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Congrats are in order!

Posted by Lauren

FIRST OF ALL!

Huge congratulations to my smart, talented, beautiful sister for finishing her undergrad at USC!!! It wasn’t too long ago we sat on our parents’ staircase with a big whiteboard “playing school”. I’d selfishly teach her what I learned in school, knowing she’d be able to understand – we’re talking the quadratic formula at age 8! Nicole is a remarkably fast learner and she is efficient with homework and study time, getting things accomplished well before their due. I admire her for not only graduating a semester early, but also doing that and transferring schools. It’s not an easy feat — transferring typically makes your college days longer due to mismatched unit requirements. Not for her!

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Aaaand, she most definitely made the most of her time at USC! (DG, TDF, football games galore, spontaneous Vegas trips, close friends in her department, ETC!) Her passion for dance has reached a new level; it’s obvious how much love she has for the TDF team and it’s been awesome to watch her shake it on the court. I can’t wait for what lies ahead for Nicole — she’s so darn talented, thoughtful, and helpful! Honestly I don’t know what I’d do without her….. I can’t wait for her to officially move back to the Bay Area and start her next chapter (plus, I’ll get to see her all the time yay!). So proud of you, sis!

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* * *

Back to your regularly scheduled programming….

As of Thursday night, my little vacation officially started! The week went by pretty fast and I’m proud to say I made it to The Bar Method Monday through Thursday! On Mon/Wed I went to 7 am class, Tues I opted for a 5:30 pm class, and Thursday I (somehow) got up on time for the 6 am class. Shocking, I know.

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After (a particularly challenging) Bar class, I drove down beautiful University Ave for one very important thing…

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Coffee!!

(What else at 7:10 am??)

I went back home, blasted Pandora’s Xmas station, and started packing for Denver. We leave tomorrow at the crack of dawn! I also started a load of laundry and cleverly hung a few delicate items on our drying rack tandem bicycle.

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After work, I quickly got ready for Kyle’s office holiday party in Burlingame.

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We stayed til about 10 pm and then went home to finish packing. The 4:30 am wake up call was apparently not early enough and our blue shuttle took off without us. Totally my fault. (I feel SOOOO bad about this!!!!!)

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Don’t worry, we made it to the airport …it was just a series of unfortunate events (that are now semi-comical). Think: Home Alone meets Christmas Vacation.

Next stop — Denver!!

Question: Where are you headed for the holidays?

-Lauren

Brussels Sprouts + Donuts

Posted by Lauren

Starting this post at lunchtime on Friday

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Spaghetti Squash. Lots of spaghetti squash!! Followed by peanut butter, Cheerios, and a BBQ happy hour at work! (See @gainsight on Instagram)

Lunch was actually leftovers from Thursday’s home cooked meal…

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Salmon, stovetop brussels sprouts, and aforementioned squashoodles.

We ate “in” because Wednesday we ate “out”… aka at Pluto’s for splitsies salad & sandwich.

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Kyle’s never been to Pluto’s and I couldn’t convince him to like it more than the other build-your-own salad bar down the street (Sprouts).

I also went out to eat for lunch on Thursday with some of our work team. We had dim sum (duh, it’s our thing) at a place two doors down – Fu Lam Mum I think?

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It was our intern’s last day :( We’re going to miss him in the office!

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My other lunch excursion this week? Early lunch with Krizia on Wednesday at LI.

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I owed that pretty lady a birthday gift! Anyone remember last year when we all celebrated her birthday at a roller disco?! And I fractured my wrist? haha #goodtimes

Speaking of birthdays…

It was my roommate Kevin’s birthday on Tuesday! A few friends got together at his fiancĂ©’s house and sang him Happy Birthday…

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Don’t tell Kev, but I was most excited to try Julia’s homemade ice cream cake! Soooo good, had seconds fa’ sho.

And if Tuesday needed to be any sweeter….

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…it began with fabulous fruit salad and donuts at our all-hands. When in Rome, right?

And that is a rewinded version of my week via some of the food photos stockpiled in my iPhone.

Question: What was the best thing you ate this week?

Brussels sprouts or that donut! They both made me feel so good :)

-Lauren

26.2

Posted by Lauren

Happy Birthday America!!!

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Photo from last year. Hella patriotic.

I’ll be camping with 30 peeps at Folsom Lake with no phone… Hope you have a great holiday weekend!

* * *

I’m finally going to tell you all about something special….

….No, I didn’t sneak off and run a 26.2 marathon or anything. I also didn’t sign up for a full marathon. (Not saying I won’t ever do one, but that distance terrifies me and when I do sign up for it, I want to kick ass and I’m in no place to train the way I want to right now). I just thought that blog post title would get your attention.

Sneaky.

This post is actually another birthday recap post… The last one, I promise!! To be fair, our blog was “down” that week and I’d really like to look back on how thoughtful everyone was and the fun times.

26.2 = turning 26, summarized 2 photos at a time

Friday, June 21st

Treated myself to a really good run, no excuses! (I’m making a lot lately)

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Coworkers gave me a cute lil birthday cake and sang :)

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Family dinner at Amber India (love Nicole’s recap!) and then a sister date at the movies to see Bling Ring.

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Thanks for celebrating a few days early mom, David, Sam, Nicole, and Kyle! I loved all the cards and gifts – you’re too nice to me.

Saturday, June 22nd

8 mile run with Miranda in Oakland! Those Oakland hills are no joke!

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Matt and Miranda treated me to a home-cooked brunch of champions… these two are serious pros in the kitchen!

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Banana almond butter pancakes, eggs, and oven-baked bacon. Plus a big mug of coffee, my first try of kombucha, and their homemade kefir!

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Thank you both for the hospitality!!! Cant wait for Salinas Valley 1/2 and Colorado!

I left Oakland and drove north to celebrate Victor and Maria’s engagement party :)

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SUCH a good time! Both Maria’s dad and Victor’s dad gave very heartwarming speeches and everyone was so happy to celebrate their love.

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Plus, the food was delicious. Top dish = Victor’s stuffed plantains. Who knew the guy could cook?!

Sunday, June 23rd (BIRTHDAY!!)

I spent the whole day with Kyle and it was awesome having time for just the two of us. He had a full day of surprises in store for me. :)

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The best fruit salad ever (heavy on the berries and zero pineapple), delivered in bed and then a maple donut bar from Donut Delite on our way to Alameda.

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Ferry Ride! Windy and foggy – so San Francisco haha

He planned for us to spend the day on Angel Island, what a good surprise! We walked around the entiiiire island!

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Then it was time to picnic and enjoy the views from the restaurant deck. Wine for me, Corona for him, and some good eats: quinoa salad, fruit salad, and nachos with chili on top (yum!)

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Later that afternoon, we took the ferry back to Alameda and then drove to Kyle’s place in Palo Alto. We watched an episode of House of Cards and then decided it was dinner time.

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Oh, Tacolicious. I’m so happy you opened in PA. The enchiladas were unbelievably good and the beef taco stole the show (we also split pork, veggie, and fish tacos).

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Thanks for planning a day for just us Doze!

Monday, June 24th

In addition to the texts, voicemails, FB wall messages, comments on IG, and snapchats I received on Sunday (thank you friends!!!), I also had two surprises on Monday!

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An amazing gift basket of goodies from Fran, my college roomie… and Aman (ex-coworker) treated me to lunch at Crepevine. I’m spoiled.

Again, thank you everyone! I had such a great birthday/week/month! Can’t wait til next year ;)

Question: What’s your favorite kind of donut??!??!!

I almost always choose maple-glazed.

-Lauren

Nine (more) Awesome Things

Posted by Lauren

Remember Nicole’s recent post, Nine Awesome Things? Well I’m a copycat and I’m doing the same thing. Other things I copied Nicole with in life: wearing makeup (yes my younger sister wore makeup before I did), listening to good music (she shares, I listen)… the list goes on.

1. RAGNAR SO CAL NEXT WEEK!

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I have NO idea why I haven’t mentioned it yet… but I’m running Ragnar So Cal with 11 other folks (most of them bloggers) next Friday! I was invited by Ragnar to join the Ragnar Swagnar team and blog about my experience. Can you believe it? Dream come true. Luckily, I have one relay under my belt, so I’m fully aware of the lack of sleep, late night runs, and funky van smell about to come LOL

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Ragnar’s So Cal relay breaks down like this:

  1. 200 miles to cover by 12 people, running 3 legs each (or 6 people if you’re intense)
  2. start line in gorgeous Huntington Beach
  3. 3 beach exchange points!
  4. finish line in beautiful San Diego
  5. I’m runner #4 (in van #1)

2. Short and Sweet Runs

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I am still adjusting to my new work schedule and my workouts are suffering. The temporary solution? Run Less. Run Faster. Around lunchtime on Friday I went for a speedy 2 mile run because something is better than nothing! Mile 1 in 7:22 and Mile 2 in 7:05 :) wassup speed?

3. 8 Star Challenge

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Starbucks gold card member benefits include a free drink after 12 visits. They sent out an 8 star challenge invite and you better believe I signed up. Free coffee in my hands 30% sooner? Yup.

4. Wednesday night’s homemade dinner!

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In a surprising turn of events, I actually had a homemade meal at my house on Wednesday. I’m so guilty of going out for dinner, but I was determined to make food after Wednesday’s Girls on the Run lesson. I made banana cornbread and spicy veggies with curry garbanzo beans. Kyle came over and helped cook the fish! After dinner we went for a walk since the weather was so nice. Perfect evening!

5. Only the most famous donuts ever…!

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Thursday morning our office had a great surprise – Voodoo Doughnuts!!!! The group managing our PPC and landing page campaigns is based in Portland and they brought these glorious donuts to our office for our first face-to-face meeting. (Officially love them!) 80% of the food I ate on Thursday falls into the “donut” food group… heh heh.

6. Sean’s birthday BBQ

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I mentioned that after the Rock n Roll race last weekend I went to my friend Sean’s house for his birthday BBQ (he is wearing the “Praise the Lard” shirt lol). I have some good photos of the food that I really need to upload from my fancy camera. I want to show off the two desserts I brought – a pistachio orange torte with honey glaze and a red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting! The real star of the show was the barbecue though….

7. Story Time

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Best part of Sunday’s BBQ was huddling up for story time with Sean. I won’t go into specifics, but it reminded me so much of being in college. I miss SLO.

8. Discovered Orinda?

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On our way up to Tahoe last night, Kyle was in charge of finding us food. He told me to pull off the freeway as we passed through Orinda (near Walnut Creek). I’ve never been to this little town before, but their theater square area is so cute and has tons of restaurants! We picked a nice Mexican spot, Barbacoa, for dinner. I went for a glass of sangria and taco plate. The food was pretty good, but the service was only alright.

9. Recycling!!!!

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Before heading to Squaw this morning, we stopped at Safeway to recycle 2 months of plastic, bottles, and cans. Our cabin is now $46 richer and 15 trash bags lighter.

Question: tell us something awesome going on with you!

-Lauren