Hello, everyone! I hope your New Year is off to a great start!
My day yesterday was pretty laid back, which is always a great way to celebrate the New Year, in my opinion. I was also considering it as my last day of break, as I am nannying during the day today and tomorrow, and have things going on during the evenings up until this weekend. I still can’t believe my three weeks of break are almost over, but it really was so much fun. I had a very relaxing Christmas full of…
…lots of cards and board games…
….fun presents (including these, for me)….
and plennnnty of good food! (See below!)
My parents, Dan, and I celebrated New Year’s Eve by going out to an Italian restaurant downtown. My dad and Dan both really enjoyed their dinners, but my mom and I weren’t fans of ours. Oh well, the company was great, and downtown looked beautiful.
How did you ring in the new year?
Because I didn’t do a WIAW last week, I have loads of food to share with you all!
First up: the breakfasts.
For Christmas morning, my mom made these amazing clover leaf buns. She took frozen dough and cut each “roll” into thirds, rolled them around in butter then cinnamon-sugar, and then popped them into a muffin tin to bake. I made a simple glaze out of powdered sugar and milk, and voilà! So. Good.
My dad also made some pancakes New Year’s Day. I only had one, but made sure to put sprinkles and then cinnamon-sugar on it. Yum!
A taco salad made with seasoned ground beef, cheese, tortilla chips, salsa, and of course, romaine lettuce.
For Christmas Eve, I made a pot roast from Ina Garten’s recipe. If you look, there is a sort of sauce that is made using veggies, wine, and broth just before it’s served. That sauce was incredible. I don’t think I’ve ever eaten something that rich in flavor. We had some leftover from the roast, so I cooked up some quinoa and poured the sauce over top of it. With a sprinkling of parmesan cheese, it was a perfect lunch. We had so much leftover that I made this three times over the course of the week!
I also had a chicken, apple, and cheese sandwich with a side of veggies for lunch yesterday. I had so much bad food (bad for me, not bad tasting) over the holidays that a nice salad was in order.
If I took note of all of the snacks I’ve enjoyed the last few weeks, I’d be uploading pictures for hours. I wish I was kidding. One of my favorites, though (and the most photogenic), was this dried fruit my cousin and his girlfriend made for us as a Christmas present. I love dried fruit!
On Christmas Eve eve (or Christmas Adam, as I’ve heard it called!), we had pork roast. My mom put pork loin in a slow cooker with some cranberry sauce and a few other things, and roasted it throughout the day. It was seriously delicious!
As mentioned above, we enjoyed a lovely pot roast on Christmas Eve.
Then on Christmas Day we had baked ham, thick potato “chips”, and peas. I ate my ham with dried cranberries because I love that combo!
And on my brother’s birthday we had traditional English pasties. We also had them for my dad’s birthday, and I wrote at that time that I had been on my feet for three hours making them. Well, this time, I was a bit smarter. My dad cut the meat (a chore that I find very unpleasant), which helped a lot, and I did the rest of it in shifts. I made the pastry and took a break. Then I cut the veggies and took a break. When I finally got ready to put the pasties together, it took hardly any time at all!
I also pretty much perfected making pastry crust. I used Nigella Lawson’s (albeit drawn-out) method of freezing, blending, chilling, rolling, and filling. It worked wonderfully. Hooray!
Finally, for New Year’s Day yesterday, my mom and I spent a couple of hours preparing some finger food for dinner. There was BBQ chicken wrapped in bacon and sprinkled with brown sugar, potato skins, and quesadillas. Yeahhh…my clean eating will be reenacted today!
Desserts and Baked Goods
For New Year’s Eve, I had a huuuuuuge bowl of frozen yogurt…
…but that’s not what I want to show you.
I went kind of crazy baking over the last two weeks!
A vegan brownie pudding.
Chocolate chip cookies.
And sugar cookies! Decorating sugar cookies on Christmas Eve is a family tradition. This year, my neighbor got me a couple of awesome 3D cookie cutters. The tree broke apart before I could frost it, but look at that cute Santa!
Workouts December 31 – January 5
Monday: 30 Day Shred + 30 minutes elliptical trainer
Tuesday: P90X Ab Ripper + circuit training + 20 minutes elliptical
Wednesday: 20 minutes jogging + 25 minutes walking on treadmill
Friday: P90X yoga?
Saturday: P90X yoga OR 20 minutes jogging + 25 minutes walking on treadmill
Speaking of workouts, here is my main goal/resolution for 2013:
Be happy, be healthy.
Yes, I know that’s the Honey Nut Cheerios slogan, but I think it really works for what I want to accomplish in 2013. I don’t think it’s possible to have one without the other: I’m going to work toward being the healthiest I’ve ever been (as far as clean eating and more exercising) and will therefore be more happy with my body/mind/self. Along the same lines, I will try to be generally more happy, which will hopefully lead to a healthier body/mind/self.
Other small goals for 2013 include:- Meat Free Mondays
- Run a 5K in the spring
- Figure out what to do with my future
- Earn a certificate of completion from Top Chef University! (My parents got me a year of classes for Christmas!)
Do you do New Year’s resolutions or goals? What is one of yours?
That was a super long post! I hope you’re all having a very relaxing day back in reality/work, or at least a very good break!
I know Ella is!