Seder 2014

Last night we enjoyed a lovely Seder to kick off Passover.  Here are some snapshots:

the table

the seder plate

pretty flowers

wine in our new decanter

I didn't get food pictures because I was starving, but you get the idea!  Happy Pesach!


Passover Prep 2014

Hi all! 

This year, like last year, I am hosting R's family for Passover Seder to kick off Passover.  If you are unfamiliar with Passover, you can read about it here and about Seder here.  It is a beautiful, meaningful holiday which, of course, involves food.  Passover can be a challenge because of the dietary restrictions: (fast version- think no-carb diet + no beans or corn).  But with some planning it isn't too difficult.

This weekend I set the table, made the matzo ball soup, chocolate dipped coconut macaroons, and the charoset.  R hardboiled eggs. We made sure we bought all the seder plate components.  My inlaws will be making the brisket & kugel, and I will be roasting some asparagus just prior to dinner Monday night.  It will be a great meal, I think! 

a peek at the table

my soup

I can't wait!  Then tomorrow night we are going to a "second night" seder at our Temple, and we will be going over to some friends' home next Monday for a vegan kosher dinner- talk about having to get creative!!  Lots of good food & good times to be had over the next week.

Chag Sameach!


Five for Friday: 5 Favorite Raleigh Spots

For Five on Friday this week I thought I'd share my top 5 Raleigh food & drink spots with you:

1. Bida Manda:
pho lao with beef 
beef larb

This place is freaking awesome.  Laotian food-- similar to Thai.  The beef larb is to die for.  I've also had the pho lao and it was great as well.  In fact, no one I've ever dined with here has not loved what they got.  It is a Raleigh must.  Even the New York Times agrees.

2. Trophy Brewing Co.

I've written about this place several times because I'm basically obsessed with it.  Small batches of craft beer-- delicious.  Great pizzas.  Flavorful salads (the Greek salad is my favorite).  Cozy but lively atmosphere.

3. Cafe Helios

raspberry biscuit or scone smothered in mascapone and fruit

breakfast tostada
I think this place has some of the best coffee in Raleigh.  They also have fresh, flavorful breakfast and brunch food.  I used to beg R to take me here every single weekend.

4. Remedy Diner:  Couldn't find any pictures from here but this was one of my first restaurant loves in Raleigh.  Lots of good vegetarian and vegan food and also lots of great meat options too.  Mostly sandwiches-- but sandwiches done right.  Good drinks & drink specials, too.

5. Foundation: There are a couple of craft cocktail bars in Raleigh where you can go to get a $10 drink that will give you a big buzz.  This one is probably my favorite.  Tiny, dark, and cozy atmosphere.  Great whiskey/bourbon drinks.

Have a great weekend!


Spring Fashion Trends: Will I or Won't I?

Or, maybe a more accurate title-- Which 90's trends am I going to take up again for this Spring?

YES to:
  • Florals:  florals are (still) in and although I'm not usually a big flower fan, I picked up this beautiful blouse from J. Crew Factory that I am suuuuper excited about: 
J. Crew factory, $39.50 (on sale)
  • Tomboy-Chic: I've enjoyed the resurgence of "tomboy" chic this spring because it involves a few of my favorite pieces--baseball caps & baseball tees.  I've been wearing this top non-stop:
J. Crew linen baseball tee (SO comfy!), $49.50 (but watch for sales)
  • Pastels: I am not usually a big pastel girl but I have my eye on a couple pieces-- the Asos sweater I featured on Friday-- and I plan to use lots of pastel on my nails this spring: 
Sally Hanson Mint Sorbet (I have this and love it)

Essie Romper Room (Might need to buy this beautiful pink!)

NO WAY to:
  • Overalls:  Just..... no.  I wore overalls when they were cool the first time (see generally 5th-ish grade).  I even wore them with a baby tee underneath.  Been there, done that, and leaving it in childhood.
J. Crew gallery overalls... $168
  • Mini Backpacks: Also, been here and done that.  These were so cool back in the "Clueless" days.  Even though the new mini backpacks out this season are admittedly kind of cute, I KNOW that in a few years it would be a huge "what was I thinking?!" moment to look back on. 
kate spade claremont drive cody, $398.00

Coach Studio Legacy Backpack in Leather, $258

What about you? Are you going to partake in any of these trends this Spring? 


Real Talk Tuesday: Fat Talk & Thoughts

Good morning!

I posted before about how I was committing myself to banning fat talk.  I feel strongly that it is important to not insult yourself both in front of others (especially if you have children) and in your own head.  It's just useless and not productive and awful.

image via cnn.com

But have I been able to stick to it?  I'll be honest, yes and no.  For a long time I was doing really well, but slowly it has creeped back in.  I finally had to say enough is enough on Sunday night when I was complaining to R about how "fat" I looked in all the pictures from cherry blossom weekend.  And some point I was like

Wait a sec. This body just carried me through a TEN MILE RACE.  This body is amazing! 

I need to re-commit myself to banning fat talk and self-defeating thoughts.  I need to focus on the positive and not beat myself up.

Are you with me? Do you struggle with this as much as I do?


Girls weekend // Cherry Blossom 10-Miler

 Coming to you from the couch of my house after a successful girls weekend! Why am I on the couch, you ask?  Some how I am more sore than EVER before after this race.  I am literally hobbling around.  I felt like I needed to take a day to rest, stretch, take a hot bath, etc. just to feel human again.

 So how was the race?

It was good!  I started out a little fast. I have been running shorter runs with my husband lately and his comfy pace is about 30 seconds to a minute faster than mine.  I started out running a 10:15-10:30 pace, and kept up with that for about the first four miles.  After that I started to get tired and fluctuated between about 11:10 and 11:37 min/mile for the rest of the race.  I knew I was going to be close-ish to my time last year of 1:49, but felt that I was probably slower since last year I started out at 11-something and had negative splits for the whole race.

I was right, and ended up with a time of 1:53:53.  Not bad, and I'm fine with that time.  I didn't train as hard as I did last year, so it works for me.

Afterwards we took some pictures:
The girls and three of the moms

R came to watch and found me twice on the course, it gave  me a HUGE boost
Then we headed back to the girls' place to take pics with our bestie L in our Liverpool shirts. She was the inspo for our outfit this year because she always runs with us but is going through a health issue. L is a HUGE liverpool fan, so this was our way of saying, look, you're running with us!!! We love you, L.

Then we headed to Agora for unlimited brunch.  yep. Unlimited food & drinks.  I started off with a bloody mary:

Some of the girls:

A, Teri, and G
me, C, and A's mom! 
It was a great weekend, but I'm feeling the effects today, big time.  Next year I will probably run the 5k unless I feel that I can fully commit to the ten miler training and train more consistently.  It feels terrible to have my body be this sore, and I know it's because I just haven't been doing the mileage I should have to feel good during and after the race.


Five on Friday: Spring Wants!

Tomorrow early AM I'm headed up to DC for girls' weekend & The Cherry Blossom 10-miler.  I'm nervous. I'm ready for the race to be over.  I will update you about it on Monday.  Until then...

It's Friday! And it feels like Spring!  Here are a couple of items I'm eyeing for this spring.

1. New Sunglasses

Ray Ban clubmaster classic, available here for $155

2. White Skinny Jeans

Seven Kimmie Contour Straight Jeans, available here, $169

Old Navy distressed white skinny jeans, available here, $32
3. High-Heeled Sandals

Sole Society Marni heels, available here, $59.95

4. Flat Sandals

Black Jack Rogers, available here, $110
Gap leather sandals, available here, $44.95
5. Something cropped

Zara light pink cropped sweater, available here, $16.99

Have a great weekend!