In this Sunday Funday Series, I share little tidbits and finds from my week that brought a smile to my face, in the hope that they’ll do the same to you!
1. Sunday Brunch
My parents first brought me to Hobee’s as a two-week-old. They ordered, shoveled scrambled eggs down their throats, and split in under 10 minutes before I started wailing or eked out one measly tear. (They didn’t want to be the couple with the embarrassingly loud howling newborn in public!) Now that I’ve grown up a bit, we take our sweet leisurely time at brunch, drink bottomless mugs of spiced hot tea, and ask for the biggest piece of blueberry coffee cake. (Okay, maybe that last part’s just me.) The waiters recognize me and always follow through. Check out those plump juicy berries and thick cinnamon crumb topping!
2. Cranberry Nut Bread
My mind began brainstorming holiday baking recipes about, oh… Two weeks ago. (Food bloggers are like magazine editors: we start on the next holiday season before the regular world celebrated the first!) So my jaw dropped when I spotted this Cranberry Nut Bread by Kate of i heart eating . A moist and healthy orange flavored loaf studded with large tangy berries? Cut me a slice please!
3. Scarecrows Hard at Work
Although small, our dog is fairly smart. She prances into the kitchen whenever we crack open a deli meat container, and she sprints to her bed if she hears the shower running. (She hates b-a-t-h-s. Shh, don’t say the word!) So when she started growling one afternoon on our walk—without a human or squirrel in sight—I thought she had lost her marbles… Until I glanced to my right and spied these scarecrows. Either the rustling straw startled her or they look way too lifelike—you choose!
4. Donut Showdown: Camping
While browsing OnDemand TV shows, this title caught my eye. A donut showdown? Now that I gotta see! Bryan, one of the competitors on this episode, actually owns a shop called Doughbot Donuts in a neighboring city, and after marveling at his creative recipes, I just might need to drive over for a taste!
5. Spaghetti Squash with Garlicky Kale Pesto
While wandering around Trader Joe’s, I dropped a spaghetti squash into my basket on a complete whim. (Random urges and splurges happen a lot at that store.) The very small, very minor, practically minuscule problem? I’ve never cooked one before! I ran across this recipe by Kiersten of Oh My Veggies for Spaghetti Squash with Garlicky Kale Pesto, which I immediately wrote on the top of my “To Try” list. Since my (picky eater) guy loves garlic more than life itself, I may convince him to eat it with me!
6. Carving Pumpkins for Halloween
We ran out of time to carve a pumpkin last year, so I bought the smoothest, prettiest one I could find this week. With my squeamish stomach, I really dreaded gutting it, but my guy offered to hollow it out for me—and he saved and washed all of the seeds for me to roast. Aww!
As our second Halloween in this house, I actually knew a few of the neighborhood kids, and my heart melted into a big chocolaty puddle when the four-year-old Spiderman boy around the corner ran up to my door yelling, “Hi Amy!! Oh wait… I mean, trick or treat!” This family also drove all the way across town just to say hello (and show off the son’s and dad’s all-too-realistic zombie scabs and scars—yikes!). I haven’t felt like I was part of a community for a while, but those two moments changed my mind.
8. Candy Bar Cheesecake
I bought an extra bag or two of candy this year, so I have more than enough left over to bake my favorite Candy Bar Cheesecake. The recipe is really adaptable, so you can use whatever you have on hand. With only 348 calories and 15.4 grams of protein in each generous slice, you have every right to indulge!
9. Spinach & Cream Cheese “Cinnamon” Rolls
Or if you swore off candy for a month to get back on the healthy eating track, these Spinach and Cream Cheese “Cinnamon” Rolls are the perfect cure. Each hearty and filling roll only packs in 80 calories, so I usually “splurge” and devour two for breakfast. They’re also clean-eating friendly and absolutely ideal for this upcoming holiday season if you still want to fit in your skinny jeans! (Or dress slacks… If there are any boys reading my blog?)
10. Road Runner Sports
Anybody buying shoes from Road Runner Sports always receives the royal treatment. Employees ask you to stand on a white pad that creates a heat map of each foot’s pressure points; then film you on a treadmill to watch for flex and protonation; and finally pick out custom shoes based on their analysis just for you. I finally caved and purchased a new pair of running kicks after two years. Despite my sky-high arches and tiny fairy feet, Saucony’s always fit, and they designed some new shoes with fun colors too. After 8 miles in them yesterday morning, I’m already looking forward to more!