Saturday, October 27, 2012

Halloween cookies

My work held a Halloween Potluck yesterday and you had the choice of donating $5 towards food or bringing a dish. I choose to bring a dish as I had found some cool and creative Halloween treat ideas online. I decided to make tombstone brownies.
I used a basic sugar cookie recipe and hand cut tombstones because I couldn't find a tombstone cookie cutter just by itself anywhere. I then made a batch of brownies and had no idea how I was going to get the cookies to stay in the brownies, but while the brownies were still fresh from the oven, I put them in and put some frosting around them to act like glue to keep the cookies in place. They didn't turn out half bad. If there had been a most creative dish award at my office, I bet I would have won, as most of the desserts were store bought.
The potluck was a lot of fun and it was nice to have such a filling meal for lunch. Usually I just have a sandwich and some granola bars, but I made sure to fill up my plate with meat before adding the sweets on top.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Pink Hair for Hope

For the last few years I've looked into getting a pink hair extension for pink hair for hope, but I've just never found a place close enough when I had the time or I get busy and forget. This year I remembered to look up places near by and being at home now I found a place just a couple miles away. I called them up and they had an appointment time open. Next time I definitely have to schedule in advance as they were really busy, but I got my hair extension and am so happy to have it to support breast cancer for the month of October!

My New Appreciation for Fall

The last 4 years, I've been in Buffalo, NY for Fall. I had forgotten how pretty Fall really is outside of a cement and pine tree campus. Sure there were some pretty neighborhoods in Amherst and Buffalo, but I really didn't leave campus much other than to go to the grocery store or the occasional trip out for dinner. Last week, we had such a gorgeous fall day in the 70s and I sat outside to eat lunch along the bike/walking path around my work building.

 We have a nice pond and all the leaves had started to Fall. I enjoyed every second outside that day. Unfortunately since then, it has been in the 50s and 40s and quite windy on top of that, so I usually eat my lunch inside now with a co worker though, so it's nice to have a break to chat about non work related things.

Last weekend, my boyfriend, Brian, came for a visit. I was so much more relaxed with him here. We also got a chance to celebrate our 3 year anniversary. I got him a kindle and a wallet. He surprised me with a diamond heart necklace. I thought he was going to buy a tablet for me, so I was completely surprised and real diamonds! Diamond is my birth stone which I probably constantly remind him of as I've never had any real diamonds. I'm one lucky girl! Love him!

Saturday night we went out for dinner at a stir fry type of restaurant and then we went to see the movie The Perks of Being a Wallflower, which was different from what I expected from seeing the trailer  but we both enjoyed it.

Sunday we went to a pumpkin farm with one of my friends. There was a corn maze and lots of different animals to pet and feed and of course some big pumpkins! We picked out a big and perfect pumpkin. I also did a bridge at the pumpkin patch, because you don't get many opportunities to go to a pumpkin patch. The picture is absolutely priceless with a little girl staring at me like what is she doing? 

aren't we cute?!?

bridge over a pumpkin

Brian carrying our perfect pumpkin

having some fun
So I may not be able to pick apples around here, but at least there was a fun pumpkin farm to go to. A perfect afternoon activity!
Now the pictures of my simple pumpkin carving. One year I'll make a really really cool pumpkin and spend lots of time planning out the picture, but I didn't have a lot of time, so I went simple.
happy pumpkin!

our family pic with our pumpkin
It was a great weekend full of fun to celebrate Fall! Fall is pretty, but I'm still not liking these temperatures outside falling, because winter is right around the corner....

Friday, October 5, 2012

Yoga and Reliving Australia through Photos

Today I went to my Friday Vinyasa Yoga class after work. I was told about this class one Friday while I was in the locker room and heard some ladies talking about the store Lululemon and joined in on their conversation mentioning that a store was in Evanston. They told me how great the instructor was and so the next week I checked out the class and I have now gone to 3 classes! I've done quite a few yoga classes with many different instructors and each instructor is different and I feel like most of the yoga classes I've done have been hatha yoga. Vinyasa yoga has definitely become my new favorite kind of yoga and this instructor seriously is AWESOME! Today we started a normal warm up routine with different breathing exercises and then suddenly we were doing some cardio to get moving with some nice workout music that sounded like it could fit into a zumba class. He always makes us laugh while we're in some pose during the class, which often makes the pose much harder. The class time flies by which is good and bad. Good because then I'm not looking at my watch like "omg 45 min left and I'm already sweating like crazy!" and bad because it's just so fun I don't want it to end sometimes. So anyway today we did the bridge pose in yoga and then had the option of doing the wheel pose. The wheel pose is my favorite and what I call a bridge pose. After class the yoga instructor complimented me on my wheel (bridge) pose and my 1 legged bridge as well.
Wheel yoga pose or what I refer to as a bridge pose. This is at Manly Beach in  Sydney, Australia
bridge pose

While I was in Australia in Spring 2011, I made a friend named Jenny who was also studying abroad and she gave me the idea for more interesting pictures. She would do the splits or some other fancy pose. I decided to do a bridge. So each place I went in Australia, I tried to find a place to do a bridge. Since then I have now continued to do a bridge each place I go. So here are some bridges from Australia where it all started...

my 1 legged bridge at the Blue Mountains. I love how the people in the background are like WOW

sand dunes

Sydney Botanic Gardens

Hyde Park, Sydney, Australia
                    My arch in my back definitely improved overtime in Australia and I love doing a bridge everywhere I go now, even if I get weird looks. I think one of my favorite photos was doing a bridge on the glass floor at the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower this summer. I have to admit I was never really scared to step on the glass floor, but doing a bridge and looking at the city upside down is a bit scarier, but makes for an AWESOME picture!