2012: Look how far we’ve come

So back on December 31 of last year I posted my 2012 New Year’s Resolutions. And, like many, I’m positive I didn’t complete ALL of them…That being said, I didn’t do terribly. So, because it’s that time of year again, I wanted to do a little check-in and update on where I’ve been through the year and where I plan to go in 2013!

Ok let’s start with the ones I DID do:

Blog more.
Done. You’re looking at it, son.

Maryland Double Run the Maryland Double.
DONE! Woo hoo! This was HUGE for me. Not only was it my first half marathon…it was my first TWO half marathons…in the same year! Big step for me and my hatred of running. Felt great! :)

Eat better.
I didn’t do fantastic with this ALL year, but I’m definitely working towards it on a more regular basis.

Write more thank you cards.
Done. Again, such an easy thing to do to show your appreciation.

Set aside at least 10 minutes to check in with my Tone It Up community every day.
I try to do this! 10 minutes may have been setting the bar a little high, but I think I try for 2-5 for this. Check in with the girls on the team, tell everyone what workout I did or healthy recipe I made…trying!

Save money. Again, trying… :)

And now for the ones that DID NOT happen (whoops):

Try one new group fitness class every month and attend at least one meeting of it each week for that month.
I tried a few but I couldn’t keep up! Molly & I started training with a trainer and it just didn’t happen. I’m hoping to get into more classes this year! Especially because I realized this year that I can go to 3 months at the MAC gyms with my Merritt membership through a partner pass! WIN!

someecard

Text/talk/call my best friends at least a few times a week.
As much as I wish this were true, I fell short. I love you girls. I’m sorry work has made me insane and I don’t call as much as I should. I’ll do better I promise!

Make at least one recipe out of every cookbook I own.
I just have SO MANY cookbooks! I’ll get there…I will!

Read at least one book every month.
I read a few…just not that many. I’m thinking maybe a Kindle will help me…Any thoughts?

Ok, so what’s the plan for 2013:

Here’s hoping that these are achievable…

love more, worry less

Worry less. 
Yea yea yea…I know that’s a lofty one. But hey, realizing it needs to be done is the first step, right? “I’ve got to let it go and enjoy the show…”

Blog more – yes, even more!
I’m hoping to bring back Workout of the Week and maybe add in a Recipe of the Week, a page or day for link love, and much more!

Run the Maryland Double AGAIN!
I haven’t pulled the trigger yet, but I’m really thinking I should do it again. Run while you can, right?

Pull together my recipes! 
So I’ve been saying this for like three years now, but one of my goals is to pull all my favorite recipes together in a little cookbook. There are a few companies (I really like Blurb) that help you make your own books with your own pictures and everything. I’ve been slowly taking photos of the food as I make it, but it just hasn’t ever come together. This year, IT’S HAPPENING.

Make at least one recipe out of every cookbook I own. 
This WILL happen. Especially because I just bought myself a new cookbook (yes, it’s as amazing as it looks) and realized I really don’t have room for it. SO I need to do a little purge. I think this will help me really weed through the books I have that are pretty versus the ones I have that I’ll actually use.

Use the Merritt/MAC pass 
I love my gym, Merritt, but MAC does have some cool classes I’d like to try out. I have to get this pass and USE IT.

Text/talk/call my best friends at least a few times a week.
This is so worth the effort. Get ready to get annoyed with many messages and calls, ladies. Yes, even as you have your baby Alli! :)

Eat clean (as always) 
Yes, we constantly say this BUT shouldn’t it always be a goal to eat well? I think so.

Ok so that’s enough for now, right? What are YOUR 2013 goals?

Saving lives

Hi friends! Some of you may know my lovely friend Annie Truax (@annietruax) – one of my fellow Baltimore gals and #BMOREtoned Tone It Up sisters. Well, past her sweet Twitter posts and what she shows off online (aka what I tag her in haha), what you may not know is that she’s the fighter, an amazing person and a fantastic friend.

baltimore marathon

Annie killin it during the Baltimore marathon! (I just joined her for a mile or two…26 miles? she’s just plain crazy haha)

Unfortunately, this year was a tough year for her. Annie and her family unexpectedly lost their beautiful mother, Pamela, in March to lung cancer after being diagnosed only a month prior. BUT, as I said, she’s amazing. She took a look at the odds (according to the American Cancer Society, as of 2012 nearly one-half of all males & one-third of all females living in the US will develop cancer during their lifetimes) and went right to work, doing everything in her power to improve those odds.

fitbloggin annietruax

We love Annie! Showing our support at Fitbloggin ’12 :)

Annie is currently honoring her mother’s memory by raising funds for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) as a participant in their Team In Training program!

I hope that you’ll think about donating in her honor to her fundraising campaign. It’s SUPER easy to donate! And just think – you’ll be getting in one last act of kindness for 2012!

CLICK HERE to learn more about Annie progress and to donate online quickly and securely. You’ll receive a confirmation of your donation by email.

Tone it up

Annie & the BMOREtoned crew excited to welcome Karena & Katrina of Tone It Up to Baltimore!

Each donation helps accelerate finding a cure for leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma. Nearly 958,000 Americans are battling these blood cancers. Annie (& I) hopes that her participation in Team In Training will help bring them hope and support, while allowing her to honor her mother’s memory. It is so inspiring how far their team has come in the fight against cancer!

BMOREtoned

BMOREtoned loves & supports our Annie!

Also, I’m sure she’d greatly appreciate it if you shared this post and/or her site to encourage support! Its surprising how many people we interact with in our day-to-day lives that have been affected by cancer in one way or another, and who would love to offer their support. It never hurts to ask! <3

[Giveaway] #G2KHoliday

ONE WEEK UNTIL CHRISTMAS EVE! Want some presents now? (DUH.) I can help with that!

Anyway, I met some fun people from Unilever’s Good to Know team at Fitbloggin‘ (seriously, who did I NOT meet at Fitbloggin’ this year?!) and was very intrigued. I had been trying to get away from butter, but still hadn’t really found a spread I loved (aka one that Tom would eat regularly). Then, they introduced me to Brummel & Brown at their Fitbloggin’ event and I was hooked!

brummel and brown

Brummel & Brown is made with YOGURT and it’s less than half the calories of butter! And it tastes good. I Tom was SOLD. Also, it (and all the Unilever spreads)…

  • Have 0g trans fat per serving
  • Contain no partially hydrogenated oils
  • Have no cholesterol
  • Are 70% less fat than butter per serving!
  • Have 30% fewer calories than butter per serving!

All good things, right? Right. :)

For the holiday season, Unilever challenged people to make a holiday cookie recipe with one of their spreads to test how they stand up to traditional butter. Now their website says B&B may not be the best for baking but I wanted to challenge that! (I only have one speed…challenging hahaha)

The Unilever team provided me with some great baking essentials to complete the challenge:

  • Silpat baking sheet liner
  • Steel cooling rack
  • 17×11 Large nonstick cookie sheet
  • Stainless steel cookie scoop
  • $10 gift card to purchase baking ingredients

 

baking giveaway

And now I have the amazing opportunity to give them away to YOU!

To enter to win Unilever Baking Prize Pack:

Leave a comment below telling me, “What would be your “Good to Know” holiday cookie creation?” 

Extra Entries: 
Follow katekatebear on Twitter and tweet “Enter to win a #G2KHoliday Prize Pack from @katekatebear http://bit.ly/UDKjta

Post this giveaway link to YOUR personal or fan Facebook page and leave a separate comment here telling me you did so.

Subscribe to this blog by either email or RSS feed. Leave a separate comment telling me which way you did.

Deadline to enter is Friday, December 21, 2012, Midnight EST. Contest is open to United States residents ONLY. Winner will be chosen at random and contacted by email. Unilever will directly handle your “Good to Know” winnings. :) 

sugar cookies

Ok so here’s the good part – COOKIES!

I tested Brummel & Brown with my go-to sugar cookie recipe from the Southern Living Incredible Cookies cookbook.

Classic Sugar Cookies

  • 1 C Brummel & Brown spread
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 3 C all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 t salt

sugar cookie ingredients

  •  In a medium to large bowl, beat the spread with an electric mixer for approx. 2 minutes of until creamy.
  • Add sugar, beating well.
kate eating cookies

I mean if you want to try the cookie dough, I guess that’s ok…

  • Add egg and vanilla, beating well.
  • Gradually add flour (it may poof up if you add too quick!) and salt, beating until well blended.

cookie dough

  • Divide dough in half and wrap each in plastic wrap. Chill two halves for approx. 1 hour.

**COMMENCE 1 HOUR DANCE PARTY!!!**

  • At this point, I would traditionally roll out the dough and use cookie cutters BUT because I just got this shiny new cookie scoop, I decided to make drop cookies with some extra toppings I had!
  • Scoop small sections of the dough onto baking sheet liner.

drop cookies

  • Smush each ball just a little to flatten out cookie.
  • Cover with your favorite toppings! I used chocolate chips, almonds and sprinkles!
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes. With the baking mat, it threw my timing off a little because it seems to change the way the cookies are heated – so it was closer to 10 minutes.
  • Cool cookies on baking sheet for approx. 1 minute on baking sheet then transfer to wire rack.
  • ENJOY!

chocolate chip sugar cookies

Good luck to everyone entering the giveaway contest!

Give back to our troops!

I love love this promotion Stella & Dot is doing and had to share! When you purchase one of their charm pendants, S&D will donate gifts to active duty members, female veterans, military wives and their teenage daughters through the one of the below organizations!

USO donations

Anything to do with those in the military usually gets me…I mean honestly, any commercial gets me. A soldier returning home and surprising their child? Done. Soldier calling his wife? Done. I’m almost tearing up now just thinking about it…

Anyway, below are the (super cute) charm necklaces they are offering for this promotion. If you’re interested, check them out here: http://bit.ly/TtPY7r

stella and dot charms

 

God bless our troops (& troops families)!