breakfast: bread

Without fail, every time Sunday rolls around we jump into nesting mode. It's the day that the sheets get washed, kitchen gets a scrub, meals are planned, fridge gets stocked, etc. It really helps our week run smoothly. By the time we get home from work, nobody feels like doing any of that stuff.

For awhile I've been wanting to nail down some breakfast staples. I hate eating cereal ... I'm hungry 30 minutes later always. Some days we make breakfast sandwiches, but it's hard to know if we'll have enough time. Here's where the magical breakfast bread comes into play ... 
It's super healthy and non-sugary. We eat it with french vanilla yogurt or greek yogurt for a protein boost. But be forewarned ... if you are looking for a sweet bread like traditional banana or pumpkin bread, this is not it. Pairing it with yogurt actually seems to add some sweetness though. I loosely follow these two recipes -- trail mix bread and oatmeal breakfast bread
For the trail mix bread I basically just throw in any dried fruits I have, omit the sugar (I use the honey though), and omit the dark chocolate. It has the best coconut flavors! 
For the oatmeal breakfast bread I put 1/4 cup of brown sugar (instead of 1 cup) for two loaves.


three weeks

What are those pom poms? Well, they are part of my Holiday 2013 Wrapping Prototype (I just like saying that). I know it's September ... but I do this every year and it's so much fun. Josh doesn't even think it's weird anymore!

We are continuing to find a new "normal" for us. Making fitness a priority (I will talk more about this), setting aside time for hobbies (I will talk more about this too), and being outside as much as possible. We started this weekend with a trip to our local yoga studio and then a breakfast spot a block down. It feels nice to be apart of a neighborhood. And everyone is SO nice! Not creepy nice, but genuinely nice and happy. We are still working on getting our apartment set-up ... I have to iron-hem a million (8) curtains.

One major thing that has really stuck out to us -- we aren't frantic about the weather anymore. It's no secret that we are obsessed with the weather/being outside. But the difference is that when we have a nice day here ... we just say "Oh wow, it's beautiful. It's going to be nice tomorrow too. And for the next 7 months." Living up North we were always in this mindset of "Oh it's so nice I need to stay outside every minute of today because it will never be this nice again wow it's so nice". Yep.

Weekly observations:
+ It is the last week of September ... all the gardening stores have signs that say "Plant your veggies now!"
+ I tried to find a local "pick your own" farm. There are a bunch ... but their "season" doesn't start till the end of November.
+ For as hot as the days are, the evening totally makes up for it. There is this breeze and coolness in the air. We have been biking or running every night. Sauce prefers running and generally acting like a maniac.
+ There is a major ant (and other bugs ... so we've heard) issue. When we talk about it people say "Well, it's Florida!" Tropic problems.
+ Everything here is so close. All of our errands can be done with in a mile of our house. We do have to drive to the mall/ikea but it's less than 10 minutes away.
+ I used to HATE going to the grocery store for a few items ... like if I forgot something ... or didn't plan for one dinner. Now I LOVE it. The publix is so cute and it puts me in the best mood. Plus there is always a nice police officer there (wtf?).
+ This week I discovered Hobby Lobby. I will never go to another craft store again.
+ There are 7-8 cats that sleep under Josh's car at night. They are slowly driving Sauce crazy.
+ People complain about mosquitoes but I haven't seen one (and we are outside all the time)! At our old place we'd get bit up like crazy.



Something crazy happened over the last few days. I was driving around, and suddenly things started to feel familiar! Many times the streets were new to me, but it was Florida and it felt like home. Up until now it's felt like a foreign, vacation land and I needed my gps 24/7.
We've found the local vet, post office, bank, coffee shop. All things that make a place feel more familiar.
Last week I found a job at a school I really love... I think it's going to be a great experience. Sauce has had some ups and downs while trying to get used to everything. At this point things will only get better for him! Josh is still settling into his new job but he really likes it. 
I've made some goals for myself this next year. One of them being to try and learn how to customize this blog. I really want to make it more of a space that reflects who I am and what I like. Also, we are going to try life without cable. If you know me then you know this is a big deal. We figure that it's super nice weather in the evenings here ... we should be out biking etc. Even so, we have netflix and can catch some stuff on that.

Last weekend I threw a bunch of random stuff into a pan and wallah! Tacos! And they were delish.

Anything Goes Tacos:
Saute 2 packs of sliced mushrooms with one chopped onion until cooked. Add 3/4 of a bag of frozen (thawed) corn and cook until heated through. Mix in 1 1/2 tsp of chili powder and salt/pepper. Add 5-6 cups (loosely packed) of fresh spinach. Cook until wilted.

Put mixture in a flour tortilla and top with goat cheese OR my favorite healthy creamy topping ...
Mix 1 cup greek yogurt, 2 tsp of minced chilies in adobo (this comes in a small can), and salt/pepper. Done!



There always seems to be something going on here. And everything is so close! Last night it cooled down and we walked around lake eola. We've always loved pennsylvania because it's beautiful, but we have never lived so close to a place(s) like this. People are running, walking their dogs, taking pictures, kids playing, picnicking. We day dreamed about doing this same walk around the lake during the winter. 
Things are starting to feel more familiar -- this street turns into that street, that pharmacy is better, we could bike to that place, etc. 
Afterwards we realized how close we were to Tasty Tuesday -- a weekly food truck meet up. So weird to be out and about on a school night!

We are still trying to get our apartment put together. I need to make an ikea trip to get some lights, curtains, and other random things. There are empty boxes everywhere since we are trying to recycle them in shifts (only so many fit at a time). I will take pictures of it soon.


first week

We have been in Orlando for one week now. It has been a BLURE! All in all, we are so happy we chose this city. It has everything we are looking for! Just last weekend we took a city bike trail all the way to the Winter Park farmers market. We shopped around and ate some of the world's best empanadas. On Sunday we drove to a dog beach. After Sauce finally relaxed, it was the best day watching the dogs play in the water with their owners and seeing families lounging around with their pets. It was the perfect first weekend in our new home.

I'm planning on posting a ton of stuff about what we are up to. The ups and downs of getting to know a new neighborhood ... the challenges of living in a city. I really want to remember this time.

For now ... here are some first week observations ...
+ We drink way more water here. Way, way, more water.
+ I can spend an hour in Target and not hear one person speaking English (even on the employee walkie talkies) ... it's kind of refreshing.
+ Profusely sweating in public is 100% acceptable. No judging.
+ Everyone that you pass on the street (walking or biking) says "hi".
+ The only Disney paraphernalia I have seen was vintage Mickey shirts at Old Navy. I kind of want one.
+ I knew the summer sky here was beautiful ... but it's kind of ridiculous on a daily basis.
+ Orlando seems to be one of the only places that has lots of big trees (not just palms). It's very shady here and that it not the FL norm. 


bits and pieces of august

Josh left for Orlando August 10th and our closing wasn't until August 30th. After getting the house ready, he came back for a short visit and we tried to pack in as much as possible.
We weren't that frantic because we know we'll be back really soon (florida teachers have so much time off ...) but it was so nice to spend time with the people we love.
Our families (moms, dads, I love you!) and friends were there to help me the whole time ... half of it I walked around in circles not knowing what to do next. It felt so good finish the last of the house projects (aka painting our scary (as hell) basement with the most toxic paint you could ever come in contact with. Why did I waste my time cleaning my house with vinegar and baking soda!?)!
The week before Josh came back for closing I stayed in nj with my family. We had a wine and cheese party to send Kaitlin off to Italy which may have been the most delicious party ever. Over the next few days we moved Emily into her new dorm room and took Kaitlin to the airport. It was so fun to see them starting new adventures! The quiet time with my family was priceless. That's the thing about moving away -- when you come back it is uninterrupted time when you're not rushing back to your home to do this or that. You are just there and you're only job is to hang out.
We have been in Orlando for a week now ... more to come on that.
On another note, Sauce is seriously the best dog. I can't tell you how good he has been through all of this. After watching in disbelief as we carried his (our) bed out to the moving truck, to sleeping in a million different places, to not making a peep during the 18 hour car ride, he deserves doggie ice cream or something. 

Also ... I am having so much fun with my camera! I still have no idea what I'm doing but kids are the easiest (and my favorite) to photograph. It's such a different experience taking a kids picture as opposed to an adults because they are so blissfully unaware (or don't care) that someone is watching them. They are just totally themselves doing what they want to do. It is awesome.