Tag Archives: big-girl 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?

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?

Write It Down, Do It Up – Week of Oct. 7

Friends, good news—my piles of organized chaos fit into the minivan …

And I’m all moved into my big-girl apartment!  Well, “all” is the operative word; there are still lots of odds and ends I need to pick up, but my new abode is livable.  Once everything is organized, I’ll post some pictures.  Also, can I get three cheers for my bike fitting into the minivan?

Yes!  I was mentally preparing for one week sans Trek, but since it’s here—it may or may not be in my bedroom, ha!—this means I can incorporate cycling into my first week of NYC-based workouts.  Speaking of which, I’m very excited to join the Big Apple’s fitness scene.  Hopefully, I’ll figure out my off-season triathlon training within the next couple of weeks, and until then, I’m pumped to practice yoga at my favorite studio again.  And, since I’m relatively settled, I’m going to spend the next few days working on a race calendar.  Although it’s been great both physically and mentally to sweat without training for a definite race or event, my inner athlete is itching to toe a starting line.  Anyway, it’s time for Write It Down, Do It Up!

(If you’re new to WIDDIU, here’s how it works:  Every Sunday evening, I’ll post my workout schedule for the week, and I invite you to do the same.  This way, we can motivate each other and hold ourselves accountable.  Sounds like a win-win, right?)

Monday – 30-minute run; strength training

Tuesday – 40-minute run; strength training

Wednesday – a.m. 45-minute bike; p.m. yoga

Thursday – a.m. yoga

Friday – 50-minute run; strength training

Saturday – 60-plus-minute bike

Sunday – easy run/off

How are your October goals coming along?

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?

Write It Down, Do It Up – Week of Sept. 30

Wait, how is tomorrow October 1?  September sure flew by!  And so did this weekend.  Yesterday, my mom and I shopped for more NYC apartment staples.  I almost bought this mug; it screams Fitness and Frozen Grapes.

In all seriousness, though, I found my bedding set; it’s a purple duvet, and it looks much prettier out of the packaging.

My family and I went to my cousin’s football game last night, and after a bike ride this morning, I did some baking.

Protein-packed pumpkin bread—yum-ola.  Recipe coming soon!

Anyway, onto this week’s workouts.  Since I’m moving into my big-girl apartment in less than one week—yikes!—I’m banking my rest days for Saturday and Sunday.  It’s sad to think this will be my last few times biking and running around my tiny town until Thanksgiving, but I’m more than ready to hit the big city.  It’s time for Write It Down, Do It Up!

(If you’re new to WIDDIU, here’s how it works:  Every Sunday evening, I’ll post my workout schedule for the week, and I invite you to do the same.  This way, we can motivate each other and hold ourselves accountable.  Sounds like a win-win, right?)

Monday – 30-minute run; strength training

Tuesday – 60-minute bike

Wednesday – 45-minute run; strength training

Thursday – bike (I’m riding with MB, and she’s planning the route.)

Friday – 50-minute run; strength training

Saturday – off

Sunday – off

What are your October fitness goals?

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”)?

Shopping for Apartment Necessities

Hey, everyone!  Just popping in quickly to share today’s eats and adventures—it was another busy day over here.

After eating a two-ingredient pancake for breakfast, my mom and I headed to Barnes & Noble, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Target for big-girl apartment necessities.  Well, our stop at B&N didn’t involve home goods; I wanted to pick up the books for Jamie’s virtual book club!

For November, we’re reading The Courage to Start:  A Guide to Running for Your Life by John “The Penguin” Bingham; we’re taking December off because of the holidays, and January’s book is You Are an Ironman by Jacques Steinberg.  Both look like great reads, so I’m excited to dig in.  I also picked up a copy of What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami. (And, a Starbucks soy latte.  They are addicting!)

I first spotted this memoir in The Strand during my not one, but two-part adventure to New York City.  When I brought the books to the checkout, the cashier asked if I was planning to do an Ironman.  Thanks for the compliment, but I think I need to complete a 70.3 first. (Maybe in 2014?) Also, for fellow Downton Abbey fans, I nearly died when I saw this cookbook.

After B&N, my mom and I went to Bed Bath & Beyond to look at bedspreads and dining sets.  For now, we’re just browsing, and we would like to purchase bedding and plates, bowls, etc. before the move; bringing bulkier and heavier items to the city would be easier than buying them there and lugging them from the store to my apartment.  Anyway, I really liked these plates, but the pattern might be a distraction in food photos—what do you think?

I have to think like a blogger now, right?  However, I really like pairing patterned cups and bowls with solid plates.

We’ll see.  I also found two bedding options.  The first was set up in the store, which took the guesswork out of picturing the entire set.

The second choice was unfortunately in a plastic bag.

But it’s called “Chelsea Paisley”—that has to be a sign, right?  Finally, we went to Target and bought a toaster, crock pot, and handheld blender; pretty standard appliances, so no pictures.

Lunch
When we arrived home, I used a ton of leftovers to make an egg scramble.

In addition to a two-egg base, I tossed in roasted zucchini, a handful of tofu cubes, and fresh green pepper slices.  I rounded out my meal with a slice of Ezekiel bread slathered with almond butter.  Breakfast for lunch never fails.

While I snacked on an apple, I made some apple cinnamon spice chips.

Although their texture isn’t exactly chip-y, these good-for-you slices were tasty; I’ll share the recipe tomorrow!  And now, I’m off to give my healthy curried chicken salad recipe another shot.  Fingers crossed it’s sharable this time!

Fall face-off:  Do you prefer apple or pumpkin?  I’m trying to get myself to appreciate pumpkin, and I love anything apple-flavored.