Five Things Friday 01/03/14.


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(I almost put 13 up there. Oops).

Annd it’s the first Friday of a brand new year! And for me, the last official day of vacation. Boo – back to school on Monday! Ahhh well.

But, it’s also the first Five Things Friday of 2014 (I almost did it again…damn).

Five Things Friday

Thanks to Clare for hosting!

5 Things I’ve Eaten Lately:

1. Spinach, whole wheat rigatoni, and a pasta sauce made from bottled tomato sauce, onion, mushrooms, ground turkey and Italian seasoning. Topped with Parmesan, of course.

Pasta Aka: the first meal I actually had to cook post-holidays. It was a good way to go.

2. Smoked salmon and cream cheese on rice cakes with a spinach salad (dressing post-pic).

Smoked Salmon I’m pretty sure this was my lunch for four days straight. Whyyy must smoked salmon be so expensive? Seriously so good.

3. PB & J oats with a fried egg.

Oats My first breakfast in 2014…might as well start with something you love, right?

4. Roasted butternut squash and steamed broccoli with nutritional yeast. Cottage cheese with a bit of protein powder mixed in on the side.

Veggies/Cottage Cheese Another day, another random lunch.

5. Beef and veggies stirfry with brown rice vermicelli noodles.

Stirfry Can we all just agree that stirfry is basically the perfect dinner?

5 Things Happening This Week:

1. Winter is basically ruining my life right now. Including the wind chill, we were at -24 (-11) with a severe wind chill warning, snowing, with poor driving conditions on the highway. Which meant that making the drive up to Burlington to see Chelsea, Gabby and Suzanne wasn’t going to happen. Boo.

Winter (img source)

Seriously, anyone in California, Florida or anywhere else warm want to put me up for a couple months? Cannot handle this cold.

2. It is officially New Years Resolution season at the gym. I went to a hot yoga class on Monday, which was the most crowded thing I’ve ever seen. I’m sure I accidentally smacked a few sweaty limbs in that hour…unpleasant.

3. Earlier this week, Amanda blogged about making a memory jar for 2014. I tried to do one in 2013, but in the first three weeks, remembered approximately 3 times so I gave up on it. Buuut I’m determined to make it work this year! Now I just need to go and find an actual jar/container….

4. Speaking of buying containers, I need to go find one for all of Atti’s toys. Boy is seriously spoiled…

Toys There’s basically a pile that size in every room in the apartment.

5. Oh, New Years Eve! Did everyone have a good one? I can’t tell you much about mine…I spent New Years Day on the couch, if that’s any indication of how mine went. Ugh, that was an unpleasant day.


(img source)

5 10 Things I Love About (Amanda) Spoons:

Yup, it’s this girls birthday tomorrow, so a few fellow bloggers and myself have teamed up to make sure Amanda knows how awesome she is Wink

Spoons (obviously, the pug felt the need to join in on the well wishes too…despite how sleepy he is in this picture).

1. When it comes to what she posts online, she is seriously relatableWhenever I read Amanda’s posts, I tend to find myself nodding so fast I give myself a headache. She knows what’s up.

2. She introduced me to Minions.


(img source)

After Amanda told me how awesome Despicable Me was, I finally went out and watched it. She was seriously onto something – that movie is amazing. As is number number two!

3. She’s just as wonderful in person as she is online.

Amanda Sam After getting a chance to meet her in person this last September at HLS, I can say that she is just as hilarious, sweet, and awesome to be around as you would expect. When you meet people on the internet, there’s always the fear that they’re just putting on a fake persona. But Amanda? Not in the slightest.

4. She doesn’t snore.

HLS (I’m not sure what this picture has to do with not snoring, but that’s ok. Also pictured are Gina and Chelsea!)

After sharing a hotel room with her for a weekend, I can confirm that. Wink

5. Besides minions, she’s also introduced me to Lululemon, the combo that is coconut butter and honey, Greens+ Powder, and more. Lady just has good taste!

6. As a blogger, she is seriously inspirationalHer writing style, her photography, her brand-new linkup…I can honestly say that I’m a little in awe of that girls blogger skills.

7. Her taste in books/TV shows.

The Name of the Wind Anyone who likes Game of Thrones as much as I do (and can introduce me to an amazing new-to-me fantasy series) definitely gets points.

8. Her sense of humour.

Anyone that can laugh when I do things like this…

Running With Spoons (letting her know that I was sad she left at HLS!)

you know she’s a keeper! 

9. Her thoughtfulnessWhether she’s leaving a supportive or insightful comment or sending me a birthday card, her kindness always makes me smile.

10. Can we all just take note of how beautiful she is?

HLS And I mean that both in the physical and non-physical sense Wink Happy birthday to a seriously well-rounded, amazing, kind lady who I’m lucky enough to call a friend!!

And of course, check out the other lovely people wishing Amanda a public happy birthday today: Arman, Lucie, Heather, Davida, and Miss Polkadot.

And on that note, have a good weekend!

<— Have you wished Amanda a happy early birthday yet?

<— What are your plans for the first weekend of the new year? Eric and I are going out for dinner Saturday night, then going to see one of his friends’ band play downtown.

<— How’s the weather out where you are? Seriously if it’s warm…got a spare bedroom? 

<— Gym goers, has the gym gotten packed yet?


  1. I love the pics of you girls at the HLS!! Still so jealous! You all look darn gorgeous.
    Aww and sleepy Atti is the best! I want to cuddle him!
    I love the sight of these creamcheese salmon rice cakes. Genius. Happy Friday Sam!
    Lucie@FitSwissChick recently posted..10 things I heart….My Profile
  2. You are every bit as beautiful as each other Love you guys and happy Brithday Amanda. I really think you are a brilliant blogger Sam- the most honest, down to earth and interesting- my favourite Happy Friday
  3. Oh my goodness, this is soooo sweet. Sam, you just made my heart all soft & melty – that never happens to me.
    I agree, Amanda is one of the most genuine people I’ve ever “met” through the internet. I can’t wait to meet her in person. YOU TOO!!!
    Jo @ Living Mint Green recently posted..Thinking Out Loud (#2)My Profile
  4. I wouldn’t say no to moving somewhere warm right now either… maybe Arman can take us both in for the winter! Then we could finally hang out! I guess Arman could join us too.

    Ugh I can totally relate about New Year’s Day… I spent the whole thing in bed and couldn’t keep anything down until my sister brought me ice cream at 9 pm. I think it’s safe to say I’m not touching alcohol for a very long time haha.
    Chelsea @ Chelsea’s Healthy Kitchen recently posted..NYE 2013/2014: 7 courses at QuatrefoilMy Profile

  5. I am always nodding my head reading Amanda’s posts as well! I don’t know her very well, as I am sort of new to blogs/blogging, but I never skip hers!
    Megan @ Meg Go Run recently posted..You may have missed…My Profile
  6. I remember that picture! Omigoodness I was so miserable that I had to leave you guys early! And I’m seriously all misty eyed right now, but happy tears instead of sad ones. Sammmmmmm! I love you absolutely TONNES, and getting to meet you at HLS was one of the best memories of 2013. Thank you for being… well… YOU… and I’m seriously counting down the days until summer when we can meet again. Well, that and I’m counting down the days until I can bitch about how hot it is
    Amanda @ .running with spoons. recently posted... currently – january 2014 .My Profile
    • I’m glad we were able to surprise you – you know I love you and umm, do we remember that I cried like 10 minutes after we took that picture? Bah – I can’t until next summer
  7. I adore adore adore that you photo bombed your dog for that one. Adorable! I am sorry the weather is so bad, I can’t even imagine because New England is getting slammed and you are like 10xxx worse in Canada with weather stuff.
    Alex @ therunwithin recently posted..TOT: No, Not Tater TotsMy Profile
  8. Awww – I love your shout out to Amanda!
    Liz @ Carpe Diem and Run recently posted..Thinking Out LoudMy Profile
  9. Aww happy birthday Amanda! Sorry your plans yesterday got cancelled- that’s how I feel about today with this snow. Ruins everything! I hope you have a fantastic weekend and enjoy it before the routine starts again!
    Sarah recently posted..Hangover Classic 5KMy Profile
  10. So sad you couldn’t make it to dinner the storm was pretty brutal though! These birthday posts are solo cute! Happy birthday Amanda!
    Suzanne @ hello, veggy! recently posted..Easiest Morning MuesliMy Profile
  11. Love that we pulled this off! Great news that she doesn’t snore!
    Davida @ The Healthy Maven recently posted..A Spoonful BirthdayMy Profile
  12. Not as cold here as it is there, but still pretty miserable. And this snow – ugh. I haven’t been to the gym since the new year started, but I’m sure it will be packed for about a month, and then not so much. Can’t wait for all of the new gym goers to fall of the resolution wagon (or to find another gym)! Haha, I kid. Y’all are so sweet to do these posts for Amanda’s birthday. She’s a lucky girl!
    Amy @ Long Drive Journey recently posted..5 Lessons from My Vegetable ChallengeMy Profile
  13. Baha, I love that you included that she doesn’t snore!! That is definitely a big perk. Nobody likes a snorer ;).
    Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl recently posted..Friday Foodie Favorites: January 3, 2014My Profile
  14. I feeeeeeel you on the cold weather but lol because once it gets hot I just want it to be cold again. Ahhhh well. Also on the hot yoga. I haven’t been back since the new year (yet) but I can imagine when I go it’s going to be twice as packed.
    Happy birthday Amanda!—going over to her blog riiiiight now Have a great weekend!
    Erin @ The Almond Eater recently posted..2014 Ch-Ch-Ch-ChangesMy Profile
  15. I’m having trouble writing January let alone the right year!! I’m in FL so you can come visit Maybe not live with us, but visit for sure haha!! what a sweet post about Amanda! I only started reading her this year, but agree she’s so honest it’s great
  16. I love Amanda’s blog!! Happy Birthday, Amanda! So nice of you to share your feelings about her on this post! I have to ask, how do you make that stir fry? Yes, believe it or not, I don’t know how to make a stir fry! It’s horribly cold here too….and we got about 12 inches of snow! The temperature today is -9 right now. I detest winter and so want to move somewhere less cold and windy!
    • For my stirfries I just cook my protein over high heat on the stovetop, set aside, add frozen stirfry veggies and heat those up, return the protein to the pan and add sauce. When it’s all heated up, I add whatever starch I’m using (rice or noodles).
  17. My gym is packed too! I love seeing all the New Years crowd at the gym. It always makes me a little sad to see them trickle out by February. But then I go back to school and February is the Spring Break gym crowd, haha.

    Sounds like you had a great New Years! My next day was a little rough too, but some (and by some I mean tons of) pizza late in the day knocked the last of the hangover away. The best cure.

    Happy New Year, Sam!
    Sally Rae recently posted..Great Grandma Jeannette’s Tom and Jerry’sMy Profile

  18. Ahhhh cold everywhere! And snow! It took me an hour to get home last night thanks to the weather and it usually takes 15 minutes. Not fun and yes I was freaking out mentally and talking to myself out loud the entire time. I actually haven’t noticed anything different about the gym but since I go before work, I didn’t expect much difference stay warm and safe this weekend hun!
    Caitlin recently posted..Thinking Out Loud #4My Profile
  19. That pasta looks AMAZING!! And I have never thought to put lox on rice cakes – GENIUS! With all those HLS photos, I’m itching to head to another blogging conference, stat!
    Becky @ Olives n Wine recently posted..10 Things I Love About SpoonsMy Profile
  20. LOVE both little black (and white) dresses you’re wearing in that last picture!
    emma @ be mom strong recently posted..1st FitMama FridayMy Profile
  21. I’m pretty sure that I would hate the frigid cold, but I seriously hate living in Arizona sometimes. Can I switch with you for the day?
    This post almost made me seriously cry though. I’m totally fangirling over how awesome the blog community is and how caring everyone is to one another. This was really the reason I started my own blog…. I totally agree that Amanda is seriously one of THE BEST! It’s so sweet how you dedicated a post just for her!?!?!?! to bits and pieces!
    Alice @ dailysweetpotato recently posted..Vegetarian Black Bean ChiliMy Profile
  22. Look at the flap factor of that fried egg

    Urgh, three comments already and I don’t know how I’ll be able to continue for the whole damn year.. oh well. C’est la vie.

    Smoked salmon seriously needs a price decrease. Even the canned variety is expensive. I lol at your NYD antics. Glad the house party stayed true to traditional outcomes.
    Arman @ thebigmansworld recently posted..10 Things I Love About SpoonsMy Profile

  23. I’ve been writing 13 all day! I always do that for the first month or so of a new year.
    Matt @ Runner Savvy recently posted..Would You Rather Running Survey #7My Profile
  24. I so approve of minions making an appearance in the Amanda love. When I hit up the gym on New Years I braced myself for all the sweaty limbs, but it was surprisingly calm. Then again, I was traveling and going to a different gym than usual, my fingers are crossed I won’t be bombarded by limbs when I head back to my usual gym tomorrow…

    I’m glad at least one of us enjoyed NYE out and about (although I’m sorry about the couch laying the next day!), I had a super mellow (okay, kind of boring, let’s be honest), night, but I was visiting relatives so it was still nice.

    • I’m not going to lie, New Years Day I would have given anything to have switched NYE’s with you! And fingers crossed on the limb thing
  25. Pingback: A Birthday Wish to My Favorite Spoon |

  26. It’s so adorable you got Atti to join the party for Amanda. And well, I guess he was clearly tired after playing with all of his toys ;).
    Does anybody else’s fondness of Amanda grow with every of those birthday surprise posts because they all include different points meaning even more reasons to like her?! The “doesn’t snore” one had me laugh.
    Happy Saturday to you and – we can finally say it officially – happy Birthday to Amanda!
    Miss Polkadot recently posted..10 Things I Love About SpoonsMy Profile
  27. This birthday gift you’re doing for Amanda is so cute! I love it when bloggers with similar blog style/attitude/lifestyle etc. actually become friends in real life

    (and just to be annoying, I also have to say that those are not "rigatoni" but "fusilli" in your first pic. I'm Italian, I should know! :D)

  28. Glad to see roast butternut squash getting some love..they’re my fave dipped in almond butter.
    So jealous you got to meet the incredibly amazing Amanda. Honestly though, I’ve been reading her for so long it feels like I’ve met her :p . Oh you are more than welcome to lodge in with me for as long as you please. We’ve been hovering around 35 degrees celcius..can’t moan about being cold that’s for sure!

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