Showing posts with label fall. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fall. Show all posts

September 9, 2016

#PranaFallStyle: Prana Fall Product Review

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by prAna through my partnership with FitApproach. I was provided with free product from prAna. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

I know some people are all pumpkin-crazed and ready for fall, but I am not one of those people. Give me some more summer, please!

Fall is lovely, but let’s be honest it’s a small jump away from a long, freezing winter so I’m good with sunshine and shorts for now. I may not like bundling up and pants in general (unless they are of the yoga variety), but I do love cozy sweaters and scarves. At least when cold temperatures arrive I’ll be a little more ready thanks to a package of warm & comfortable clothes I received from Fit Approach and prAna recently. I was sent the Lucia sweater in natural and the Kara jean in denim.

The pieces arrived so neatly folded and wrapped!
In case you missed my previous post, prAna’s mission is to inspire healthy, active, free-spirited living and create versatile, stylish, and sustainable clothing and accessories (for men & women!) to wear during every adventure.  I also love the brand because they use sustainable practices in the creation of their apparel such as using fair trade materials-the Lucia sweater I received is made from recycled wool too! 
don't mind the glasses glare!
The Lucia sweater is a wool-blend to keep me warm, dry, and comfortable through all my cold-weather adventures. I also appreciate that it’s wrinkle resistant and wearable besides being so absolutely chic-looking. 
I love the subtle herringbone pattern on the color and sleeves as well as the fact that the sweater is lined and even has some jersey material on the collar and sleeve cuffs so there is NO itchiness with this wool sweater! It feels very high-quality and looks really quite stylish on.

October 7, 2015

Apple Cinnamon Smoothie Recipe (With Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener)

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Zing™ and Her Campus Media. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
As someone with huge sweet tooth, I love using alternative sugar replacements to cut
down on the sugar in my diet. Since discovering stevia years ago, it has become my go-to daily sugar-replacement.
I was really excited to try Born Sweet™ Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener because it is made from 100% stevia and has zero calories and zero artificial ingredients. Zing™ makes a Baking Blend with stevia leaf extract and pure cane sugar (5 calories per serving), but I was sent the Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener which is perfect for sprinkling on food or mixing into food and drinks. I was sent a box of single-serve packets, but it also comes in an easy-to-spoon jar as well.

The biggest test for me with stevia and recipes that use stevia is the taste. Some varieties of stevia leave really strange, bitter aftertastes to the food and drinks they are added to that totally take away from enjoying my meal or snack! I have to say, that the taste is really great with this brand. I’ve been sprinkling a little into my coffee and tea or mixing into smoothies and yogurt bowls.
Since the weather is starting to cool down and fall is in the air, I’m ready for some of those great fall flavors in my food. 

Don’t worry, I don’t have another pumpkin smoothie or latte recipe for you today. 

Instead I have an awesome smoothie I have been loving as a snack in the afternoon or after a workout that includes another one of my favorite autumn flavors-apple cinnamon and goes perfectly with some Zing™ Zero Calorie Stevia Sweetener.
The spiciness of the cinnamon and nutmeg is balanced by the hint of vanilla and
sweetness of the apple. I used my NutriNinja blender, but just a word of caution that you may need to experiment using applesauce in the recipe if your blender at home cannot handle blending apple chunks!

Apple Cinnamon Smoothie

Serving Size: 1 Smoothie      Total Time: 5 Minutes


1 small apple, cored, chopped in chunks
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 packet of Zing™ Stevia or tsp of sweetener of your choice
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1 cup cashew milk (use whatever milk you prefer or have on hand)
1 handful of ice cubes (~ 1 cup)


Place all ingredients into a blender and pulse until blended completely. Serve immediately and enjoy! 

You can use the store locator to find a location near you that carries Zing™ and even Give Zing™ a follow on Facebook and Twitter for more news and recipes. 
Use this link to snag a free sample to give it a try!

Have you tried stevia or an alternative sugar replacement before? What's your favorite fall flavor?

October 4, 2015

Pumpkin Beer Bread Recipe {With DuClaw 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager}

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by DuClaw Brewing Company and a 6-pack each of 31 Pumpkin Spice Lager and  was provided to me for review. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

I'm not a fan of cold weather and therefore am not Fall's biggest fan because, let's be honest, the magical light jacket, brisk Fall weather only lasts maybe a month before Old Man Winter takes over and refuses to leave for months on end. 

Besides candy corn and Halloween, the only things I like about fall are pumpkin foods and Fall beers, including pumpkin beers. 

I have a lot of favorite pumpkin beers and love supporting local breweries so I was excited to try out the latest seasonal offering from DuClaw after enjoying their Naked Fish Stout so much this past Valentine's Day.  I was sent their 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager and the 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale

Both beers were excellent but the Imperial Pumpkin Ale was my personal favorite.  This 8.2% ABV beer is infused with cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg to round out one of DuClaw's most hop-loaded beers to date! I loved how flavorful the beer was and how much the spices came through. It's a delicious, just hoppy-enough fall beer. 

The 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager is packed with cinnamon and nutmeg flavor, sits at 5.7% ABV, and is frighteningly delicious. Don't worry, I thought of some more corny Halloween puns. You can find either the 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager or the 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale at a store near you for a limited time.

I decided to experiment with a pumpkin bread recipe using the 31 Pumpkin Lager. It would work with either of these pumpkin beers, but I ending up using the 31 Lager because my boyfriend and I had already drank most of the 62 Imperial Pumpkin Ale six-pack-whoops


This pumpkin bread is my twist on a classic beer bread. It's not a super sweet bread, and I see it as being the perfect side to a hearty dinner like my turkey pumpkin chili

Pumpkin Beer bread

Total time: 60 mins
Makes: 1 loaf (8 slices)


2 1/2 cups of flour
1 12-ounce bottle of pumpkin beer (I used DuClaw’s 31 Pumpkin Spiced Lager)
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp of salt     


Preheat the oven to 375F. Grease a bread loaf pan with cooking spray. Mix all the ingredients except beer together in a bowl until combined. 


Next slowly add in beer and stir until combined. Pour batter into the greased loaf pan and bake for 45 minutes or until lightly no longer wet in the middle (test with a toothpick after around 30 minutes of baking) .  

Allow bread to cool and firm up before slicing up. Enjoy!  


DuClaw Brewing Company is a Baltimore-based craft brewery that was founded in 1996 and has released over 65 unique beers, producing over 25,000 barrels per year to keep pace with it's always-expanding beer lineup and demand. They outgrew their initial brewpub space in Bel Air, MD and relocated their brewing facility to Rosedale, MD.  You can find DuClaw in select liquor stores, restaurants, and bars through MD, DC, NJ DE, VA, PA, NC WV, and most recently-Cleveland, OH as well as their brewpub restaurants in Arundel Mills, Bel Air, Bowie, and BWI airport.  

Be sure to check out DuClaw on Facebook and Twitter


What is your favorite pumpkin food or drink? 

This post was linked up with Weekend Snapshots and  MIMM 

November 5, 2014

Turkey Pumpkin Chili

A couple weeks ago I cooked this chili up for dinner after work, and it turned out amazing! I had read a couple recipes that used pumpkin as chili base, and I was pleasantly surprised at how much thicker my chili came out. The pumpkin flavor isn't prominent, so don't worry this won't taste like a pumpkin pie. It's the perfect fall dinner plus was on the table in less than an hour!

I make this on the stovetop, but you could also set this up in your crockpot before you leave for work, cooking on low for 6 hours.   


October 31, 2014

5 Friday Favorites: My Favorite Things About Halloween {via gifs!}

I didn't think I would post today, but I'm in the Halloween spirit so I'm linking up with the Friday Five hosted by Courtney, Cynthia, and Mar.  I got in a chilly 10K run this AM and even spotted a few dogs already in costume-SO cute. 

I'm really excited to dress up as Wonder Woman, my spirit animal tonight and to have a few pumpkin beers, some candy, and have fun!


October 27, 2014

My New Fall Fashion Staples

It's been all about running on the blog lately but now that my marathon training is over, I'm taking some time to talk about other things that make me happy like fashion and beauty. I devour my monthly fashion magazines and love creating outfits so I thought I'd share some fall pieces that are becoming staples of my wardrobe as the weather gets colder.  


November 1, 2013

Friday Favorites 11/1/2013

So how is it already become November? I was just getting used to the beginning of Fall not the end! I don't think I'm ready for Thanksgiving, Christmas, cold weather, and snow. I'll gladly enjoy the hot cocoa, presents, and cookies though :)
Since I was sick last week and missed posting my favorites of the week, I had plenty of favorites to share with you  today!

Five Friday Favorites

#1-Pumpkin Harvest and Harvest Blend Teas

These two teas are rocking my socks right now. The pumpkin one actually tastes like pumpkin pie-so delicious. I also can't get enough of the Trader Joe's Harvest Blend Tea. I've been drinking a mug of it at night before bed because it's caffeine free and tastes like spiced apple cider. Yum!

#2 Fit2Flex's Puma Plyometric Power Workout


I always love reading the Fit2Flex blog and pinned this  bodyweight workout a couple days ago. Honestly I'm feeling pretty sore today so I might do this after workout and then have a nice stretching and foamrolling session followed by a glass of wine. Fridays for the win. 

#3-"30 Days of Little Things Challenge"
Download the printable here!
I stumbled upon Julie's blog Savvy Eats this week and have been loving all the posts! I am going to take part in her "30 Days of Little Things Challenge" where she created a printable for you to fill out one think you are thankful for each day of November. I made a list like this a few years ago and it was a great way to stay positive and have a few moments of mindfulness at the beginning or end of each day.  

#4-Candy Corn Peanut Butter Protein Cookies


It doesn't matter that Halloween is over, you can still enjoy all the leftover candy or bags of candy corn you get for 75% off :) I was so excited when I pinned this recipe for candy corn peanut butter protein cookies. I mean, they're healthy because they are loaded with protein, right? They look super easy to make, and I may just have to make them this weekend!

#5 J.Crew Jeweled Donegal sweater
I hate the cold, but I do love sweaters. I love this sweater in gray from J.Crew that looks cozy but can also be dressed up because of the jeweled clusters around the collar.  I've seen some similar styles but cheaper at Forever 21, Old Navy, and Loft,too!

Do you have lots of leftover Halloween candy? Any big weekend plans?

October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween 2013-Time to Dress up

 Happy Halloween everyone! I personally love Halloween and love dressing up in costumes. I always try to spend a bunch of time thinking of an idea and not resort to buying a packaged costume. The second best part of Halloween is the candy of course. I'll have to find some friends who have trick or treaters and steal a few Reeses cups and Milkyway bars. When I was younger I always loved stashing all my Reeses from trick-or-treating in the freezer and having them for months after Halloween! I would still trick-or-treat if it was acceptable for someone in their mid-twenties to... I guess I'll just have to wait until I can tag along with somebody's kid as a decoy :) Here's a little look at some of my past costumes!

As I showed you earlier this week, I'll be dressed up again as R2D2 tonight. It's a shame I don't have more occasions to wear my costume to!


Last year Scott was Rick from The Walking Dead, and I was a zombie nurse. It was really fun to go all out with the makeup. The year before we were Curious George and the Man with the Yellow Hat. That was one of my favorite costumes to date!


Here are some other costumes from the previous years.  

Clockwise from top left: Harry Potter & Hermoine; Rocky Horror Picture Show; Sookie Stackhouse from True Blood; Me as Alice in Wonderland with my pals Dorothy and the Orbit gum girl. 

The past two nights, Scott and I have been working on our pumpkins. It's the first time I've actually used patterns and stencils and not just tried to freehand something. I always carve a pumpkin every year the week of halloween-it's a tradition! We've got a couple more to put finishing touches on because we bought too many pumpkins but here is a sneak peak: 

GO EAGLES, of course, and my Boo pumpkin

I didn't get the time to make as many Halloween treats as I wanted to but I saw this recipe online and made these little "bones"  for dessert the other night. They are a super simple and festive recipe, and all you need is marshmallows, pretzel sticks, and white chocolate chips. Attaching the marshmallows onto the pretzels did take a little more time than I expected, but I was really pleased that they turned out looking like they were supposed to! Props to my Scott for taking the lead on this little project!


After work I'm going to go for a quick run and and do my 5 Minute Abs workout and then it's some dinner, putting my costume on, and opening a pumpkin beer! 

Are you dressing up for Halloween? Do you have any fun plans for tonight? 

October 7, 2013

MIMM #13-A Pumpkin Filled Weekend

Well first of all, this is my 100th blog post-what?! If you would have asked me almost a year ago (this week!) when I started this blog if I'd still be blogging away consistently I probably would have said no. Crazy.

My weekend was full of lots of relaxation and smiling. That's a nice change of pace. Here is my MIMM pumpkin themed weekend recap!


Marvelous is a nice, final long run with my training group Saturday morning-it was bit hotter than it has been which made for a sweaty run.  

I stopped by the local running store and finally met Sarah in person. The Brooks Running people were there with their Run Happy Island touring van, and I won ANOTHER pair of Brooks shoes of my choice. SA-WEET and oh so marvelous

Marvelous is going pumpkin picking with my boyfriend and getting three huge, bright orange pumpkins. It was a nice farm where you could go in the patch and pick your own pumpkins. They also had a huge corn maze and farm animals. 


It's amazing how many types of gourds and squash they grow-like this ginormous butternut squash. 


Marvelous is spending the afternoon tasting pumpkin beers including my favorite-Southern Tier Pumpking on draft. 

Last night I made this marvelous and healthy bacon pumpkin pasta from A Pinch of Yum and even my boyfriend couldn't believe it was healthy because of how creamy and tasty it was-I should have doubled the batch! I added extra bacon and used almondmilk instead of evaporated milk. I also added some sauteed spinach into the mix to get some more veggies.  Delicious.

To end the pumpkin-filled weekend, I made pumpkin spice donuts I found on Sarah's blog, Ingredients of a Fit Chick here. They were a yummy dessert to end a marvelous weekend! I made a little frosting with some cream cheese, greek yogurt, and vanilla-flavored liquid stevia.   


 Oh and I went through a box of these pumpkin pastries from Trader Joe's on my latest trip to pick up some autumnal goodies. They are delicious-like a pumpkin flavored brown sugar poptart. I wrote that box off as carb-loading :)


What is your favorite pumpkin treat?

September 5, 2013

Marathon Training Week 11 Update and a Pumpkin Coffee Recipe


The Road to 26.2 -Marathon Training Week 11

Short runs: My training group was back to hillwork this week. It was a pretty warm and humid afternoon so it was not very easy. We did 4 hills, 3x each, with a medium effort the first two times up the hill and a hard effort the third time.  I definitely was out of breathe after that session, but I'm going to need all the hill preparation I can get for the Baltimore marathon! I also got a couple short, easy runs which were quite nice due to the pleasant weather we've been having here. 

Long Run- Saturday was my longest run ever. 20 freaking miles. Besides some glutes and hamstring soreness, I felt good.  I've never felt that burn in my bum before, but I guess a bunch of hillwork and running will do that to you ;)  There was a trail race on Sunday so our training group was kind of split up and doing the race or the miles on their own. A couple of awesome people from the training group were running around the city so I joined them. It was pretty much a running tour of all of Baltimore by the time we were done and included some hills too! 

The sun was shining so I was a big sweaty mess, but I kept fueled and hydrated properly and definitely felt a runner's high by the end. I was smiling from ear to ear and feeling quite accomplished, hence my more than usual social media fitness sharing! On my cooldown walk, I treated myself to my first pumpkin iced coffee of the season from Caribou Coffee (it was closer than the Starbucks!). 

What was awesome last week:  I ran 20 miles for the first time. Duh :)

What I need to work on this week: Stomach issues starting to normalize a little bit but still not quite great yet because I drank some boozy beverages and ate lots of greasy eggs over the weekend, so that doesn't help.   Drink a least a tall glass of water when I wake up, before a workout or before I eat breakfast. I've been neglecting water in the morning and going straight for the coffee, oops. 

All you crazy kids who want to rush summer being over and do everything that comes with autumn and eat pumpkin flavored EVERYTHING, I've got a recipe for you. 

I'll admit, I love some pumpkin coffee and pumpkin beer, but there's no need to have a pumpkin overload already. Unless I suppose, if you live where it never gets cold and autumn is just another season where some holidays happen.  I'm just not ready for all the craziness and the cold weather. 

However, this morning as I stirred some pumpkin into my peanut butter oats, I decided I'd make myself a fancy pumpkin coffee. This recipe is super simple, but if you can't throw down money on flavored coffee from a shop everyday, when you really just want some of that pumpkin syrup flavor, this is for you!


Are you ready for fall? Are you a pumpkin coffee fanatic?