Tuesday, August 15, 2017

WSM [pt. I] + Bakersfield

Hello, hello again! I hope your week is off to a better start than mine, but I'll get into that in another post. Life sure knows how to throw the best, most confusing curve balls right when you were expecting to be intentionally walked, am I right? But I'm not here to complain, I'm here to continue my Cleveland Series! This week I am showing you our venture to the West Side Market (WSM), a quick pumpkin beer at Market Garden followed by a mouth-watering-ly good meal at Bakersfield with our all-time favorite - JB. 

I watched a documentary one time about how the people in European countries purchase groceries almost daily, or several times a week with the purpose of using the ingredients right away as opposed to storing them. Anyway, every time I come to the WSM I have envy and wish I could be one of those people. Mainly so I can come here every day, but also because I love the idea of having fresh food on the daily.

FROMAGE! Cheese is my weakness.

Now comes the fun part - Take everything you just purchased and do your best to make it fit in the small cooler. Typically, we would just go home afterwards (we live 15 minutes away); but on this day we were meeting a friend for lunch and didn't have time to run home. But we made it work! (see below)

Picture this: 72 degrees, just enough sun to feel a gentle warmth while the cool breeze keeps you from getting too hot. And then...

you're handed pumpkin beer! We only had one so that we're not tempted too much to throw a sweater on, but it was a glorious moment in our day.

Cheese may be my first weakness, but tacos are up there too! Although... Come to think of it, my taco's didn't have cheese on them. Oh well, they were so good who would even notice? When one goes to Bakersfield, one MUST get the fish taco. BEST!

JB. It's true, Bakersfield has the best taco's in all of Cleveland, but when you get good service, you come back. Like, a lot. You come back and specifically ask to be seated in JB's section because you know somehow those tacos are going to taste better and you're going to have a much better time. I'm a little sad that we only have so many more meals left while enjoying JB's company there, but I'm equally happy that he's doing his "thang" and hitting the road to continue his never ending quest! You will be missed, JB! (But make sure to come back to Cleveland, darnit!)

I also want to point out (for anyone that may not know) WSM, Market Garden and Bakersfield are all near each other. So you can park and walk to all of them to enjoy a spectacular combination of fresh food shopping, pumpkin beer sipping, and incredible service with taco's on the side. (REMEMBER: FISH TACO'S).

Have a wonderful week ahead! 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Life lately (and an update on my health!)

Howdy there! Thanks for following along. I'm really, genuinely enjoying blogging more. I think I like to write anyway, and I'm a nervous over-sharer that hates posting on social media too much. So this is working out quite nice! 

Anyway, I wanted to take a quick minute to share some updates on what I posted about a couple weeks ago with my new "lifestyle change". I'm still sticking to it, both diet-wise and exer-wise (hehe! see what I did there?). So far, I am noticing that I'm sleeping SO much better and waking up SO much easier. I don't have heavy eyes with the groggy feeling in the morning (or afternoon for that matter). I'm moving much more than I ever have. I don't try to combine trips to the printer, and outgoing mail box with my potty breaks and/or having to chat with someone. I'm just getting up whenever I think about something without putting any thought behind it. I can fit into clothes that haven't fit at all, or right in years... Oh, and I've lost 22 lbs.

But I want to give credit to the real hero in this journey... My man, and master of patience: Cade. I wanted to eat more of a plant based diet, BOOM! He's walking through the grocery store with me grabbing ingredients to make cauliflower quinoa for dinner. I want to completely eliminate red meat from our diet? BOOM, we eat black rice burgers for dinner instead of hamburgers. I want to start working out several times a week? BOOM, he made a big sign writing out a entire 30 minutes of intense exercise from his running days. I want to lay in bed 30-45 minutes before I go to sleep to shut out any screen time and just read? BOOM, he's right there next to me while I read my book and he draws. Honest to goodness, I fully intended on doing this regardless of the support I received, but to have someone there for you and right next to you in every step of the way is incredible. So yeah, I'm feeling better both mentally and physically, but I am also learning and finding something new to appreciate every day. So, thanks Cade! (and sorry, but your spotlight is now shifting to something else :P)

I plan on posting more meals or certain foods that I'm enjoying, but these were already in my saved photos so I erred on the side of convenience. More to share soon! 

We made our own rosemary sweet potato fries and they were perfect. 

Here's my (earlier mentioned) black rice burger. I topped it with tomatoes, lettuce and avocado on a piece of Dave's Killer 21 grain bread. 

I think Taco's are pieces of heaven here on earth. If you disagree then that's fine, I'll still love you anyway. Just with a little bit of pity thrown in there :P

YEAH, I know I've already posted this, but I haven't found it since I've had it back on that day and I'm about this close (-) to emailing Health Ade and asking them to just ship me 24 bottles to have all to myself. THIS CLOSE GUYS.

I'm a sucker for a good dessert that isn't terrible for you. So these pretty quickly won me over along with the eating evolved chocolate cups (below).

So, that is all for today. Cade and I have exciting plans to explore Cleveland this weekend so of course, I already can't wait to share it with you.

Have a great weekend! 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Cleveland Parks!

Starting The Cleveland Series off with a true favorite. The Cleveland Parks! If you follow me on Instagram then you know I am at Rocky River Reservation at least 3 times a week to run/jog/walk/read during my work week. It's only a couple miles away so I can get there quickly, and enjoy the majority of my lunch break there. I've never been to a Cleveland park that I didn't like but Rocky River holds the cake. It's incredibly beautiful, clean and spacious. In one step you're standing near a big open field with picnics and dogs playing fetch and then next thing you know you're walking through a shaded path keeping pace with the river. The park itself is very big so I haven't been to every corner of it, but what I have seen is worth sharing. 

Word to the wise; this post is preeeetty flower heavy. Just a heads up to those of you who have picture-flower allergies!

Also, I share some other much-loved parks that I have visited at the bottom of this post.

Quick story (!). My favorite color is purple, and I'm an impulse do-er. So, I was driving down Mastick Rd. (through the park) and saw a 2ft x 2ft cluster of these flowers and immediately stopped, put my flashers on, grabbed my camera and photographed these for a solid 5 minutes. This picture makes the area larger than it actually was which is why, I think, I love it so.

I firmly believe animals are fearless at Rocky River. I have stood within an arms reach of a deer and this duck? goose? Who knows, right? A bird-thing. (sorry guys)

Remember that Instagram story where I literally stumbled upon a waterfall during a rainy week. Yeah, that happened! This is usually just a wall. But it had rained so much that it was running down and oh.my.god I thought I discovered gold. Still a highlight!

Cleveland Parks are also Frankie-approved.

I think I started this off right. If you're ever looking to get out for a picnic in the Cleveland area and want a safe, family friendly and pet-friendly park then I would definitely 100% suggest Rocky River.

Here are some other favorites for anyone interested in checking out more! 

Cleveland Lakefront State Park
Brandywine Falls
Obviously, all of CVNP
Edgewater Park

and I haven't been yet (YET), but I've heard tremendous things about Lakewood's new Solstice Steps!

Stay tuned for more Cleveland! 

WSM [pt. I] + Bakersfield

Hello, hello again! I hope your week is off to a better start than mine, but I'll get into that in another post. Life sure knows how to ...