Friday, March 30, 2012

March Foodie Penpal Reveal!

My foodie penpal for March was Robin (@robinlourie) from Texas! Please make sure to check out her blog as well.

After my first experience with foodie penpals this month I was even more excited and had a hard time waiting til my packages arrived. Wouldn't you know that it would arrive on a day that I come home to change into workout clothes and run back out the door. Needless to say I was a little late that day cause I couldn't pass up being able to atleast open the box but definitely did not have time to sample. So my waiting continued until I was back home 2 1/2 hours later and let me tell I enjoyed every minute of my mini sample session. 

the first thing I tried was Annie's organic honey wheat pretzels. Not only where they delicious but I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that they are shaped like bunnies and carrots. Let's face it I am just a kid at heart!

I also immediately tried the dark chocolate with orange peels. Which was amazing!
Everything else was more things that I could bring with me as snacks. Which is exactly what I did, packed some for snacks with my lunch for the next day.

I love these natural fruit leathers. I brought one with me to work to have as a late afternoon snack and it was great!

I also really enjoyed these crispy cheddar crackers. And the best part was that it fit right in with my classroom because the children got cheese-itz for snack (mine of course were a little better for me though).

A few days later my husband and I went to a place called Purgatory Chasms where you can go down into the rock chasms and do slight rock climbing. The cliff crunch came in very handy as a little something to bring along with us while we were out exploring! I have to say I had never had the crunch granola before and it was really good. I will definitely be stocking up on those!

Robin also sent me a reusable snack taxi (or as I like to call it snack bag). I thought it was really interesting, you can put all your favortie snacks in it that you would normally put into a ziplock bag. The best part is that when it gets dirty you just throw it in the washer. I had to laugh though when I saw it and read that it was from a company in Massachusetts. Someone mailed me something from Texas that originates from my own state I thought that was awesome just how far product can travel.

I will 100% admit that not one of these made it into my mouth for the fact that I made the mistake of leaving my goodies on the counter in the kitchen and my husband decided they would make a good treat for him. But who doesn't love skittles?
For all the goodies I was sent there are only two things that I have not gotten to try yet. Robin sent some amazing teas, green tea tropical and Honey yuzu. 
 I am sure I will get to those soon.
The other thing I did not try is honey. It is local from Texas, but I usually only use honey in baking or cooking so I will be using it soon I am sure.
The last thing I got from Robin was a chocolate chip cookie recipe.
I couldn't wait to try it out but unfortunately I had to wait until the weekend. But come Sunday I was baking away in the kitchen and as the title of the recipe states they were the best ever chocolate chip cookies!

I can't thank Robin enough for all the thought and effort she put into sending me a great foodie penpal package. I enjoyed immensely!! And also would like to thank Lindsay for putting this whole program together and making it so fun and easy!

And now it's time for some details about Foodie Penpals.  In case you’re a new reader, here’s a reminder of what the program is all about:

-On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email. It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal and get their mailing address and any other information you might need like allergies or dietary restrictions.
-You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail. On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal
-The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats! The spending limit is $15. The box must also include something written. This can be anything from a note explaining what’s in the box, to a fun recipe…use your imagination!
-You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size and how fragile they are. (Don’t forget about flat rate boxes!)
-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers. If you’re a reader and you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received. If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for that month. 
-Foodie Penplas is open to US & Canadian residents.  Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only. We've determined things might get too slow and backed up if we're trying to send foods through customs across the border from US to Canada and vice versa. So, I'm going to keep two separate lists and match US w/ US and Canada w/ Canada!
If you’re interested in participating for April, please CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions.
You must submit your information by April 4th as pairings will be emailed on April 5th

Sunday, March 4, 2012


I have many friends who have taken spinning class and honestly there is a pretty even split between those you love it and are addicted to it and those who just don't like it. I normally do Zumba on sunday mornings which I absolutely LOVE! But this week our instructed is on vacation so the class was not being held, in an effort to find something to replace it I started looking at the class schedule at the Y. For both yesterday and today the only offering that I was remotely interested in was spin class. I opted to do a swim routine yesterday and do spin today. 

Since I decided to take spin I decided I would ask for some input from others as to their experience so I would have a little heads up as to what to expect. After posting this on both facebook and twitter I pretty much got universally that I would have a sore butt, bring lots of water and a towel. So I prepared myself as best I could the night before and went to get a good nights sleep. A few people suggested I should go get a gel seat cover but unfortunately I did not have time so I just had to hope I would be able to take it for the hour class.

Fast forward to this morning. I arrived early in hopes that I could let the instructor know I was a newbie and get help setting up my bike. However the 8:30 class I was there for the door got unlocked to the studio at 8:25 due to some printer issues apparently so everyone rushed in and got their spots. I ended up in the last row which secretly I was happy about cause I really didn't need anyone watching me attempt this.

 I actually did very well setting up my bike. It ended up not being that difficult but then again I know the basics as far as how much bend in your legs and how far you should be leaning to the handle bars so that was good. It wasn't until we were about a minute into the warm up song that the instructor asked if there was anyone new. I was the only one therefore the spot light was on me, literally because I was directly under the ceiling light! ironic. She said it looked as though I had done well setting up my bike and that most importantly just go at my own pace. 

I am sure glad I listened because let me tell you had I kept up with everyone else it would not have been pretty. I did well until about 25 minutes in. I was keeping good pace and doing well with the sitting/standing intervals. But then I started getting these waves of nausea. I couldn't drink anymore water for fear of it becoming more than just nausea, but I pressed on.

At about 47 minutes I got an extremely strong way of nausea so I really dialed it back. Everyone else was standing and I was lowering gear, go figure! But I didn't give up just because the resistance was lighter didn't mean I wasn't still getting some kind of workout so I was ok with this.

I did recover after a few minutes and was able to step back up to the challenge for the remaining 5 mins and then we started our cool down. I was pleasantly surprised to see that the cool down not only meant going slower but also doing upper body stretches while riding. Then for the last 2 minutes we got off the bike and did leg stretches. I love that this was included in the class!!!

I had started a little earlier than the actual class while I was trying to setup my bike so I got in an extra 3 minutes! I was very happy with 27.1 miles considering the longest I have ever gone on any stationary bike is 12 miles which means I more than doubled that!! 

The best part is that the instructor did such a good job of alternating between sitting and standing my butt doesn't even really hurt that much! I will definitely be visiting a spin class again!