1. listening: to Pandora in general. It makes my work day infinitely more pleasurable. If we want to get specific, right now it’s shuffling between my White Stripes station, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club station, Oingo Boingo radio, the Killers radio, and my 90’s grunge station. I’m not super awesome at keeping up with current music-I got really into the Yeah Yeah Yeahs like 5 years after they were cool, but I like to listen to Sirus XM’s Alt Nation too, and really like the song “House of Gold” by Twenty One Pilots. 

2. eating: oh, it’s back into the work day food rut for me: oatmeal for breakfast, banana at midmorning, clementine if I’m super hungry, whatever for lunch, and then an apple and probably some popcorn in the afternoon. I made this recipe this weekend, and it turned out really good and is filling me up for lunch this week too! 

5 minute Slow Cooker Beans & Rice

Cooking spray
1 TB extra virgin olive oil
1 1/4 cups of whole brown rice (do not use instant rice!)
1 15 oz can of no-salt-added black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz can of reduced-sodium kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 14.5 oz can of mexican style diced tomatoes, juice reserved
1/4 tsp black pepper
cumin, to taste
2 cloves minced garlic
1/4 onion, diced
Sea salt, to taste
3/4 cup of the salsa of your choice
Shredded part-skim Mexican or cheddar cheese (optional)

1.  Spray your slow cooker with EVOO spray to prevent sticking.

2.  Add EVOO to bottom of slow cooker.  Add rice and stir until the rice is coated with the olive oil.

3.  Add drained and rinsed beans.

4.  Drain juice of tomatoes into measuring cup.  Add water to measuring cup until you have 2 1/4 cups of liquid total.  Add tomatoes and tomato juice/water mixture.

5.  Add seasonings.

6.  Cover and cook on high for 3 to 3 1/2 hours OR on low for about 6 hours.

7.  Turn the slow cooker temperature down to low.  Add in salsa, stir, cover, and continue cooking for 15-20 minutes.

8.  Upon serving, top with additional salsa and/or cheese (if using).

*It came out great! Would be a little better if I hadn’t run out of salsa, but I can see myself making this to take to lunch pretty often-it’s simple, it’s light, and when I add some diced avocado to the top…heaven! 

3. drinking: All of the coffee, some of the tea, and plenty of water. 

4. wearing: the month of December I was NOT in leggings maybe twice. I blame surgery; who wants to put on “real” pants with incisions along your waistband? That being said, I’m enjoying feeling like I’m actually for realsies dressed lately so I have been wearing more denim lately. Our workplace finally dropped the business casual pretense and made it officially casual, so it’s pretty rare that I put on fancy trousers, but I’ve been dying to put on some dresses and feel like a girl lately too. 

5. feeling: excited. SO excited that I got clearance to get back to the gym last night, so today will be my second first day back (I went back unauthorized for about a week-it was not that my doc didn’t authorize it but the gym didn’t have it in writing). I’m also a bit nervous-with the near month of inactivity, my body has basically reset. I didn’t gain any pounds, but I know I’ve lost a lot of muscle. It’s basically like I’ve got a blank, veal like canvas to sculpt here and I’m toying with different ways to do that. I know I want to incorporate more regular runs, and longer ones at that, but with the 4 degree temps we’ve had here and my cold, I just didn’t want to subject my poor lungs to that just yet. Excited to get back to what I love and feel a little less squishy. 


I am currently squishy in the less cute version of this. Sad day.


6. weather: so cold. So very, very cold. I am a hot weather girl all the way, but I can also deal with being cold for shorter amounts of time (within reason). If it’s less than 20 degrees out, I have a hard time making myself do anything outside. See last weekend and how there were only a few short bursts of activity and most of the time I hid indoors. 

7: wanting: Jeff and I were toying with the idea for our Next Big Trip yesterday-we’re travel hounds and can’t wait to visit new cities. That being said, we have a few domestic trips we want to take as well as our next big eurotrip-France. Can’t decide if a few small trips or a great big trip will do the trick next year-suggestions? 

I want to go to there.


8: needing: to get my head back in the game-with December being a lot of time off work and the gym, I’m just not as excited to do either now that I’m back to both full time. Need to find a way to be excited about everything again! 

9. thinking: Thinking about how to work in all the travel we want to do, trying to mentally balance the budget to save for said travel, and constantly thinking about food. That’s my brain, I’m basically a dog. At least I’m basically our dogs-it’s always “Food? Food? Food!” with them. 

10. enjoying: Spending time hibernating at home with my husband. We can always make each other laugh, and are learning how nice it is not to have to “go out” to have fun. 

There’s my brain in all its messy glory lately! What have you been up to? 


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