January 18, 2016

Weekending: The Return of Body Pump, Meal Planning & New Books

Happy Monday, friends! Before we get into it, I want to congratulate Becky for winning my Blogiversary Giveaway! And thank you again to everyone who entered!

So anyway, I'm sitting here, looking in my day timer at how busy my week ahead is going to be, trying to figure out which meals I've picked out for the week to make on which days, and where to squeeze in some workouts at the gym. This past weekend, while not a very exciting one in the grand scheme of things, it was a pretty great one for me. I found myself back in the gym after a very long break (too long I might add), and I realized how much I really did miss group exercise, especially my beloved Body Pump.

But let's back up.

On Saturday, I took in a Body Flow class which is a mix of yoga, tai chi and Pilates, and it was such a great way to "wake up" my body and dormant muscles. At the end of the class, there are seven minutes of relaxation with the lights off, where you are just one with your mat, and I was shocked at how many people leave right before this. I get that people are busy and have other things to get to, but it's only seven minutes, and I feel like the relaxation part after a yoga/mind-body class are SO important. I also couldn't help thinking that maybe these early leavers just aren't mom's and don't realize how precious seven minutes of silence and calmness truly is!

Once I got home, there was no way we were going out anywhere, thanks to the nearly -20C weather! Instead, we finally got around to hanging pictures in our house and a new mirror that I bought like five months ago! It feels so good to check some things off the never ending house to-do list. I also finally took down all the Christmas decorations and Christmas tree. Wait, don't judge me! Ok, I really, truly do hate taking down the Christmas decorations, so I put it off for as long as possible. But this year, Sully has been over the moon to come downstairs each morning and turn on the Christmas lights all on his own, and I just couldn't take that joy away from him right away. Then of course, this morning he wasn't even phased by the lack of tree or lights so I guess I could have taken them down a lot sooner! Toddlers, I tell ya.

I also got my meal-planning done a day early since I knew I wanted to get out for groceries after the gym on Sunday morning. I really struggled to find/think of recipes for this week, and I'm actually finding that the hardest part of it all is deciding which recipe to eat on which day. I have to take into consideration ingredients I want to use up from the previous week, what activities we have going on during the day and therefore how much time I will have to make dinner, and what needs to be defrosted . It's been a big learning process, but I've been on track for two full weeks now and it's making a world of difference for us!

Here's a look at what we ate this past week leading up to the weekend:

Creamy Spinach Artichoke Pasta from Budget Bytes. Add this to your meals to make list. I will definitely be making this again. I threw in some chopped chicken to up the protein!

Meal Planning with A Slice of Brie

Creamy Chicken Curry. My aunt gave me a photocopy of this recipe from an old Walmart magazine, and I loved that it was simple and was all cooked in one pan on the stove top.

Meal Planning with A Slice of Brie

Cheesy Gnocchi Skillet from Budget Bytes. Another super easy, affordable recipe. Unfortunately, this makes a lot and I personally don't enjoy leftover Gnocchi (and neither does Sully), so I'd probably half this recipe if I ever make it again. (Also, food pictures, in the evening when there's no natural light aren't very pretty, so I apologize for that!)

Meal Planning with A Slice of Brie

Honey Garlic Salmon from Rasa Malaysia with Cheesy Baked Cauliflower from Healthy Recipes. This  salmon recipe was a bit too vague for me. I'm a pretty good cook, but when trying a recipe out for the first time, I like a little bit more direction. And some of the instructions were conflicting. I couldn't get the "glaze" like it said I was supposed to so my salmon dried out a bit. Still yummy, but didn't make for very good leftovers. The cauliflower on the other hand - DELICIOUS. Would also be good if you subbed the cauliflower for broccoli, especially given the price difference! Six dollars for a head of cauliflower right now! Which seems ridiculous, but then I can't help but think how most of us have no problem dropping 5-6 dollars on ONE drink from Starbucks, yet balk at the cost of produce.

Meal Planning with A Slice of Brie

Mini Chicken Pot Pies from Be What We Love---- which were little muffins of heaven. So quick and easy!

Meal Planning with A Slice of Brie

All of these recipes are pinned on my pinterest page as well!

Sunday, I was up and out the door by 10am so that I could meet some friends for a Body Pump class. It's been over two years since I did this class and even though I'm pretty sure I will be sore for the rest of the week, it felt so good to be back at it! I've missed this class, and to be able to do it with some awesome ladies made the experience that much better! Afterwards, we had a healthy brunch at Freshii and I had a delicious Teriyaki Bowl with chicken which I devoured.

Body Pump @ Goodlife Fitness
{Jo, Jen, Saba, Ange & Me}
Teriyaki Bowl at Freshii

The rest of the day was spent reading books (both mine and Sully's), playing, listening to music and sorting through Sully's old clothes. I don't even feel like I buy him new clothes that often, yet I'm amazed at how fast the outgrown items pile up!

sorting baby clothes

I started reading this book on Thursday night thanks to a bunch of you who recommended it after this post, and it is SO good, but it's also getting incredibly sad. My heart is so torn while reading it that I had to set it down last night and take a break.

The Light Between Oceans - a great adult fiction read

Also, this book has been on my radar ever since Jo started mentioning it on her blog, so I took advantage of the free top-up points from Chapters last weekend and ordered it, and it arrived on Friday (the other two are still in transit). I'm not sure when I will have time to get to it, but I'm really looking forward to it.


Anyway, longest "weekend recap" ever, am I right?!

Tell me how your weekend was!

Best meal you ate? 

Book you're reading right now?

Body pump - have you tried it? Love it or leave it?

Linking up with Her Heartland Soul for Weekend Snapshots! 

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