My baby brother graduated yesterday + healthy nachos.

As you’re reading this, my ass has been out on the trail, to work, and is currently dashing to Charlotte to see my little brother graduate.

I’m not sure what to say, cause I remember when he was born and now he’s graduating high school, and I cannot even.

I drove down to Charlotte on Thursday, but not after first noticing that I was sunburnet from a trail run early this week.

photo 1If you ever have awkwardly asked a black person why they wear sunblock, or if they can tan, here is your answer.  A resounding hell yes!

So I made it down to Charlotte just in the nick of time,  but not before my dad sent me this to take us down memory lane..

photo 2This, folks, would be my brother on his first day of kindergarten.  I can barely stand it!

photo 3This is the bro, getting ready to graduate!

photo 4And this is us, after the ceremony.

He did great, and we were all so proud of him.  And we followed the big day with a visit to the local Ihop to celebrate his big achievement.  My brother’s favorite spot is Ihop, and he we had to give the man what he wants.

After such a huge accomplishment, once we got back to my parent’s house, we were all in a very nostalgic mood, and it all summed up to us looking at a bunch of old family pictures.  For your viewing pleasure, I will share with you this…

photo 5No idea.  No idea.  Thank you god for my adult face coming in.

Let’s switch gears for a minute.

Who likes nachos?

So a food that I’ve sort of struggled with is nachos.  I love nachos like a ton, but they’re not particularly easy to fit into your plan, especially when you’ve suffered from gastritis.  Nachos + an inflamed stomach lining don’t get along particularly well.

So, The Hungry Runner Girl posted a recipe for healthier nachos, and they weren’t particularly terrible.  Actually, they were pretty good, so I’m gonna share with you!  If you’re looking for a better way to do nachos….

photo 1 (2)Start with two baked potatoes.  Slice em up, and layer a teensy bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper on top.  Stick them in the oven for 30 minutes (my oven was a little overzelous, so make sure you keep tabs on how the potatoes are smelling).  Pull them out, and add 1/4th of a cup of low-fat mexican cheese blend, and pop the potatoes back into the oven.

Melt them for about 4 minutes at the same temp.  Once they’re done, add avocado, some beans and some corn, and a few jalapenos.  You’ll end up with these…

photo 2 (2)It’s kinda like nachos, but less fried.  A solid, solid recipe, without the terrible stomachache after.

What are your plans for this weekend?


The year 2009

The Timehop app has been treating me to all of these seriously traumatizing photos, and I decided to take a little walk down memory lane to walk you guys through what I was up to nearly 5 years ago, in 2009.  I also feel it right to mention that I totally got this idea from Becca Dorr, who recounted her 2005.  Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure I can’t think that far back, so 2009 it is!

1234881_10100329684601393_8666914097420434132_nIn 2009:

  • I one time skipped an 8 am class by accident because I spent the entire night before imbibing.  Cheap wine.  I emailed the professor and told her I was sick.  Later that day, I saw said professor on campus.  Super awkward.  Had to pretend my headache was due to a condition, and not due to the fact that me and a few friends got a little rowdy the night before.
  • Barack Obama was well into his first term, and it was really really cool to be a youngster at the time that history was being made.
  • I was dating someone who I literally broke up with 65 times over the course of that year.  When it was done, I thought my life was over.  It’s funny how much time changes, right?
  • I moved to Raleigh.  Was not a huge fan at first, but it really grew on me.
  • Michael Jackson died.  My sister called me sobbing, and the next few days were insane, as the world tried to figure out what went wrong with him.
  • The recession was raging strong.  That was not a fun year to be a grad.  Come to think of it, 2011 (when I graduated my Masters) wasn’t the best time either.
  • Remember when that guy landed the plane in the Hudson?
  • Also, the swine flu. Yick.
  • I got hired at CPT, a Pennsylvania weight loss camp, and, my life started to change (for the total better)!

What to you remember about 2009?

You just graduated. Now what?

5 years ago, I graduated from Elon University.

The Timehop app has been rudely reminding me of this – and it’s not rude because it wasn’t a good memory or anything – but rude because of the way I looked in all the pictures.

Allow me to elaborate.

photo 1No….just. Absolutely not.

I need to understand a few things about this photo.  Why am I sweating like a whore in church?  Why hadn’t Vanessa Williams yet introduced me to the wonders of the Proactiv Solutions?  Why hadn’t someone encouraged me to eat a few more salads instead of going to Cookout while drunk?  All questions we may never know the answer to.

photo 3Well folks who graduated this past weekend at Elon, or who graduated anywhere really, I want to first congratulate you on such a huge accomplishment.  All joking aside, college is a really insane and stressful time – not only are you expected to be academically successful, you’re suddenly navigating love, roommates, employment, internships, cover letters, freaking learning how to put a professional email together, all while also going through that awkward process that is the ages of 18-22. It’s a lot.  So seriously, props to you guys.

You graduated, so now what?


  1. Your parents are going to be in really really really good moods and really proud of you.  They’re going to send an email out to the entire family announcing your graduation.  Cherish that because they’re totally gonna not care in a couple of years what you’re doing. My parents have not always been sure what state I was in, I’m gonna put it to you that way.
  2. Your relatives will hand you wads of money to start your new life with.  Do NOT buy you and your friends shots with it because you will be feeling extra foolish mid-summer when you’re still kinda looking for a job.  Take all of that cash, and put it away, just in case your end up on your butt a few months after graduation.  Trust me.
  3. Make sure you keep in touch with those professors that really stuck out to you.  I have cultivated relationships with two professors in particular who really made my education at Elon special. I’ve made two incredibly smart friends, and as a bonus, I feel as though, at least for those recommendation letters for graduate school, I had some strong folks to choose from.  Make sure you thank them, and keep them close to you – they are always an incredible resource to have.
  4. It’s so tempting to relax by the pool for a month.  Hey, you deserve it, right?  But if you’re not going to travel or take a gap year, and you haven’t yet found a job, it’s really time to start looking.  Even if you’ve got plans to head over to graduate school in the fall, there is nothing wrong with keeping yourself busy and making a little bit of cash until you move onto your next venture.  Even if it’s a typical summer job, like at a camp, I would do it.
  5. Postpartum may set in.  This is completely normal.  4 huge years of your life were building up to this.  And now, it’s just done.  You might be weepy and sad, and really find yourself yearning for any excuse to hang out with your old crew, which is fine.  This is a really, really good time to start working on yourself, especially now that there’s a good chance you might have more free time than you did before.  This definitely happened to me – I was hurting after I graduated for a number of reasons.  It took me too long, but I got into crafting, writing, and eventually began teaching Zumba, running, hiking, lifting, and creating an identify for myself outside of Elon University.
  6. It’s time to create your own identity. You’re now a real grownup.  You no longer have step practice or a cappella practice.  You don’t have to write papers.  Friends are not built into your every day – you have to actually work to begin and maintain friendships, as well as romantic relationships. There is no dining hall, no RA, and generally no free pizza on random nights.  When you graduate is when it really begins.  Who are you going to be?

Okay, that’s my commencement speech for all of you beauties that have graduated over the last few weeks, or are planning to do so.

**One last thing**

Discouraging things may happen over the next few months. You might not get an interview right away.  Your college boyfriend, the one who you thought you might marry?  It might not work out.  The girls you could not be separated from may move to Texas and leave you behind.  You feel like you have no friends.  You’re in a new city.  Whatever.  Keep your head up because it gets better.  Discouraging things can’t happen forever.  Things will look up for you.  So keep it up with the persistence, and make sure you keep your ears open to learn from those who have done it before you.

Ok! Done!