Thinking Out Loud: 94 Years of Friendship

THANK YOU all so much for your messages and support the past couple of days!  It still feels like a dream – like I’m gonna wake up one morning, go to school, and find out that it isn’t real.  Oh gosh, I hope not.  Also, thank you for emailing me your interest in guest posting on LAB.  If you haven’t already contacted me and are interested, email me at

Last night I fell asleep while staring out the window, watching the snow fall and a dusting start to coat the ground…  This morning I woke up to a fluffy, white, winter wonderland!  I know that many people are eagerly awaiting for spring to spring {admittedly, I was too a couple of weeks ago}, but the snow is so beautiful and peaceful!



Thanks Amanda for hosting another link-up!

Thought #1:  Farmers are very smart people.  Their predictions were accurate this week…  I wonder if we’ll get a second snowstorm later this month?


Thought #2:  I’m curious if this nut butter really is “wow” worthy?


Thought #3:  Running in new sneakers is one of the best feelings.  Pure comfort and joy!


Thought #4:  We’re crazy no matter what.


Thought #5:  A wonderful Walmart find.  Except, I’m not allergic to chocolate…  Or diamonds.  *Cough, cough.*


Thought #6:  I don’t make egg {or chicken or tuna fish} salad often enough.  Peas and diced carrots/celery are my favorite veggies to mix-in.


Thought #7:  Current favorite jam…


Thought #8:  My BFF sent me this video this morning {read more about their story here}.  It immediately made my heart melt and makes me think of us when we’re 100-years-old!

Thought #9:  Breakfasts this weeks have all included cottage cheese + peanut butter + honey {sometimes raisins too}.  On top of pancakes, slathered on a bagel, or mixed into oatmeal – a delicious combo!


Thought #10:  I’m still so excited that it happened!  Good timing too, because now I’m paid regardless of whether we’re in school or at home for a snow day ;)


Question:  What combos are you currently craving?  Peanut butter with jelly? Or honey? Or chocolate?

Share the 94 Years of Friendship video with your BFF!

— Allison


Favorite Finds: Healthy New Year

Call me crazy, but I’m counting down until Monday morning.  Usually we’re all looking forward to the weekend, but I’m eager to get back into the classroom.  After a two week winter break I can’t wait to pick up where we left off…  Multiplication tables?  Oh yeah!  The solar system?  Hey there sunshine!  Jamestown?  We wouldn’t be here without you Captain Smith!

Thursday afternoon I finally met Sarah from Passion & Laughter.  She and I had been exchanging messages about meeting for a run/walk/coffee/anything date for months.  I joked on Twitter just before we met that blogging is a lot like online dating…  You meet someone virtually and if you like what you see you plan a date.  It’s hilarious but totally true!  Thankfully, I didn’t have to fake any emergencies because we had a fabulous time chatting for over two hours.  If I didn’t have to study I’m pretty sure that the conversation could have continued through dinnertime.


Friday morning we woke up to a light dusting of icy snow, below freezing temperatures, and whipping wind.  Nothing compared to the blizzards up in New England, but it was bitter.


While growning up in Northern Virginia, I learned to drive on winding roads (the ones that make you feel like you’re flying out of your seat if you go too fast), but I didn’t learn how to drive in the snow.  I’ve never been in a major accident, but ever since I fishtailed in Ryan’s car a few years ago, almost crashing into two other cars, I’ve let him be my snow chauffeur.  Unfortunately, my chauffeur had to work yesterday so I was on my own to get to my test.  The major roads were treated so it wasn’t as bad as I had envisioned, although I did pass by two minor accidents.

In college I was required to pass a series of MCAS (Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System) subtests in order to graduate and receive my Professional License.  Some states will honor out-of-state licenses if you have a few years of experience, but since I was straight out of college Virginia issued me a Provisional License valid for three years.  Three years will be up in June so yesterday I took the VCLA (Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment) and I’m excited to share – assuming I didn’t completely bomb the free response – that I passed!


It has been a while since I’ve done a Favorite Finds post, but what better time is there to get back into the groove than the New Year?  I continue to add new boards to my collection so rather than posting my favorite pin from each board, I’m thinking that I’ll share 5-10 of my favorite pins from the week?  And with it being the New Year, this week I’m focusing on a healthier approach.  New Year, new start, fresh ideas, lots of (p)inspiration!

Favorite Pinterest Finds

Homemade Healthy Butterfingers by The Sweet {Tooth} Life – one of my favorite candies, second to Reese’s Pieces!

Homemade Healthy Butterfingers

Breakfast Cookies by Sally’s Baking Addiction – a great grab-and-go idea for weekday mornings

Stuffed Pepper Soup by diethood – thick & hearty, perfect for a cold winter day


Quinoa Quiche Muffins with Spinach and Cheese by diethood – sneak in those healthy ingredients


Top 13 in 2013: Workouts by Peanut Butter Fingers – a mix of treadmill, elliptical, circuit, & strength workouts


50 Tips for Healthier Living by Lauren’s Latest – baby steps towards a healthier lifestyle


“Look, I eat really well and I workout, but I also indulge when I want to.” – Jennifer Aniston


11 Healthy “Hippie” Ingredients Everyone Should Cook With via BuzzFeed – healthy can be tasty


Dark Chocolate Hot Cocoa by The Lemon Bowl – dark chocolate is full of health benefits!


Printable New Year’s Resolution by The Girl Creative – write as many or as few goals as you want *free*


Question:  Do you enjoy driving in the snow or do you have a snow chauffeur?

Question:  What’s your favorite healthy ingredient?

— Allison


MIMM: Blurry Memories

Last week sped by but I have a feeling that this week is going to go by much.much.slower.  Tuesday was Christmas Eve, Wednesday was Christmas, Thursday we saw Anchorman 2, Friday I spent my afternoon at the salon before friends came over for dinner and the Bull Run Festival of Lights, Saturday we celebrated my BFF’s birthday, yesterday we saw American Hustle…  And then in the blink of an eye, it’s already Monday.

IMG_4488 Charlie doesn’t do mornings, or Mondays

I was scheduled to take the VLCA exams this afternoon but considering that I haven’t studied,  I postponed the tests (without penalty) until Friday morning.  Yesterday evening I outlined grand plans for my week ahead – wake up, eat breakfast, workout, eat lunch, study, snack, study, eat dinner, study, go to sleep, and repeat.  With the exception of some fun on New Year’s Eve, obviously.

How did today go?  Well, I’ve eaten, worked out, washed all of our laundry, walked Charlie, watched wedding shows…  And I have not even begun to study.  Gah!  I never have been good at studying at home.  In elementary school and throughout high school I went to a tutor after school before I went to practice, in college I studied and wrote papers at a local coffee shop, and nowadays I prefer to stay late at the office to finish any work and write blog posts at Starbucks.  My brain has coded home to be an anti-work zone.

IMG_4507 upped my weights so my body was sufficiently pumped at BodyPump

In an effort to procrastinate even longer, below are some marvelous moments from the past week (a few that didn’t make it into my Christmas recap are also included).  A lot of the pictures – especially the ones from the light show since we were instructed not to stop along the route, as well as from Seasons 52 because the room was extremely dark – are oober blurry.  Maybe in 2014 I’ll start using one of my fancy cameras?

Thanks Katie for hosting another marvelous link-up!

IMG_4147 the world’s best chocolate chip cookies made by my uncle (which he may start selling online!)

IMG_4202 salty & sweet breakfasts have been the theme lately

IMG_4242 Charlie loves playing fetch at my momma’s house because her wood floors are like a slip ‘n slide

IMG_4252 I always have had & always will have chubby cheeks, they’re my signature

IMG_4294 it doesn’t get much cozier than sitting by the fire with a warm drink & snow socks

Bull Run Festival of Lights 2013 Bull Run Festival of Lights – pretty, but not worth the $20 admission fee

IMG_4316 my teacher feet will be happy the rest of the winter

IMG_4320 an ornament for each year that Ryan & I have been together (a new tradition)

IMG_4423 Dilbert & Doonesbury for life

IMG_4446_2 birthday mani + pedi

IMG_4436 I may not stay awake to see the ball to drop on NYE, but at least I’ve got glitter on my nails

Lauren's Bday at Seasons 52 good food, good service, great company, & fun memories

Question:  Does any place near you do a light show?  This was my first experience.

Question:  Have you ever eaten at Seasons 52?  What’s your favorite dish?  The menu changes seasonally so we try to go once each season!

— Allison