Grocery Haul & the Weekend

Sunday always comes way too fast. Working full-time and taking on multiple jobs while trying to stay fit and remain sane can be truly exhausting. I try to take each day as it comes and not just live for the weekends, but they’re definitely my favorite part of the week!

On Sundays, I usually try and get some grocery shopping done and take Oliver for a walk. I almost took him to a forest preserve, but I’m glad I decided against it because it was super-muddy out! There was a pretty steady rain going on all day Saturday in Chicago, and because we’re still in the midst of recovering from the winter, the ground everywhere is destroyed.

Oliver and Brutus have no chill

These two crazy boys were happy to be playing, but the cleanup was definitely not fun. Brutus is almost 120 pounds, and he just turned 3 on March 1st, so he’s still in full-time puppy mode. He overpowered me when I was trying to clean his paws and ran through the house and onto the carpet. He had fun watching me while I was scrubbing his mess, though.

Hard to stay mad at that sweet face!

Oliver loves to bask in the sun. He relaxed in the sunlight streaming in through the window after our 1-mile walk.

My sweet boy

After taking care of the dogs, I headed to Aldi. I usually purchase fresh fruits and vegetables once a week, but I have frozen vegetables and proteins to work with at home in case I don’t feel like it. This Aldi is only a few blocks from my apartment, though, so it’s not a huge deal.

Aldi grocery haul – under $40

I do get some of the same things every week – spinach and berries for my smoothies, zucchini, and broccoli. This week, I’m planning on making:

  • Ground chicken chili with sweet peppers, jalapenos, riced butternut squash, and zucchini, and I’ll probably crumble some of the gluten-free crackers for an extra crunch and serve with avocado slices
  • Citrus-fajita chicken (chicken marinated in olive oil and fresh lemon and lime juice), which I’ll serve in Romaine lettuce wraps
  • Pan-fried shrimp with mashed cauliflower
  • Broccoli salad with grape tomatoes

None of these meals are too time-consuming, so they’ll be quick and packed with vegetables and protein. I didn’t do a ton this weekend, but here’s a small recap.

Saturday morning, I woke up and went to the gym for leg-day. Saturdays are always heavier days for me. I did a few different circuits and worked in squats, deadlifts, lunges, leg presses, leg extensions, and I cooled down by running a mile and then walking on the highest treadmill incline for ten minutes.

When I got home, I ate a quick lunch of leftover vegetables (zucchini, yellow squash, and broccoli medley) and some honey mustard-marinated chicken, and then my husband and I went on a small nature adventure. There are a lot of really cool forest preserves and state parks in Illinois. We like to go to some of the ones located in the south suburbs because the scenery is gorgeous and we always catch glimpses of wildlife. We’ve seen coyotes, raccoons, possums, hawks, chipmunks, field mice, and more.

It was sort of dark and foggy yesterday, and the light drizzle added a cool atmosphere to a small cemetery we passed. The Christmas decorations were still up on some of the grades.

After passing some more forest preserves, we headed home to get ready for a date night. When we got married, we decided not to have a traditional reception because we didn’t want to be in debt before we even had a chance to start a life together. Sometimes I get a little sad about it, and I wish that we had done something more, but the memories we made that day are very vivid in my mind, and I’m relieved to not have spent thousands of dollars. Perhaps we’ll do another reception or ceremony a little bit later. Our parents didn’t want us to not have anything, though, so we had a family dinner at Buca di Beppo. Because I was so excited, the whole night there went by in a blur, and I hardly got to try anything! I’ve mentioned to my husband that I wanted to go back there again, both for sentimental reasons and because I wanted to actually try the food. On Valentine’s Day this year, he made me a sweet card asking me on a date there!

I celebrated with one Moscow mule, and we ordered the baked ziti and the lasagna. I try not to go ham with carbs too often, but this was a special occasion. My Italian grandmother makes the best baked pasta with ricotta, but this was pretty good, too!

So, the weekend went by in a blur as it inevitably does, but I’m glad I got to get in a good workout, eat some delicious food, see my pups, and go on a fun adventure. I’m looking forward to the meals I plan to cook this week. Recipes coming soon! I wish everyone a great week ahead!

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