dinner date

Happy Christmas Holiday!

After much hemming and hawing I took Christmas Eve off from work. I was planning on saving as much time as possible for maternity leave but work was SO dead the day before Christmas Eve I knew Christmas Eve would be even more boring. I was glad I took it off. I slept in, went to the gym, got a haircut, ran some errands and then spent a few hours working on the soon-to-be-nursery. Lots of stuff to go through!

Christmas morning Michael and I opened presents. He got me a new camera! I LOVE it! It’s a Canon and a lot of the features are similar to my old Canon but it’s still going to take some time to figure it out. Michael said that there’s a feature on the new one that will make it easier to take pictures of moving targets–like babies and dogs. It’s so hard getting a good photo of Bella, even using all the tricks I know with my current camera, because she just moves too fast! I’m looking forward to practicing.

Fat Kitty enjoyed the wrapping paper and boxes. I got Bella a new squeak toy and she loved the sound but didn’t want to play with it, which was weird.

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We took Bella for a walk–thankfully it was finally NOT raining here in Portland, then my parents arrived from Seattle and the four of us went to Gracie’s for our annual brunch!

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We love Gracie’s. The food is always perfect and the service is as well. This year they had a champagne cocktail menu! Dang it! It looked so good. But I did splurge and order some freshly squeezed orange juice that was absolutely amazing.

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I ordered the ham and cheese omelette this year. It came with potatoes and I got sourdough toast. Michael got the Huevos Rancheros, of course, and my mom got the crab and avocado omelette. Everyone’s breakfast was fabulous. It was a nice, relaxing brunch. I’d kill for some more of that OJ.

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Back to the house for presents with my parents. Fat Kitty decided my dad’s lap was the best place to be, apparently. 🙂

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My parents got us a glider for the nursery (to be delivered next month when the nursery is finished). They also brought down this super cute chair and stool:

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One of my dad’s friends got it in Arizona and it’s so cute! It’s small but sturdy and will be a great addition to the nursery. After spending a few hours with my folks, they took off for the beach and Michael and I went to his mom’s house for dinner. There were deviled eggs, I made a veggie tray, Michael’s sister did these pork buns that were really good.

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It was a very full day but it was nice that we got to see everyone and spend time with them. I got to talk to my brother on the phone for awhile and that was good, too. Maybe one of these years we’ll all be together for Christmas. Who knows, things might look very different next year!

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Saturday evening Michael and I went out with another couple for dinner. Michael had been planning a big group dinner with some of his childhood friends and in the end it was just the four of us, which was nice! Much more intimate and it was nice to catch up with friends we wish we saw more than a few times a year–especially since it’s not like we live all that far from each other!

We went to East Burn for dinner. The three of them shared the goat cheese and prosciutto appetizer that looked really good:

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I wish I could have had some! For the entree Michael got the burger (I had a bite and it was quite tasty). I got the steelhead entree that was to die for. It was nestled on top of pumpkin risotto with cranberries. The dish sounded like it would be really sweet but it wasn’t. The pumpkin risotto was slightly sweet but tasted more like butternut squash than pumpkin and it was mild. The cranberries gave it a really nice, tart finish. There was brown sage butter drizzled on top and the steelhead was crispy and perfectly prepared. I LOVED my dish!

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It was so so good! I wonder if I can recreate a dish like this at home…

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We decided to share a dessert–the Fudge cake. It was giant! Thank goodness we split it four ways. It was really thick and rich.

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It was a nice evening and we spent a few hours hanging out with them, even after the food was done. It was also nice to pick their brains about birth and babies and such as they have two of their own. It was a decadent weekend!

Park and Ride

MUCH BETTER!

My second ride of the season was a lot better than my first. My back was much happier for some reason and didn’t feel tight or sore. I decided to drive to the Park and Ride and bike in from there instead of Sellwood. Last time, even though my body felt fatigued,  I felt like it wasn’t quite long enough of a ride. Just as I was getting warmed up it was over with.

Not this time. Even just adding a little under 2 more miles was just right. I wore my arm-warmers this time because it was a little chilly that early in the morning. I biked through Sellwood, on the Springwater, and then crossed the Hawthorne Bridge. Thankfully it wasn’t overly crowded on the bridge. This time I was cyclist #875 to cross the bridge that morning (at 7:30am) according to the bridge counter.

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My ride was decent and my body felt really good and strong. It made me happy that I was able to bike and not feel knee or back pain. YAY ME.

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And my calories were a little bit better this time around, too:

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Morning Stats:

Miles: 7.81

Time: 36 minutes

Calories Burned: 370

My goal for the rest of June and July is to bike once a week. Running is still my priority right now because I want to be trained for my two 5k’s later this summer but I love being able to combine my workout + commute. Hopefully in August I can bump it up to biking twice a week to work.

For lunch I got a rare treat and went out. I met Michael and a friend in Director’s Park for a lunch date. Since my lunch hour is only 30 minutes Michael kindly picked up food for me too. They went to Addy’s and got the kale salad he’s been raving about for months!

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Kale, quinoa, pesto chicken, sunflower seeds, red cabbage, hard boiled egg and half an avocado. It was DELICIOUS! Small, but filling. And a calorie bomb. I’m guessing it was around 700-800 calories for the whole thing (and I ate the whole thing). I was so famished and it tasted so good. It was all good, healthy things but definitely higher in calories than I’d like. It was a nice little break from work, though, and I don’t go out to lunch very often (I usually walk or read my book during lunch).

Afternoon Ride

It was another great ride! Body felt fantastic. My sit bones weren’t too sore (not like last time) and the ride felt comfortable and dare I say, easy…I huffed and puffed up the Morrison Bridge but thankfully it’s a short one so I can coast once I get to the top. Ooof. Biked by OMSI and caught the Springwater. And I saw some wild raspberries along the path! I SO wanted to stop and pick some but…ick. Who knows WHAT has been on those berries. No thanks.

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Since I parked at the Park and Ride it was a bit longer of a ride than the last time. My body felt good, though, so I didn’t mind it. In fact, I was tempted to keep going up to Johnson Creek and then turning around. I decided to play it safe, though. I did see that they are building a new path that connects the new Max line to Milwaukie.

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Got back to the car, feeling good and strong and had the urge to high-five myself! YAY BIKING.

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Afternoon Stats:

Miles: 7.55

Time: 32 minutes

Calories Burned: 326

Total Miles: 15.36

When I got home I took a hot bath with epsom salts. Seems weird, especially on such a hot day, I know. But I didn’t want my muscles to tighten up or get sore and my right hamstring was feeling a little bit of a strain. Not sure what happened there or when it happened. I didn’t feel anything while I was riding and it seems like a weird muscle to pull when riding a bike, so who knows.

Since it was such a nice night Michael suggested we get sandwiches and go to the park. I got a Subway sandwich (ham on flatbread) which was pretty low in calories, so that was good after the high calorie lunch I had. After our picnic dinner we walked over to the fenced dog park area of the park.

We’ve been trying to go once a week lately to help Bella with her social skills. She’s pretty good with other dogs but she’s nervous and jumpy and sometimes sudden movements (i.e. playful dogs) can make her scared. She’s getting a lot better with it at the dog park. And we are seeing some regulars there! So she’s making friends. 🙂

Bella is usually the fastest dog in the park. Seriously, her zoomies are epic. But she met her match last night when an adorable little whippet beat her!

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Go Bella! Go!