Happy Friday, friends! We made it. While this wasn’t a terribly long week for me, it was trying in some aspects. Do you ever realize that a change is coming, and it’s a great change, and you can see it off in the distance? That’s how I’ve been feeling. I’m going to partake in the Conscious Cleanse in a couple of weeks because I realize lately that I’ve started to slip into some old and not-so-healthy food habits. I’d like to nip those in the bud before my belly protrudes more than it already does. More on the cleanse later. Let’s get to the list!
1. Barberito’s. If you have one of these around you, and you haven’t tried it because you love Chipotle and Moe’s, do yourself a favor and take your fancy pants on a new-food date. This joint is the shiz. They have vegan options clearly listed on the menu which are delicious. They offer a healthy menu which boasts lower calories, and they even get their food from local farms. They value recycling, too. Just go there and give it a whirl, will ya? Find your nearest one here: http://www.barberitos.com/
2. Forever 21. No, I’m not a 16-year-old girl, but I do love this place. It will forever hold this place in my heart due to their plus sized clothes. When I was heavier, I really loved shopping there because they offer cute and hip clothes for the larger girl. Just because you’re bigger or curvier does not mean you have to sacrifice style. Plus, they offer TONS of super cute and cheaply priced goods that I go goo-goo over. Sometimes I go in there just to look at their accessories. And buy jewelry for as low as $2 a necklace. Cheap? Maybe. But it fits this girl’s budget.
3. Gardening. My green thumb has EXPLODED this year thanks to 4 plants I bought from a sale at work. I had never grown tomatoes before, or any other food. I was still morning my dead bamboo plant from a year ago. Side note: you cannot over water a bamboo. They will die. As it was, I had no clue what I was doing with these veggies. But I’ll be damned if they didn’t need too much help. Those bastards have taken over my deck with dozens upon dozens of gorgeous, fresh, organic, home grown tomatoes and jalapeno peppers. And full disclosure here: I honestly didn’t know that jalapenos grew from a plant. I KNOW. I guess I never really thought about it before, but I felt like a moron. They grow from flowers, just like tomatoes, and hang there until you pluck them. I feel stupid even admitting that. Anyway. So far, I have been able to gift jalapenos to coworkers and friends to rave results. How cool is that? Here’s a freaking jalapeno that I grew. Now I’m wondering what veggies I can grow next…
4. Fried Green Tomatoes. No, not the movie. Well, yes. And the movie. I can quote that movie, I’ve seen it so many times. It was my favorite when I was in the 3rd grade-ish. I was gifted three delicious green tomatoes and I knew I just had to fry those bad boys. Of course, I can’t just be eating fried green tomatoes all day every day, because that would be a cry for help. But last night, I had my way with them. It was so simple too: dipped them into unsweetened soy milk, then dredged them in a 1/2 corn meal, 1/2 flour mix (with some salt and pepper added), then plopped those babies in some oil. SO EASY. They came out delicious. No sauce needed, homies. I ate them the way the universe intended: simple and fast, like I was angry at them.
5. Summer Eats – Cookouts. I LOVE SUMMER COOKOUTS. If it weren’t for those damn mosquitoes and the possibility of getting sunburned, I would just stay outside all day and await a cookout. Cause you know one is going to happen eventually. You have to love fresh, wonderful summer foods: corn on the cob, watermelon, veggie kabobs, veggie burgers and dogs, and fresh tomatoes. I get seriously excited when it’s summer tomato and corn time, as if they were long lost friends and I say to them, ” Maybe you shouldn’t stay away so long next time, hmmm?” with a sly smile. Because I love them so.
6. Cold Beer on a Hot Day. Do I even need to explain this? Is it hot? Get a cold beer and sit on a patio. Repeat as needed.
7. Etsy. To be honest, I haven’t bought that much from Etsy. What I have bought I have seriously loved. I found out that the Hippy Homemaker, an awesome blog I follow, actually makes goods and sells them on her Etsy site. How cool is that? So instead of following her directions for beachy hair spray, I can simply order some from her and support this cute woman all at the same time. Win! Check her out here: https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheHippyHomemaker?ref=l2-shopheader-name
8. Landmark Midtown Arts Cinema. I’ve loved this place for years. You can check out new indy films and have a beer while you’re watching. Hop over to Trader Joe’s afterwards or even to the Highlander for food (or more beers). They offer such cool and new films that you won’t find anywhere else. Some films get wider release after Landmark, but if not, then you have to go there to see it.
9. The Peachtree Road Race. I came, I saw, I conquered. I took that Peachtree Road Race and I bent it over my knee and I yelled, “What did I tell you about talking back?” This race was much more fun than even I expected it to be. I am so very happy I did it, and I am excited to do it next year with the knowledge I learned this year. Next year, I’ll drink the entire beer I’m offered instead of taking a sip.
10. Schmidt’s Deodorant. I’ve been on the hunt for natural deodorants that don’t suck for a while. I was rocking the crystal deodorant, but then the crystal cracked. Then I tried Nature’s Gate deodorant and it did NOT work for me. Then I tried Tom’s and it was alright. I ordered Schmidt’s and have been pleasantly surprised. If you can wrap your brain around the fact that you will be rubbing deodorant onto your body with your own hands, then you can master this. I didn’t shower the morning of the Peachtree Road Race (I am NOT the only one, btw) and applied Schmidt’s to my yesterday’s underarms. Then I ran 6.2 miles. Then I went out that night. And I’ll be damned if I did not smell one scent of b.o. the entire time. Powerful stuff, friends.