Things I’m Loving Lately: December 2012/January 2013 Edition

Hello, blog world.  Between having Monday off and knowing I only have a half day on Friday before I leave to visit Jen, this week is flying by.  I’ve got lots to do between now and then, so let’s hop to it.  Time to discuss some things that I’ve been loving lately!

Favorite Things

Keurig + New Coffee Mug

My parents bought me a Keurig for Christmas this year, and I’m not sure how I ever lived without one before?  I love it!  I don’t use it everyday because my company offers free coffee at work, but it’s perfect for days where I’m working at home and on the weekends.  I remember being torn for a while whether to just get a regular ole coffee maker or the Keurig, but I’m so glad I got the Keurig because I would never need to make a whole pot of coffee – it would just go to waste.

Christmas Day:  Keurig

And an extra accessory I’ve been loving to go along with the Keurig, my new coffee mug that Tim’s grandmother got me for Christmas.  I needed one of these for my desk at work!

coffee mug

The Biggest Loser

I am seriously obsessed with this season of The Biggest Loser.  Between Jillian being back, the focus on fighting childhood obesity, all the talk about being accountable for your health, and Bob Harper’s Deck of Cards workout… I’m so hooked.  Plus, all the mentioning of worksite wellness is getting me fired up!

biggest loser


Nut Butter on Pancakes

The other day, Jen posted about the pancakes she made with Nutella on top.  Feeling inspired, on Monday I scarfed down a similar plate:  blueberry pancakes with Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter on top.  And also a dab of the maple syrup from Dakin Farms that Santa put in my stocking.  So so good.

Blueberry Pancakes

New Old Navy Shirt

Last week, I totally took advantage of Old Navy’s 40% off their active line sale.  It was a little picked over, but I snagged this bright green long-sleeved GoDRY running top.  I love it and wish I grabbed it in other colors because it was seriously $8.  And it has the holes for my thumbs, which I’m a huge fan of.  Next time!

old navy godry running top

Saranac Blueberry Blonde Ale

New beer discovery!  I ordered one of these Saranac Blueberry Blonde Ales while out to dinner at Amici on Federal Hill this past weekend with Slesh, Bridget, and the guys.  It’s quite possibly a new favorite!

saranac blueberry blonde ale


What about you guys?  What are some of your favorite things lately?

For my past favorite things posts, click here!

P.S.  I am SO SORE this week… between the two Best Body Bootcamp workouts I’ve done so far this week and teaching Dynamax Bootcamp on Monday night, I’m definitely feeling it.  I’m psyched for a well-deserved rest day today!

My First Foodie Penpal Experience

Hi friends!

This is the first month I participated in the Foodie Penpal program run by The Lean Green Bean.  Ever since I saw my friend Jen post about all the amazing food she was receiving in the mail, I wanted to sign up for it!  I decided to wait until I was settled in my new apartment before signing up.  Before I get to all the amazing things that were sent to me, let me explain how Foodie Penpals works in case any of you F&F readers want to participate.

Foodie Penpals:  How it Works

–> On the 5th of the 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 can choose 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 Penpals is open to US, Canadian residents & UK residents.  Please note, Canadian Residents will be paired with other Canadians only.

If this sounds fun to you, just CLICK HERE and fill out the form to participate!  Remember anyone can participate whether you are a blogger or not, which is one of my favorite parts of this program. 

Foodie Penpals:  September Goodies

Do you guys even know how THRILLING it is to get food in the mail?  I’m serious.  Like day brightening, mood enhancing, borderline need to get checked out for excessive excitement levels thrilling.

Tim was working from home when that bad boy arrived, and I told him I would hurt him BAD if he even tried any of the food without me before I got home.  Even though he got me those bee-yoo-ti-ful fall flowers you can see in the background.  Food > flowers, Tim.  Kidding.  Kind of.

Anyways!  Dani over at On Hollywood Ave sent me a wonderful assortment of things — mainly a nut butter, granola, and chocolate theme.  Love all the above, and love themes too of course.


Here’s the “something written” that gets mailed with all the food:


And here’s a little breakdown of the goodies!

Granola Galore


  • Archer Farms Chocolate Chunk Hazelnut Biscotti Granola
  • Archer Farms Pecan Sticky Bun Granola
  • Archer Farms French Vanilla Almond Crunch Granola
  • Archer Farms Blueberry Granola with Flax Cereal
  • Raw Wildberry Trail Mix — I wasn’t sure what this even was but I Google imaged it and I think it is this – includes organic raw cashews, organic sprouted pumpkin seeds, organic mulberries, wild goldenberries, wild goji berries, organic Himalayan gold raisins, organic currants, organic sultanas and wild barberries.  NEVER would have tried those things on my own but they were pretty good!!
  • Ginger Zing & More Ginger Zing
  • Superfood Hemp Granola
  • White Chocolate Macademia Nut Clif Crunch Granola Bar
  • Peanut Butter Clif Crunch Granola Bar

I mean, just this would have been enough.  But the awesomeness continues:

Nut Butters


  • Justin’s Nut Butters — maple almond butter, honey peanut butter, chocolate hazelnut butter
  • Homemade cinnamon honey peanut butter.  Amazeballs.  Favorite part of the package, hands down.
  • Jif mocha cappuccino flavored hazelnut spread
  • Nutella to Go! with breadsticks.  YUM.




  • 2 Adora Calcium chocolate supplements
  • Alter Eco mini dark noir organic chocolate
  • Alter Eco mini dark velvet organic chocolate



  • Stash premium moroccan mint green tea


And as if all that wasn’t enough, Dani also included two mini candles!  I’ve had the apple one lit all week in my bathroom and it seriously spreads to all rooms in my apartment.  I love it!


I haven’t gotten to try every single thing yet, but I’m enjoying what I have tried so far and am so appreciative of my first amazing Foodie Penpal endeavor.

Thanks again, Dani!

Oh, and if you guys want to see the stash of stuff I sent to my foodie penpal (you don’t send to the same person you receive from), click on over to Lex’s Life as a New Wife at some point today and check out Alexis’s reveal post too!

Have any of you readers participated in a foodie penpal program before?   If not, head over to The Lean Green Bean and sign up for October!!

Happy Monday, all!