all things we could pronounce! I use some HM flours/pastas so I was glad to try another product.

I have to say, I was a bit skeptical because, well, it was a mix.  I was pleasantly surprised. The only complaint I had was that the dough was a bit sticky when spreading into the pan-this was remedied by flouring (or, for those who are actually GF, Corn Starching) our hands/utensils.
The mix was easy to make and turned out nice and light with just the right combination of chewy/crunchy. We kept our pizza simple; topped with olive oil, garlic, fresh basil and rosemary, fresh mozz and tomatoes. We even snuck in some kippers.
Anyway, in short, this was a lifesaver. Like I said before, normally we make our own dough, but if ever in a pinch, I can definitely recommend this mix, especially if you are gluten-free.

Also, sorry for the lack of photos.

3. I don’t really watch football, but man… that 49ers’ game was intense! The other games? Eh, not so much. I don’t know what’s come over me… but I can’t wait to see the 49ers-Giants match-up next week!

4. On this day, two years ago, I went on a date with some guy I knew… Now he’s my husband. I guess the first date went a little better than I thought. Anyway, shout-out to my amazing hubs; I love you, Benjamin! And sorry for stealing the blankets last night-I didn’t mean it!

At our rehearsal dinner (photo credit: my sister!)

5. I find this photo hilarious, partly because how ridiculous we both look and partly because it was taken in 2008…when we were just friends. Thank you to Tina for taking this… and letting me steal it. Sorry Ben!

Younger Years

6. I am making Ricotta Cheese tonight-I’ll let you know how it comes out. I’ll also be posting a super easy and delish pasta recipe.

7. It was 9 below this morning. My car, Zeke, was not happy. I didn’t mind so much-for some reason the sky seems to be crystal clear on cold winter mornings and I secretly love it.

8. I have been obsessing over Chocolate Soy Milk. I finally bought some. I am also going to make a TON of iced coffee sometime this week.  Hello extra 12 minutes of sleep!

More to come-stay tuned!


Back on the Ice!

I am super excited to announce that I’m back. Back on track that is. I told you about my night of lunges (still feeling the burn from that…oy!).

The next night I was able to make up a few routines set to music-thank God for my year of Jazzercise (shout-out to Renee,  amazing instructor!). The moves consisted of boxing, kicks, crunches, some stretches and dancing like a fool. If felt good to be moving again. I only wish they had a class in the North Country. I’ve been told to try Zumba-also fun, but it’s just not the same.

Saturday, I continued my activity. I went to visit my mother and ended up lugging some heavy boxes and groceries around, playing with our 200+ lb. English Mastiff (Love Griffin!) and the kitties. I then went home, threw on my running clothes and took off for a quick 3 miles before work.

I say a “quick” three miles, but it wasn’t really. I was extremely sore, so getting myself up to pace took some time. I hate to admit it, but I even took a walk break in the middle.  In the end, the 3 miles took over 30 minutes. Not great, but I can’t complain since it was my first run in about three months. Needless to say, I have some work to do. Thank God for some upbeat tunage or I would have been in serious trouble. Confession time: I definitely listened to “Moves Like Jagger” and “Love You Like a Love Song” during this little trek. Don’t judge.

Why am I telling you this embarrassing tidbit? I’m human… it takes time and effort. This first run was rough, no doubt about it. But I’m gonna keep at it. You should, too.

Anyway, Sunday was a huge day for me. I was finally teaching Ben how to ice skate. We went to the open skate at SUNY Plattsburgh… I was super excited as I would be sharing a piece of my childhood with him and possibly starting a new activity together.

Unfortunately, the experience did not live up to expectations; We got there about 5 minutes before the open skate started. When it was our turn for rentals, they were out of our sizes. We were both stuck with skates that were at least a size too big. Not good, especially for someone who has never skated. Even worse, the blades were dull.

When we finally made it onto the ice, it was complete chaos. Tons of toddlers and little ones were pushing around little bars to help them learn, trying to run on the ice and then sliding all over the place, while their parents were… somewhere else. Teenagers were skating in groups of 5 or more, middle schoolers were playing tag (okay, this was not that obnoxious) and some people were just standing in the midst of it all. There was hardly any open space on the ice. In short, it was nuts. The ice was super rough.  I was about half way through a spin when I had to dodge an out of control 8 year old, needless to say, I fell and smashed my knees.  I fell again later, after hitting a crevice on the ice. Ben’s ankles weren’t holding up very well with the giant skates, so he went to change back into street shoes. I took a few more turns around the ice, still dodging small children, bewildered adults and unconcerned parents. I finally gave up with 10 minutes of skating left.

Now, it may just be me, but you’d think that living in a town where it is winter for about 5 months out of the year and SUNY being a big hockey school, that this skating time would be run a little better. Again, that’s just my opinion.

I know that next time I go skating, I’ll probably go to the small rink on the other end of town. We still had fun and got some quality time on the ice in, but it was a bit too crazy.  I’m happy to report that Ben was a quick learner- I was pretty impressed, all things considered. Yeah, my hubs is pretty amazing.

Anyway, the reason I am lumping this in with my activity is that ice skating is an awesome workout. It’s also tons of fun and doesn’t feel like a workout, until later. Yes, you may fall, but you just get back up. You’re in constant (low impact!) movement, using your arms, your core, and your legs. Ice skating is also great for balance. Just sayin’, give it a try!

I’m not sure what I will be doing tonight as my knees are feeling a bit rough today, in addition to   everything else. Even with the little bit of pain, I feel good. I was telling the hubs that I haven’t felt this good in a long time. I have more energy and my whole outlook has changed for the better.

Sorry for this post being a bit scattered, it was a pretty stellar weekend! I’m looking forward to hearing about your workouts, your fitness hangups, and what your favorite activity is.  Look for a new post and a possible recipe soon!

I’ll leave you with this quasi-random photo: Some of my best friends and Griffin…circa 2007, stolen from my friend Mel. How can you not love that sweet pup?!

Griffin and the Girls

PS. Another embarrassing Noelle fact: Apparently my right leg is bigger than my left. I am wearing my amazing new boots. The left zips up all the way, the right…doesn’t. Ugh. No big deal.