Monday, December 31, 2012

2012 Recap

2012 was filled with many great memories, many more than I can recap in one blog post. I wanted to recap some of my favorites to share with you all. 

 I received a grant from the AUSA to put towards my schooling. My dad and his girlfriend went with me to receive it at a special luncheon that was held for the recipients.

 I met my best friend/boyfriend Alex early in 2012 at school

My sister graduated from high school. My twin brothers also turned 18.. I feel so old!

 Jessica, one of my best friends turned 21 and we went out to dinner to celebrate.
We went to South Carolina for a vacation to visit my aunt and uncle. We visited Myrtle Beach and a plantation while we were there!

I joined the Ball State Runner's Association and ran at Regional's

 Life in Color came to Ball State for a fun night of music, dancing, and paint!

All of the cousins were together for Thanksgiving. This doesn't happen often as some of them live out of state.

I ran in the Galloping Gobbler 4 mile race with my brother

We enjoyed the Festival of Lights downtown with family

2012 was filled with some fun memories and I can't wait to see what 2013 has in store. I hope everyone has a safe and fun New Years Eve and wish you all the best in the new year!

Also, for everyone who has a New Years Resolution to become more fit, active, and/or live a healthier lifestyle, check on the blog often for a fun New Years Resolutions Giveaway that will be taking place with some fun giveaways from our favorite health food and fitness brands!

Do you have any resolutions for 2013?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Cascadian Farm's Granola Review

A few weeks ago I received an email from Cascadian Farm asking if I would like to sample some of their products and of course I said yes!

Cascadian Farm is a company who's mission is to make a difference beyond the foods they produce. They strive to farm organically and balance the needs of the environment with the needs of our nutrition. Their products are naturally better for your health as they are organically produced and do not contain any harmful chemicals or synthetic pesticides.

To see a full list of the benefits of eating Cascadian Farm's organically produced products click here. 

Earlier this week I received a package in the mail and when I opened it I found a few goodies from the company.

In my package I received a box of their Berry Cobbler Granola Cereal, Crunchy Oats and Honey Granola bars, a Cascadian Farm spiral notebook, and a bon appetit magazine.

Alex and I immediately dove into the granola bars and loved them. They come with two bars in each package so we both took one to sample. The bars were definitely crunchy and weren't soft like a normal granola bar. The hint of honey added a hint of sweetness making them perfect for breakfast on the go or a midday snack.

The next day I had tried out the Berry Cobbler Granola Cereal for breakfast before I went on a run. The cereal didn't get soggy while I was eating it like some cereal does and it diminished from my bowl rather quickly as it tasted really good. It was crunchy and the berry flavor and actual berries in it made the granola taste sweet but not too sweet.

Overall, this cereal was really good. If you like granola you should definitely buy a box of this cereal the next chance you get! The crunch and the sweetness of the cereal will definitely make you want to pour yourself another bowl.

Disclaimer: I received these products free of charge, however all opinions are my own.

Have you ever tried any of Cascadian Farm's products? What did you think?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A Very Merry Christmas

We had a wonderful Christmas and even received some snow today. A day late but better than nothing, right?

Christmas Eve

On Christmas Eve we dressed up the pups in their festive reindeer antlers.  They didn't complain once and wore them all night.

Now the cats on the other hand.. They don't like to dress up as much but we still try to get them to wear their little Santa hats!

For our Christmas Eve dinner we had a large spread that included everything from nacho cheese dip, mini BBQ wieners, meatballs, wings, a veggie tray, chips & salsa, bagel bites, summer sausage, cheese & crackers.. you name it, it was probably there. After dinner we opened up gifts. Mom had to work on Christmas so we decided to do all of our present giving the night before.

Some of the amazing gifts I received:

A Keurig! I am so excited about this. It will go perfect in my dorm room.

A Columbia rain jacket

New boots! I love that you can wear them either folded up or down. They are so comfy too!

New running capris and "The Stick" 

Harry & David milk chocolate truffles (This was a Secret Santa gift from my cousin) They are so good!

I also received a few gift cards, a super warm robe, running socks, and some other things. I'd have to say it was a pretty good Christmas.


It's been awhile since you've seen one of these posted on here. Yesterday morning I went out for a short Christmas day run. Mostly because I wanted to run in the shoes I got a few days ago and my new capris!

It was really sunny out so I figured that most of the ice would have been melted by the time I went out for a run. Well it wasn't so I tried to run in the grass as much as I could and when I was on the road I would run through the spots that were looked like puddles. About 30 seconds after I stopped to take this picture I wiped out. My side of my lower leg has a pretty little bruise on it and some nice scrapes.

I guess it was a sign that I wasn't supposed to workout on Christmas.

Did you workout on Christmas?

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas Eve!

Whether you spent today doing last minute holiday shopping or spending time with loved ones, I hope you enjoyed every bit of it!

We enjoyed our normal Christmas Eve dinner and opening presents tonight and are now continuing our traditions with a movie-marathon! We have three different movies in line so we will see how many we get through.

I thought I would squeeze in a super short post just to wish you all a Merry Christmas tomorrow!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Tis the Season

It is starting to look a lot like Christmas around our house! We have our first family Christmas party to go to tomorrow at my grandma's house so lots of gift wrapping, baking, and hot chocolate drinking took place today.

I made a fun, festive cake for the party. Pictures of it are to come later because you can't get the full effect of the cake until you actually cut a piece of it! Here's a picture of the prepping for the cake..

I also made some Christmas Cookie Brittle to take over. It was super easy to make and put our red and green Christmas chocolate chips to good use!

Christmas Cookie Brittle Recipe

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/4 cups chocolate chips

1. In a bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Gradually add flour and mix well. Add in chocolate chips.
2. Line a 15in x 10in baking pan with foil and then spray with cooking spray.
3. Press the dough into the pan. Sprinkle with any remaining chocolate chips.
4. Bake at 350' for 20-25 minutes. Cool and then invert pan and remove foil. Break the brittle into pieces and enjoy! 

This recipe can be easily altered by adding nuts, pecans, m&ms, or different color chocolate chips depending on the occasion!


After all of the presents were wrapped I did a little blogging and sipped on a cup of hot chocolate. Between blogging and hot chocolate sipping, I also painted my nails for the party tomorrow.

How are you getting into the Christmas spirit?

Friday, December 21, 2012

The End of the World

According to the Mayans, today is supposed to be the end of the world. Other than a power outage and breaking some glass, nothing too horrible happened around my house. Did anything crazy happen around you that made it seem like the world was ending?



I began my day with a workout. Over the summer I was regularly attending fitness classes at the Y near my house. Because I am home for a few weeks I thought it would be fun to go to one of my favorites - Turbo Kick. Turbo Kick is a high intensity cardio kickboxing class and is so much fun! The workout leaves you sweaty and at the very end we do some leg and core work which makes your muscles burn. I love the class because I always know that I will get a great workout out of it.

The Asics I bought a few weeks ago ended up being too tight and then when I went to exchange them for the next size up they felt too big. So look what I wore to Turbo Kick today...

They are super comfy, I love the colors, and I got a great deal on them. Everything you can ask for when it comes to buying new shoes!


After my workout I headed to the store to pick up a few things for dinner tonight and to make dessert for a family Christmas party on Sunday. Tonight my grandpa and his friend came over for dinner. Mom made a pot roast that was full of vegetables and buttery biscuits. We were freaking out around 3 when the power went out because the roast was cooking in the crock pot and we thought we were going to have to have a plan B for dinner and for a place to sleep tonight because we would be freezing without heat! Luckily for us the power came back on and we were still able to have dinner tonight.

 After dinner we enjoyed a dessert of fudge brownies and peppermint ice cream. Peppermint ice cream is my absolute favorite but I hate that it only comes out around Christmas. I would buy it all year round if they had it! The brownies were still really warm so they didn't stay together when taking them out of the pan but they tasted great.

 After everyone had left I worked on my t-shirt quilt project a little bit more. Tonight I cut all of the shirts into squares. I hope to make some more progress on the quilt tomorrow!

Did you encounter any the-end-of-the-world type experiences today?

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Fitmixer Slim Review

As I mentioned in my previous post a few weeks ago I entered into a contest that fitmixer was having. All I did was enter my name and email and choose what type of mix I wanted: slim, protein or amino and hit enter. The first time I entered, I had received an email saying that I didn't win but should come back and try again because the prizes were being given out daily, so I did just that. And the next time I checked my inbox I had an email saying "CONTEST WINNER!" This was extremely exciting for me as I have entered numerous giveaways and have never won anything.

The goal of fitmixer® slim® is to deliver more protein with less sugar, fat, calories, sodium and carbohydrates than the leading national brand in an effort to help you to better meet your weight loss goals. The fitmixer slim comes in two flavors, vanilla and chocolate, which both help to improve metabolism, decrease hunger, and use fat as an energy source to help you lose weight faster.

The other day when I made a shake using the fitmixer slim I was sent, I also used a few other ingredients but today I made it just like the directions said. I added one scoop of the mix with a glass of milk and stirred for 30 seconds. Well after stirring for over 30 seconds, the mix still wasn't mixed in all the way. It just sat on top of the milk and looked really soggy.

So then I poured my glass with the undissolved mix into the Magic Bullet blender and it mixed right up. I don't know why it didn't mix when I just tried stirring it with the spoon but this did the trick. I then tasted the shake and it was good. It tasted chocolatey but not too chocolatey. I can see myself drinking the shake just like this but I really liked it when I added in a scoop of peanut butter the other day.

Overall, I liked the mix and want to try the protein mix next!

Try fitmixer

If you want to try fitmixer, go to their Facebook page, click on the app titled "6 Days of Christmas" to reveal the sale codes for some awesome promotions! Sorry I was a little late with finding out about this deal, but today is BOGO 6lb bag of vanilla protein mix, tomorrow you can get free shipping on any purchase and on Saturday you get $25 off fitmixer Bootcamp registration!

Disclaimer: I received these products free of charge, however all opinions are my own.

Today I went to Panera for lunch with my sister and 2 of my cousins. We were out doing some shopping so we decided to stop in Panera and get the "Choose 2" menu option. I got the Sierra Turkey with extra avocado and tomato, chicken noodle soup, and an apple. It was really good and filled me right up.

Later in the day after I got back home I reorganized the fridge and panty. I am a little OCD so this is actually something I enjoy doing. I enjoyed a vanilla caramel cream Keurig cup with a little bit of sweetener added while I was doing the cleaning. When I was done with that then I finished up wrapping all of the Christmas presents. I am so ready for Christmas to be here! Sunday kicks off the Christmas season as we are celebrating with my step-dad's family at my grandma's house. I am excited for good food and to see family! Alex will also be coming up for this get-together so I am excited to see him because I haven't seen him in a week!

Another exciting thing is that it is snowing today! We might actually have some snow this Christmas :)

I didn't workout today but I am going to a turbo-kick class in the morning with one of my friends! Can't wait!

Also, if you haven't yet, head on over to the Truffles n' Treadmills facebook page and show some love by hitting "Like!"

Have you ever tried fitmixer? What is your favorite mix?

Banana Bread & Puppy Treats

Around 10:00 last night, I wasn't tired and I saw a big bunch of bananas sitting on the kitchen counter. They weren't going to be eaten because they were too brown so it left me with two options: throw them away or make banana bread.

Can you guess what I did? I found a few recipes online and changed them up a bit because I wanted to use as many bananas as possible. Most recipes call for 2 or 3 bananas but not this one. This one doesn't have 3 or 4 bananas, it has 6! And it even has a handful of chocolate chips thrown in for a chocolatey kick!

Now I know that most of the recipes on this blog are recipes for desserts, meals, or snacks for humans but I thought I'd share one that I use when making treats for my dogs.

Mix all of the ingredients together

 Roll out the dough

Cut into pieces using a knife or a cookie cutter. I cut all of the treats for my dogs into squares and then used a fun shaped cookie cutter for some treats that I plan on giving to a friend's dog.

Place all of the treats on a baking sheet and then place in the oven for 18 minutes. The pieces can be realllly close together (just not touching) because they don't expand during the baking process.

Once they are cool you can then call your dogs into the kitchen (if they weren't at your feet begging already) and give them one of these tasty treats. These treats have my dogs' approval 100%.

Also, I just realized that this is my dogs' first appearance on the blog! So a little bit about my dogs.. Maci is on the left and Ethel on the right.

When I was in middle school I volunteered at a local animal shelter and I instantly fell in love with Ethel. She was such a calm dog and loved to be loved on whenever we took her out in the yard to play. She is getting close to 10 years old now but is still a really good dog. She still loves attention and gets jealous really easily. She can usually run a mile or so with me but Maci on the other hand... running isn't quite her thing. If you can't tell from the picture, she struggles with her weight a little bit, but that could also be due to the fact that my step-dad just can't say no to the puppy-dog face she puts on whenever he has food. My sister brought Maci home a couple of years ago when she was just a few weeks old and told my mom she found her in a parking lot. About a month later a lady asked my mom how the new dog was working out. My mom had never said anything to this lady about getting a new dog so she asked how she knew about the dog.. well apparently Stephanie had bought Maci off this lady for 20 bucks! Everything worked out though because Maci is such a loveable dog.

 Now that I am home for a few weeks, I am sure there will be a few more pictures up on the blog of these furry friends! I also have 3 cats but they aren't the most exciting animals so I don't think you will be seeing much of them on here.

Do you ever exercise with your dogs?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Scarves for Italy

Yesterday morning I had a doctor's appointment. I fainted a little over a month ago, so it was mainly just a follow-up appointment about that incident. I still have to go get a few tests done to see if I have sugar problems or not but other than that I am completely fine! He just told me to drink more water and talked a little bit about exercising and food intake.

After my appointment I went over to my cousin Rema's house. She is an Art Major and has the opportunity to go to Italy in the summer for a couple of weeks to take a class there and visit some different cities. The trip is quite pricey so to raise some money she has been knitting scarves to sell. So far she has knit 20 scarves and they all look beautiful! She was knitting the whole time we were there except when she was making us lunch. During the time she was making lunch I kept the knitting process going by helping her finish one of the scarves she had been working on. I have been feeling super crafty lately so I really enjoyed helping her. After all 20 scarves were complete, we dropped them off at our aunt's house. She said she would take them into work with her and see if people there wanted to buy them.

This just in! My aunt just texted me saying that she sold 16 of the scarves today and has special orders for 6 more! It looks like they were a big hit! I am sure that Rema could take those scarves to any office and people would buy them. They are adorable and the colors are so pretty!

After visiting with her and some other family members, I headed over to the bank to set up an account for the charity donations. I am excited that this process is really beginning! I have a few other ideas about how to raise money for my aunt's medical expenses but those are just ideas for the time being.

When we got home, Mom had a big pot of chili waiting for us. It was still warm so the cheese melted right in. Yummm

Disclaimer: I didn't actually eat the crackers but my sister, Stephanie, felt they were necessary to add to the photo to make it look pretty.

After dinner I worked on my t-shirt quilt project a little bit more! And will probably go do some more work on it right after I finish this post..


Today I had to work at noon so I woke up early (9:30!) to get a workout in. I did a workout DVD and it really worked my legs. I am already a little bit sore. After my workout I enjoyed a shake that I made using the fitmixer slim shake mix I received in the mail! I entered a contest a few weeks ago that fitmixer was having and I won!

The shake I made included the fitmixer slim chocolate mix, a big scoop of peanut butter, milk, and ice. It was delicious! I am going to have to try the mix by itself with milk tomorrow and so then I can tell how it really tastes by itself, without the peanut butter flavor thrown in.

What are your favorite ingredients to put in a shake after or before a workout?

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Winter Break Project

Today began with a run. I wanted to run about 5 miles but it started sprinkling during the run so I decided it was best to cut the run short. I went to the YMCA and ran on the trails that surround the Y and ended up running 3.5 miles. The trails included lots of torturous hills that made for a good workout.

When I got back home the house smelled delicious. My mom and her friend were busy in the kitchen doing their annual Christmas baking. They used to make several different kinds of cookies but now make homemade cinnamon rolls to give to their friends and co-workers. They even made a few extra batches, which made for a great dessert after dinner. You can click here to see the entire recipe.

(Photo courtesy of Michelle D.)

For lunch we decided to get carry-out from a local sushi restaurant called Koto. We decided to get the California rolls, chicken fried rice, clear soup, and green salads with ginger dressing. The soup (not pictured) is one of my favorite soups, the ginger dressing is delicious, and the rice and sushi are to die for. This lunch definitely hit the spot.

Later in the day I saw this sitting in my room..

A basket of old race and high school t-shirts. Before I left for school this year I got them all together, picked out some of my favorites, and planned to make one of those t-shirt quilts out of them. I told myself the other day that I wanted to get this quilt done while I was on break and had a bunch of free time so what better time to start than now?

Most people don't really know that I have a crafty side but I have done almost everything from quilting, sewing, glass making, jewelry making, sketching, scrap booking, painting, drawing, card making, knitting... you name it and I have probably done it. I just don't use my artistic abilities as much as I could so most people don't know that I have this lovely trait, which I got from my mom. I even made one of my Prom dresses a few years back.

So with all of my t-shirts cut up and laying in a pile (once again), I need to go to Joann Fabric's and buy some fabric and stabilizer and this quilting project will be under way!

What do you do with all of your old t-shirts?


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