Hi there! Another Monday is here, and I am excited about being closer and closer to being done with my clerkship. It’s been an amazing experience working in judges’ chambers for the last two years, but I am really eager to put my lawyering skills to work!
My weekend was kind of a perfect mix of activity and rest, which is exactly how I love my weekends to be!
Friday afternoon, I went to lunch with two girls from work. Even though it was really hot outside, we went to Ramen Nagomi because it was New Brunswick Restaurant Week. I had the kukoni bao and a spicy miso ramen soup. It was absolutely delicious. I wish I had more opportunities to take a real lunch outside of the office, but once a week is usually the best I can do.
After work, I took Brooks on a quick walk. It’s been incredibly hot and humid outside, so our afternoon walks have gotten pretty short lately. When I got home, I started to pre-heat the oven for dinner. While the oven was pre-heating, I did two Blogilates videos. Although I love her workouts, I haven’t been doing too much Blogilates lately because Cassey’s videos used to include a lot of talk about being thin and toned. As you can probably tell, I’m just not about that life anymore. I’m more into feeling healthy and strong than I am into trying to make my body look a certain way. I did one of Cassey’s newer videos and I noticed that she was doing a lot less talking about how you’re going to look after her workout and more talking about how good you’re going to feel. I love that! Big thumbs up to Cassey for being a responsible fitness guru and not promoting disordered eating or thinking.
After my workouts, I threw this chicken shawarma into the oven for about 20 minutes. It’s pre-marinated chicken from Trader Joe’s and, let me tell you, it tasted like the real thing.
I grew up on foods like these, and I was really pleased to find a cheaper and, let’s face it, probably healthier option. I also chopped up some heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, and a yellow bell pepper for a little salad. We ate the shawarma with tzatziki sauce (pre-packaged from Trader Joe’s), and the salad that I made, inside of warm whole wheat pitas. It was delicious!
Pat requested that we stop by a bakery on my way back from picking him up from the bus station. We went to M&M Bakery, which we hadn’t been to before, even though it’s only ten minutes from my apartment. Pat got a chocolate cheesecake. I got a mudslide cupcake and ate it for dessert with some tea. It was so delicious.
We watched a few episodes of The Office and went to sleep because we were both really exhausted.
We made breakfast at home Saturday morning. I poached eggs for the first time, and I was pretty successful! The eggs were a little bit well done, so I won’t cook them as long next time. I was pretty surprised at how easy it was. Once I get them cooked to perfection, maybe I’ll do a post on them! Our breakfast was poached eggs over mashed butternut squash. We shared a banana chocolate chip muffin and a blueberry muffin that we got from the bakery last night, along with some homemade cappuccinos. The blueberry muffin was made from batter that was over-mixed. You can tell when batter is over-mixed because the texture isn’t uniform, and you see holes inside of the bake. Because of that, it turned out a little bit dry. (I watch way, way, way too many baking shows). The banana chocolate chip muffin was uniform throughout, moist, and absolutely delicious. You win some, you lose some!
Later that day, we took Brooks for a walk and then took our time getting ready for the day. We drove up to Morristown, which is where I’ll be working starting in September, and potentially where we are moving to in November.
We stopped for lunch at Minuteman Smokehouse & Grill. The restaurant was pretty empty when we arrived and we were seated right away. Pat had pulled pork with cornbread and coleslaw. I had the Texas Brisket with cornbread and the vegetable medley. We both had Carolina sauce on the side. We also each had unsweetened iced tea.
I got spoiled by good Southern barbecue when I lived in Virginia and have been pretty disappointed by most barbecue places I’ve tried up here. Although some of the barbecue up north is tasty in its own way, I definitely miss the southern style barbecue which isn’t typically covered in a thick, sweet sauce.
Minuteman looked promising, and it definitely delivered! It was some of the best barbecue I’ve had in a long time and tasted almost like what I got used to in Virginia!
After lunch, I showed Pat the building I would be working in and then we walked around downtown Morristown. We stopped by a potential apartment, and got the grand tour. The apartment wasn’t bad, but was a bit of a downgrade from the apartment I currently live in. We both thought we could find something better in our price range that is perhaps a little bit farther from the downtown area.
We walked around the downtown area, stopped at Smartworld Coffee for a quick pick-me-up, and headed home. Pat had plans with his friends, and I had plans to binge watch as much Orange is the New Black as humanly possible. I got through six episodes, which I was pretty impressed with.I wasn’t really hungry for dinner, so instead I just had a bag of pop corn with some tea for a snack. Between episodes of Orange is the New Black, I took Brooks for a walk and on a trip to Petsmart, meal planned for the week, and worked on this blog post.
Sunday morning started with a whole wheat bagel and some garden vegetable cream cheese. After taking Brooks for his walk, Pat and I got ready to go to the beach with my brother, my niece, and my nephew. We stopped by Walmart to get some sunscreen and realized that all the back-to-school stuff is already back! What?! School here doesn’t start until Labor Day! It’s not even August yet. It’s too soon!
It was about an hour’s drive to the beach. Once we got there, we scored some sweet parking, got our wristbands, and went down to meet up with my brother and the kids. I was in charge of my niece, who is slightly nervous in the water because the waves in New Jersey can be pretty choppy and rough. We spent a lot of time building sandcastles, burying each other in the sand, and rinsing off in the shallow water. We did coerce her to go a little farther in, but after a while, I had to pick her up and hold her because she was getting too freaked out. Let me tell you, running up and down the beach, and holding a five year old while being slapped by waves was enough of a workout for me today.
After the beach, we were all pretty starving, so we headed over to a diner near me. I had a burger with jalapeño, pepper jack cheese, and bacon on a brioche bun. It was delicious. We said goodbye to my brother and the kids, and Pat and I went to Magnifico’s for ice cream. I had a twist cone with chocolate crunch on the outside. My absolute favorite!
We headed over to Shop Rite to do some quick shopping for the week, and then spent a an hour or so meal prepping and watching The Office. For lunch this week, we’re having jerk chicken with pineapple black bean salsa and rice. Neither of us was very hungry for dinner, so we just heated up some soup and called it a night.
It’s supposed to rain all week this week, so I am super glad that we got some time outside! I got kind of upset earlier last week because I realized I haven’t done a lot of things that I had been looking forward to this summer. I’m writing down an end-of-summer bucket list, and then I’m making a fall bucket list so that I don’t end up in this same situation come November!
Question: What did you do this weekend? What’s on your end of summer bucket list?