{Instagram photo challenge}

So Happy Halloween everyone! 🙂 Unfortunately I have to work tonight, maybe celebrating after, who knows? Anyways! This lovely month of October I did the Instagram photo a day challenge, which was as follows:

Day 1: You, now. Here is the best and most recent picture (although not so much at this point ;)) of me and my pledge sister.

Day 2: Picture with you Father, I know I have some with just my Dad but why leave Mama out?

Day 3: Far Away. Visit to Seattle in 10th grade, one of the best trips of my life.

Day 4: In my mailbox.

Day 5: Bright! It’s always a bright day with my pledge sisters on the way the La Parota! ❤

Day 6: Everyday. My planner and my phone are two things I use everyday for everything.

Day 7: Natural, delicious apple crisps, Kind of natural. 😉

Day 8: At night. Typical apple cider and Pinterest.

Day 9: Something you do most weekends. Work as a day of event and wedding go to girl! It is wonderful and I absolutely love it!

Day 10: Black and white, me and my friend Paige went and got Blueri froyo!

Day 11: Hero. Shannon Miller was my hero growing up, I idolized her as a gymnast and it was incredible to  meet her and to have her coach me at IGC. She is still an inspiration today successfully battling cancer.

Day 12: Together. Even if I feel completely alone I know I have you 5! My life. My heart. My home. LO6 lubuil.

Day 13: Table. Cute table settings at the last wedding of the season!

Day 14: Favorite. Dubbie ( 😦 ), Cosmo, Queso, and Alice! (and extra Kiki).

Day 15: First thing you see. It was Dublin my baby kitty but she got snatched up by a terrible woods creature who thought she would be a nice meal 😥 so very sad. I miss her.

Day 16: Strange… I couldn’t find anything else. I don’t think this needs an explanation for strange…

Day 17: In my fridge, lotsa stuff, and lotsa stuff I can’t eat.

Day 18: (late again.) Prices! Prices at King Street Coffee with GF mini loaves!

Day 19: Underneath. Underneath this ugly warehouse roof is the largest collection of vintage carriages in the US!

Day 20: Man-made. Keys are man-made, keys to all the cool things at my work.

Day 21: Sometimes. Sometimes I blog 😉 #gfp

Day 22: Up. Up the movie, is so cute!

Day 23: Before Bedtime: Netflix

Day 24: 3 Things. Even though today at the Battlefield was pretty awful… here were 3 pretty parts.

Day 25: Frame. cute frame used as an armoire tray!

Day 26: Near. It’s nearly Halloween!

Day 27: Love/ Hate. I hate a love hate relationship with running.

Day 28: A good thing. OMG THESE ARE DELICIOUS! I have been thinking about buying these as long as I have been gluten free but could never bring myself to pay $7 for donuts! Thanks Mom and Dad 😉

Day 29: Errand…No errands today! Stuck inside thanks to Hurricane Sandy. Carved a kitty pumpkin instead! 🙂

Day 30: You, Then. Dad and I carving pumpkins just like we did last night!

Day 31: HALLOWEEN! If I were going out tonight I would want to be Effie Trinket from the Hunger Games!

May the Odds be ever in your favor!

Thats all for now! That was such a fun challenge 🙂 🙂 I Liked it a lot too because I was able to give some variations to the pictures based on the theme of the day!

TTFN xox. GFP ❤

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Gluten free wraps and snacks!

When I went gluten free the hardest things for me were lunch foods (sandwich-like) and foods that were quick on the go! And food on the go that was good and not a dried out rice puff bar… During my last Wegman’s excursion I picked up these gluten free wraps, they had chipotle pepper flavored, and spinach garlic flavored, and although they were green, I chose the spinach garlic ones and they turned out to be DELICIOUS! They are called Sandwich Petals and they are perfect for lunch 🙂 I came up with a few delicious combos for some yummy wraps!

  • Turkey, hummus, provolone, and some spinach leaves
  • Italian dressing, provolone, salami, turkey, and spinach
  • Turkey, miracle whip, lettuce, and tomato
  • Peanut butter, jelly wrap 😉
  • Peanut butter and honey wrap
  • Chicken, buffalo sauce, ranch, lettuce
  • Ham, cheese, lettuce
  • Turkey, lettuce, guacamole, and tomato

And the list goes on and on! You could even branch out and use these as quesadillas or enchiladas! More experimentation to come! On the topic of experimenting, I had a kitchen success this week in making what I would call mini quinoa quiche. They were just an idea for an easy breakfast bite that I could eat really quick before my run to give me a little extra energy, and munching like 3 of these really keep me filled up for a while! They were a little time intensive in the prep work but totally worth it and I got about 30 from the recipe:

You need mini-muffin pans!

Ingredients: 

  • 2 cups cooked quinoa (about 3/4 cup uncooked)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup crumbled bacon
  • 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons parmesan cheese
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • salt & pepper

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix.
  • Spray a mini muffin tin with non-stick spray
  • Spoon mixture into each cup
  • Bake for 20 minutes, or until the edges of the cups are golden brown.
  • Let cool for at least 5 minutes before removing from the mini muffin tin.

Enjoy! These are so good! I stored them in the fridge and have been re-heating for breakfast 🙂 perfection!

Thats all I have for now! Enjoy 🙂 xox TTFN GFP<3

 

{Mountain Hikes and Unmarked Trails}

Well since I have been running, I have been exploring different places to run to keep it interesting; this week I decided I was going to go out and run the Manassas Battlefield.  This was a location that many people had recommended to me as a good spot to run so I thought I would check it out. This was a lot easier said than done; what was supposed to be a 1.5 hour run turned into roughly a 3 hour run/hike around the battlefields. Upon my arrival, I ran around aimlessly looking for the entrance to the trail, then once I found it there were many occasions that I had to stop, look around, and really guess which way I was supposed to be going. And finally I ran the same loop twice in a row because of a lack of markers out on the trails. I ended up pretty turned around and lost and the map was of no help; and as much as I don’t like to admit it, I gave up and called my Dad to pick me up from one of the parking lots off the Battlefields. Sad I know. But I was very frustrated and concerned by the lack of markings and how easy it was for me to get lost out on the trail, I’m not saying I am the most avid hiker but I have a relatively good sense of direction so for someone who really gets turned around easy this could have been a nightmare!

On a brighter note I did run like 5 miles out there while being lost in the wilderness and then walked a lot too, all in all I think it totaled out to around 7 miles! Woop thats always a plus.. and there were some pretty views as well.

This week has been a week full of outside adventures, thanks to the oddly warm weather in October 🙂 yesterday a few friends and I hiked up Old Rag Mountain and man am I sore today! We only went about 6 miles but its a mountain, so the first half is all up-hill, and the last bit before we turned around was literally climbing up rocks! I was pretty tired but it was so worth it! The views were spectacular and we didn’t even make it all the way to the summit (we got kind of a late start).  It was so pretty and I would do it again in a heartbeat, I just need some better hiking shoes!

Well more adventure posts to come later, and some gluten-free yummies coming soon!

TTFN xoxo GFP ❤

{Gluten Free Pumpkin cupcakes}

So with everyone everywhere talking about pumpkin it seems, I decided to experiment with a little pumpkin treat myself.  I found these on Pinterest, big surprise lol! And needed to make a special treat for a close friend who is also gluten-free! Yay! So these were an obvious choice!

GF Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin/Cupcakes

(props to Silvana’s kitchen, where I found the original recipe)

INGREDIENTS

For the filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar

For the muffins:
3 cups rice flour mixture
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
2 cups pumpkin puree
1¼ cups vegetable oil

Frosting: Cream cheese frosting (the original site has a homemade frosting that I did not have time to experiment with so I stuck with a traditional favorite!)

(you will also need an electric mixer, and cupcake pans duh! 😉 )

1. Place a rack in the lower third of the oven

2. preheat to 350 °

3. Line muffin pan(s) with cupcake cups

4. In one bowl, mix the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar for 3 minutes. Beat in 1 egg white and ½ teaspoon vanilla.

5. In another bowl, whisk the rice flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder and ½ teaspoon salt.

6. In a third bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, 2 eggs, granulated sugar, oil and 1 teaspoon vanilla.

7. Whisk in the rice flour mixture.

8. Layer each muffin cup with some of the pumpkin batter (just a small spoonful, enough to cover the bottom of the muffin cup)

9. then layer some of the cream cheese mixture (again not too much you don’t want to run out and or have these things over flow)

10. FInally, add more of the pumpkin batter.

11. Bake until springy to the touch, about 25 minutes.

12. Let cool.

13. Frost early, to eat and enjoy warm!

Don’t forget to refrigerate to keep them fresh, and frost as you please! From the friends who have tried them, they all said they were good. Next time I mad add a little something to give them a little more lightness to the pumpkin batter but they are still so good! Cold, and heated up in the microwave later on; Also good without the frosting on top as a nice breakfast muffin 🙂

Enjoy gluten-free sweet lovers!

xox GFP

OH and PS! IF you miss wraps! Get these 🙂 🙂 They are called Sandwich Petals, I found them at Wegmans and they are so great! A post with great gf wrap ideas to come soon!

 

 

 

{Fall Favorites!}

I always love the change of the season, especially the change from summer into fall; the changes of the leaves and the crisp fall air makes everything seem new.  But fall not only brings a lot of apples :), but brings on the season of cute boots and comfy sweaters! A few of my fall staples are:

An accent of leopard! Just a touch, my favorite are these flats I found for cheap cheap at Charming Charlie! 🙂

Pair these with jeans… khakis… black pants… colored pants… must I go on? I think you get the picture, basically with anything! 🙂 Adds a little flair, and lets face it; leopard is very ‘in’ right now. Or so I gather 😉 On the topic of pants I have been a colored pant fanatic for the past few months, scooping up any pair I can get my hands on! Even if they are supposed to be capri’s.. they usually fit me perfectly as a cute colored cropped pant. #shortgirlprobz, or advantages? However you look at it!

I love love love love my vest, I ordered it 3 years ago, monogram and all ;), and am still completely obsessed! I got a navy one because it goes with almost everything, and I love pairing it with my all-time always obsession, no matter the season!

Stripes!

  

Those two paired with jeans and a cute pair of boots?! Fall perfection if you ask me! Last but not least, accessories! In addition to those leopard flats, I am always in favor of warm scarves, off tones of purple nail polish, and boots of any color! 🙂 I just love fall! Hmm, I’m sure there is more but at least these are some of the faves! Well! I think that’s it for now! TTFN xoxo 🙂 GFP

{Apple Obsession}

I always love apple flavored or scented anything, but fall always intensifies this obsession; leaving me craving hot spiced apples over my vanilla ice cream and burning apple cider candles 🙂 YUM! Today all I wanted was some hot apple cider after timing horse trials all day at my job (Yes, be jealous horse shows and weddings are part of my day to day life), and after a day of being chilled to the bone it was the perfect remedy.

Some of my fall apple favorites are:

Alpine Apple Cider Drink Mix: I discovered this gem in high school and have never encountered a more delicious instant fix to your apple cider cravings. You know in between apple picking and visiting the local pumpkin patch this fall you may need a fix of cider, and this stuff is just perfect!

Bath and Body works Apple Cider Candle: makes any room smell like spiced apple cider

Seneca Crispy Apple Chips: These are seriously the perfect snack, my Dad just recently introduced me to these delicious, and obviously gluten free, apple crisps. And they are cheap! Cheap, sweet, healthy, delicious…. I am really not sure how you can really beat that. We have them at a small grocery chain called Aldie, hopefully they are located somewhere else.

Well short post tonight! Have any more apple suggestions? I would love to hear them 🙂

xoxo TTN GFP

{My life through music}

There are always those songs that instantly take you back to a certain time in your life and I have been brainstorming a timeline of some of those significant  songs throughout my life. It was a really fun project to go through all my music and find those songs that just bring you back.

Music has always been a large part of my life, growing up playing the violin and everyone in my family is involved in some sort of choir, music has always been present.

Young life (baby years!) No I don’t remember these but there are always those songs your parents refer to when they come about, ‘aw I used to sing this to you as a baby’ these are a few of those

  • The Chordettes – Mr. Sandman
  • Jungle Book’s – Bear Necessity
  • The Little Mermaid – Under the Sea

Childhood/ Elementary School this is when I was really introduced to music outside my parents and when I became a complete teeny-bopper N’Sync and O-Town obsessed little girl

  • Tom Chapin EVERYTHING growing up that is all my parents had us listen to, I later realized or was told that it was because it was the most tolerable children’s  music.
  • The Beatles and Jefferson Airplane were also staples on long car rides
  • Britney Spears
  • Hanson
  • Backstreet Boys
  • NSync
  • O-Town
  • Christina Aguilera
  • etc, etc, etc

Middle School is where I really started to branch into my ‘skater girl phase’ going from Britney Spears to Avril Lavigne.

  • Michelle Branch
  • Avril Lavigne
  • Ashlee Simpson
  • 3LW
  • Blink – 182
  • first introduction to Jack Johnson ❤
  • there are so many more I know but these lists may start to get long lol

High School was a mix up of scenes and friends and types of music and types of people and I know for sure there are hundreds of musicians and bands that I listened to throughout high school; but to name a few:

  • Jack Johnson
  • Death Cab for Cutie
  • The Shins
  • No Rain by Blind Melon
  • The Used
  • My Chemical Romance
  • Postal Service
  • Fall Out Boy
  • Keith Urban

College brought frat parties, Hampden Sydney College, and Zeta. So many memories, some remembered some I never will but there was always an awesome sound track in the background

  • The Bread Song
  • Soul Sister – Train
  • Jack Johnson
  • Cotton Eye Joe
  • Thunderstruck
  • Wagon Wheel
  • Dixie Land Delight
  • Corey Smith
  • Zac Brown Band
  • Taylor Swift
  • Strawberry Wine

And I know there are so many more songs that would bring memories flooding back from college, I miss my pledge sisters so freaking much!!

What I also know is that there are going to be so many more songs, musicians, and moments that they will recall to come. A sense of Deja vu, a rush of emotion, a friendly or sorrowing reminder of something left behind or something greatly missed. Music can do that to you, and if you let it, it can be the best memory scrapbook.

TTFN, XOXO GFP

{October brings cool morning runs and Instagram photo challenges}

So I am super excited! (SORRY FOR BEING MIA THE PAST TWO WEEKS! Life has been hectic and there hasn’t really been time for blogging. I am hoping the internet connection is back up at work the next few events and I can blog during my downtime. YAY! :)) ANYWAYS I am super excited because I just signed up for my first 5k! whoop whoop! It is 26 days away and I really think it will be a lot of fun. It is the Three Fox Haunted Hallowine 5k in Delaplane, VA. It involves a vineyard run and a haunted trail! Hopefully a few of my friends will run it with me. I have been trying to run on the days that I don’t work all day long, which is tough on the weekend but it almost makes me look forward to Monday because I finally get to go on a run. Seriously the thought of me saying that 6 months ago is pretty insane.

Does anyone have any suggestions on places to run in Northern VA? I have a few friends who were runners or run for fun but I have only gotten a few ideas. Bull Run Marina, The Battlefields, Prince William Forest, Veterans Park, Leesylvania Park; SO MANY FUN PLACES TO EXPLORE! If only I had an adventure buddy to do all these fun things, it used to be my roomie Emily but we don’t live that close anymore :(.

The most irritating thing to figure out while running that I have encountered is how to carry water with you. So either you actually carry it while you run, or have a sweet fanny pack (NO), or hope your pants have pockets big enough to put a water bottle in and your pants won’t fall down? It’s a problem. Any tips would be greatly appreciated, because with a water bottle I can run so much farther than without. #runningstruggles. I have also been in need of light weight long sleeve breathable shirts they are so comfy and perfect for these fall mornings. Blah RAMBLING! I can’t wait for this vineyard 5k it is going to be SO MUCH FUN :).

And last but not least: SPOILER ALERT! This month I am doing one of those photo a day, Instagram challenges and although it isn’t the one everyone is doing for October (because I thought that one was annoying and lame #sorrynotsorry) I am adapting one I saw from August instead. Look for a post at the end of the month going through my month in photos and a recap about my first 5k!

TTFN, xoxo GFP ❤