New York City!

It’s Monday and we’re all back to the real world! For me in particular, since this is my blog and it’s a bit of a shock having spent the past few days in New York City, aka my favorite place in the world!

After a whirlwind week of working, my friend Lauren and I hopped on the bus to visit our friends Bobby and Ruben. The bus ride was a little long, especially as the anticipation built, but we got through with a lot of chatting.

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Once we arrived late Thursday night, we had dinner at a Mexican place where lots of chips and salsa were had, as well as a grilled chicken and pepper dish that was pretty okay. It was time for bed as Lauren and I had a busy Friday planned.

On the definite agenda on Friday afternoon was the NBC tour, so we headed towards Times Square and had brunch at a diner. I selected the single pancake, scrambled eggs, and bacon, which hit the spot! I’m not used to waiting so long to eat in the morning, so I was hungry! The weather was beautiful and perfect for walking around, though Lauren and I might have been the only ones wearing shorts. On our travels, we noticed two very long lines, which I thought might be for those elusive eateries that Buzzfeed always posts, but one was for what we concluded was a Hamilton meet-and-greet (understandable) and the other was for Chik-fil-a ( a rousing, huh!?).

After we took in the scene, we found ourselves at 30 Rock! We found where we were supposed to meet for the tour and then we had an adventurous debacle trying to locate a restroom, and then a restroom that was actually open. We did make it back in plenty of time, but almost missed the tour anyways because we were browsing the store. Whoops! The tour was fun and informational, plus just plain cool getting to sit in the audience of SNL (sans actual show), but it wasn’t all that overwhelming. It didn’t help that Lauren and I were bunched in with a bunch of teenagers on a class trip.

Back into the sunshine and away from the teens, we made our way over to the Highline which we walked on our way to meet Bobby.Though it was a little congested, it’s such a nice walk with spectacular views. Here would be a great time to insert a pic of the view, but we were busy taking in the scene. Once we stepped off near Chelsea Market, it was time for some refreshments.

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The final leg of our afternoon took us to Union Square, where we hopped back on the subway to get ready for dinner that night. Lauren and I were excited to try Tao!

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The food was excellent, especially the sweet and sour cauliflower! We also shared chicken and pad thai dishes, finishing off with a giant mousse-filled fortune cookie. Post-dinner, we decided to take advantage of the still-warm and beautiful evening weather and hit up a rooftop bar. I can already predict this will be my favorite thing to do in the summer, even though I don’t think every place I go to will offer views of the Statue of Liberty.

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Once we arrived and got our drinks- boozy popsicles in wine!- it started to rain! There was a cover and heat lamps above us, but they only lasted so long until we were the only ones left and had to leave.

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Lauren and I racked up a ton of steps, especially on Friday- almost 30,000, and then a lot on Saturday too!

On Saturday, we started our morning off right with a workout! I’m now a big fan of hitting up gyms for one-day passes when I travel! For my workout, I spent a half hour working through a strength training circuit before hopping on the treadmill for a run. Since losing the last ten pounds, I’ve definitely gotten faster and was able to stay at a strong, but comfortable pace, except that I was battling a bit of a bellyache. I finished my hour up with a core workout before getting ready for brunch.

This pretty much sums up brunch.

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Bottomless mimosas! For my actual meal, I chose eggs benedict with spinach with a side salad. Delicious! A little tipsy and a lot full, we made our way over to Central Park to sit in the sun and just relax. The best!

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That is the face of a happy girl! I mean, look at this view from lying on my back:

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Once the sun started to go down, so did the temperature, so we knew it was time to head back. For dinner, I had part of an amazing cauliflower (vegetable of the weekend!) crumble and spaghetti in a lemon cream sauce. For after-dinner drinks, we had trouble finding a spot that stuck, but we finally did find one (my poor, sore feet!) and enjoyed a nightcap before heading back to bed.

Sunday sadly was our final day and we kicked things off with brunch. I had trouble deciding, but the waiter recommended the hot dog (kind of an odd choice for brunch, sure) and it didn’t disappoint. By the time we got back to the apartment, Lauren and I decided to pack up and head out to stay in the general area of our bus. Even though we weren’t hungry at that time, we knew we would be once we were on the bus, so we trekked over to Whole Foods with our luggage and got some snacks.I enjoyed a roasted chicken sandwich and a cookie! The journey home was even longer than the one there, and even though I love and miss New York, I was happy to be home.

For one, after a weekend of indulgences, I always love getting back into my food and exercise routine as it’s so motivating to feel healthy again! Another, I always feel so inspired by the city and ready to work hard, so I know I’ve got a lot of exciting things to do over the next few months- and choices to make!

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend, wherever you are and whatever you did! Happy Monday!

The Radio Needs to Pull Themselves Together

Here at Give Me My Crown Already, we are all about truth and honesty, so I’m going to lay one on you. I’m a little bit nervous about it actually, but here goes.

Taylor Swift kinda scares me.

There, I said it. I can’t take it back.

Sometimes despite myself, I love Taylor’s music. Each song is catchy and sing-along-able and just fun.

But does it make anyone else a little nervous about how good she is at spouting these songs off? I used to think that she was throwing cheap shots at her exes and enemies, but then I realized that’s the essence of almost every other creative facet, so why shouldn’t she do it? More power to her. But damn, she’s a strong song writer.

There was an SNL skit a few years ago that satirized the way in which Taylor Swift has taken over the world. And yes, I think she might have actually taken over the world, this cute little blonde woman who holds so much power. In the skit, all of these people would try to deny liking Taylor Swift, but then one of her songs would play and it would hit them, they liked her music. Everyone does, unless of course you are strongly Team Katy.

My idea for this blog post was inspired by my conversation with my mom this morning in the car on our way to our shopping adventure. I was having her listen to the new song Wildest Dream because the other day, as I was driving to work, every single one of my pre-set channels was playing that song. This might say more about what I select as my pre-set channels, but still, I think we can agree that the radio can afford to play different songs once in awhile.

So yes, Taylor Swift in her overwhelming popularity kinda scares me, but she is one kick-ass chick and so far, I’m finding I’m quite alright with her world domination. We could have far worse options. For example, she would make a better presidential candidate than say, Donald Trump.

To recap the day thus far, I woke up this morning ready for breakfast. I scrambled up an egg with two egg whites and heated up two whole wheat waffles to accompany it. My phone was charging while I was eating so there is no picture.

As I mentioned before, my mom and I headed up to our local outlets for a much needed therapy shopping trip. Shopping is good for the soul and for your health because we racked up a ton of steps! I got a few more pair of pants and some cute new shirts, so I’m very pleased.

Mid-way through, we stopped for lunch as I was starting to feel a little hangry. We both enjoyed a balsamic chicken wrap with lettuce, peppers, and tomato. Not too shabby! On the way out, we stopped for a cone at the Dairy Queen, which was so refreshing.

In the stores, it was so cold, we suspect because they want us to buy all the warm fall and winter clothes, but outside it was still nice and warm. Now we just want to wear our fun new clothes, but I will not rush the sun away.

Have a good rest of your day!

Here Comes The Week (And Snow)

Boy, does time fly by. Wasn’t it just like Thursday of 2005? Somehow long weekends seem to pass by even faster, but hopefully that means that you’ve had that much fun and/or relaxation. In the aftermath of the storm, we all sort of rolled and slipped out of our houses and down our streets. All you hear people say to each other is, “how’d you brave the storm?” The silver lining of snow storms- everyone can relate, so I guess it fosters equality…?

Anyways, my mom and I made it to the empty-ish grocery store, which was a beautiful thing at checkout. It’s the first time in months I haven’t almost gotten decimated by a carriage. I did find a dirty tissue in a carriage though, so I ex-nayed that pretty quickly. This is my life. You read it for the good, the bad, and the perfectly boring. You’re welcome.

I was able to make it down to the gym with minor spinouts. For my workout, I started with an intense dumbbell strength routine because who knows when I’ll make it down to the gym again ‘cus, YUP, more snow is in the forecast for basically all of this week. After I got my muscles burning, I took it to the treadmill and started my run with some sprints. Starting with the intense speed actually made the rest of my brief, but fast run that much easier because my legs adjusted to the higher speed more quickly. I would’ve stayed longer but I had an appointment I needed to get to. Hopefully tomorrow I can get to the gym before the storm- yes, I wake up earlier than snow sometimes- because even though I can workout at home, I prefer the gym.

To recap my meals, I fueled my snowy shoveling Sunday with these peanut butter pancakes. The way I arranged them kind of look like a flower, which at this point, might be wishful thinking for the rest of our lives. Still warm, yummy, and slightly magical.

photo 1Post-shoveling, I dove into this grilled cheese sandwich. On the side, I chopped up some veggies and a handful of potato chips for that satisfying crunch. Even better, a warm cup of Trader Joe’s roasted tomato and pepper soup!

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To go along with SNL 40- that was mostly fantastic- we cooked up delicious chicken cacciatore with a bunch of peppers and mushrooms. On the side, I opted for the leftover macaroni and cheese and a great big salad that didn’t make it into the picture.

photo 3Another great weekend and hopefully another great week in which to look forward! It may be freezing cold outside, but let’s keep the warm, positivity flowing!