Having Fun / Uncategorized

The Final Days of My Break with “Nothing to Do”

Wow, I don’t think I could have been more wrong when I was complaining how I would be bored, twiddling my thumbs with no job to keep me busy over winter break.  Quite the opposite, actually!  Let’s just say there was hardly any TV watching, and even less twiddling going on.  My break was so much fun and I am sad to see it come to an end.

Let’s review some of the things that filled up my days this last week of freedom, shall we?

Russy and I went rock climbing!  Someway, somehow, a Groupon magically appeared on my account when I was out of the country.  We don’t know who purchased it, but who are we to ask too many questions?!  (And no, it wasn’t Russ being cute).  Needless to say, we used it!  The Groupon allowed us to participate in a belaying course, provided us with all of the necessary climbing gear and then they set us free to allow us to belay each other and climb as many walls as we wanted.  It was a blast!

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I think that the lighting on that picture is SO WEIRD.  Look at Russ’ arm…doesn’t it look like my arm is weirdly long and wrapped all the way around him?  No?  That’s just me?  

We each climbed six walls before calling it quits.  Climbing takes such a toll on the hands and upper arms!  We both climbed straight walls and those reverse-incline ones where you swing away from the wall when you fall.  Scary!

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What’s even scarier is when I would look down and see Russ standing there without the brake on! 

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It was a lot of fun and I would definitely go back to climb again!

So besides climbing, I have been creating and eating some tasty food!  Once I move back to school, I won’t have access to a fully loaded kitchen, so I need to take advantage of the fresh, in-season vegetables and other goodies.

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Romaine with bell peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, strawberries, beans, homemade guacamole and a balsamic glaze. Mmmm!

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Mango Greek yogurt with a sprinkle of Kashi-Go Lean, sliced strawberries and unsweetened almond milk.

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That isn’t the prettiest picture, but it’s a whole wheat bagel topped with peanut butter and strawberries on one side and hummus, lettuce and peppers on the other.  I served it with a side of clementine, baby carrots, and a bit more hummus for dipping.  The ugly plating can be attributed to my growling stomach after a long workout.

Okay, so strawberries aren’t exactly in season, but they have made their way into our refrigerator over the last week and I definitely took advantage of them.

Remember that time that I made pasta and I thought it was a big deal?  I take it back!  This week, I got the idea in my head to make Pumpkin Ravioli with fresh (frozen) pumpkin that we had saved from the fall.  Everyone knows that restaurants charge a quarter of your paycheck for a small bowl of fresh pumpkin ravioli.  I decided that I would go for it and try to make it myself.  Let’s just say, I completely understand why they charge so much!  By the end of the FOUR hours that it took me, I was ready for someone to pay $25.00 a plate, too!  I can say, however, that if you have the time, and perhaps someone to help you, making pumpkin (or any type) ravioli is delicious, fun, and worth it in the end!

I tried to take some pictures of the process, but hands covered in dough made it difficult, so I only snapped a few.  If you’re interested in the recipe, search “Alton Brown’s ravioli recipe” and follow his recipe for the pasta.  Then for the filling, I just searched “healthy pumpkin ravioli recipe”, read a few of the results and put together a couple of recipes.  I loosely followed (http://allrecipes.com/recipe/pumpkin-ravioli) <—that recipe.  (I don’t know how to hyperlink).  I also added sage and thyme, which added a nice flavor to them. 

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Flour, eggs, oil, salt and water to make the pasta

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The beginning of the filling. Sauteing garlic!

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Before boiling

I made sure to snap a bunch of photos before I cooked the ravioli, because I had a huge fear that they would all open up and fall apart as soon as they hit the water.  Some of them did, but most came out beautifully!  I made a parmesan cheese sauce to go with them.  Most recipes that I found called for a heavy-cream sauce, but I used 1% milk and it came out great!

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Deliciously fluffy center with chewy pasta on the outside

I got a lot of compliments for this dinner, but that could also be because everyone felt bad for me since it took so long.  Either way, they tasted great, they looked nice (for the most part) and they were fun to make!

I also did a lot of relaxing with Russ and his roommates, which was fun and just what I needed before the semester starts!

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I did a bunch of quality workouts, as well.  I think I want to start “Fitness Friday” posts, but that will have to start next week.  For now I’ll just mention what I did.

  • Saturday: 35 minutes of HIIT running on the treadmill, 5 minutes on the elliptical and a quick biceps workout
  • Sunday: rock climbing with Russy!
  • Monday: 10 minutes on the elliptical, followed by a 30 minute incline-walking workout.  It was intense!  I also completed a triceps workout
  • Tuesday: 10 minutes on the elliptical, 25 minute incline-walking workout and a shoulder workout.
  • Wednesday: Russ snuck (is that a word?) me into the gym and it was so scary!  I would make an awful criminal.  Once my heart stopped racing, I did 10 minutes on the elliptical, 5 minutes on another elliptical, 12 minutes incline walking intervals and 30 minutes of jogging and sprinting on the indoor track.
  • Thursday: Off for reasons mentioned below.
  • Friday: Not sure yet!

Last, but not least, the MOST exciting thing that I did this past week (and possibly the entire break) was shadow a medical student in the Plastic Surgery Service.  I have never experienced anything like it and it was so incredibly fascinating.  I plan to write an entire post on my experience sometime over the weekend.Image

So am I ready to be back at school and back into my hectic-never rest-never breath-always run life here at school?  No, I don’t think so.  However, come Monday morning, I know that I’ll feel that familiar surge of excitement as a new semester begins, opening doors for new opportunities and adventures.  I hope you come along for the ride!

 

 

 

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