New Orleans is pretty cool: Days 1 +2

Friday morning, I was up bright and early to head off to New Orleans. Easter 2014- New Orleans with my Dad and brother. My amazing twin is a Marine in the Marine Corps Band of New Orleans (1 of 10 in the country).

That meant an early morning on Friday, I was up and at ’em. I headed over to the gym around 5:30…only to find out they weren’t opening till 8 because of the holiday. No problem though, I headed back and did a circuit workout in my apartment. Quick &sweaty, just what I wanted!

These knees made it a little more challenging. Guess I haven’t quite learned to walk yet. Or I got attacked by a bear. But probably the first one.

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Workout done.
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I had a quick breakfast and then headed off to the airport. IMG_5095My layover was pretty short, but I enjoyed a quick walk around the airport to stretch my legs. Once I arrived in New Orleans, I met up with my Dad, rented a car, and we headed off to explore. The night was simple, catching up with my brother, walking around the park, enjoying each other’s company!

Saturday morning, we were up and moving early, off to see my brother perform at the Crescent City Classic 10K.

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The race went right in front of the St. Louis Catherdral and Jackson Square, two iconic parts of the New Orleans French Quarter.

My dad and I watched for about an hour as the brass band (and my awesome brother) performed. I was lucky enough to be serenaded by the Marines as their “Guest of Honor”- it was so sweet!

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^^Don’t they look snappy? The best!^^

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^^My amazing twin is the one rocking out on his trombone^^

After the race, and the clean up, we picked my brother up from his base and headed back downtown to grab some lunch. I was practically starved by this point and happy for any food at all. We went to a little restaurant in the French Quarter and it was great.

I had blackened chicken on a greek salad, and I braved some of the crawfish appetizer we ordered. We also had some Fried Green Tomatoes, a southern staple!

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The rest of our afternoon was spent exploring New Orleans and just taking in the gorgeous weather, and each other’s company.

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Unfortunately, my brother had to head back to base early evening to pack up a few more instruments for the band’s big trip the next day. My dad and I used the time to go for a long walk around the base (and look at all the big planes) before relaxing in our room a little. I did a circuit workout, and it felt great to move a little.

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For dinner, we just headed to a local place in Belle Chasse and enjoyed some Mexican food. Salad + shrimp- don’t mind if I do!

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To finish off the night, we practiced taking selfies… or just taught my Dad about them. It was a great night, only dimmed by the fact that my twin had to leave the next morning!

Did you travel for Easter?

Back home. And lots of driving.

December 31-January 2 were spent driving home for my mom and I. Jacksonville to New York– about 996 miles. My conference ended on Tuesday, the 31st, and my mom and I decided to get some miles down and make the next days a little bit shorter for ourselves.

Early that morning, I did a 60 min treadmill interval workout. I knew I would be in the car all day, and I wanted to get my sweat on before being stuck!

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Before leaving, we stopped at Zoe’s Kitchen, a Mediterranean style restaurant. I had a quinoa salad and it was so so good.

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Quinoa and veggies any day! Zoe’s Kitchen is a chain, so if you’re lucky enough to have one, go check it out!

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The drive from Jax to NY is 99% on I-95. It’s insane! Driving on that one road for 6+ hours….it gets very monotonous. Luckily my mom has me to jabber away and keep her entertained! 😉 We drove from about 12-7 pm, with only one stop!

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For our big New Year’s Eve party, mom and I headed out to Olive Garden. We thought it would be fast and easy, but it was so crowded! Oh well, more time for us to hang out 🙂 For dinner I went with the tilapia and shrimp off their Lighter Italian Menu. It was delicious!

After dinner, my mom and I headed to our hotel and conked out long before midnight! Oh well, haha. We needed to be prepared for another long drive the next day.

On Wednesday, my mom and I got up early to get in a little sweat sesh together. I did another treadmill workout, more incline walking than running this time. I would have preferred something different, like biking, but the options are limited when you’re in a tiny hotel!

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Breakfast was eaten at our hotel before we hit the road. A little oatmeal, fruit salad, and some eggs. Plus some trail mix once we were in the car.

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About an hour before we arrived in Baltimore {our stop for the day– to visit cousins!} my mom and I stopped at Applebee’s for some lunch. I had tilapia, vegetables, and potatoes Nothing special, but it did the trick.

After lunch, we stopped at Target- who can resist?! Then we headed up to Baltimore where we spent the rest of the afternoon with my family. It was great. We just talked and hung out, and enjoyed each other. I had some delicious chocolate covered pretzels, and some steamed shrimp and vegetables {we ordered Chinese for dinner}. It was a great night!

Thursday morning, I woke up before everyone else, so I got in an elliptical workout. It felt good to finally get something other than the

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Mid-workout photo…. always interesting.

After realizing that a snow storm was heading towards us, we packed up as fast as we could and got on the road. Thank God, we didn’t hit any bad traffic and made it home before any real snow was coming down!

After we got home, my mom and I spent the rest of the afternoon crafting. My dad was packing up Christmas decorations like a good little elf! We watched the movie Munich. It was really intense, but very good. If you don’t mind some violence and love some suspense- you should definitely watch!

For dinner I had some homemade soup– my dad is a little chef! This was all vegetables and potatoes. Perfect for such a freezing winter night.

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After the soup I also had a few peanut butter cookies! Oops.. haha today I’m starting a new challenge for January which I’ll share soon. Time to get a new plan for 2014!

Question of the day:

Do you craft with your family?

Any good movies you’ve seen lately?