Happy, happy Friday, everyone!

I am FINALLY finished with school for the year!  All I want to do now is tackle my ever-expanding reading list…


(To be honest, I probably won’t get to any of them over break and –shh- some of them will be going to mom for Christmas)

I brought all of these home from the Lindenwood library yesterday.  I paid for them with $1 in pennies! Now that’s a great way to end the semester. The problem, however, is that I literally have no room left on any of my 6 bookshelves.  Ooops. But come on, how could I resist?


Before the happy ending however, the curse of the car attacked again yesterday.  I was pulling out of the driving to take my physics final when, once again, the car quit on me.  At this point, it really doesn’t surprise me anymore. Yep, my car breaks down more often than I refill the gas tank. 

Luckily, mom was only a few minutes away and was able to get me to school in time to take the final.  And as of this morning, my car (I think we’re naming her Christine, from the Stephen King  novel about a possessed car) is back at the repair shop.  Something tells me I need to start looking into getting a new one!  And really, it couldn’t come at a worse time: I have to work today as well as go to an interview at the gym, and tomorrow I have a dance photo shoot. 

At times like these, I know I just have to go with the flow.  I’ll probably have to call and cancel the shoot, which makes me really bummed out but, as Sean keeps reminding me, it will all work out in the end.

Besides, these tough times have made me even more grateful to have Sean in my life, and not just because he’s helping out with the money. Last night after work, he drove all the way down to my house to try to fix my car, and he even picked me up from the gym! I was so, so happy to see him. He has been so supportive and encouraging – and now I know that our marriage can survive difficulties, too!

And while I’m stuck at home,


I can paint my nails!


And lift weights! (It’ll be an easy workout day today: yesterday I did BodyPump, CXWorks core class, and an hour on the butt-burner stair machine! Super sore.)

And I can always bake, right?  Last night I made Chocolate-Covered Katie’s Ultimate Fudge Brownies (I’d post a photo, but hers are better!)

Last week, I also made vegan homemade pop tarts, which I think I’ll try again over the next few days.  They still need a bit of tweaking!


They were delicious, but I need to master the dough thickness and the filling ratio.  It was like the three bears: some pop tarts exploded with filling; some had hardly any at all.  I need to make them just right!


(And yes, there’s eggnog tea in the background.)

What are you baking for the holidays?  My challenge to you: take a look at your recipes and see what you can do to make them a little healthier without losing the taste.  For example, you can replace all of the extra ingredients (eggs, butter, milk, etc) in boxed brownie mix with a simple can of black beans!  Same goes with cake mix, but use applesauce instead.  A lot of grocery stores also carry small packets of powdered whole food mixes or greens, which have minimal taste and can be added to just about anything.


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