Tag Archives: planes

To Florida For Christmas!

Finally I have reached the point where I can start telling you about my trip to Florida – and I’ve already been in Florida for more than two full days! Funny how that happens when you’re busy having a good time!

While my dad and I were eating dinner in Boston, my sister texted me to tell me we’d be flying first class on the way to Florida. I hadn’t flown first class since I was an infant on my mom’s lap, so I was pretty pumped. Turns out they were trying to get us out of coach to make room for more people on the plane, and my dad has mucho reward points, so upgraded we were!

I don't care if it's obvious I haven't flown first!

I don’t care if it’s obvious I haven’t flown first!

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Rest Days, Christmas Day, and Too-Jay’s

You have until 11:59PM EST tonight to enter the giveaway for Anytime Fitness CEO Chuck Runyon’s book “Working Out Sucks! (And Why It Doesn’t Have To)”. What are you waiting for?!

HAPPY FRIDAY! Is it just me or did this week go by quite fast? Even though I had to work on Monday, unlike the rest of the world (seemingly), I still don’t feel like it’s Friday. I just kept telling myself that this morning as I tried to drag myself out of bed. I was in the habit for awhile of waking up before my alarm a couple times a week, but lately I’ve been sleeping like a rock and can barely wake up, despite going to bed at the same time as I usually do. I’m gonna take this as a sign that I’m less stressed (I tend to wake up thinking about all I have to do for the day – quieting my mind is not something I do well) but I also do not enjoy feeling so sleepy each morning.

Yesterday was a long, busy day with errands that ran over, so I took it as a spontaneous rest day from the gym. I was feeling a bit guilty about it at first (after all, reading “Working Out Sucks!” will take away any excuses you have in your reserves),  but I took to Twitter to get a little #fitfluential chat about rest days going, and received some good insights.

The general consensus seemed to be 1-2 rest days per week – sounds good to me! But everyone is different – some people just starting out in working out may only do so every other day. As long as it’s something, I think you deserve a pat on the back for getting out there.

This is the portion of the post that moves into beyond-late-recap zone, a recent trend as of late, but a trend that I plan to continue since I believe that withholding delicious eats from my Florida trip would be more of a crime!

Looks like Marian agrees with me on this one…

And is it appropriate to say Merry Christmas, since this is a semi-Christmas post, even though it is now January 2012? I think I’ll say it anyway – Merry Belated Christmas, because this is a Christmas Day recap! It’s my blog, and I’ll recap late if I want to!

Told Hannah she looked like a yogi prepping for boat pose here – she didn't follow.

My dad’s flight to Florida left ridiculously early on the 25th (as in, he had to get up at 4:30am), but my siblings, mom, and I were lucky enough to score a flight that departed at a godly hour, so we left the house around 9:30am (leaving me time to do the moving vinsaya portion of P90X Yoga). Hannah and Mom scored their usual airport Dunkin, but I just can’t stand their coffee anymore enough to even have it once in a while, so I went with a nonfat café au lait from the not-much-better Lavazza.

He loves me so much.

Michael opted for a bacon, egg, and cheese on a plain bagel from DD – Hannah stole a bite!

He doesn’t quite understand my blog-photo-taking ways, nor does he want to partake in them.

We arrived at my grandparents’ apartment in Florida in the late afternoon, which gave us time to get settled in and chill for a bit while my parents headed to TooJay’s Gourmet Deli to get Christmas dinner! This is a tradition we started last year, and I hope we keep it, because I adore TooJay’s and would much prefer their food to a traditional Christmas meal. I know my blend Amy may agree with me on this – we spent time tweeting about TooJay’s!

Fun fact – my mom was a TooJay’s waitress up until she had my younger sister! So our family has a lot of history with this restaurant. They have various locations (the one we got dinner from was not the one my mom worked at), but quality never varies from city to city. I remember going there with my dad for dinner when I was little, so she could be our waitress. Of course back then all I’d touch were the steak fries because I didn’t like anything else. Sometimes I’d convince my dad to order me a slice of carrot cake just so I could eat the little icing carrot on top. I was a real pain, huh?

Michael went with the most basic of meals. He’s still in the I-like-much-of-anything phase that I was in until about age 18.

Chicken tenders and steak fries.

The steak fries still remain one of our favorite menu items, so there was no shortage of those. I had a few once I finished my meal and knew I had room for a bit more.

Hannah's grilled chicken pesto sandwich on wheat.

My favorite part of going to TooJay’s has got to be their picklesChristina, you feel me on this? I probably ended up eating all but three of these over the course of our stay in FL, including three during this dinner and four in one sitting a few days later. What salt addiction? I don’t know what you’re talking about.

Can't put a price on pickles (or maybe you can).

My dad, mom, and I all got the same thing – the turkey pastrami on rye bread, Russian dressing on the side. This dressing is not something my mom and I usually eat, but it’s a necessary indulgence when it comes to TooJay’s. Oh, and steak fries are VERY good dipped in it, FYI.

A normal looking sandwich, right? Not so fast.

That’s right, each half is stacked that high. IT’S SO GOOD with spicy brown mustard. I ate every last bite.

Then I had one bit of my grandpa’s leftover dill chicken salad (it’s under there somewhere), and oh man. Best chicken salad I’ve EVER had! I polished it all off, I couldn’t help myself. And then I definitely didn’t have any room for dessert. But man oh man, that was fine with me because this chicken salad was fantastic.

We spent the rest of the evening exchanging gifts with my grandparents and watching the NBA’s return (more specifically, the Miami Heat’s return) before hitting the hay. I was bummed Christmas was over, but psyched for the amazing vacation that lied ahead!

What do you usually have for Christmas dinner? Relive what you had a couple weeks ago for me!

Tennessee Recap: Part One

Still no power at work so I am back at Whole Foods hangin’ out and blogging. I just cannot stay in my house, I need to be out and about and around background noise. People are confused as to why I’m here since I’m in the lucky 50% of the town that has power back. But I just like to be out and about! It makes me feel better about sitting on my butt and using the laptop for an extended period of time…anyone else feel me on this?

I got in another morning workout today – a Pilates Ball Fusion class at my gym, followed by 30 minutes on the elliptical to get my sweat on. The pilates class was very good for my tight muscles, and the elliptical allowed me to start a new issue of my favorite magazine More. Does anyone else read this? It’s for women over 40 but I honestly love it…so informative and there are always both inspiring and practical articles!

In book world I just finished Jennifer Weiner’s “Fly Away Home and really liked it more than any Weiner book I’ve read yet, probably because it wasn’t full of cheese.

I started a new book last night, Jodi Picoult’s “The Pact. I’m already so intrigued and anxious to see how it ends. I could barely put it down after the first chapter – I think this will be a good one.

And finally, I’m going to get to work re-capping last weekend’s trip to Tennessee!

My adventure began on Friday. I finished packing right before we left (while managing not to forget anything, score) and had a pre-flight snack of half a toasted Fiber One whole wheat English muffin with Beltane Farms chive chevre.

I packed a nice, big salad for the plane because I am not usually a fan of airport food. We ended up sitting on the runway for about 20 minutes before we could even take off, so I ate it before we got up in the air. I used the beans and ground turkey from my mom’s latest chili creation for the salad’s protein, and it was good! I think packing food for airplane travel is the smartest choice to save money and ensure that you have food that you will enjoy and that will not leave you dragging in the rest of your travels.

That being said, when I was younger my favorite airport travel treat was a Cinnabon cinnamon bun. And the Biscoff cookies!

I went Biscoff-less and opted for a pretzel and peanut packet once we took off to make my own little trail mix. I was super hungry that day for some reason – I also had another packet of peanuts and a pear before our travels were complete.

My mom went wild and used a free drink coupon (we are a family of coupon-ers) to get a vodka cranberry. Keep it classy, Mom!

Our second flight was only 26 minutes long, a fact that I didn’t discover until we started descending, so that was a pleasant surprise. I ended up doing none of my paper and watching four episodes of “Entourage”. I’ve finally made it to season 5!

We landed, picked up some snacks and alcohol, picked up my sister from school at the University of Tennessee, and dropped our stuff off at the hotel. I was ravenous and had a few Special K crackers to hold me over.

We went to eat a great seafood place called Chesapeake’s. It was filled with the usual nautical décor and reminded me of somewhere we’d go to on a Florida vacation.

Hannah showing off the nautical decor.

They were packed, so even though we had a reservation, we did some waiting at the bar. I decided to get a glass of wine because – when in Rome! We were seated as soon as I got my drink (Cabernet), conveniently enough.

The specials menu alone had so many great options that I didn’t even really need to look at the full menu (but you know I did).

It took me awhile to decide but I ended up with the Red Snapper, minus the herbs, with the roasted garlic cream sauce on the side. I selected the veggie of the day (asparagus), sans lemon butter, as my side.

I love bread baskets with variety! I had a corn muffin as well as half of a croissant. The corn muffin was definitely the best – Southern corn bread, not that sweet Northern stuff.

I was so impressed with this House Salad that came with my meal. It was awesome! Field greens, fresh veggies, feta, garlic-y croutons, and even sliced almonds. I ended up donating the croutons to my dad and taking off some of the cheese/almonds. Oil and vinegar served as my dressing.

I loved the generous portion of fish, as well as asparagus (five spears is such a tease, but some places give only that much). The garlic sauce on the side was great too. I dipped my fork in it before some bites, a trick I picked up from some magazines. I’m glad I didn’t skip the sauce completely because it was tasty! I prefer grilled asparagus to steamed, but this still had a lot of great snap to it and I really liked it.

My dad got salmon with Hollandaise sauce and a baked potato with butter. I ended up finishing about a quarter of his fish for him, as well as his entire baked potato skin. I had a feeling he wouldn’t eat it, so that’s why I got a veggie as my side! My master plan worked perfectly. The salmon was great too.

Hannah kindly displays her plate (hand model?)

My sister got a filet, cooked medium, and she said it was perfect. And she was kind enough to donate a few asparag-i (that’s my own plural form of asparagus, thank you very much) to me!

We had a great time at Chesapeake’s and left satisfied and ready to REST after a day of travelling! Getting to a destination is usually stressful, but once I’m arrived and have had a real meal, I always feel so much better and sleep quite well. That’s exactly what played out here!

Stay tuned for more details on the trip – I doubted I’d have enough content for more than one entry, and now I see I’ll need at least three posts to sum this all up! Just so many good eats and so much fun!

What are your favorite air travel foods? How about your favorite post-travel foods? Do you watch “Entourage”?