Dinner in St. Michaels

Welcome back to the real world kids.

I got the chance to skip Monday at work kind of – we had a company retreat over in St. Michaels where we stayed overnight Sunday. A few of us got massages at the 5 Gables Inn and Spa where we all stayed. After, a colleague and I checked out Gina’s (a delicious little eatery that Hubs and I checked out a couple years ago on our last trip to St. Michaels), and the St. Michaels Winery and then we had a team dinner at Ava’s – a delicious little pizzeria on the main drag in St. Michaels.

avas cupcake st michaels

Dessert at Ava’s.

Wine tasting at the St. Michaels Vineyard.

It was unseasonably warm for January on Sunday night. Since I didn’t know where we were going when I packed, so I packed pseudo-dressy-ish. Thankfully, I didn’t feel overdressed at all, I was warm (enough) – until my colleagues opened the window in our private room (BRRRR) and we had to walk back after a rain.

dinner outfit

Sweater (Gap)
Pants  (Old Navy)
Shoes (Gap, old – similar)
Scarf (Old Navy – similar)

Of course, I came and remembered I had to register for the St. Michaels Half before the price went up. I’m excited to actually train for a race again – and I’m hoping to schedule a mid-late summer metric or full century so I simultaneously train for a long road race and a long bike race just to see if it’s doable and if I like the long bike ride distances. You know, in hopes that I’ll have the desire to do a half ironman next summer.

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Autumn-y Apple Fritters

I am failing miserably at all of my goals for the month.

But in my defense, I have not bought anything new and we’re 20 days in and we just tried our first new recipe last weekend. We hit up Larriland Farms with some family friends up in Howard County, picked pumpkins, took a hayride and generally enjoyed the season.

 

We also saw cows! Ethan has started mooing which is highly amusing.

We did not pick Apples (that would have been a nightmare with little man) BUT we did buy some fresh picked ones and so Hubs has been in full on apple baking mode. His first mission? Apple fritters. Cue Pinterest. Thank sweet baby jebus for Pinterest.

I’m not a HUGE apple fan but these? Were amazing. I’m not going to post the recipe since it was NOT my own but I am going to link back to it and tell you it was easy (Hubs isn’t the best at following directions and I don’t usually trust him to bake, but he baked these incredibly well without burning anything so huzzah!)

neon

 

{Recipe here}

And no, this recipe does not require a deep fryer. Just a lot of vegetable/canola oil. It was super simple. Not hugely messy and not incredibly time consuming. So huzzah! A+ on all fronts!

apple fritters

He also made apple dumplings but ehhhh I wasn’t so down with those. And not just because half of those pots and pans are STILL in my kitchen sink uncleaned.  BUT, we still have a good 6-8 apples left so we’re trying to figure out what to make next. I may get him to make more apple fritters – those were AMAZING!

What’s your favorite Apple recipe for the fall?

 

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Fall Bucket List: Visit a Pumpkin Patch(ish)

Autumn Bucket ListVisit a pumpkin patch

I had been on the prowl for a pumpkin patch/apple orchard for a while because it’s one of those autumny things I grew up doing, but haven’t done in quite a few years. Now that we have Ethan, we’re more likely to go do more family friendly things (never mind the fact that he’s barely seven months old and has no idea what’s going on) than say, go to Rehoboth to drink all day at Dogfish Head which would have likely been the case a few years ago. So, a couple weekends ago one of my mama pals was rounding up the troops to make a trip to a pumpkin patch. We picked Larriland Farms out in Howard County and met up after morning nap times were through. Even though there was fewer of us than we anticipated it was still a really fun day.

Despite the hour long trek from Annapolis, it was so worth it.

Larriland Farms is a vast farm that allows you to pick your own of whatever is in season – this particular weekend they had tomatoes, beets, apples, pumpkins, and a few other things. However, we did not pick our own because:

1. The pumpkin patch is actually up the road. By the time we were done kicking around, feeding babies, changing explosions, and feeding ourselves (they had a fantastic food bar and apple fritters cooked right in front of you) we didn’t want to risk melt downs. We’ll be going back for that.

2. The apples were over the river and through the woods. Okay that’s an exaggeration but we did have to drive to the far side of the farm (a good couple of miles), repark, get baby out of the car seat again, reattach him to the Tula, and blah blah blah. You get it. #alloftheparentingwoes. (I kid. I kid.) That being said, one of the moms who met up with us hit up the apples and said a lot of them were relatively picked over or something like that. So we decided to skip.

3. We didn’t feel like it. There. We just didn’t feel like it. I mean I did. Kind of. But Hubs was concerned about hitting Ethan’s limit and being out in a field and then having him become like a bear which he does if he does not get a nap right at the moment he needs it and making our hour long drive home hellish because he’d be screaming the entire way. It’s happened before – I’m looking at you MommyCon.

That being said, they did have plenty of pumpkins, apples, and other gourds and fruits pre-picked that we grabbed at the end of our excursion.

I really loved that the farms had fresh food – we had apple fritters – delicious and omg. So much powdered sugar. One of the mamas with us is dairy free and they even whipped up a special batch for her on the spot which was super awesome of them. Kudos to the bakery!

We hung around, contemplated where to go next but then the babies needed to eat.

Then we got food – they had a little stand set up with some bratwurst, hot dogs, and the like – I had a hot dog and Adam and I shared some sweet potato fries that I’m fairly certain were among the best that I’ve had.

ethan goat

 Ethan saw a goat. So that was fun.

Then like I mentioned, I bought allofthegourds. Seriously – acorn squash, spaghetti squash, baking pumpkins, and mini pumpkins. All of them. Adam had to stop me from buying more/any jams/jellies/apples/allofthethings since lord knows it takes me two weeks to follow through on recipes I want to try. My only complaint – and this is the Vermonter in me because I grew up in a town that had a place called the Apple Barn – is that this autumny day trip was missing cider doughnuts (though we did get a half gallon of apple cider that was ahhhh-mazing).

Alas. It was a fun day out at the farm. It’s a perfect day trip from Annapolis/Baltimore or DC. Free to visit, plenty of parking and if you want to pick your own pumpkins – they’re up the road on the left when you’re heading back to the highway. Check the website to see what’s good (I wish I had known that before we went out there) and be prepared for farm awesomeness.

Larriland Farms
2415 Woodbine Road
Woodbine, MD
http://www.pickyourown.com/

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Ask Heidi: When in Annapolis…

Time for another volume of Ask Heidi – I was pretty stoked to get this question – if you’re visiting Annapolis and need some advice where to find the best dozen crabs, best orange crush, best burger, best fro-yo, best pre-race dinner…shoot me a line. I won’t steer you wrong I promise!

Hey Heidi! I’m running a race in Annapolis soon and am looking for things to do after the race to check out the town! Got any suggestions?

Two of my favorite things! Racing and Annapolis! Seriously, Annapolis is such a fun town you will love, love, love it.

Here are my top five things to do in Annapolis if you’re visiting whether for race day, or of course since it’s just about that time of year, coming into Annapolis for a football game (Go Army, beat Navy!).

Jazz Brunch at Rams Head. They have a lovely outdoor patio and on Sundays they have live music – it’s especially awesome in the spring, summer and fall – since the patio is decently shaded and in the cooler months they have heaters. Their prices are reasonable and the food is pretty decent, and on the weekends they have a bloody mary bar for brunch, I’m not a bloody mary fan but that still sounds awesome. It’s a great meeting spot and has a decent amount of parking back on Cathedral Street or in the garage off Calvert Street. If it’s raining I recommend sitting in the pub downstairs. It’s got a lot more charm than the upstairs.

Check out City Dock. There’s nothing better than walking around City Dock on a nice summer day. Grab a cup of coffee or freshly made italian soda and walk around enjoying the boats. There’s a Farmers Market before that ends at noon on Sundays and plenty of little shops on Main Street and Maryland Avenue to pique your interest as well! (Star Monogram on Maryland Ave, Pink Crab and Sperry on Market Square and Black Dog on Main Street are all favorites of mine).

Crabs. Feeling crabby? Check out one of the many crab shacks in Annapolis. Between Mike’s Crab House on Riva Road, The Point in Arnold, Cantler’s in St. Catherine or Phillips on City Dock, there are plenty of places to get your mallets going. Careful though, crab season started a little late this year so prices are up but still, a summer can’t go by without enjoying at least one dozen crabs covered in Old Bay with an orange crush to wash it all down.

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Reward yourself with some Smith Island Cake. My favorite place to pick up a slice (or two?) is Boatyard Grill over in Eastport – I think because it was my first slice of Smith Island Cake makes it that much more special to me. While you’re there try some of their Summer Shandy – it’s some of the Boatyard Ale with lemonade and it is DIVINE.

summer shandy at boatyard grille eastport

Get some ice cream. Annapolis is home to some of the most AAAHHHH MAZING ice cream joints. Between Annapolis Ice Cream (my personal favorite – try the Strawberry Oreo!) or Kilwins, or even Storm Brothers, grab a cone and enjoy your success! Don’t have the ice cream too soon though. I did that back in 2009 when I had the awesome Ben & Jerry’s after the VT City Marathon…let’s just say the five minute drive back to my Nana’s didn’t end well. Ice Cream + marathoning before any thing else = not good.

Finally, make sure you stick around for your race’s after party. Most (though definitely not all) races in Annapolis have pretty baller after parties and since most races in ‘Naptown start at the stadium you’re in a great location. Zooma did with barefoot. I know the Annapolis Running Classic does, and the Annapolis Ten Miler has a band and some vendors also. When you’re done, then take the Circulator downtown and get your tourist on!

As always if you have any questions regarding Annapolis, running, or anything mama related, shoot me an email or tweet at me! All questions are answered anonymously as always! 

 

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#RunBaltimore Half Training Week 5

Ya’ll. I did something this week. I traded up. For this bad boy. It was inevitable really. Our jogging stroller was a bit of a tank – since it was given to me, I passed on the love to a friend who’s starting the Couch 2 5k and needed a jogging stroller. It was big for our apartment and car and being a two stroller household because of it just was NOT working for us.

So I traded up.

Bob Stroller

I’m so excited. So very, very excited. I’ll have to make due with the Snap & Go for todays walk (if we make it, depending on how baby feels), and Tuesday’s Grand Opening of Stroller Strides Annapolis but that’s all good. They’re walking dates so it ain’t no thang. But Wednesday night? Game on bias.

So last week…

I fit in a run on Monday with a pal of mine – we did about 3 miles (a little less. Her baby girl had a melt down half way through the 2nd lap of the Naval Academy Stadium loop ).

Wednesday Adam and I did 3.5 miles (3 laps around the stadium – my new favorite place to run).

Saturday I fit in my 8 with a loop around the mall and then a trip to the Eastern Shore to check out the Cross Island Trail. Adam wanted to run 5 so it was perfect.

cross island trail running

I didn’t think about it as an 8 miler until we started back to the car and then I was like shit yo. My legs are sore. Oh wait. I’ve already run SIX MILES. Shiiiiit. But eight miles. On the books.

cross island trail maryland running

We took turns pushing the stroller – but damn. Pushing 50 lbs of baby and stroller makes shit a lot more real.

All in all, a good workout, a great day. If you ever have the opportunity to go run or bike on the Cross Island Trail – do it. It’s a beautiful trail. After our workout, we had brunch over at Holly’s Restaurant (which I first read about on Liz’s blog. So glad I tried it out!)

Hollys restaurant

French Toast and Fried Green Tomatoes. Delightfully carby post run breakfast.

But now for this week…

Monday – walk
Tuesday – stroller strides
Wednesday – 6x400m with 1/2 mile warm up & cool down. 2 minute rest between intervals.
Thursday – Run 3.5
Friday – rest
Saturday – run 9
Sunday – rest

Still working out how I’m going to fit my 9 miler in since hubs has his business school orientation all day. It may be a late afternoon run (Or I can use my baller new STROLLLLLLLEERRRRR by then. We’ll see. 🙂 )

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Summer Bucket List: Visiting A Farmers Market

One of my most recent goals was to start being “greener.” Eating locally more often, picking green products for us and for baby. To do this, one of my goals for the summer was to check out the local farmers markets. Recently, Adam and I checked out two of them here in Annapolis!

A few weeks ago, we checked out the one on Sundays on Compromise Street downtown.

annapolis farmers market

We were all out of cash, but I will definitely be back – they had some amazing looking produce, meats, and baked goods. Not to mention, the Naked Juice folks were there giving out free samples, a nice, refreshing treat for a warm Sunday walk downtown!

annapolis farmers market

annapolis farmers market

naked juice annapolis farmers market

The Annapolis Fresh Farms Market is open Sundays from 8:30 a.m. – noon from early May – late November. You can also check out their other locations around the greater DC Metro Area 

This past weekend we checked out the Farmers market over at the Westfield Annapolis Mall on the first floor of the Macy’s parking garage. It’s there every Sunday morning and since we live so close, we figured it was about time! So worth it (though definitely get there earlier, we didn’t and I think we missed out.)

annapolis farmers market

They had Brenda’s Best Jams – fresh and sugar free!

annapolis westfield farmers market

annapolis farmers market

They had fresh ice pops – I got a mexican chocolate one. Oh em gee. It was amazeballs. So flavorful!

westfield annapolis farmers market

They also had fresh produce and herbs. We didn’t buy any since we’ll be in CT for the later half of the week.

fresh perogi

They also had fresh pierogi. Next time you come to Annapolis Lexi, I will have some for you 🙂 The ones we tried were DELICIOUS!

cedar run farm annapolis farmers market

We did end up getting some hot dogs from Cedar Run Farm – based out of the Eastern Shore, they have grass fed meats and fresh BBQ sauces. I’m pretty excited about these for the fourth.

The Westfield Farmers Market is open every Sunday between May and October from 10 a.m – 2 p.m; and the first and third Sunday from January through April. 

Other farmers markets in the Annapolis area worth checking out…

  • Anne Arundel County @ Riva Road & Harry Truman Parkway on Tuesdays from 7 a.m. – noon and Saturdays 7 a.m. – noon. Saturdays run from early April until late December, and Tuesdays run late May through late October.
  • The Department of Natural Resources also has one in their parking lot off Taylor Avenue on Thursdays from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. from June to Labor Day in September.
  • A little bit North at the Severna Park Park & Ride at Jones Station Road and Route 2 has a farmers market from 8 a.m. to Noon on Saturdays from late April until late October.
  • Finally, a bit further south in Deale at the Cedar Grove United Methodist Church Parking Lot on Thursdays from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. This one opens up starting July 11 and runs through October 31.

Not sure if there are any I missed, I’d also love to check out some of the markets up in Baltimore, and of course make a trip into DC to visit my favorite at Eastern Market.

What are your favorite finds at farmers markets? Do you frequent them? 

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Showered with Love part 2

Yesterday, a great friend of mine threw a lovely little shower for Adam and I at her apartment. It was  a small to-do but it was a perfect afternoon with our friends that was so needed.

There is no doubt in my mind that baby Schmidt is welcomed by a great group of people and will be loved more than he will ever know.

We had great food, great drink (I splurged with a Dr. Pepper – everyone else enjoyed wine and beer 🙁 ) and TONS of laughs.

And because I’m awesome, I subjected myself to my friends measuring my belly. Becca (back) was not even close. Turns out Jason’s got an eye for size or something. Hubs bowed out since he felt he’d be too biased. Given that he lives with me and stuff.

Baby Schmidt also received all sorts of goodies from our friends – from books to more clothes and then some.

And more cute hats. Of course. Babies definitely come with hats.

So many thanks to Sarah for hosting – WE  are so blessed to be surrounded by such amazing and thoughtful pals.

Now, there’s 2 weekends left. Next weekend Denise is taking our maternity photos – she took our fantastic Christmas card photos, so I’m super excited about this.

We moved the bassinet into our room, I have one more load of laundry to run, and we took the strollers out of the nursery also. So. Aside from my anal retentiveness about artwork, which I’m hoping to finalize in the next week or so, the nursery is all donezo! Woo!

It’s all coming together, and because my fellow 3/27 lady  (even though baby will be arriving on 3/22) asked last week, tomorrow I’ll post our final to do list and how we’re doing the final preparations. Stay tuned! Can’t believe there’s only 18 days left!

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An Annapolis Feast

This past weekend the wonderful in-laws were in town, a whirlwind trip filled with great food, lots of laughter and talking about the year ahead with hubs now having a new job – there are lots of new changes here!

Saturday afternoon, my mother-in-law and I went for afternoon tea which was delightful. I think delightful is really an appropriate word for my first ever “proper” tea experience. If you live in/near Annapolis and are ever wondering what to do with visitors? I highly suggest the afternoon tea at Reynolds Tavern. The tea selection is amazing, the food was quite delicious. Not to mention they have a few different options for platters (or whatever you want to call it) –  we got one the smaller options, they also have Colonial High Tea that’s a four course meal, and a champagne tea among a few others.

We walked around downtown after, and then headed to church finishing off the night at Galway Bay over off of Maryland Avenue (which, is littered with amazingly, cute boutiques! Must go back when they’re open…). Fun fact: Galway Bay was featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives! They featured the Guinness battered oysters and the stuffed cabbage wraps – both of which Adam ordered Saturday night.

Hubs enjoyed them – the cole slaw had a bit of a bite to it but over all he said it was amazing.

I’m still on my massive pasta kick, so I enjoyed a linguine with shrimp dish that was quite possibly some of the best shrimp I’ve ever eaten. It was delicious.

 

Buttery amazingness. Yes I’m aware amazingness is not a word, but who doesn’t like to make up words when it comes to describing delicious food?

We also enjoyed some Annapolis Ice Cream, which is my favorite ice cream joint in town (even more so than Menchies), and lots of good conversation and window shopping – really a perfect weekend.

In other news…

Army Ten Miler training started this week. I altered my training a little bit though.

Monday – rest
Tuesday –
6×200 with 200m rest – warm up/cd run to/fro the track
Wednesday –
strength (AM)
Thursday –
3-4 mi easy run
Friday –
strength 
Saturday –
5 miles
Sunday –
rest/yoga/stretch

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This past weekend

We started out Saturday with a short run – it was super short and super slow but it felt really good to get moving. We’re still planning on doing the Fun Run with Fleet Feet tomorrow so that should be fun!

Then we headed up Towson to stop into the new Lily store – where I wanted to buy ALL of the things.

We finally got our Furminator for the cats – OH EM GEE. Seriously we’ve taken off the equivalent of like FOUR cats of fur.

We also had a great dinner out with my old roommate and his wife at Boatyard – one of my favorites

I’m focusing on moving more this week, and I want to get started (again) on the 100 push up plan – I’ve really gotta start knocking these items off my 30 before 30 list before it’s too late!

This week I will…

Run 3 days
Do one day of yoga
Complete week 1 of 100 pushups

Also I cooked an amazing meal in my slow cooker last night – about time i busted that bad boy out – too bad I forgot pictures sorry. But take my word for it, this is delicious.

Slow Cooker Lasagna

1/2 onion chopped
1 lb sausage (I used TJ’s sweet italian chicken sausage)
28 oz Italian style tomato sauce (I used the canned stuff from TJ’s)
1 box oven ready lasagna noodles
basil, italian seasoning, oregano, garlic powder (i was out of garlic) and salt
15 oz ricotta cheese
1 egg
1 pkg mozzerella cheese

1. Cook up sausage (if you have the type with the casings take out of casings to crumble) with onion for about 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix 1/2 c mozzerella cheese, ricotta cheese and egg together beating until well mixed. set aside.
2. add sauce and spices. I add my spices to taste because i’m bad at measuring them. Let simmer about ten minutes.
3. add layer of sauce, noodles. breaking noodles as needed to allow to fit into slow cooker
4. top noodles with ricotta and egg mixture slathering so it’s evenly spread across the noodles. Top with mozzerella and sauce mixture. Repeat three more times.
5. Add last row of noodles top with sauce and mozzerella cheese (i add a lot. others may not so add as much cheese as you want)
6. cook on low for 4 – 6 hours or until noodles are cooked and not burnt. (i burnt mine a little on the side…whoopsy daisy)

Enjoy!

I’ve been on a massive lasagna kick lately so now I have leftovers to last pretty much all week for lunch. Hubs is going to be all kinds of pasta’ed out but so worth it.  At least for me.

How was your weekend??

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Last Two Rides

I did my last pre-tri bike ride yesterday.

It was supposed to be my last BRICK workout but I begged off of the running. Perhaps that was a bad decision, either way, I’m sure we’ll find out on Saturday.

Sunday was supposed to be that pledged last BRICK but instead of setting my alarm at the butt crack of dawn as many endurance athletes are wont to do, I decided not to. I don’t often sleep past 8 or 9 on the weekends when I let myself “sleep in” so I figured we’d be fine.

Au contrare self. Au contrare.

I slept in. I cuddled my husband. Then I curled up with the new Jennifer Weiner book. By noon we were finally like hmmm we should make something of our day.

So we got ready, strapped our bikes to our car and headed up to Arnold to get our bike on. After some Naval Bagel of course.

11 miles up to the end of the trail (well almost the end… we were about a mile and a half short. We stopped at the Sun (start of the planet walk) and then headed back. We stopped each way at the Ranger Station to pee/refill water bottles

22 miles in about 2 hours or so but man was that tough. Like holy hell tough.

Yesterday, we fit in about 9.5 miles in under an hour – I feel better for my race, but man I really wish I had fit in that BRICK. Whoops?

My legs are sore today – and I feel just a little worn down so I’m going to stick to taking it a bit easy this week so i can be well rested for my race on Saturday.

This week’s workouts:

Monday – 10 mile ride (DONE)
Tuesday – yoga
Wednesday – 3 mile run
Thursday – travel day to CT (rest)
Friday – short 2-3 mile walk/run
Saturday – RACE DAY!!!!

I’m super nervous about packing everything. I’ve traveled for races before but road races I generally only need running clothes, fuel belt, sneaks and my garmin. For my tri I need:

…goggles, towel, bucket to rinse off feet, biking sun glasses, helmet, sneaks, socks, tank top, sunscreen, water bottle for bike, fuel, fuel belt for run, garmin, bag to carry everything down to the Transition Area,  biking shorts, jog bra that I decided to do my swim in so that I can wear my tri shorts as well.

Plus I need to make sure I have my air pump to just double check my tires before we go. I want clothes to change into after so I don’t have to enjoy wine in super smelly I-just-finished-a-tri clothes.

I told the husband I’m going to pack Wednesday night since we’re leaving Thursday afternoon. I’m planning on getting to work early and on travel days we’re always rushed. Super rushed. So because I don’t want to forget anything, it’s all going to go in the car on Wednesday night.

Do you have a way to stay organized before traveling for a race??

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