Category Archives: Apartment

Take a Turn About the Room, Part II

Good morning!  TGIF!  I completed a Full Throttle Endurance team swim workout this morning before our head coach held an informal clinic on how to change a flat tire/tube.  I sort of know how to do it, but I don’t exactly feel confident; it’s definitely a process you need to practice, so our head coach suggested the following:  “Go home, pour yourself a glass of wine, and practice.”  Why didn’t I think of adding vino to the equation before?  If there’s wine involved, then count me in!

Anyway, I promised another “tour” of my apartment since my mom and dad helped me find some big-girl apartment birthday décor.  I enlisted my parents because first, I don’t trust myself when it comes to home decoration; college posters aren’t exactly appropriate anymore, and the limited experience I do have equated to an area rug searching and purchasing nightmare.  Second—which shouldn’t surprise anyone—I don’t have tools in my apartment like a hammer, nails, etc.  But I do have a foam roller and bike pump, so it all evens out, right?  We found everything at Bed Bath & Beyond, except the clock, which came from TJ Maxx.  Let’s take a turn about the room!

First, we hung a mirror in the entryway. (And by “we,” I mean my mom and dad.)

mirror

It adds some depth to the area, and it lets me do a quick teeth/hair/makeup check before leaving.

mirror3

In fact, I used this mirror when I took a picture of my new haircut. (Not that you can tell, but still.)

1:7-haircut

To the right of the entryway sits the dining table/work center, and we placed a clock up above.

clock

It’s been temperamental at times—its hands stop on 7:20—but it looks really nice.

clock2

Although I might have to buy a new one if its hands continue to refuse to work.

clock3

Next up is the most important piece:  This painting hangs above the couch and essentially connects the central theme of the room. (Although my original idea was to hang my bike there!)

living-room-with-painting

Perfect size and perfect color scheme—what a clutch find!

painting

living-room-with-painting2

Between the windows sits this unique metal piece.

metal-piece

Again, perfect size and colors.

metal-piece-close-up

Finally, we found two flower paintings for my bedroom.

bedroom-flower-paintings

Very pretty, right?

bedroom-flower-paintings-close-up

So that’s what I have so far.  I still want to get a few more pieces, but my apartment feels much more homey now.

What was your favorite room/area to decorate in your home/apartment?  Did you decorate it immediately after moving in, or did you wait and buy one item at a time?

Hurricane Sandy—Back in Business

Good morning, friends!  Happy Saturday!  Guess where I’m blogging from today.

Yep, my apartment with heat, electricity, and the like.  Around 6 p.m. last night, power was restored in my neighborhood—woohoo!  As I walked down the street, cheering, dancing, and celebrating quickly ensued; after four days sans cable, Internet, and running water, it was truly a cause for celebration.  I went to Whole Foods to pick up some produce and almond milk, and on the way back to my apartment, I witnessed Broadway going from a pitch-black street to lighting up like a Christmas tree.  Everyone, including me, began cheering.

Before power returned yesterday, I found this Post-It display taking shape outside of Fishs Eddy on Broadway.

What neat act of social activism.

Although my neighborhood is relatively back in business, I realize others aren’t so lucky.  With extremely limited access to the news this past week, I’m seeing a lot of the Sandy aftermath for the first time.  I’m completely floored; I heard it was bad, I knew it was bad, but seeing the severity of it for myself has put everything into perspective.  I plan to resume normal Fitness and Frozen Grapes blogging, but there will definitely be more Sandy-related posts within the next few days.

Hurricane Sandy—Keep on Keepin’ On

Greetings from Starbucks!

(Can we please note the festive cup?  When I camped out here yesterday, Starbucks didn’t hand out these holiday ones.  Maybe Nov. 1 marks the start of winter festivities?  Too soon?)

Friends, thank you so much for your texts, tweets, and comments; I feel so loved and lucky you’re concerned about me and my fellow New York City Hurricane Sandy warriors.  So how are things?  Well, I’m keepin’ on—still no power, but luckily, there’s a vacant apartment in my building that has running water, so my grunginess has been resolved. (City officials say power should be restored Friday, so keep your fingers crossed!) I’ve also been enjoying some romantic candlelight dinners.

Taking food photos hasn’t been a high priority at this point, but I am working on a couple “upbeat” Hurricane Sandy-related posts.  Oh, and my workouts have also fallen to the wayside—Chelsea Piers is closed indefinitely, and I haven’t been running since Monday—so I’m not sure if I’ll do Saturday’s Dash to the Finish Line 5-K.  I hope to run this afternoon, and I plan to make a decision regarding the race Friday night/Saturday morning.  Actually, holding the NYC Marathon has been a hotly debated topic.  Hurricane Sandy successfully destroyed the city’s marathon fever, but according to race officials, Sunday’s 26.2 mile event will go on as planned.  Even though I don’t have power, I still want everyone (who can) to run the marathon.  After all, they’ve trained hard and logged the miles, so as long as the city and course pass safety precautions, I say take on the 26.2 trek!  That being said, though, I think race officials should offer runners the option of transferring their registration to next year (if that’s logistically possible, of course).

Updated to edit:  I just found out Saturday’s NYRR Dash to the Finish Line 5-K has been cancelled.  Race officials want Sunday’s marathon to be their “sole focus,” which is totally understandable.

Given Hurricane Sandy’s damage, would you run a race on Saturday?  How about the marathon on Sunday?

Hurricane Sandy—I’m Alive!

Greetings, everyone!  Thanks for your kind comments, tweets, and virtual hugs throughout the past couple days.  Hurricane Sandy hit New York City hard Monday night, and I’m still without power.  Needless to say, it’s been a tough (read: grungy, ha!) few days. (On the bright side, I got quite a bit of reading done.) Anyway, welcome to my view.

Hello, Starbucks!  Power in my area won’t be restored for another 4-5 days—glahhh–so I’ll do my best to update the blog and tweet when I can, but I’ll most likely be off the grid for the time being.

Please stay safe, friends!   Any ideas for fun activities that don’t require power or electricity?  Any book recommendations?  What are your plans for Halloween?

An OCD Moment and Dinner at Penelope

Hi!  Happy Hump Day!  How’s your week coming along?  I have some good news to share on the apartment décor front—my area rug arrived yesterday!

This looks innocent enough, but upon closer examination, you’ll see this setup simply will not do.

Cue a frantic OCD reaction.

My inner perfectionist could not deal with the rug-rug pad nonalignment, so I spent a good 30 minutes fixing the non-slip pad, unrolling and rerolling the rug, and obsessively adjusting it.  I couldn’t figure out why I was struggling so much, but I realized the rug pad measured one foot longer than the area rug, which was why things weren’t matching up.  Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and the labor was totally worth it.

Success!

Dinner

Last night, I made plans to meet up with my friend Sara for dinner at Penelope.  Sara and I go way back—we embarked on our Writing and Rhetoric Honors projects together, and we ran the Boilermaker 15-K this summer—so it was great catching up with her over a great meal.

Situated in Murray Hill, Penelope boasts a “refreshing twist on mom’s recipes.”  Ready to whet your whistle?

Did you spot the “seasonal sangria” on the board?  Once in our booth, Sara and I ordered two glasses of the harvest sangria, which contained apples, pears, and blueberries. (Sorry about the bad iPhone photos.)

For my meal, I went with “When Veggie Met Sally”—chopped greens with grilled veggie burger and green apple. (It also came with goat cheese, but I ordered it without.)

Whoops, such a fail; this picture doesn’t do it justice.  The fare was delicious, and it was great catching up with Sara.  Can’t wait to do it again!

Breakfast

Although I had an a.m. bike ride on the docket, rain and wind prompt me to postpone, so I ate my morning meal shortly after waking up.

Whole Foods didn’t have my standard Kashi waffles, so I picked up a box of Van’s Power Grains.  They definitely tasted grainy-er, and I topped them with almond butter and banana slices.

Time to start the day—have a good one, friends!

Take a Turn About the Room

Happy Tuesday, all!  Did you have a nice Columbus Day?  I spent my Monday running a ton of apartment-related errands, and finally, I have some pictures to share!  Welcome, and let us take a turn about the room. (Caroline Bingley from Pride and Prejudice, anyone?) First, let’s start with the entrance.

The kitchen is to the left, bathroom and closets to the right, and the dining/living area straight ahead.  I’m totally in love with the kitchen—very modern.

(Go Yankees!)

And I’m really pleased with how the bathroom turned out.

Alrighty, onto the dining/living area.

This section needs some work.  I’m still waiting for a floor rug to arrive, and I also need to track down end tables and wall décor; it feels comfortable, but not yet homey, know what I mean?  Last but not least, my bedroom.

Like the dining/living area, I need to spruce up this room, too.  Although I did manage to put together a bag rack.

And my bike adds some character to the room.

Much like my triathlon swim, my apartment is still a work in progress–ha!  But working toward improvement, whether it’s in the open-water or in your home, makes the process more rewarding and worthwhile.  At least that’s what I tell myself when I’m making my third trip in two days to Bed Bath and Beyond.

Do you live in a house, apartment, or condo?  What’s your favorite room?  What are some of your favorite home goods stores?

Settling In

Hey, everyone!  I hope you had a great weekend!  My Saturday and Sunday were jam-packed—both literally and figuratively—with all things apartment-related.  With the minivan loaded to the brim, my dad and I drove five hours to the city.  Even though we got caught in some rain, a lucky omen greeted us.

Hopefully this rainbow means lots of luck in the Big Apple!  And speaking of omens, here’s something else that happened:  After arriving at our hotel, my dad and I went out to dinner, and as we chatted away, I realized my watch’s battery stopped working—it called it quits at the exact time I left home.

How weird is that?  Even stranger, I bought the watch in NYC two years ago.  Maybe things are coming full circle?  Or perhaps this means one era has drawn to a close, and I’m entering a new, exciting time.

Anyway, on Saturday morning, we started the daunting process of unloading and organizing.

So.  Much.  Stuff. (This isn’t everything, by the way.) These move-in gifts from the management were a pleasant surprise.

The apartment itself is still a work in progress, and I promise I’ll post pictures within the next few days.

Dinner

Now back to regularly scheduled blogging.  For my first meal in my big-girl apartment, I made an old favorite—almond-crusted tilapia.

As you know, I’m obsessed with seafood, so this dish will make regular appearances on the blog.  For dessert, I had some frozen grapes my mom brought from home.

How sweet!

Workout – Running

I didn’t sleep that well last night, which was probably due to slew a new bed, a new room, etc., but I woke up a little after 6 a.m. for my first NYC run.  I headed over to the Hudson River Greenway for a 30-minute jog.  Holy cow, what a great place to workout!  It was great seeing so many people getting their sweat on—biking, running, and walking—and since the path itself mirrors the Hudson River, the view was beautiful. (I’ll have to take some pictures next time!) Plus, maybe because I had two rests days and/or because I’m used to hilly Central New York, I felt like I was flying this morning.  Speaking of CNY, I obviously needed to represent my favorite fitness people—Syracuse Bicycle, plus Fleet Feet Syracuse and their RUNapoolza 5-K.

Afterwards, I completed some upper-body strength training and ab exercises.

Breakfast

Another go-to made its first NYC appearance—overnight oats.

Technically, though, it’s a bowl of 20-minute oats with mashed banana, frozen strawberries, plain Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup almond milk, 1/4 cup old-fashioned oats, chia seeds, and a scoop of Justin’s plain peanut butter.  This was my first time trying Justin’s, and I’m a fan.

I ran some errands after breakfast, which included yet another trip to Bed Bath and Beyond, Trader Joe’s, and GNC (which was out of Jay Robb egg white protein powder—what?!).

Lunch

I broke for lunch around 1:30 p.m. and threw together a salad.

It was only after I gobbled down the turkey I remembered it’s Meatless Monday.  Fail.  Guess I’ll just have to redeem myself at dinner–I’m planning on making homemade soup tonight because I’m a big girl!

Do you participate in Meatless Monday?  Are you a vegetarian?

Shopping for New York City—Complete!

Hey, everyone!  How’s your Tuesday so far?  I have some great news to share—this pile o’ stuff marks the end of apartment home goods shopping!

Woohoo!  My mom and I picked up bedding, pillows, and blankets this morning, which comprises the last of the “big stuff” (bulky and heavy items) I’m bring to New York City.  It feels great to finish shopping, but I have a feeling this is the calm before the storm—packing starts tomorrow.  Oh boy.

Dinner

Keeping with last night’s Meatless Monday theme, I prepared blackened grilled tofu.

Holy cow—talk about taste heaven.  This mixture included eight different spices like paprika, lemon pepper, and ground red pepper, and it packed flavor and heat; my spice-loving taste buds were super happy.  I’ll share its exact contents next week.

Breakfast

With a morning of shopping looming overhead, I made a veggie-packed meal.

There were a ton of roasted vegetables leftover from last night, so I added those to a one-egg, one-egg-white base.  For a little extra staying power, I ate a sliver of protein-packed pumpkin bread.  I have a feeling this loaf will be gone very soon.

Workout – Biking

Once NYC shopping was complete, I set out on a celebratory bike ride.  Even though I battled powerful headwinds, I covered the 14.5 miles pretty easily by reminding myself that I won’t be biking around Central New York much longer; it bittersweet to think I have one ride remaining.

Lunch

A blustery ride called for a warm midday meal, and black bean soup fit the bill.

Black bean is easily my favorite soup of all-time, followed by Italian wedding and chicken noodle.

What’s your favorite kind of soup?

One Long Day

Happy October, everyone!  Today has been the longest day ever.  Hopefully, I can string together complete thoughts for this post.  Just to give you a sense of my current state, I’m blogging in my PJ’s.  It’s 6 p.m.

Workout – Running

Thirty minutes on the pavement plus body-weight exercises like push-ups squats, and single-leg squats.

Breakfast

In addition to the protein-packed pumpkin bread I baked yesterday, I also made a batch of pumpkin crunch granola.  Meghan posted her recipe a few days ago, which I altered a bit, and this stuff tastes great.  It’s dangerously good. (I’ll post my version soon!) It needed to be incorporated into this morning’s meal, so a yogurt parfait proved perfect.

Frozen strawberries and blueberries comprised the fruit layers.  Then came plain Greek yogurt and a generous sprinkle of the granola.  For good measure, I also drizzled some almond butter on top.

Success!

Lunch

My mom and I shopped away the morning and took a lunch break around 1:30 p.m.  For Meatless Monday, I made a salad with scrambled eggs, red and green peppers, celery, and apple slices.

It’s been a while since I’ve had a salad, so it totally hit the spot.  I satisfied my sweet tooth with a slice of pumpkin bread.

To use a sports metaphor, lunch served as halftime of today’s shopping spree.  Following lunch, more of the same ensued.  Basically, this is what I wanted to buy.

And this is what I ended up buying.

Contents of this organized chaos include (but aren’t limited to) plates, bowls, wine glasses, plus a duvet and shower curtain.  And we’re going shopping again tomorrow.

To end this post on a positive note, how about some Ryan Gosling?

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which Ryan took the liberty of reminding us.  I saw this graphic on Facebook (thanks, Annie and Michele!), and since I love Ryan Gosling, I thought I’d pass it around.

How was your Monday?  Do you love Ryan Gosling as much as I do?

Link Love and Furniture Shopping for New York City, Take Two

Because one spree isn’t enough.

Hey, friends—Happy Friday!  Do you have plans for the weekend?  It’s been raining all afternoon, so it’s going to be a low-key evening.  Tomorrow, though, the fam is going to my cousin’s football game.  I haven’t been to a high school football game in … well, since high school.  Funny how that works.

Yesterday afternoon, I got some serious link love from my friends at Chelsea Piers and Full Throttle Endurance.  We’re talking two social media outlets—Facebook and Twitter.

So cool!

Did you miss the recap of FTE’s swim practice at Chelsea Piers?

Unfortunately, these screenshots were the sole pictures I snapped yesterday.  For lunch, I had more healthy curried chicken salad, which tasted even better leftover; we also had our neighbors over for drinks and hors d’oeuvres, which also went undocumented.  Whoops.  Just picture lots of red wine, cheese and crackers, veggies and dip, plus some tasty finger sandwiches.  No dinner after was required thanks to the copious amount of cheese I ate.

Workout – Running

This morning, I “slept in” and answered some emails before tackling a 7.25-mile run.  For me, this qualifies as a semi-long run, although I know my marathon-training friends would say different. (One day!) Even though it was lightly misting, I still had a great, low-key outing, minus my iPod shuffle dying about 15 minutes in. (I even charged it last night—what the heck!) “Running naked” ended up being a nice treat, and I also left my compression sleeves at home.  The eight-mile threshold is usually when my calves crave compression, but I was still pleasantly surprised there were no tightening issues.  Woohoo!

Breakfast

We go through a lot of peanut butter, which works out perfectly for an overnight-oats-in-a-jar addict like me.

This morning’s mix included one mashed banana, plain Greek yogurt, 1/4 cup old fashioned oats, 1/2 cup almond milk, and plenty of chia seeds.

Lunch

Before heading to Raymour & Flanigan for furniture shopping round two, I made a veggie scramble.

With a one-egg and one-egg-white base, I added leftover roasted asparagus and red peppers, plus some tofu for extra protein. (Plus Sriracha, obviously!) I also ate a few handfuls of grapes.

Onto some good news:  Guess who has big-girl furniture for her big-girl apartment?

This girl!  I ended up going with the sofa sleeper, accent chair, and ottoman.

This area rug. (And the blurry dining set.)

And a dresser and nightstand I totally forgot to take a picture of, probably because I was so excited!

Also, on a completely unrelated note, I found out today I won a GNC Twitter giveaway.

All I had to do was click “retweet,” so I figured what the heck.

Wow!  First the #RunChat prize package and now a Total Lean Pumpkin Spice Shake?  Heck, maybe I should go buy a lottery ticket.

Have you ever won a prize or giveaway (either virtual or in “real life”)?