Boston Day 2: Salem

Oh, just all of us with our awesome porta potty friends.

Yesterday morning started with my first legit winter run. I mean, I’ve been running all “winter” in Phoenix, and the lows in Phoenix do get down there sometimes, but I don’t think it really counts. Yesterday I put on long yoga pants, tall socks, leg warmers, 2 long sleeve shirts, a sweat shirt, performance fleece, a hat and gloves. Ummm, I was regretting my top half a little bit. My face was so cold, but my middle body was totally over heated! Also, this neighborhood is super hilly. I don’t think I encountered flat road for more than 10 seconds. I was pretty proud of myself for busting out 2.5 miles with an average pace of 9:03. Not too shabby for winter/hills/vacation :)

After I got back, we made breakfast and then headed out to Salem. I have to be honest, I’ve never thought too much about Salem or the witch trials.

Oh, just all of us with our awesome porta potty friends.

I don’t think it was even in my school curriculum (Arizona schools are so awesome), but I found myself fascinated! It’s so hard to believe that at one point you could so easily be hanged just for being different. Our society isn’t perfect by any means, but looking back on things like this, I really do feel like we’ve learned a lot, and although our justice system is by no means perfect, we’ve come a long way.

We started by exploring the graveyard.


Tree huggers

We looked at the “witches” grave stones and I found this one especially interesting. He refused to plead guilty or not guilty so they pressed him to death with stones to make him talk. He still refused, so for two days they stacked more and more stones on top of him until he finally passed.

After the graveyard, we went to the wax museum and explored downtown Salem.

After walking around for a bit, we stopped into Salem Beer Works for some drinks. Jason, Nacho and I each ordered the sampler with 4 oz samples of 4 different beers.

Yummmm. The Rustic Porter was definitely my favorite.

Steve just got the Black Stout which was also delicious and David ordered an Irish coffee. It was disgusting. Here is the evidence.

Steve got a candid of Lisa trying a sip.

There was no cream, no sugar. Just about half coffee and half whiskey. Holy hell. That’s a little too intense for this girl. I mean I like coffee, and I like whiskey, but I need some half and half in there or something! Yikes!

After Beer Works, we headed back to Rockport to make dinner at David and Lisa’s. More on that coming soon :)

2012 Goals

If you know me at all, you know how I feel about New Years resolutions. Every time I hear the words “After the first of the year…” it’s like nails on a chalkboard to me! I am a firm believer that if you want to change something, you don’t wait for the first of the year, or month, or Monday, or even the next day. If you really want to change something, don’t waste any time. Start now. This second.  I would love to say that my New Years resolutions are to clean more, do my laundry, and stop procrastinating, but let’s get real and say if I reaaaalllllly care enough about those things (I want to care enough!!!), then I will fix them when I’m ready and a different ending on the date stamp doesn’t necessarily inspire me.

However, I am big on setting goals for myself. I read a lot of blogs where they set monthly goals. I love that and I want to steal it! I definitely have a few goals that I really want to accomplish in the next year. Some are running/fitness related:

  1. Cross the PF Chang’s finish line with a big ass grin on my face. Yes, Big.Ass.Grin.
  2. 26.2
  3. Run a 7:59 min mile.
  4. Try crossfit.
  5. Try hot yoga.
  6. Keep strength training consistent.

Some are food related:

  1. Drink 9-10 cups of water per day. (I either do really well or really awful on this one, not usually in between.)
  2. Try at least one new recipe per week.
  3. Only eat out 1-2x per week. (I get so stuck in the “Let’s go out!” mentality.)

Some are more life related things I have been trying to focus on in the last year that I don’t feel like I’ve fully accomplished yet:

  1. Give others the benefit of the doubt, and don’t take every action personally.
  2. Chill the F out! Umm, this has been a goal since JULY. Clearly, it’s a work in progress.
  3. Have patience. With others, with myself, with life.
  4. Focus on career goals and choose work accordingly.
  5. Continue working towards balance in all areas of life (I have come a long way, but I still have a long way to go).
  6. Sing and dance. Every day.
  7. Be me, no matter who else is around (again, still working on it).
  8. For the love of all things holy, TAKE A FREAKING HONEYMOON!!!!!

I hope this is just the beginning of things I work towards and accomplish in the next year, but I feel like it’s a good place to start, and I feel like the first  set is 100% achievable, the secpnd set can and will happen most weeks of the year, and the third set is 100% work-towards-able–is that a word? Is now. I will not become the pillar of patience in 2012 just because it is a goal, I guarantee it, but I will become more patient.I can’t wait to spend the year checking back in with my goals and check things off the first list as they happen! :)

What do you want to achieve next year? Next month? Today?

Boston Day 1: Mike’s Pastry and Little Italy


After a lovely morning in Rockport, we headed down into downtown Boston.  We parked at Lisa’s fancy hospital (MGH) and experienced some public transportation.

Apparently, everyone is supposed to visit Mike’s Pastry while they’re in Boston and we were all hungry, but not quite ready for dinner so we headed down. I’ve gotta be honest and say that the whole experience wasn’t my favorite. There’s not really a menu and it’s ridiculously crowded and it just gave me major anxiety. I ended up just ordering a cappuccino and stealing bites from everyone else.

Chocolate peanut butter brownie. Sooo rich, but it was super yummy.

Tiramisu--this was my favorite. Probably the best tiramisu I've ever had.

Cannolis. I like the filling of the cannoli. I wish they sold it naked with no shell.

We did things a little backwards and had dessert first. It’s vacation :) We found a delicious restaurant in Little Italy where I had the most delicious mushroom risotto, but somehow this ended up being the only picture from dinner.

You can tell what we were focused on....

After dinner, we walked around downtown Boston for a bit. Soooo pretty.

My hubby takes good pictures :)

By the time we got back to Lisa and David’s we were all exhausted and pretty much went straight to bed. Today was Salem…more to come on that soon! Happy New Years Eve Eve everyone!

Boston Day 1: Rockport


Hello, from Rockport, MA! In the day I’ve been here, I’ve totally fallen in love with this super cute beach town. My friends Lisa and David moved here last May after David got a fab job at Rockport Music. Yesterday, we spent the morning and early afternoon exploring the downtown area.

Jason and Nacho

We went into a cute kitcheny store and found a bacon chocolate bar.

Lisa practiced her thug face.

I really have no idea why, but this time Steve told us to keep our tongues in our mouth, so of course we did the opposite.

Lisa and David

My fav picture of the trip so far ;)

Jason was cold and needed a hat. I tried to convince him that he needed to buy the Oscar the Grouch one, but unfortunately we were not in agreement.


Steve got some really great pictures of the town and the scenery.

Then David gave us a tour of Rockport music. They have the most gorgeous concert hall with a huge window in the back overlooking the water.

Above the concert hall, there is a big area where they often to wedding receptions.

Nacho suggested we all do "Porn lips" whatever that means...

II really really loved Rockport and would especially love to come back in the summer months when everything is open and it’s not 20 degrees out :O) We spent the rest of our evening in Boston, but that is a post for a later time. Now we’re off to Salem to find some witches!

Highlights of 2011

There is no doubt in my mind that 2011 has been my favorite year I’ve been alive so far. I hope to say that every year, but 2011 was particularly special with some pretty amazing things going on. Here’s a list of some of the highlights (in chronological order, not favorite order):

Steve and I celebrated our last non-married anniversary by going with Winston to a cabin in Northern AZ and spending the weekend just the three of us. Winston saw snow for the first time. Trips are awesome. Trips with puppies are even better :)

My mom threw me the perfect bridal shower! My mom isn’t much for hosting parties, but she told me early into the wedding planning that she wanted to throw my shower, and with the help of my amazing bridesmaids, I spent the day feeling totally overwhelmed by love and gifts, and amazingness!

My best friend Bethany went way above and beyond as my maid of honor to make me feel like the most special bride in the world and threw me the perfect bachelorette party!

I GOT MARRIED!!!!!!! And it was perfect.

In addition to all the reasons marrying the love of your life is awesome, I had almost every single person I love in the same place at the same time. Friends and family flew in from across the country and made me feel like a million bucks. I don’t think I’ve ever felt so loved as when I stood there looking at Steve and looking out at the faces of all the people who love us, their eyes glowing and each one totally present in the moment, and grateful to be there. Then, at the reception, there were so many unexpected speeches that left me crying my make up right off my face. Thanks for that, Bethany :) I don’t think a better maid of honor speech has ever existed.

WE GOT CLEMENTINE!!! Second only to the wedding, best part of this year. That dog drives me nuts. She won’t go to the bathroom outside when it’s raining, she walks around on the coffee table like it’s the floor, and she runs in crazy circles around my neck for no reason, but I love her, and she was the best gift I have ever received. Thanks, Amelia!!!

I got my first big directing job in Phoenix! I directed/choreographed/music directed The Rockin’ Tale of Snow White for AJTC (the same theatre I just did Fiddler with) and finally began to feel like I was doing what I wanted to do with my degree.

I met the two most amazing mentors! Molly and Emily, I’m not sure if you two read this, but your friendship, guidance, and insight have changed my life this year. I feel so lucky to have the two most incredible people to look up to and learn from as I grow and build my career.

I went to the Grand Canyon for the first time since I was like 4! It was grand. Okay, that sounds lame, but pretty much John and I looked at it, said “Yup, it’s grand”, enjoyed it for a bit, and went on our way, but I did really love going and especially getting to go with John!

I ran my first race, decided to run a half marathon and discovered a love for something I never thought I could do. I don’t care if it sounds cheesey, but running has changed my life and being able to do it with Kara and the friendship we have developed through it has been so amazing.

I choreographed Aladdin! Definitely one of my favorite working experiences ever, and I had been wanting to work for Greasepaint pretty much since the second I moved back to Phoenix. I had the most incredible team, and I ended the show feeling so proud of the kids, and of my own work!

We hosted our second Thanksgiving. It was pretty perfect in my opinion :)

The same day, I had my first double digit run!

I directed/choreographed Fiddler on the Roof Jr. Okay, so I’m not super great at being Jewish, but I must admit doing this show was pretty special to me. Seeing the audiences that came out and how much it means to so much of the Jewish community was really inspiring, and I was so proud to show my parents what I had done. I know that sounds silly, but getting to do work that meant something to my family and my cultural community was really amazing for me.

Annnnddd, by the time you read this, I will be on a trip with my 3 favorite guys to see one of my favorite people in the whole wide world, my friend Lisa! Steve, Jason, Nacho and I will be freezing out booties off in Boston with Lisa and her husband David and I cannot wait to go and spend New Years with them! I’ve never been to Boston and I’ve been wanting to go visit Lisa ever since she moved there.

It has been a truly incredible year and I am so grateful so the life I am living. Happy New Years everyone!

Leavin’ on a Jet Plane


Its here, its here!!!! My vacation is finally here! I have a confession. When I bought this plane ticket I knew this wpuld be towards the end of my half marathon training so I scheduled the flight specifically to be able to get a long run in this morning before I left because by the time I get back it will be less than 2 weeks until the race! So Kara and I got our run on at 7am.


I don’t know what it is, but my last 2 long runs I have felt so sluggish. Every time I think I’m going fast, I look down and see like 10:30 on my garmin. Blecchhh. Maybe my body is just ready for a little bit of a break.

After the run, I packed at lightening speed, got coffee and got to the airport. Steve and I are just waiting for our flight to board!!!


I figured this was a good time to try out blogging from my phone. Not my fav, but definitely convenient for traveling.

Alright, I’m off to Boston! Yay!!!!!

Mexican Egg Bake


I made this recipe a long time ago, back when this blog was titled “Skinnified”, but  recently made it again with a few changes, so I just wanted to give it an update with some better pictures. It is equally, if not more delicious, and so perfect for hosting brunch for a large group!

Mexican Egg Bake

yield 12 servings

  • 1 8oz package Pillsbury seamless creations
  • 12 egg whites
  • 4 whole eggs
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 can green chilies
  • 1/4 cup red fat sharp cheddar or goat cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1 lb cooked turkey or soy sausage, chopped (I’ve made both and I love it both ways)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbs ground cumin
  • dash chili powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • splash Chalulah
  • splash milk (I used 2%)


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray 9×13 pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Press Pillsbury dough into sprayed pan and cook about 12-15 minutes until golden.
  3. Spray a large pan with nonstick spray. Over medium heat, saute garlic, onion and bell pepper until tender. Season with salt, pepper, cumin and chili powder.
  4. When veggies are tender, add in sausage and continue to cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
  5. Whisk together egg whites and eggs. Add a splash of milk and a couple shakes of Chalulah.
  6.  Pour veggies and soy sausage on top of cooked dough. Add green chilies and egg mixture.
  7. Top with cheeses and bake at 350 for about 45 min or until the center is set.

Christmas 2011


I know it’s now December 27th and I’m super late with my Christmas recap. I thought about just skipping forward, but I had such an awesome Christmas that I wanted to rewind a little bit and talk about what a lucky girl I am :)

As always, I was the first one awake. At 5am, which is gross on a day off, but I was too excited! I tossed and turned for a bit before deciding 6am was the acceptable hour to wake everyone up on Christmas morning. I jumped out of bed and ran around the house shouting “It’s Christmas!! Wake up, it’s Christmas!!” I have an 11 year old sister in law and every year that I’ve celebrated Christmas with Steve’s family I have been the one to wake everyone up. For some reason, they still love me 😉 After a little persuading no time at all, we all joined in the living room to open some presents. Steve and I were mostly waiting on my mom, Hank and Charlie who were arriving around noon, but we opened a couple of things and watched Lisa, Ashleigh, Mathew and Deann open all of their gifts.

"Look!!! Santa came!!!" Looks like he brought someone a fancy new macro lense ;)

Clementine kept trying to hide from the big dogs behimd the tree so we decided she was a present. She was a present once--just not a Christmas one.

"I'm tired, mom." Being a present is hard work.

"Please don't tell me this Hanukkah sweater is my Christmas present. You can't fool me. I wore this last year!"

After presents round 1, Deann and I went out for a short run. I left my Garmin at home and was totally bummed because I originally planned on doing the Home for the Holidays 10K on Christmas day, but no dice. Deann and I took about a mile and a half loop, I dropped her back and went on an other 3ish solo, no music or anything. It was weird, but kind of awesome to run with absolutely no technology. No checking my pace, and really no clue how far I had gone. I remembered that I really enjoy running, and I’m not just doing it because I signed up for a race–something I had kinda been quietly questioning lately. Of course the second I walked in the door I hopped onto to try to figure out my distance, and figured it was somewhere between 3.5 and 4. Not too shabby.

The next part is my favorite. I have a niece that I don’t see nearly as much as I should/would like to. She’s 4 and the absolute cutest little girl EVER. Her name is Aubrianna, and watching her open presents was without a doubt the highlight of my day. Check out this cuteness.

She was so excited about her $5 bill. I want to be 4 again and feel like $5 is a lot of money!

After presents Round 2, we all hung out as I anxiously checked the door about every 5 seconds waiting for my mom. Hank and Charlie to arrive, so we could commence presents Round 3!

This was my second favorite part of Christmas. On my epic day off, Steve and I had gotten my mom a Vera Bradley purse for Christmas, almost 2 months before. Well at Lisa’s birthday, my mom starts talking to me about how much she wishes she had a Vera Bradley bag. We had only gone in the store once together and never spoken about it again until that day. I got the gift on a hunch because she seemed to really like the store when we had gone in. So she talks to me for a good 10 minutes about wanting one while I bite down hard on my tongue to contain myself from spilling the beans! I get sooooo excited when I know I’ve gotten the right gift. Holidays can be stressful, but nothing beats seeing the face of someone you love as they open something that totally makes their day!

Once she saw the name on the box, it was done! That wrapping didn't stand a chance ;)

There were also some pretty hilarious gifts.

A Clementine shirt. The rest of the dog is on the back. So freaking cute. Good work, Charlie!

Jewball. "I know you don't like to read, but it's about Jewish basketball, so if you don't read this, you're illiterate."--My mom

iPad for Dummies

Apparently if the "For Dummies" aren't dummied down enough, they have Seniors for Dummies so that even the oldest of farts...or my mom...can learn too. PS: Mom, I don't think you're old!

Then there was my awesome hubby. I think Steve took notes of every single thing I said I wanted for the entire year. You see, I always see things I like and want to buy, or talk about things I kinda need, but apparently don’t absolutely need because I never end up buying them for myself. I suck at buying new things sometimes. So this year Steve bought me everything I wanted. There were no big expensive gifts on my list this year, and honestly I loved this because I had so many presents to open and they were all things that showed he had been listening to me. Whenever people ask me what I want, I can never think of anything, but he just listened carefully and knew exactly what I wanted. I love him!

Running clothes!

A new fuzzy robe

A clippy thing!!! Such a long story, but I REALLY wanted a clippy thing for my garage door opener. Don't judge me.

A zeester!

A super fancy cutting board

And the one thing that I didn’t get from Steve, my mom ordered for me and wrapped up a picture of it because it’s not here yet hahaha. I love her.

Onion goggles!!! I really really really wanted some. My eyes cry so badly every time I chop!


What an amazing Christmas this year. I got a million more amazing gifts that would take hours to go into from all my family and friends. Thank you everyone for making me feel like a million bucks!! Even more importantly (even though I REALLY love gifts), I got to spend the day with the people I love. Last year, my mom, Hank and Charlie started coming to Lisa’s for Christmas, and honestly, Lisa opening up her house to my family so that we can all be together is the best Christmas present anyone could ever give me.

Okay, I gotta know!!! What was your favorite gift you received?!?!?!


Lisa’s Birthday


Steve’s mom’s birthday is on Christmas Eve. I personally love it, because Christmas is really his side of the family’s holiday anyway, so we spend December 24th celebrating Lisa and getting ready for Christmas, and then do a huge family celebration on Christmas morning. This year, I started Lisa’s birthday off with a brunch. I made Blueberry Applesauce Muffins by following this recipe almost exactly. They came out soooo yummy!

I also made a Mexican Egg Bake and realized that I need to update my recipe a little bit because I did some things differently, so that will happen soon. It came out delicious and the whole thing was devoured with not a leftover in sight.

And of course I made cupcakes. Salted Caramel Toffee Crunch Cupcakes to be exact (recipe coming soon).

Anyone want to give me some frosting/decorating lessons? In case you've never seen my food before, presentation is not my strong suit haha.

After brunch we all hung around the house for a bit. Hermano had brought over our Christmas presents since we wouldn’t be spending Christmas together, so Steve and I opened our gifts. Let me tell you, my brother totally out did himself this year. Last year he bought me The Cake Bible which was awesome and perfect, but this year his gifts were thoughtful, personal, and no offense to anyone else, but possibly my favorite! The first thing I opened was a gift card, but not just any gift card…

LULULEMON!!!! EEEEEE!!!!! Let me just say that every single person who asked Steve for advice ended up getting me super awesome things. My husband rocks.

But the best part was this:

You can't fake that kind of present excitement, friends.

It’s a personalized water bottle that says “Hermana” on it. I love love love love love it! Anything personalized (not like just my name, but personalized to my relationship with that person, or an inside joke) is the key to my heart. You did good, Hermano. I am such a lucky sister!

Okay, back to the birthday. Sorry, I get on tangents and I can talk about myself for hours. It’s a skill. There I go again 😉 Steve and I took Lisa and Ashleigh to dinner at The Arrogant Butcher. The last time I went to The Arrogant Butcher, I ordered asparagus and a side salad. F you carb diets. This time was sooooo much better! I ordered a turkey sloppy joe on a pretzel bun with sweet potato soup. Hellllllooooo, carbs! Glad we’re BFFs again. I missed you so.

So yummy, but honestly, I would have been happy with a huge bucket of the soup and nothing else. Something about soup with sweet potato, pumpkin, or butternut squash. My favorite.

I really love this guy. In case you didn't know ;)

Lisa might end up super mad at me for posting this picture, but I love it. She cracks me up.

I mean, really the whole napkin on your shirt thing is smart. Do you have any idea how much I end up spilling on myself on a daily basis? Just me? Oh, whoops....

They even brought her out a free birthday dessert! You know me and free :) Seriously delicious peanut butter cup.


Lisa has treated me like a part of her family since the moment Steve brought me into his life. I am so grateful to be a part of such an incredible family, and I am so happy to have the most wonderful second mom a girl could ask for! Happy birthday Lisa!

Steak, Potatoes and Beer, Oh My


I am a person who loves to be busy. Some may say I’m a workaholic, but I am MORE than happy to keep busy by celebrating and spending time with family and friends. Is there a job where they pay you to do that? I think what I do is actually probably as close as you get. Lucky me :)

Let’s catch up, shall we? 2 days before Christmas started out with the 2nd to last long run Kara and I will do before PF Chang’s. We planned for 10, but Kara has been sick for like 2 months straight and after 8 she just wasn’t feeling it, so we ended up walking the last 2 miles home. At this point, we’re ready and the ending walk where we were just able to chat felt really nice actually. We ended up covering just under 10 miles total in about 2 hours. Still not too shabby.

The past few weeks after my long run, I’ve had the craziest cravings for steak. I don’t really eat red meat, but the evening after a run, all I want to eat is a big, juicy fillet! Well, Friday night I finally got what I had been craving! Kara, Charlie and Hermano met us at our house before heading out to Whole Foods to pick out our meat and our drinks. I love the type of dinner party where everyone picks their own meat, Steve grills it all up and I make the side dish. So simple, and much cheaper than trying to buy steak for everyone (ummm Steve’s steak was $30).

Hermano and I each picked out a fillet, although his was 13 oz and mine was 6 haha. Steve and Kara both picked out massive rib eyes. Charlie picked out some chicken, and Hermano also picked up a pound of macaroni and cheese because he was skeptical about the side dish I had planned.

Kara and I also picked out some cherry stout and cappuccino stout. Delicious.

As soon as we were home and we had popped open our beers, Steve fired up the grill and I got to work on the taters.

Hard at work. Obviously. I actually think I was trying to put my hair up, maybe?

Soon enough, dinner was served!

That, my friends, is what a 1.3lb piece of meat looks like.

Hermano's pound of steak and pound of macaroni.

After trying my Maple Bacon Sweet Potatoes (don’t you worry, recipe is coming soon), Hermano regretted his decision not to get some himself, so 2 lbs of food later, he went back to get some.

Yes, that is the pan I cooked them in. Apparently I need to hit my growth spurt so I can polish off pounds of food at a time and still be thin.

Then, 2 beers later (apparently I’m a light weight because that was seriously all I could handle), we were watching The Muppets Christmas Carol and I decided to make dessert. Very tipsy, recipe-less dessert. I didn’t measure a single thing and I thought it was going to be a disaster, but the entire 8×8 pan was gone in about 10 minutes flat. No pictures. No recipe. Sad day. I do remember it included mashed banana, caramel and white chocolate chips. Maybe one day I’ll try to recreate it :)


In Case You Missed It…

Here’s a quick recap of the healthy-ish holiday baking extravaganza that was November/December 2011 😉

Holy cow, it’s been a busy two months for baking. If you’re looking for some last minute holiday baking ideas, there you go friends. Enjoy!

Apple, Goat Cheese and Fig Stuffed Chicken


I did it! I made up a dish. I didn’t look at anyone else’s recipe for inspiration (although I’m sure there are a million recipes out there like this one). I just thought about things I liked and put it together and it was so delicious! This dish is perfect for when you’re busy around the holidays and have been living entirely off cookies because there’s not a ton of prep time, it’s healthy and it looks much fancier than it actually is!

Apple, Goat Cheese and Fig Stuffed Chicken

yield 4 servings

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts approx 6oz each
  • 2 oz goat cheese
  • 1/2 apple, thinly sliced (I used the amazingly delicious honey crisp, but any apple will be good!)
  • 4 tbs fig butter
  • olive oil
  • freshly ground sea salt
  • freshly ground garlic pepper (I bought it at Whole Foods and it is so amazing!)


  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with nonstick spray.
  2. Season chicken with salt and garlic pepper on both sides.
  3. Butterfly the chicken, and stuff with 1/2 oz goat cheese, 2 apple slices and 1 tbs fig butter. Fold chicken back over.
  4. Heat a pan on medium high and drizzle with a little olive oil (just enough to avoid sticking).
  5. Sear chicken about 2-3 minutes on each side, then transfer to baking dish.
  6. Baker for 40-50 minutes until cooked throughout and juices run clear. Let chicken rest out of oven about 2-3 minutes.