Weekend Recap

Hi friends. Happy Monday. I had a pretty excellent weekend. There was a heavy emphasis on relaxing this weekend, which was just what I needed. The last couple of weeks have not only been very busy but they have been incredibly emotionally draining with some personal & family stuff we’ve had going on.

So let’s recap my relaxing weekend shall we!

Side note: as you can tell from the photos below I am completely obsessed with Snapchat these days! My username is amberyharding if you’d like to follow me :) 

Friday Night…


After having some fun with snapchat on Friday afternoon at work I made my way to the grocery store and the local butchers block to pick up some nice ribeye steaks!

Once I got home I immediately poured a glass of vino.


Then Eric and I proceeded to make an incredible Friday night stay-in dinner. We had really nice ribeye steaks, shrimp, veggies and baked potato.  We ate while watching the Outlander season finale.


It was such a nice Friday night and exactly what I needed after an intense week.


Eric works on Saturday’s so I was on my own for the day.


I started the morning on the deck reading in the sunshine with my cup of coffee!

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Then I ate a delicious breakfast of gluten free waffles with chia seed pudding, natural PB and blueberries on top. So yum! After breakfast I went to an amazing Saturday morning yoga practice. I am really starting to love the yoga studio here and I may get an unlimited membership after my punch card runs out.

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Post yoga I hit up the Farmer’s Market. New city but same Saturday mornings – I love going to the Farmer’s Market on the weekend. Plus there is so much great stuff at the market these days – I got kale, rainbow chard, arugula, carrots, beets, green peppers, apples, cherries, peaches and blueberries for $40!

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After yoga and the market I dropped my car off to get detailed. I get my car detailed maybe once or twice a year and it is such a indulgent splurge for me but I love it. I HATE cleaning my car so would way rather pay someone to do it. Then since I was carless I walked to my afternoon mani-pedi appointment. It was actually so nice to walk there and back, it was only about 3km round trip so not bad at all.

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Saturday night was my favourite indulgent activity that you may remember from my get to know me quiz, I had a hot bubble bath, enjoyed a bowl of ice cream and watched Gilmore Girls. Perfection!



Sunday morning we got up bright and early and drove out to check out a lake that was about a 45 minute drive out of town. Eric’s mom and our nephew Drayden joined us.



Unfortunately the lake was not that great. There was a tiny rickety dock and nowhere else to fish from the shore and it wasn’t great kayaking weather with the wind. So we only hung out for about 1.5 hours and then headed back to town.

We went for a nice brunch and then headed home to spend the rest of the afternoon resting.

And rest we did. Naps, reading in bed, face timing with my brother who is about to head off on an epic 30 days of travel (Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Rome, Florence, Zurich, Brussels, Barcelona, Warsaw and Munich) — leave travel recc’s in the comments!

It was a super relaxing and lovely Sunday evening. I am officially on the last season of Gilmore Girls and soooo sad about it.


And that’s a wrap!

How was your weekend? 

Don’t forget to leave travel recommendations for my brother in the comments! He’s spending the next 30 days traveling around Europe and visiting Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Rome, Florence, Zurich, Brussels, Barcelona, Warsaw and Munich.


Post Whole 30

You can read all my Whole30 recaps here if you’re wondering what I ate for 30 days:

I wanted to wait to do a full, full recap until I had been about a week post Whole 30 so I could fully report back on the different foods I’d tested out and how they felt. Now a week later I’ve had the following: cheese, rice, ketchup, frozen yogurt, pizza, ice cream, sushi, peanut butter and beer.

So far so good and nothing seems to bother my stomach. Though, gluten, specifically in the form of pizza did make me feel a bit bloated and icky.



I’m not going to lie – this sushi hit soooo many spots!


Peanut butter on peanut butter on peanut butter with some oreo thrown in :)


Ice cream and beer on the deck while reading my book!

So here’s the jist of my Whole30.

How did I feel?

Good! The first week was tough and I got the ‘carb flu’. In fact, I thought I may have actually gotten sick that week because I had quite the sore throat and just felt really stuffy and crappy. Day 1, which was a Sunday was completely fine and then Monday morning I woke up feeling like I got hit by a truck. That lasted for the first five days.

Then after that I felt really good. I felt like I was fueling my body with whole, clean foods. The stomach bloat I had been dealing with during all the busy moving and travel was mostly gone and at the just over halfway part I did start sleeping super well and slept through the night for the first time in a very long time. Sadly that only lasted about four days and I was back to getting up once a night or so.

My energy levels were also a lot more steady and I think I have the lack of sugar to thank for that. I didn’t have the energy crashes in the afternoons and it was easier to get out of bed in the mornings.

Was it hard?

Nope. This was the most surprising part for me. I really psyched myself up for Whole30 and thought it would be so so difficult but it really wasn’t at all. I think a few key things helped with this. 1. It was summer so there was plenty of fresh and delicious fruit and berries in season. 2. With Whole30 you are not counting calories or measuring your food intake. Basically you can eat as much as you want as long as it’s compliant and that was helpful. If I was starting to have cravings I would just have some nuts or fruit.

Would I do it again?

Absolutely! In fact I felt so good by the end I’d like to do this twice a year. I think maybe next time I would a modified Whole30 and allow legumes. It would have been nice to have lentils or chickpeas as a protein source occasionally as I ate A LOT of meat on Whole30.

Was it expensive?

Yes. It was. Ha ha. My groceries for the month were about 50% more. That being said, I only ate out three times in 30 days and I would have ate out less if I hadn’t been traveling the last weekend of the program. In the one week since going off Whole30 I’ve ate out twice. Ha! Sooo, I think it kind of evened itself out in terms of cost.

What now?

So ideally I would like to do Whole 30 from Sunday dinner – Friday lunch and then eat whatever I want from Friday dinner – Sunday lunch. That said, I am definitely more of an Abstainer and getting back on track with Whole30 yesterday was harder than I thought it would be and I did have a few slip-ups. We’ll see how today goes!

If you’ve done Whole30 how did you implement the habits from the program into your day-to-day eating after you were done? Would you do it again? 


Get to Know Me Better!

I saw this Get to Know Me quiz on A Foodie Stays Fit and then on Peanut Butter Runner and thought it would be a fun addition to my blog that is all just Whole 30 recaps, weekend recaps and monthly recaps lately. Enough with the recaps already, I know!

So here we go :)

1. What brings you the greatest joy? Being at home with my little family – Eric and the pets. I love traveling and exploring but I truly do love just being home. The other night Eric was watching TV, I was reading a book, Webster was curled up on the couch beside me and Chloe was at our feet and I just felt so filled up. So much gratefulness. So much joy. Other things that bring me joy are exercise, spending time with my family, girls nights, sleep and travel.

2. What are your vices? Facebook scrolling. Oh the scroll. I’m so bad for getting trapped doing it when I’m really tired, it’s a terrible habit I would like to kick. I’ve tried taking Facebook off my phone completely but then I feel like I’m ‘missing out’ on certain things.. Maybe I just need to get over that. Any tips?

3. What is on your nightstand? I have a drawer in my nighstand that is filled with CRAP – ha ha! So on top of the nightstand is just books and my kindle and a cute bag filled with my daily supplements & medications. Here is a picture :)



4. Do you have a secret talent? Hmmm, I think my secret talent might be planning travel. Nothing overly exciting, but I get asked a lot about how I manage to plan all of the travel we’ve done and also score great deals on trips. It takes A LOT of time. I would estimate I spent 30 – 50 hours planning our Ireland and Scotland trip. So much researching, price comparisons etc. We are going to Hawaii this Christmas and watching deals / doing price comparisons has been on my to do list since Fall 2015! You can’t just decide to go on a trip and book something and expect to get a good deal, you have to take the time to compare prices and plan it out. So I don’t know if that’s really a ‘secret talent’ or not but a lot of people do ask me for advice when planning trips so I guess I’ll call it that for now!

5. What is your greatest indulgence? Something I did a few times before going on Whole30 is eating frozen yogurt in the bathtub, while sipping on a glass of wine and watching Gilmore Girls on my laptop. That was SUCH a treat! And it still works without the froyo and wine as I’ve discovered during Whole30 :) Something about a hot bubble bath and your favourite TV show on Netflix just feels indulgent!

6. What should everyone try at least once in their life? I do think everyone should live alone at least once. I only did it for about 8 months but it was a real growing experience for me.

7. What makes you laugh? Eric. Every day. My husband is hilarious.

8. What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you? I think people would be surprised to know I have quite the potty mouth and tend to drop more swear words than most people might expect!

9. What is on your bucket list?  So many things! Top of the list; having a family and hiking Machu Picchu in Peru.

10. What is on your feet right now? Tan flats! I actually couldn’t wear flats for the longest time because they gave me blisters but I’ve discovered I need a really soft/flexible pair of flats to work for me. I have three pairs I rotate through now and I love them!


11. How did you make your first dollar? My parents used to own a small store so I think it was working for them in the store.

12. What superstition do you believe in? Karma! If you put out good you will get good back, if you put out bad you will get it back, eventually…

13. What items in your closet do you wear the most? It depends on the time of year. I basically live in my Fabletics gear on the weekends. I wear my Liverpool Denim Jean Jacket A LOT in the summer and fall.

14. What is the best gift you’ve ever received? Man, this is a tough one… I don’t know if using the words ‘best gift’ is the way to categorize these but two very memorable gifts are the afghan my grandma knitted for us last Christmas, I will treasure it forever. And then also the Birthday Picnic Eric took me on for my 26th birthday in 2014 was a pretty special and unique birthday ‘gift’.


15. What is on your liquor shelf? I haven’t drank alcohol in 32 days so I’m not entirely sure. I know we have several bottles of wine and I think some whiskey Eric bought back from Ireland that he never plans on opening. lol

16. What is on your kitchen counter? Kitchenaid mixer, knives, coffee machine, microwave, clean dishes that are drying, candle… a bunch of crap. Here is a picture :)



17. What would you never leave home without? The only thing I truly never really leave home without is my iPhone – but sometimes I even take the dog for a walk without that! Rarely though.

Questions to answer in the comments: What is your greatest indulgence and what items in your closet do you wear the most?