‘Choices’ is Gooood!

My Little Loves (aka niece and nephew) were out of school and I planned a weekend full of fun. Besides a lot of pool time at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Downtown Sacramento, Tia Bernie had to spoil them with a lot more! With Jan’s help from Choices Ice Cream & Smoothie, they enjoyed some complimentary designer milkshakes and a delicious smoothie. It was so good, they couldn’t stop talking about it all weekend.

From the hotel, we walked down to Old Sacramento in some pretty warm weather. We even had to take a break in the shade because it was too hot for the little ones. We were definitely working for these treats. We eventually made it to Jan’s which is located across the street from the California State Railroad Museum in Old Sac.

From the moment we walked in, we were greeted with the much-welcomed AC and Jan’s bright smile. I introduced the crew to her and we scoped out the menu. They have smoothie bowls, smoothies, designer shakes, cones and sundae, and floats! The kids already knew what they wanted. The day before, I showed them a photo of their Birthday Cake Milkshake ($14.50) on Instagram and the decision was made that very instant. It contained a cake on the side but the milkshake itself was 4 scoops of their ice cream and sprinkles of their choice, milk, whipped cream and as many toppings as they desired.

Jan invited Nate and Arya to go behind the counter and help with their milkshakes. They washed their hands and put on some latex gloves. It could get messy! Jan walked them thru the steps of decorating the cup, how to scoop ice cream, how to blend the milkshake and more. They got a front row seat to her expertly stacking this dairy tower.

Now seated at the tall counter, they were patient as we took these photos. They loved their 24-ounce milkshake. I was pretty impressed by the damage done by a seven and nine-year-old. Of course, Christy and I tried their milkshakes and it was definitely delicious.

Assuming there was going to be leftovers, I opted in for the 24-ounce strawberry acai smoothie ($8.99) to try more of Jan’s offerings. It was made with acai, bananas, strawberry and nut milk. It was very refreshing. See my Instagram reel on @werehungrytoo for my initial reaction.

While the kids were occupied with their milkshake and I was trying not to sneak in more bites, Jan was at it again making Christy’s Strawberry Shortcake Designer Shake ($14.70). It had white icing, crushed vanilla wafers, strawberry shortcake popsicle, strawberry drizzle, whipped creamed, scoops of strawberry ice cream and milk. And the actual shortcake. It looked amazing.

Before we dove into this piece of art, we had to get a photo with the designer. The kids were all smiles and we had to do it quick before it dripped on her floor. The photo turned out great and the milkshake, was eye-roll deserving. It was so good.

The kids were tapping out. The next thing for us to do was to sign the wall! We all loved Choices. Can you tell the kids loved Jan? Jan was so great with them. She invited them to get involved, asked them questions, made them laugh and hugs were given all around. We had such a great time! They even want to come up from the Bay Area to visit for their birthdays! It looks like we will definitely be back.

Be sure to check out Choices Ice Cream and Smoothie and follow them on social media. It is owned by a lovely black woman and it just opened in May. Please continue to support small business.

See my videos on TikTok ‘bappletree’ and on Instagram and Twitter.

Oahu 2021 – Day 1 – Airports, Hertz & Sushi

Seven days on the island of Oahu was not part of my travel plans this year. After a year of no air travel, I was hesitant to book the flight to New Orleans for my roommate’s birthday in April. I wasn’t ready to be in an enclosed area with a bunch of strangers. But, there’s nothing like good flight deals for under $400. More on that trip soon!

This trip to Oahu came as a surprise when my niece’s traveling partner fell thru.

Do you mind going with your auntie?

I shyly asked my 21-year-old niece thru Facebook messenger. I had assisted her with booking this trip and I knew I could show her a good time. I have never traveled one-on-one with her before, but I was down for the experience. I think I am pretty fun. It’s been amazing to see her grow up.

She obviously let me crash her vacation. I had booked my outbound flight using my Hawaiian Airlines miles and booked a seat on her Southwest flight for her return, which is where I am writing this now.

My flight was easy. I love flying Hawaiian. It’s comfortable, the food is decent, and you usually get a rum cocktail as we near our destination. Unfortunately, the egg sandwich was OK and we didn’t get that Koloa Rum cocktail. We did get a Honolulu Cookie though. But the best thing about the flight is that they give you power! Sadly, Southwest does not give you the juice! I did not bring compatible headphones, just my Apple Airpods, so I was not able to watch a free movie. I did play their travel trivia game for a bit though. That was good educational training for this Travel Agent.

Upon arrival, it was a long trek to the baggage claim. As mentioned in my Island Prep post, be sure you get pre-screened. It will get you to enjoying the beach faster! But as of July 8th, all you need to do is upload your vaccination card. If you aren’t vaccinated, you will still need to get pre-screened.

The baggage claim carousel number for your flight mentioned during your flight may change. Be sure to listen to the overhead speakers for these announcements. Mine changed but if you recognize some of the travelers that were on your flight, it may confirm you are in the correct area. Reviewing the screens for your flight number will also be helpful.

I am mostly a patient flyer. I am not someone that waits close to the perimeter of the baggage claim carousel waiting for my bag to pass by. You are just standing in the way of other travelers from getting their bag. At a distance, I propped by Coach bag on the shelf of a pay phone and leant up against it. I kept my eye out for a large, red Samsonite luggage to make its way along the conveyer belt. The glittery beige Coach luggage tag also makes it easy to spot.

With the luggage in hand, I made my way to get transferred over to the car rental area via a shuttle. People were all in a rush to crowd the shuttle door to hop on. I usually do not. With Covid, I will wait for the next one. Thankfully, this shuttle didn’t board an excessive amount of people. I appreciated that.

Arriving at the car rental counters, each of them had very long lines. My heavy bag was taken off the shuttle and the driver helped me down. I handed him a tip. He looked surprised and gave me a happy ‘Mahalo.’ I don’t think people are tipping enough nowadays. I know everyone is going thru hard times, but every service industry is hurting. If you can tip, please do. Even a dollar goes a long way.

I looked at the Hertz line and was thinking this was going to be a pain. Then I realized that the Hertz Gold Members line was empty. I made my way to the front of the line, gave only my name to the next available customer service rep and my car keys were handed to me. I didn’t have to give them my license or credit card. I did ask if they had any upgrades for members or Travel Agents but was told that my car was automatically upgraded. I was in and out in a jiffy. I told the lady I walked by that it is extremely worth becoming a member! It doesn’t cost anything!

I made my way to the car assigned to me and it was a big black Chevy Impala. The top of the trunk came to my chest! Then again, I am 5’1”. I opened the trunk to add my massive luggage to it and I was shocked to see how large the space was. I joked that I could put more than a few bodies, I mean pieces of luggage, in there. It was enormous. The inside was leather, all black and very spacious. Upgraded, indeed! Thanks, Hertz!

Before I pulled it off the lot, I did my usual video recording going all around the car noting dents, scratches, etc. You do not want to be held responsible for pre-existing damage. Hold onto that video until at least a month has passed.

I had some time to kill before my niece arrived. I did some work in the car with my laptop, then I remembered that she is allergic to seafood. I haven’t had sushi in awhile and looked for someplace nearby. Ninja Sushi came up and it wasn’t too far. It is located in a private parking lot, and you had to have your ticket validated with a purchase in order to stay there for two hours or less. It was warm in the sun so I ordered and ate inside.

I ordered a salmon roll, salmon nigiri and a bottled water. I also ordered her and I a Spam masubi. I figured she would be hungry after a long flight. The rolls were decent but they didn’t have ponzu sauce, which is normally what I use instead of soy sauce. No big deal. The service staff was friendly, and they quickly cleaned each table after the patrons left.

I positioned the car to where the sun wasn’t beating down on the driver’s side. I rolled the windows down, welcomed the island breeze, listened to music and played on my phone. I was waiting for her to say she had landed. She eventually did but needed to charge her phone so that we could communicate without interruption when I pick her up at the correct terminal and door. I highly recommend purchasing a portable battery for instances like these. A charged phone is so important. Regardless, it all worked out. I had my niece in the car scarfing down a Spam masubi and we were about to start our adventurous week on Oahu.

Stay tuned for more!

Jewelry by Stella & Dot (all retired pieces), hat by Steve Madden, top by Abercrombie & Fitch.

#WomenWednesday – 6/16 in Honolulu

Given I had a few cancellations from my last Women Wednesday for Tay Ho Restaurant in Oakland, California the week before, I was really hoping I can gather some local ladies for an event while I was on Oahu. I have to say, it was quite a success.

I first had to select the venue. I Googled woman-owned businesses. I found Hana Koa Brewing Company in Honolulu. I checked out their website and their Instagram. Yup, Chrissie Piney, the Beer Goddess herself was featured on a post for her birthday. With that, the venue was selected. I made a reservation for 6 at 5:30 pm thru Opentable. I messaged the account and the marketer gave Chrissie’s email to inquire if she can stop by the table of ladies and say hello! She responded saying it was a cool idea and that she was going to be around! Awesome!!!

I started reaching out to my network on the islands to see if they could connect me with some local ladies. I had a few referrals but the ones that responded couldn’t make it. My friend, Gwen, who does sales for an event rentals company on the islands was able to make it! I started to ‘stalk’ some locals on Instagram. By that, I mean I scoped out their profile to see if they were legit locals, not just visiting. I also could see that they were professionals, not every picture was a selfie and their personality came thru a bit through their posts. Attendees didn’t necessarily need to have thousands of followers but it does help when they are open to new friends, enjoy food and beverages and likes to share their lives. I found many and invited them but two committed almost immediately and I appreciated it.

I was going to Oahu with my 21-year-old niece. Upon our arrival and cruising down Ala Moana in our rented Chevrolet Impala, I let her know of my Women Wednesday events and that I was doing this event. She did not have to join me but she decided to! She didn’t even like beer.

After going down the street the brewery was on, we almost missed it. It does have a small parking lot and I am glad we found parking. Parking could be challenging in Honolulu. We walked in and our table was ready for us. It was high top for six and in the corner with a view of the whole spot. You can see the extra large chalkboard of their beers on tap to the left, socially distanced tables in the center, the bar top, the brewery and stairs going to an upper level. I was pretty happy.

We didn’t hesitate and started with the Dole Whip mimosas.

The first lady to arrive was Shannon. She is a landscape photographer and also works at Koko Head Cafe, which the other locals in attendance enthusiastically vouched how good it was. Shannon prefers tequila over beer so she ordered a cocktail to go with her lettuce wraps.

I asked Shay, our Server, if Chrissie wasn’t busy to please come say hello to the table. A brunette in a green maxi dress and jean jacket with a beer in hand approached our table. It was Chrissie. We discovered that is also from the East Bay and her husband, Josh, went to University of the Pacific in Stockton. We Californians thought that was really cool.

Next, Kat, arrived. She said she could only stay for a bit but wanted to say hello. She doesn’t drink alcohol but she did find something she liked by the end of the night. Kat is originally from China but recently moved to Oahu from New York City in January. Her boyfriend isn’t as social so she welcomed an opportunity to meet new people.

Gwen arrived and the party was goin’. I am glad she was able to pull away from work as it has beens super busy for her. There wasn’t a single awkward moment of silence with this group. Josh, the Head Brewer, also joined us for a bit.

The food ordered looked good! My niece had the adult mac n cheese and it was tasty. Along with the Killin’ Me Smalls Imperial Stout, I ordered their chocolate mousse dessert. I had my niece take a bite of the dessert and chase it with a sip of the beer. She liked it! The beer was made in partnership with Purve Donuts and it was perfectly done. See post soon on the donut shop.

I ordered a flight consisting of the guava and vanilla milkshake IPA called Dream Machine Guava, the West Coast IPA called Feelin’ So Good and lastly the Saison called Shine A Light that supported Helping End the Backlog initiative. It is to help end the backlog of untested rape kits in the US and to bring justice victims of sexual assault. I can definitely get behind that. I am happy to support Chrissie and Hana Koa in their efforts in making a change in this world. Please consider supporting companies that give back.

After we were mostly done, Josh was happy to give us a tour. Before that started, I found the gear for sale and I picked up two pink Hana Koa tank tops and stickers for my niece and I to rock. I also added a 4 pack of the Killin’ Me Smalls to my bill. My roommate and PP/Favorite Person would like to try it! We then grabbed the beers we had left and met up with Josh in the brewing area.

I have done several winery, distillery and brewery tours but I was excited to see the smiles on these ladies getting access to a work area and see what is done behind the scenes. Josh definitely loved talking shop and we all ate it up! “What does this machine do? What about your water? How many people work back here?”

Of course, we had to get some great photos! Thanks to Kat for her great shots. She has five cameras on her Samsung. It is definitely better than my camera on my iPhoneX.

Photo by Kat

Before we parted ways, Chrissie let us taste the Ghost Ride the Drip, an ube hard seltzer. The Pinays of the group were impressed and several cans were purchased.

Photo by Kat

Hugs were exchanged all around, Instagram profiles were followed and so many IG story mentions were posted. I was so happy how it all turned out. I took Kat home so she didn’t have to rent a bike, we also hiked Makapu’u and met my friend, Michael, two days later. The next day, we went to Koko Head Cafe to see Shannon and see what all the rave was all about.

Thank you, Chrissie and Josh, for spending so much time with us and the special tour. It was definitely not expected. I never expect more than maybe a reTweet or re-share or comment from the establishment so this visit was truly special! I am so grateful for the experience and the ability to share it with these amazing ladies. I wish you all the success! The sticker is on my Earthwell water canteen and my niece and I wore the tanks during our hike. Oh, the many, many pictures that were taken!

I hope to grow these events to be more than just six people and it is obviously welcomed outside my own neck of the woods. Please contact me should you know a woman-owned business that would like to have a ‘Women Wednesday, a One Busy Bee Enterprises LLC event’ at their establishment.

Upcoming events:

June 23, 2021 – Posh Pisco Party at my house in Hayward, California serving pisco cocktails and offering my retired Stella & Dot and Poshmark pieces at a deep discount.

June 30, 2021 – Beer for Boobs Fundraiser at Shadow Puppet Brewery in Livermore, California. 5:30 pm – 7:30 pm, Win a $50 Disney and/or a $50 Stella & Dot gift card in the raffle.

July 7, 2021 – Tay Ho Restaurant in Oakland, California. Woman-owned Vietnamese restaurant.

July 14, 2021 – Skipping due to a personal obligation.

July 21, 2021 – TBD

July 28, 2021 – Pa’ina Lounge & Restaurant, San Francisco

More to come!

#WereHungryToo – Peninsula Bites – May 2021

With spending more time on the peninsula of the San Francisco Bay Area and my love for trying new spots is alive and well, here’s some yummy, local businesses to support! The restaurant industry could still use your help so please share this post, follow them on social media and continue to order out or dine inside now. Apparently it’s Peninsula Restaurant Week (May 14th – May 22nd). See the site to learn how to win a $50 dining certificate.

Be sure to also follow me on social media:


Instagram – @werehungrytwo
Twitter – @werehungry2

ASIAN BOX
Mountain View, California

With so many options on this strip, I settled on something simple – noodles and protein. I opted for the Chef Salad with steak and a bottled water. All came out to $16.67. They will charge you $.10 for a bag to take your item with you. Save the dime and the planet by bringing a tote.

I ate most of the flavorful meat at one of their tables outdoors. The noodles were good and the dressing was tasty but sticky. I asked for another dressing container before I took the rest to go. My friend who ate the leftovers also thought it was good. Even non-super fresh meals to go are decent.

Super friendly service and parking is located on either side of the strip.

BAY WATCH RESTAURANT
Burlingame, California

No, not a single red one-piece bathing is in sight. What is in sight is outdoor dining, spaced out chairs and a view into the kitchen. Order at the counter, take your number, have a seat and they will bring out your order.

I ordered the tuna melt with a side salad instead of fries and an Arnold Palmer. Good sized portions and delicious. I was even offered a to go refill of my Arnold Palmer.

Super friendly customer service and plenty of parking.

SAN AGUS COCINA URBANA & COCKTAILS
Palo Alto, California

When you dine somewhere twice in one week, you know it’s good and has become a favorite spot quickly. This restaurant opened during the pandemic, has outdoor seating, accepts reservations, makes awesome cocktails and unique dishes.

We have had almost everything on the menu so far. Get the gorditas, the shrimp cocktail, shrimp tacos and the churros. You can’t go wrong. This was also the first spot I had crickets! Crunchy and tasty!

Incredibly friendly service. They are attentive and welcoming. Find parking on the street or come via CalTrain.

SWEET ORCHID
Menlo Park, California

Their sign always caught my eye when I drove down El Camino. While picking up UPS packages next door, I decided to pop in and see what they had. Gelato, cakes to order and small items as well. Oh, the options.

As much as I love tiramisu, I opted in for the guava trifle. The purple color was appealing and I could use some fruit in my life. There was a chocolate version but perhaps I’ll get that one next time. For under $6, this trifle was totally delicious. I almost didn’t want to split it. In all honesty, I did scrape the container with my spoon.

The gal behind the counter was very friendly and there’s parking on the street and in a private parking lot.

ZOLA
Palo Alto, California

This is a spot we are regulars at. It’s just that good. We have dined here for the pre-fixe dinners, the pop ups and I even ordered their Thanksgiving dinner take out dinner. Needless to say, we have to try everything. The recent menus have been changing often but rest assured, the steak frites are here to stay and the frites are delicious.

Please be kind to our friends, Walter and Duncan. And don’t forget to tip!

Here is the scallop from one of their pre-fixe dinners. Soooo good. That sauce!

RELATED POSTS:
#WereHungryToo – This Weekend – 12/11/20
An Evening in Palo Alto, California
Cafe Wisteria – Menlo Park, California

#1UpTransformationChallenge – Week 5

It has been a challenging challenge. Continuing to feel defeated, tired and stressed out with work, it is definitely not helping. I clocked in 40+ for one of my part time jobs. I’m One Busy Bee, indeed. I am continuing to log my food and working out but this was a bad week. I just have to remember that I am trying to do something good for myself and not compare my progress (or lack of) to other people’s fitness journeys. So, here’s Week 5 of the 1Up Nutrition Transformation Challenge.

MONDAY

Monday was a full day out traveling the Bay Area for work. Breakfast was the best English Muffins by Sconehenge out of Berkeley, California. We pick these up at Whole Foods. Lunch was at Lazy Dog in Newark, California. It has been awhile since I’ve been and they had a few things for me for Meatless Monday. I opted in for their grilled cheese and cucumbers salad. It was heavy but oh so tasty. An afternoon snack was a smoothie. Dinner was roasted cauliflower. Total calories: 1,891

Workouts were thru FitOn with the Total Body Meltdown and the Back Blaster.

TUESDAY

This was our day this week to San Francisco to pick up Tartine bread, get dumplings from Dumpling Time and of course some yumminess from The Butcher Shop. Dinner was pancakes with Nutella and strawberries from the farmers market. Be sure to get the organic ones! They taste sooo much better! Here are additional reasons to go organic. The day’s total calories – 1,097

I honestly can’t remember what I did for a workout that day but I was on the mat doing something! That should count, right?

WEDNESDAY

With having to a site visit in Danville, I headed back to the house for weigh-in and a breakfast 1Up Nutrition protein shake with strawberries and a slice of Tartine toast. Lunch was another 1Up Nutrition protein shake before heading out to a meeting. Dinner was a lox sandwich with egg bagels from Izzy’s Brooklyn Bagels and taste of the 2021 Dark Ray from Firestone Walker. Like the protein shake, it tastes better strawberries. Total calories – 1,014.

Thanks to Izzy’s for re-sharing my picture on Instagram!

I don’t think I worked out that day.

THURSDAY

Thursday was quite carb filled with another lox sandwich with an Izzy’s Brooklyn Bagel bagel, a potato Bolani for lunch, with a his and her salad, homemade dressing and garlic bread made by my Pandemic Partner. Calories – 1,132

Workouts were with FitOn with Lower Body Blaster with Danielle and Super Sculpted Abs with Katie. It felt good.

FRIDAY

I may been logging into MyFitnessPal for 50 days straight but this Friday was busy and after a long week of work, I was ready for this week to end. I didn’t even have breakfast. I had cheese and crackers for lunch and allowed myself to do something other than work to make a lot of chimichurri. We had grilled pork chops from The Butcher Shop and I was excited for a good meal. I also got another taste of a Firestone Walker beer, the 2021 Parabola. Tasty! Calories – 1,018

Friday is movie night but I worked straight through it til 11:30 PM, plus dealing with a work emergency. Good times.

SATURDAY

Saturday was productive. I had the house to myself for the most of the day and got my taxes filed and updated my budgets. Breakfast was eggs and toast. Lunch was a salad and dinner was a hard boiled egg, cheese and crackers, a Sconehenge English Muffin and a cup of 1Up Nutrition protein and water. I also made some protein balls with honey from the farmers market. Calories – 1,000

Again, I opted out of a workout and stayed in and watched Coming 2 America. I have to say that Eddie Murphy did a great job. Sequels are usually never good and Coming to America would be hard to top. But it was done. If laughing as hard as I did counted as an ab workout, that would be awesome!

SUNDAY

Breakfast was an OK crab omelette from Joanie’s on California Ave at the farmers market. It’s the second brunch in a row where my food was not served hot. Thankfully the coffee was. A snack was just a protein ball. Dinner was spaghetti with basil pesto from Bolani Foods and bacon and beer sausage from The Butcher Shop. Delicious! Calories – 1,000

My workout for the day was cleaning the house. Two hours of work and MyFitnessPal only says I burned 288 calories. But damn, does that vent look clean!

Onto Week 6.

#1UpTransformationChallenge – Week 4

Another week in, another week to start. Week 4 of this challenge and again, no crazy changes. I feel stronger and weight is going up but BF % is the same. Bring on the muscle but need to get rid of this extra fat. I am using the 1Up Nutrition protein and BCAAs but burners haven’t been good for me. My heartrate increases and I feel a bit out of control. I don’t like it so I won’t continue with those supplements. I will just try to eat better and continue with my workouts. I need to increase my cardio so you’ll see what I added back in this week.

MONDAY

It was a busy day driving around and working til sunset. I got home and worked out with an Easy Seated Yoga sesh with Vytas on FitOn, plus some ab moves. My roommate reminded me that the body needs to rest. We ended up watching Palmer with Justin Timberlake and Alisha Wainwright while I painted my toenails. They came out terribly. I need a pedicure so bad.

Besides treating myself to a movie, I was treated with a surprise One Busy Bee mask by Lea’s Ideas. It was a thank you gift for the donation for my nephew back when I encouraged him to do 20 pushups.

Food tracking was off so no calorie count to report.

TUESDAY

This was my weigh-in day. As mentioned, I’m not making progress as much as I’d like. I had intentions of going to the market after work last night but left my wallet at home. I had nothing really to eat in the house besides eggs and Spam. High in sodium, I know, but I didn’t have anything else to eat.

Another site visit and headed back to Menlo Park. Three FitOn videos incorporating more cardio with Tabata Strong, Agility Blitz and Core Barre.

Post-workout was some 1Up protein in water and homemade chicken tacos. Calorie count for the day: 1,256.

WEDNESDAY

Eating lighter with a total of 982 calories, I had a hard boiled egg for breakfast, an orange, cheese, crackers and soppresata and some white rice for dinner with dried mango for snacks.

To switch up the workouts a bit, I invited my roommate to come rollerblade with me after she got off work. She’s sooo much better at it than I am. It has been a couple of months since her spill down the hill but that was her ONLY fall. Thankfully I didn’t fall this time around but it was good to get out there. We didn’t skate as long as she has a bit of a back injury so we just skated for about half an hour. Looking to do a bit more, I did an abs video with Kenta on FitOn when I got back to the house.

THURSDAY

Haven’t had Tartine in awhile, my Pandemic Partner is doing a fine job of putting a whole loaf of bread away himself. He loves his carbs! But don’t we all? I had a slice of toast that morning with some butter. It was delicious. Lunch was Armadillo Willy’s with their BBQ chicken breast, and yes, the tator tots. Oh man, so good. Diner was a salad while he had a whole pizza from Delfina. I did have a bit of the pizza because the Diavola pizza is so damn good. My calorie count for the day was 1,200.

Instead of FitOn, I took a walk and enjoyed the sunshine. While I was out, I did go to Dick’s Sporting Goods looking for weights. They were out of the ones I needed but I did get some ankle weights to make some core moves more challenging. I also bought new socks as I actually went rollerblading without socks on because the skates were too small and my socks were too thick. Annnd, I also bought some yoga mat cleaning spray. It was time to clean our yoga mats.

I made another stop at Target as I recalled seeing some hand weights were stocked. There were some 10s so I threw those in the card. We only have 5s and 15s at PP’s house and when he’s using the 15s, I have to use the 5s. I can lift heavier than that so these were mainly for me. Let’s hope they make a difference.

FRIDAY

Friday was for breaking in the new weights! We did The Gun Show with Kenta, Quick Arms with Bree and Hard Core with Caroline on FitOn. It was good! I did a little extra moves with the ankle weights and kept them on while cooking to add something to each step. Let’s hope it helps make a difference!

Breakfast was 1Up protein pancakes and dinner was halibut, broccoli and white rice. I did have rose wine by Conundrum and it made me fall asleep during The Dig. Saturday morning came with a headache as well. This pandemic has definitely changed this girl’s tolerance. I used to co-own a bar for goodness sake! Drinking also makes you make bad decisions. I didn’t need those extra cheese and crackers but I had some and they were tasty! The last time I drank was two weeks ago in Napa. Let’s see if I can hold out three weeks before my next drink. I think I can as I don’t like the way it makes me feel afterwards. Such a shame. Total calorie count: 1,541

SATURDAY

Pancakes again, this time by PP and no protein powder. He doesn’t like the way it tastes. He makes good pancakes. Lunch was a bite or two of leftover salad. And dinner was halibut leftovers. Total calories: 2,007

And the last pic was at the Old Forester distillery. I was in Louisville, Kentucky for six weeks this time last year. It was my Sober Saturday picture and when I wasn’t such a lightweight!

SUNDAY

I actually took a rest day on Sunday. After the farmers market, I walked while waiting for PP to make it back to the car. Seventy-one calories down is better than none! For brunch, we walked a bit more to a cafe that is known for their sandwiches. I should’ve gotten a sandwich but I wanted eggs. The smoked salmon scramble would have been better if it were warm. Lunch was an orange and I had made dinner reservations for my Cugino and I at Timber & Salt in downtown Redwood City. It was the nicest plated meal I have had since my birthday in September. Total calories: 1,096.

Now onto Week 5!

#1UPTransformationChallenge – Week 3

Kicking off week 3 of my first 1Up Nutrition Transformation Challenge in Napa Valley soaking in hot springs and getting a massage. Not bad, right? As mentioned in Week 2‘s write-up, the Galentine’s Weekend was a bit rough. Attempts to not over eat and get in a workout was a must. In Week 3, I had another outing scheduled for my best friend. It was going to be low-key.

MONDAY

Having to leave our cute cottage in Calistoga with treatments the next block over, I had to make sure to get in some kind of workout. With the help of Cassey Ho and FitOn, I got in a pilates workout. I was able to relax in the hot springs tub before and after my massage. I think my body needed this after the work I have been putting in on a daily basis.

A spontaneous stop at the Napa Valley sign called for yoga poses again. It was then time for lunch at Gott’s Roadside and I have to say, their meatless burger for Meatless Monday was delicious. And our last stop was at Caymus. A MUST stop for us. Sooo good if you love wine. Then, more yoga in the mustard greens. Total calories: 1,722

TUESDAY

Attempting to redeem myself from a high caloric weekend, I went with cardio FitOn videos that were low impact. My knees were still giving me problems. Our usual stop to San Francisco, Tartine, Dumpling Time and The Butcher Shop included our friend, Walter. It was nice to get him to the city and experience what we do almost on a weekly basis. Total calories: 1,183

WEDNESDAY

Needing to make sure I get a workout in, I did one FitOn workout. Breakfast was a hard boiled egg. Lunch was quinoa and eggs.. Then dinner was roasted cauliflower. Total calories: 1,442

THURSDAY

Having a busy day before I picked up my best friend for our little getaway, I didn’t have a chance to do a workout. However, we did play cards. For every game lost, the loser did 50 squats with bands. We each did three sets and Christy was feeling it the next day. It wasn’t much, but it was something. Breakfast was overnight oats and dinner was Sol Food in San Rafael. It is amazing! Total calories: 1,189

Our view during workouts.

FRIDAY

Naturally waking up at 7:30 AM and letting Christy sleep a bit, she eventually woke up and worked out with me. I tried the sample of the peanut butter vegan protein by 1Up Nutrition and I have to say, it’s much better than the vanilla protein I did purchase. Next order will be peanut butter.

Eating leftovers for breakfast had us ready for an adrenaline rush with ziplining from tree top to tree top with the Sonoma Canopy Tours in Occidental, California. Yes, yoga poses again. Total calories: 1,190

SATURDAY

With checkout at 11 AM, two FitOn videos were done followed by another 1Up Nutrition peanut butter drink. It was Christy’s birthday so she opted to NOT workout. She had to work that evening so being even more sore wouldn’t be a good idea. Lunch was a crab sandwich with delicious pickles for $12 at Cafe Aquatica, then, I had to get the birthday girl some sweets. We made a detour to Santa Rosa and went to Sift Cupcakes. Sooo yum. Total calories: 1,378

SUNDAY

After 5 days of adventures, I think the pandemic has turned me into a homebody. I was happy to back home and back to my routine. Sunday, we slept in til 8 AM, went to the farmer’s market, Whole Foods and tried a new restaurant in Redwood City called Kemuri. I had the garlic shrimp bowl and it was full of flavor.

FitOn workouts consisted of cardio with Kenta and an ab workout we haven’t done before with Cassey. It’s nice to switch it up. Dinner was almond flower pancakes with nutella and fresh strawberries from the market this morning. Total calories: 1,334

And next, Week 4.

#1UpTransformationChallenge – Week 2

Week 2 of 8 of my first 1Up Nutrition Transformation Challenge is happening. Here is how it went with daily workouts and logging meals. After the FitOn, I typically do a bit more with free weights and bands. I don’t log those as it just takes extra time. But I am trying to tighten up my lats and by the change in measurements, I think it’s slowly working.

MONDAY

After a deflating Week 1 and trying to pick myself back up with a new outlook to begin Week 2, I decided to weigh and take measurements on Monday morning. From measurements taken on Saturday, there was a 2.1 pound decrease, no change in body fat but decreased measurements in almost all sections. How it was done in two days, I don’t know. With the upcoming Saturday’s measurements, we’ll see if something’s not right.

Monday’s workout consisted of a quick walk around the neighborhood with my Pandemic Partner. He didn’t feel like working out but to get him up from the desk, I proposed we take a walk to stretch our legs. Back at the house, I invited my best friend to do workouts with me at the same on FitOn. We were able to do a “party” during one workout where we could see each other moving during the video. It was pretty cool. We tried to do it again for another workout but it didn’t allow us. Perhaps we need to subscribe.

Food consisted of 1Up protein with water and frozen mango, half of a Caramel Almond & Sea Salt Kind bar, a hard boiled egg, a delicious veggie burrito for Meatless Monday from Los Panchos in Pacheco, California. Total calories: 1,070.

TUESDAY

As it was Travel Tuesday, I shared this photo of some September babies doing a yoga pose in Champagne, France. Oh, to travel again.

Three FitOn videos were done and we had homemade chicken tacos again for dinner. Fage greek yogurt instead of sour cream is a delicious idea! The chicken was marinated in a Korean spicy BBQ sauce and baked in the air fryer. Avocado toast for breakfast, and leftover air baked salmon with white rice. Total calories: 1,046

WEDNESDAY

Wednesday was good with two FitOn videos. The Lower Body Torch with Danielle was good. I had wrap my knees up as I have been hearing scraping when I bend for quite some time now. I should get it looked at eventually. Then we did Yoga Core with Vytas. Oh man, I have never done side planks on my forearms before with palms up. It definitely takes the move up a bit. A funny pic of my sweaty bum on the mat had to be posted.

Breakfast was overnight nights, this time made with strawberries from the farmers market. They were delicious! We still had leftover chicken so tow more tacos for lunch then dinner was sautéed bok choy and white rice. Total calories: 1,157.

THURSDAY

For some reason, I was tired today. Probably it was because I haven’t had a rest day. I took a nap. My load is also lightening with getting rid of 1 of 3 jobs so there’s some relief there. The fact that I was even able to take a nap was great. I think my body appreicated it.

However, when I woke, I was not feeling like getting a workout in. I turned to the feed from the other 1Up challenge participants and it got me to change into my Fabletics gear and unroll the yoga mat. I did it by myself today and it’s OK. Two FitOn videos were Serious Arms & Abs and Core Blazer. It was the first video I tried with The Chainsmokers. The commentary with these celebrities are pretty distracting. I probably won’t do any of their other videos. Another celebrity on there is Gabrielle Union. I need someone to keep me motivated thru the workout. These celebs are most likely used to attract users by taking advantage of their fanbase but I’m not a fan.

In terms of food, I gave in. I had an Sconehenge English muffin with butter. Bread and butter is my weakness! Keep it away from me! Lunch was the remainder of the veggie burrito from Los Panchos. I feel I am doing better with portion control. My taste buds rule me. Instead of finishing something just to finish it, I try to stop when I’m starting to feel full and drink more water. Dinner was roasted cauliflower and shallots, plus avocado toast. Total calories: 1,272.

FRIDAY

Friday was the start of a Galentine’s Day Weekend and celebrating a deer friend. The plan was to stick to eating decently and exercising. I did a quick HIIT workout before a friend came over. With neighbors downstairs, I had to do the low-impact version but still managed to sweat. Breakfast was overnight oats, lunch was 1Up Nutrition and frozen mango and dinner was sauteed cabbage and mushrooms, quinoa, topped with parmesan cheese. Total calories: 1,154.

SATURDAY

Saturday was weigh-in for me. I am making progress, just not as quickly as I would like. But progress is progress. Annnd, it’s been awhile since I actually did my hair and applied eyeliner. I thought I’d do a non-post workout selfie.

Top from Vintage Alley in Hayward, and necklace by Priscilla Presley that I got at Graceland.

I was definitely over my calories for the day. Total calories were 1,955. It’s the wine, mimosa, grilled octopus salad, pita and hummus, gyro salad, bread and butter and cheese at the winery. Dinner was a pan seared salmon with a buerre blanc sauce and one churro. And, I didn’t get to work out. I actually had to take a quick nap because I had a headache from the wine. I haven’t drank in a few weeks. It was delicious but not good for this challenge. We did do yoga tho! And I jumped!

SUNDAY

On Valentine’s Day, I did do a workout video and got the birthday girl to stretch with me. My roommate, who typically works out with me when we’re together, didn’t want to. I had to. Even with a 45 minute workout, I was still over my calories for the day. Total calories: 2,164.

Brunch was delicious at SolBar, the two wineries we visited in Calistoga was filling and dinner at Olive and Hay was okay. The highlight of the day was the lobster omelet.

I knew these days away were going to mess with my progress so I am acknowledging that I chose to participate. See next week’s post as I tried to burn those extra 1,400 calories.

Related posts:
1UpTransformationChallenge – Pre-Week 2
1UpTransformationChallenge – Week 1

#1UpTransformationChallenge – Pre-Week 1

I am now up for another fitness challenge. My birthday challenge between my roommate and I didn’t go so well but I am hoping this 8-week challenge with 1Up Nutrition will be better. I have my friend, Lana, and new co-worker, Diana, doing it with me. My roommate and I work out when I’m home and my Pandemic Partner (PP) and I get our sweat on when I’m with him thanks to FitOn. It’s more fun with friends. This is how the week before the challenge went.

MONDAY

Oooh, those Before photos are hard to keep and post. Thankfully I only posted it on my private account on 1Up. You had to have the personalized check-in card in each photo – one from the front, back and side. Thanks to my handy light ring, I didn’t need to prop phone on top of boxes on top of a stool or anything. That part was easy. Looking at the pics were hard to look at but hopefully in eight weeks, there will be a significant change.

With a full day of work and my roommate’s rest day, I worked out alone. I had to wait to work out until after my interview with a potential Bride and Groom for a June 2022 wedding. I am also an Event Planner/Wedding Coordinator. I did FitOn‘s Low Impact Cardio Crush, Savage Sweat and Quick Core plus additional moves with heavy weights. At my PP’s house, I have bands, 5 and 15-lb weights. I need heavier weights. I’ll just have to do more reps.

Food on this Meatless Monday was a 5-cheese ravioli and tomato basil sauce with parmesan cheese. The serving from Santa Cruz Pasta Company was enough for lunch and an early dinner. I skipped breakfast. After I showered, I had a handful of assorted nuts. I just had water to drink and had about 4-5 mugs full.

Surprisingly, I was able to fall asleep at my normal time after such a late workout. I thought it was going to keep me energized but maybe I exhausted myself.

TUESDAY

I woke up to meal prep for the day. I made an egg scramble with Ancient Harvest quinoa, corn and parmesan cheese. It was great! I added some dried onion to add some crunch as well. One cup of quinoa was enough for three meals. As a snack, I had a few pieces of Solely’s Dried Mango. Some packages are delicious with fruit soft and others are hard and hurt to eat. This particular bag is a hard one so perhaps it’s a good thing. Less calories to consume…and burn. I also split a bag of white cheddar Cousin Willie’s popcorn my father sent me for Christmas. It’s a nice treat.

The day was busy with work so it was a lot of sitting. Workouts consisted of FitOn‘s Total Body Toner with Christine Bullock and Ultimate Core with Breann Mitchell. Christine had me breaking out my sliders. They make moves quite challenging. I NEVER use the sliders but I do own a set. And Bree exposed me to a new move I haven’t done before. So very good workouts and of course, had some laughs with my roommate.

I am also back on MyFitnessPal tracking my food. I have also just completed logging 20 meals to be entered to win a $250 Sprouts gift card and one $250 Visa gift card. Seeing that I spend $400/month on groceries, I would gladly take this gift card. As a Visa stockholder, I’ll take that as well! With 48,000 participants and 10 winners and it was free to do, it would a good prize.

Typical grocery purchases include what is needed for my overnight oats recipe that I found on Pinterest. It’s old fashioned oats, honey, milk, sliced bananas and blackberries or strawberries. Mix them all together and let it sit overnight in the fridge. I top it with granola to add some texture. Breakfast will be already be ready to eat in the morning. This helps my biggest craving – bread and butter. And this bread is from Tartine in San Francisco. Sooo good.

WEDNESDAY

Hump day was busy but I had to get a workout in. Workouts with Bree on FitOn were good. I did the Cardio Core and the Cardio Chisel Camp videos. On top of that, I added deadlifts to curls to shoulder presses, single leg deadlifts, dumbbell swings, close grip chest presses and lower ab moves.

Dinner was delicious and healthy. Teriyaki marinated salmon baked in the Pampered Chef air fryer. Bok choy was sauteed with a Volcano Spice from Aloha Spice Company that I bought while in Kauai. Very good! Check out the video on TikTok making this meal. (bappletree)

THURSDAY

We had a break in the rain so my new coworker and I got a few steps in after a site visit. We were out for 30 minutes and covered 1.3 miles. She also joined in on this challenge looking to make some changes.

I can’t remember why I didn’t work out during my normal time but dinner was made early. I roasted some cauliflower and air fried some parmesan crusted zucchini spears. Not bad. Cauliflower is a normal thing to buy nowadays from the farmers market. It’s tasty!

Then more FitOn videos to get me sweatin’. I did Kenta’s Ab Assassin, Quick HIIT Booty with some bands and EMOM Express with Danielle. Very good videos.

Fabletics top. Let me send you a referral code!

FRIDAY

Friday was a busy day out and about for work. Breakfast was a slice of Tartine toast with butter (I know!) and a scramble made with leftover salmon and topped with Wise Goat Organics sauerkraut. Sooo good!

I only had a latte for lunch and worked out a bit earlier than usual because I was getting hungry. But first, I did the Total Body Yoga Flow and the Serious Six Pack videos on FitOn. I love that I get to switch it up with these videos. I’m just missing heavy weights at my Pandemic Partner’s house. At home, I have 20 and 30-lb dumbbells, my sliders and Bosu ball.

I had marinated chicken breasts in soy sauce and vinegar. I threw those in the air fryer to bake and made a salad. Logging in my meals and workouts on MyFitnessPal has me under my calorie goal and I like the range of weight I’d be at once I submit for the day. That’d be ideal.

SATURDAY

To take advantage of the dry sidewalks, I convinced my Pandemic Partner to go for a walk and pick up some lunch downtown. We had a 3-mile walk and enjoyed a bahn mi sandwich from Pho Bahn Mi on University Avenue in Palo Alto. I almost ordered spring rolls as well but I decided not to. Though healthy, I also have to watch portion control. The sandwich was probably the heaviest thing I’ve eaten all week.

Then it was time to work out. I did a 40-minute circuit with Bree and FitOn called the Full Body Burn. It was a good one!

SUNDAY

No rest day yet for this One Busy Bee. Sunday was the normal routine and then some. We had to go to the farmers market, Whole Foods plus two other errands. The sun was out and it felt so good to soak in the rays on the park bench. Someone arrived from their own shopping from the market with a bag of fresh out of the oven, egg Izzy’s Bagels. I haven’t had breakfast yet that day and I was hungry. Without too much hesitation, I took a bite out of a heavenly, warm bagel. I offered PP half of it. He took it. When my half was gone, I went for another bagel as long as he took the other half. I tried but did not succeed in passing on consuming these. Bread is my weakness. Bread and butter? I don’t stand a chance!

Annnd, PP also got me a blueberry pastry from Frog Hollow. They didn’t have pastries the last two times so I didn’t think to remind him NOT to get me one. But I ate it. It’s one of many things we do together is eat our Sunday pastry together. And it’s soooo tasty!

The plan was to make dinner after my monthly family Zoom call took place and I worked out. We are a family that loves food. We’re not the healthiest group but we do know good food. All the talk of cake and fried chicken made me so hungry. I took my family into the kitchen and continued our chat as I prepared dinner.

Chicken breasts were being marinated in an IPA by Bare Bottle Brew Co in San Francisco. My buddy is the Head Brewer there so please support my friend, John! The chicken was thrown into the air fryer and shredded. Taco tortillas were thrown on the pan to warm up, lettuce and cabbage were chopped up, Greek yogurt was mixed with Frank’s Red Hot, paprika and cayenne pepper, lime wedges were prepared and Whole Foods’ pico was on the table. These tacos were delicious!

Letting the food settle, I had to do something. As we watched Your Honor, we did Cassey Ho’s Workday Arm Sculpt. If you need a weightless arm routine that you can do anywhere, do this. It’s a killer! Her Core Crusher video is one of our favorites too. PP loves it, as in he knows what’s coming and is always reluctant to do it at first with me.

Soooo, that’s pre-challenge prep. Not bad! I think I can keep it up. However, this weekend I planned two weekends in February to celebrate birthdays. One is a weekend in wine country with massages, wine tasting and Italian food. I will definitely be working out while we’re out. Then the following weekend is my best friend’s birthday. We’re going ziplining and will be enjoying the coast in a cute town called Jenner. They all know I am doing this challenge and need to work out and eat healthy. It’s always nice to have that support.

And now onto Week 1 of the challenge! #becomebetter

Dumpling Time – San Francisco, California

It’s our spot for dumplings. A trip to Tartine was our way to take a drive during quarantine. We would pick up a country loaf, a morning bun for him and sometimes a croque to share at Delores Park when the weather was nice. Since I was first introduced to Dumpling Time by coworkers this summer, it is now a must when we go to San Francisco.

They had two sections with outdoor seating. Now with the current stay at home order, all outside seating in San Francisco are prohibited. We now place an order while waiting in line at Tartine, go pick it up and have our dumplings in the car. It’s location makes it easy to jump back on 280 to head back to the house.

What should you order?

The pork and shrimp siu mai. This is my favorite. It comes with four pieces and are perfectly prepared.

Two orders of the tofu. One wasn’t enough between my Pandemic Partner (PP) and I so I now get our own order. It is flavored well, a bit crispy and super soft tofu inside. It is my favorite way to enjoy tofu.

Seared pork baos are great. Fluffy and tasty. You can also get them just steamed.

The Beijing noodles are also great. The beef is super flavorful and extra sauce or oil is not needed. I would only like more meat!

My PP loves the chili pork dumplings. It’s a bit too spicy for me so this is all his! He likes to add the tofu squares to the remaining oil and eat with the extra jalapenos.

We have also tried the ginger snap peas, shrimp toast, shrimp balls and milk dessert baos but the above items are our favorites. And we always leave with the plates clean. I just don’t like ginger. *gasp*

The staff is always super friendly and your food is delivered quickly. Park on the street. There is metered parking or you can find free parking around the corner. They have a three locations in San Francisco. Funny, the Dumpling Time Express is one block away. Happy eating!

Dumpling Time
55 Division Street
San Francisco, California