Oh Monday {MIMM}

Oh Mondays, why are you so cruel?

You’re screeching alarm is such a rude awakening after a rejuvenating weekend. Can we make a deal where we just skip to Friday? I can get on board with that?

No? Okay, I’ll stop complaining, after all sometimes Mondays can be a little Marvelous… or something like that.

(Thanks Katie!)

Marvelous is… semi-spontaneous trips home. After being out of town the past two weeks, I was planning on actually spending a weekend in Boone, but Thursday night I decided to head home and celebrate my mom’s birthday and it was exactly what I needed.

Marvelous is… kitty snuggles

jenny cat

Full on crazy cat lady status and I’m not even ashamed about it. Cats make life better.

Marvelous is… applying for graduation and ordering my cap and gown last week! Holy cannoli, where did the time go? I’m pretty sure yesterday I was just a little freshman living it up in the dorms. I’m not sure I’ll ever be ready for the real world.

high school friends graduation

High school pictures are so awkward. I can’t believe this was four years ago!

Marvelous is… Saturday morning pancakes. I haven’t made pancakes in FOREVER and they need to happen much, much more often. Nothing says happy Saturday like a stack of pancakes.

gluten free strawberry pancakes

The pancakes are 1 small banana, 1 egg and 2 tsp mashed together until smooth and cooked in a grease pan like a regular pancake. How an egg and banana create such a fluffy pancake is magic I don’t even understand, but I do know they will be on regular rotation from now on.

Speaking of pancakes, want to see something gross? Of course you don’t but I’m showing you anyway.

chocolate pancake fail

That would be probably the most epic pancake fail you will ever witness. Almond meal, flax meal, cocoa powder and almond milk do not combine into a delicious pancake, instead they combine into one shitty looking (literally) mess that tastes like nothing. But I topped it with a little vanilla frosting and ate it anyway. Frosting makes everything better.

Marvelous is… a cocoa powder dessert that isn’t a complete failure:

cocoa powder peanut butter sweet potato healthy dessert

A sweet potato topped with peanut butter, cocoa powder, cinnamon and a tiny sprinkle of salt. Did I mention I’ve been on a chocolate kick lately? I can’t get enough of the stuff. Actually my chocolate cravings are pretty perpetual (thank you estrogen) but they’ve been especially bad lately. Gimme dat chocolate.

Marvelous is… mountain roads during sunset.

US 421 NC mountains sunset

This photo does the scene absolutely no justice, but it is an amazing sight. I think I’m actually going to miss the mountains a little come May. Flat land is just not as beautiful.

Marvelous is… Mediterranean food. Boone has an amazing restaurant scene, but we are severely lacking in the Mediterranean cuisine department. Good thing we have plenty at home so I can get my fix.

Jasmins mediterranean food

Oh pita points, why must you mock me?

Marvelous is… internship interviews. Actually, interviews are no fun at all, but I had a phone interview today for a potentially AMAZING internship, I’m not sure how the interview went because I didn’t actually do much talking, but keep your fingers crossed for me. I applied for this internship last year and didn’t get it so I’m hoping for a little redemption this year 🙂

Marvelous is… looking to get my Pilates certification! I’m loving teaching too much to stop after graduation. Right now, I’m looking at going the Balanced Body route, but if you guys know anything about Pilates certifications help a girl and give me your recommendations!

Marvelous is… the Yogalates class I’m teaching on Wednesday. It’s a Pilates/yoga fusion class and I’ve never taught anything like it before, but I get to be a little creative with it and should be a lot of fun.

yogalates promotional poster

Marvelous is… finally getting in a long run (8 miles!) after missing out for the past 2 weeks. Not-so-marvelous… the fact that it was on the treadmill and I tweaked something behind my knee 😦 boo hoo. Icing it like crazy and forcing myself to sit down and not irritate it, which is surprisingly easy and difficult all at the same time.

What made your Monday Marvelous?

Do you like Mediterranean food? I’m a huge fan but my boyfriend is not, crazy boy.

Mountains or beach?

Grandfather Mountain

I headed out to lunch with my friend Jessi after finishing the Autism Speaks U 5K (more on that later I promise). We decided on Coyote Kitchen, one of my favorite restaurants in the Boone area. Coyote Kitchen serves what they “Southwest Caribbean Soul Food” I just call it delicious. I ordered the Moab Boat

(Photo was swiped off their website, I’m terrible at taking food pictures)

“Coconut rice, butter beans, sweet potatoes, grilled tofu, fried plantains, roasted corn and broiled jack cheese” served with a side of cranberry chipotle salsa. Vegetarian comfort food at its finest right there. The best meal I’ve had in a while, that’s for sure.

If you’re ever in Boone be sure to check out Coyote Kitchen, they’re food is delicious and they are extremely vegetarian/vegan/gluten-free friendly. They’re a little on the more expensive side for the minimally employed college student like myself (my meal was $9), but it is a real treat whenever I get the opportunity to eat there.

With full and satisfied bellies we headed up to Grandfather Mountain. In April Grandfather Mountain has a $2 admission special for students, so Jessia and I decided it would be a great day to take advantage it. This was actually my first time going to Grandfather Mountain and it was a lot of fun.

Our admission price got us a fun audio tour CD to listen to in the car, it was very informative. The banjo background music totally set the mood, and I’m excited to listen to it in my car everywhere I go now. It’s the little things.

Our first stop up the mountain was the Wildlife Habitats and the Nature Museum. We saw bears

He sleeps just like my cat. So cute. Well, cute when there’s a cement barrier between the two of us. Grandfather Mountain also has a cinnamon-colored black bear which is cool, but I didn’t get to see him.

Fun fact: black bears can run up to 35 miles per hour. Don’t try to out run a black bear.

And the otters were adorable. Otters always are. I think it’s especially adorable that they hold each other’s hands while they sleep so they don’t float away from each other. TOO CUTE. This otter keep doing back flips off the rocks into the water. The 8 year old kid inside of me died of cuteness every time.

They also had cougars, eagles and deer, but they were all hiding. So no pictures of those.

A fun fact about Grandfather Mountain, because the elevation is of Grandfather Mountain is drastically higher than everything else around it it has it’s own climate distinct climate and ecosystems. The climate is actually similar to Newfoundland Canada (thanks to Grandfather Mountain audio tour for all that fun information). My friend and I made more than a few Canada jokes after hearing that fun fact, we’re really mature.

Even the squirrels are different.

We then headed over to the Nature Museum. We saw

North Carolina gold.

Mushrooms with fun names.

And tree tumors. Yes, a tree tumor. I won’t lie, it grossed me out a little, but it was kinda cool at the same time, I think.

Our final stop up the mountain was a hike up to the famous mile high swinging bridge. We took the Bridge Trail which was was 0.4 miles each way, and the views were beautiful.

On a clear day you can see the Charlotte skyline, 80 miles away.

A random cave, we were trying to decide if it would be a bad idea to try to go inside. Or if bears live in there.

The under side of the swinging bridge.

The entrance to the swinging bridge. Elevation – 5,282. I wimped out on the bridge, I made it like 10 feet across and couldn’t keep going. I’m not a fan of heights. The views were so spectacular though, I couldn’t get over it.

As we headed back down the mountain we saw Forrest Gump Curve.

This stretch of road was featured in the movie when Forrest starts running across the country. Not my picture because I was trying to not drive off the side of the mountain.

Overall Grandfather Mountain was a lot of fun, and well worth the $2. I’d love to go back someday and hike more of the trails. They sound like fun, but really intense so I’d have to come prepared.