First of all, I seriously wish MTV or HGTV would bring back Cribs. I would spend hours upon hours watching Cribs marathons, and my favorite section of Cribs was when they would open their fridge and show all of their Vitamin Waters in nice, even lines.

When A Classy, Southern Wife gave us a peak into her fridge, I figured I would do the same.

There are few things I love more than a full fridge.

As soon as I get home from the grocery store I get busy cleaning and cutting fruit. If it's not easy to grab, we won't eat it, so I've found this is the best way to ensure we get our fruit in.

The Laughing Cow wedges make for such a great snack. I like to dip pretzels or wheat things, and at 35 calories a wedge, they're really fulfilling.

With all of the extra Turkey we had from Thanksgiving, I made a huge salad and broke it into 6 mini-containers so that we can have turkey salads for lunch all week. I added sun-dried tomato, almond chips, Parmesan cheese, onion, and ceaser dressing. 

Can you see that coffee-mate on the right hand side of the door? That's my new favorite item in my fridge. Warm, Cinnamon Sugar Cookie. I wish I could drink the cream plain....it's seriously that good.

We always have loads of greek yogurt. I have it almost every morning with fruit and granola and it keeps me pretty full until lunch.

Hummus is another item that I never go without. My favorite brand is Sabra, and I'm currently obsessed with the "Supremely Spicy" flavor.

I brought Joel with my on my last grocery run and he convinced me to get the Winter Sampling of 312. 312 beer (which is an area code here in Chicago), is bottled and brewed about 4 blocks from our house and is some of the best beer I've ever had.

Behind the orange juice is my stash of La Croix. I'm pretty obsessed. I don't ever drink soda at home, but I do have about 3-4 La Croix's on any given day.

Do you freeze your bread? It really helps keep your bread last. Especially if your grocery store is anything like mine. We constantly have Buy 1, Get 1 for English Muffins, so I have about 6 packages. If you are ever in need of a good English muffin, stop on over.

We don't eat red meat or pork at home, but we do eat a lot of ground turkey, chicken, and salmon.

I still have those Apple Pies that we make every year and freeze....but I think I'm going to take a few to my next book club meeting, mainly to just free up some room in my freezer.

What are some staples in your fridge? Anything that is filling and low in calorie - I'd LOVE to know about!


December's Diet

Before I get on to how I plan to drop in December, I need to first talk about the best woman I know.

My mom.
Today is her 53 46th birthday. 
My mom is the kind of person that everyone wants to be around. She is an amazing listener, advice giver, friend, shopper, mom, wife, friend, sister, and person. 
The funny things that used to drive me crazy as a kid - like how she refused to have condiment bottles on the kitchen table - now make perfect sense to me. Her sacrifice to my family is the biggest gift she has given me and my sisters and my dad. She is there for every single one of us, whenever we need her, in whatever way. I love her so much and hope that I will grow up to be just like her in every single way.

And, not to completely switch gears...but I need to completely switch gears.

I'm going to Mexico on December 23rd. My parents own a vacation home in Punta Mita, and we have been celebrating Christmas year there for the last 6 years.

You know what Mexico means? Bathing suits, dresses, skirts, shorts, tanks, and corona lights.

You know what that means? I need to freaking DIET. NOW.

But the word diet does scare me, so I'm thinking of it more as a Detox....because that somehow sounds nicer.

Something else that is nicer, is that Joel is going to detox with me. Sometimes not doing things by yourself, "misery enjoys company" type of thing, makes things easier.

So here is my plan:
  • Limit Alcohol. 3x/week.
  • No Bread.(exceptions include low cal wraps and tortillas, as well as whole wheat pizza crust)
  • Write down everything everyday
  • Limit Calories to 1,900/day
  • Use measuring cups to manage portions.
  • Work out everyday for at least 20 minutes
That's it. That's my plan. And I'm pretty sure it will allow me to lose 10lbs.

Okay, maybe 7?

But either way, I'll take what I can get.

I'm going to do a mini-check in on the blog, mainly to hold myself accountable as well monitor my progress.

Am I missing anything that could accelerate this while still allowing it to be achievable?

Do share.


Thanksgiving Recap

Why is it that Holidays seem to come and go in a swift blur? Thanksgving feels like it happened yesterday, and yet also, 2 months ago.

Bright and early on Thanksgiving, Joel and I woke up and got over to the biggest Turkey Trot in Chicago. There were +6,000 registered runners, and at least another 1,000 bandits. Lots of people dress up, bring dogs, and come in big, big groups. While all of that is fun, it does make for a pretty difficult run. A lot of the route is on skinny paths, so for all 5 miles of the race, I was dodging puddles and pups.

Either way, running 5 miles is the best way to really stir up a healthy appetite for Thanksgiving! 

Joel and I spent the holiday with our own families, so Joel dropped me off at my cousin's around 11, and the party began.

My mom's family is 100% Italian, so our Thanksgiving includes homemade pasta, lots of cheese and prosciutto, and my all-time favorite, (and I have NO idea how to spell it) fagotch.

The hosts, my cousins, are the new parents to 3 month old twins. And yes, they had 25 people sit down for dinner. 


It was so nice to get my baby fix and spend time with my cousins. I wish we could have Thanksgiving once a month. 

At about 3, we sat down for dinner.
 Every year we go around the table and each person says what they are thankful for. Every year most of the table ends up in tears, but it's a great time to reflect as a family how lucky we all are. 
 After dinner, the games come out. This year we played tripoly and had a few more glasses of wine.
After dinner, I went home with my family and stayed in Crystal Lake for the weekend.

On that Friday, we had my Dad's side come over to celebrate Thanksgiving as well.

The Tyrrell side is the musical side, so after dinner (Portillo's), my sister and Uncle Tom got on stage and really got the party started.

The night got pretty wild, after a few too many glasses of wine (which yes, is a theme) and multiple pieces of chocolate cake, we were all having a good time. 
 I felt like over the weekend I got to enjoy, and see, everyone that I love. I left Crystal Lake on Sunday with a very full heart. 


My Turkey Day Plans

For the last 6 or 7 years I’ve participated in a Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. Typically it’s a 5k but last year, and this year, I’m stepping it up to an 8k. It’s a great tradition and a perfect way to start off a food filled day.

The race is at 9, so Joel and I are normally out the door by 8:15 in order to get a parking spot and decent place in line. We don’t run together, but it is really nice to have someone at the end cheering me on.

Thanksgiving for my family is an all day event, so after I get ready after the run we head over to my cousin’s house in the city to start off the festivities. For most of the day, we chat, eat, catch up with one another, and drink.

Dinner is typically served between 5-6 and we take our time and go around as a group (all 20 – 40 of us, depending on the year) and say what we are thankful for. Typically by the 4th person, everyone is in tears.

After dinner and dessert, we decant a few new bottles of wine and pull out the games. Last year we played cranium and trivial pursuit, and I would imagine we’ll do the same.

I’m going to head home with my family and spend the rest of the weekend in Crystal Lake. We have lots of other family and friend gatherings, and I’m looking forward to being home with everybody. I’m planning on unplugging from the computer and really focus on relaxing and spending quality time with the family.



thanks•giv•ing: expression of gratitude

1. I am thankful for my health. Without health, the rest of the list would crumble.

2. I am thankful for my family. I am thankful of our relationships, are crazy dynamics and the fact that I can’t be with or without them for too long.

3. I am thankful for Joel. I am thankful that I’ve gotten to spend the last 4.5 years with him and I am thankful for our future together.

4. I am thankful for my job. Even though I don’t think it’s the place I’m supposed to be forever, I am thankful that I have a place to go M-F and be paid.

5. I am thankful for my Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and Friends. The people that truly, truly love me and I truly, truly love them back.

6. I am thankful for red wine.

7. I am thankful that I have a gym at my office.

8. I am thankful for my US weekly subscription

9. I am thankful for Chai Tea Lattes

10. I am thankful for a bath tub in my apartment

11. I am thankful for scented candles

12. I am thankful for my planned trip to Mexico in December

13. I am thankful for my Erin Condren planner

14. I am thankful for this blog

15. I am thankful for Pandora on my phone

16. I am thankful for running

17. I am thankful for Pintrest

18. I am thankful for my dog

19. I am thankful for manicures and pedicures

20. I am thankful for DVR

21. I am thankful for owning my own car

22. I am thankful for Holiday parties

23. I am thankful for lipstick

24. I am thankful for tinybuddha.com

25. I am thankful for peanut butter, avacado’s, and cookies.

26. I am thankful for a closet full of clothes

27. I am thankful for my Nook

28. I am thankful for wine…did I already say that?

29. I am thankful for things that make me laugh

30. I am thankful for trips to the movie theatre

31. I am thankful for the people that work for me

32. I am thankful for the people that I work for

33. I am thankful for my neighborhood

34. I am thankful for my apartment

35. I am thankful for treadmills

36. I am thankful for sushi

37. I am thankful for phone calls with old friends

38. I am thankful for nice jewelry

39. I am thankful for colored pens

40. I am thankful for email

41. I am thankful for long walks

42. I am thankful for naps on the couch

43. I am thankful for my morning talks with my cousin

44. I am thankful for my after work talks with my mom

45. I am thankful for massages

46. I am thankful for Chicago

47. I am thankful for trying out new restaurants

48. I am thankful for seasons

49. I am thankful for Christmas decorations

50. I am thankful that I am able to write this list. How lucky am I that all 50 of these things are in my life whenever I want them? I am thankful to be me.


And I hope that you have a had a few minutes to think about what you are thankful for. I truly believe that if you have an attitude of gratitude you will continue to bring more good into your life.

However you spend Thanksgiving, I hope it’s absolutely perfect.


Here and There

Today is my 1st turkey trot of the week. This one is at work, and I’m on of team of 5 with all co-workers. We each have 2 hours to run as many miles as we can. The lucky thing is that we don’t have to do the two hours back to back, so I did my first one this morning at 6:30 and I’m going to do my second hour at 4. I did pretty well this morning and I’m hoping to equal or better results at 4.

Last week Joel broke our living room lamp, which was awesome because it gave me an excuse to go buy a new one. I was expecting friends over for dinner and refused to not have a living room lamp that worked, so I ran to Marshalls and had to deal with whatever they had. I was in-between buying these two but I’m very happy with my selection.

Look at this combination, champagne, clam chowder and grilled cheese with avocado. And the person sitting across from me is one of my best girls. Can you beat this?

Speaking of champagne – this weekend I went to Madison, Wi, to visit my friend Lauren. Madison is such a cool city and it was really nice to catch up with some of my college girls.

I've always had a hard time figuring out how to wear 7lb necklaces statement jewelery but, I finally went for it this week and it turned out okay...

Tonight I’m going to catch up on DVR and get some red curry! And I might even have a beer. After all that running I think I get to reward myself just a wee little bit.

Okay - wish me luck on my second hour of running and I'll see you all tomorrow with a Thankful Thanksgiving post.


The Perfect Recipe

For how I spend my most perfect day...
Wake up early and get out into the fresh, fall air.

Find an opening at your local nail salon and get a mani/pedi

and try a color you've never worn before.

On your way home, stop and get your favorite Starbucks drink. My choice, small, non-fat chai tea latte with 1/2 pump vanilla.

Turn on the Christmas jams and ignore what your thoughts are telling you about it not being Thanksgiving yet.

Leisurely browse through your favorite blogs and pintrest and decide to make a few sweet treats.


While your cookie bars bake, thank the mailman and indulge.


Take a quick drive over to the liquor store to buy some wine for dinner with friends tonight.
And DONT get a parking ticket.


After freshening up and making yourself a martini, have friends come over and then walk to your nearest sushi joint.

Have great conversations and lots of laughs, and decide that the fun isn't over. Go to a local bar and get forced to have just one more corona light (Hannah.....I'm talking to you!)

Get home before 1am and go to sleep with a smile on your face.