I don’t think I’ve blogged on a Saturday in months! I’m usually on the go, visiting coffee shops, working out, or trying new restaurants, but I’m fighting a little travel cold today. I have that annoying sinus headache that won’t go away, so I’m resting up before dinner tonight. It’s a special weekend because it’s Kyle’s birthday. I have surprise dinner plans at a very unique restaurant and a HUGE surprise adventure for tomorrow. You guys will have to follow all of my snaps to get updates as to what I’m up to (you won’t want to miss it.) I’m not over-exaggerating on this one either…it’s a big deal. Kyle still doesn’t know, so I can’t blog about it yet.
This morning Kyle and I took the Grump man for a walk. I wish I could have taken the Canadian weather back home with me. It was in the high 80’s at 9am! It’s going to be in the 90’s today, so I’m fine with lounging inside.
I just finished watching last week’s episode of The Night Of. There are only five episodes so far, but if you guys haven’t watched it yet, you might want to jump on board. It’s one of the BEST shows I’ve seen in a very long time. It’s hard to explain the show without giving anything away, so just take my word for it. You’ll be hooked in the first five minutes.
Since I’m sitting here lounging with a cup of hot tea, I figured it’d be the perfect time to share some photos from my trip to Winnipeg, Canada with General Mills and catch you guys up on some other stuff I’ve been up to. I will be writing up a separate post with all kinds of fun facts about the farms, General Mills and oats soon! I just wanted to share some other photos and eats form the trip.
I woke up at 4:45 am on Tuesday morning so I could get in a quick gym workout, a cup of coffee, shower and get my stuff ready for the trip. I had a banana and a bag of trail mix for breakfast at the airport. Becca dropped me off and wrote me the cutest card for the plane ride. Im so blessed to have a best friend like her! The flight was great. I landed in Winnipeg at 2:30pm. As soon as I walked out of the airport, I felt like I was in heaven. The breeze, the cooler temperature, zero humidity…makes me want to escape to Canada in the summer.
Dinner wasn’t until six, so Brittany (from Eating Bird Food) and I headed out to explore the beautiful city of Winnipeg.
The Forks Market was right next to our hotel, so we stopped in there. It was such a cute place with shops, restaurants and COFFEE. The Forks had gardens, sculptures, restaurants, shops, and all kinds of other fun attractions.
We walked about a mile or so along the Assiniboine River. The river walk lead us to the Manitoba Legislative Building.
Louis David Riel
“Riel’s historical reputation has long been polarized between portrayals as a dangerous half-insane religious fanatic and rebel against the Canadian nation, or by contrast a heroic rebel who fought to protect his Francophone people from the unfair encroachments of an Anglophone national government. He is increasingly celebrated as a proponent of multiculturalism, although that downplays his primary commitment to Métis nationalism and political independence.”
The beautiful Government house. Can I please have?
We all met in the lobby for dinner at the Mud & Stone Studio. This place was amazing. I felt like I was jumping into someone’s fancy Instagram account (I guess I sort of was.)
It was great getting to know everyone and eating delicious food made by The Store Next Door. First course: Pressed Watermelon/Pickled Rind/Radish/Chervil/Chive Oil/Cold Pressed Canola/Halloumi
Second Course: Lemon Ricotta Gnocchi/Blistered Tomatoes/Kale/Spiced Pepitas
Ice Course: Gin & Tonic Sorbet/Grated Cucumbers/Flowers Fourth Course: Seared Scallops/Salt Roasted Beet/Grapefruit/Sweet Pea Puree/Micro Greens Dessert: Earl Grey Poached Apricots/Meringue/Lemon Curd/Cheerio & Roasted Almond It was such a great night! I was EXHAUSTED and so ready to hit the pillow once I got back to the hotel. I set my alarm clock and went to bed. I sleep so well in hotel beds for some reason. I woke up at 5 am to fit in a workout. I ran three miles and then did some weights at the hotel gym.
I grabbed coffee at the front desk to take back up to the room with me. Breakfast wasn’t until 8:00 and I knew I wouldn’t be able to go that long without coffee. This trip made me realize how dependent my body is when it comes to coffee. I went to bed the night before with a huge caffeine headache because I was having withdrawals. I should probably cut back… BREAKFAST We were so spoiled. Look at all those toppings!
And all the milk choices…
I have a box that General Mills sent me sitting on my kitchen table. I have YET to open it. I did try the Pumpkin Spice Cheerios at breakfast while I was there and THEY ARE BETTER THAN GREAT, GREATER THAN ANY CEREAL OR PUMPKIN FLAVORED ANYTHING I’VE EVER HAD! I don’t know how long I’ll be able to go without opening that box.
We did some introductions and learned a little more about General Mills and the importance of the farming.
We spent some time at the Lefley Family Farm, where a large percentage of General Mill’s oats come from! I know what you’re thinking & YES…I’m standing on your future Cheerios.
I was so happy that General Mills invited me along on this trip because it was so informative and I gained so much knowledge about farmers, the company and of course, OATS!
It was also great getting to meet these lovely ladies! You should most definitely check out their blogs (if you haven’t already.)
The farm reminded me of being home in Iowa <3 The Lefley Farm Dog, Case! He was the best dog ever. We were spoiled again with a delicious lunch at the Lefley farm made by The Store Next Door.
We started with a hearts and roots summer salad with crunchy vegetables & a mint vinaigrette. I had the grilled mennonite chicken (DELICIOUS) with toasted quinoa topped with roasted beets, kale and sunflowers seeds. So many recipe ideas on this trip. The macarons were the talk of the trip. The filling inside of the macaron’s were made with milk infused with Golden Grahams and Trix cereal. How clever is that? You can never go wrong with fresh fruit! They also had sparkling water and sparkling rhubarb iced tea for beverage options! We toured more of the farm after lunch and even got to play on the tractor!
Learned more about the oat process at the Paterson Grain facility. It was so cool to learn how the food we eat and love ends up on our table. I will share more details in the next blog post!
Dinner at the Lefley Farm!
The set up was beautiful.
Antiques found on the Lefley Farm from over the years.
Beets & Figs. Heirloom Tomatoes/Savory Granola/Cold Pressed Canola/Pomegranate Molasses
Lebanese & Romaeso Zucchini/Fresh Herbs De Provence
New Potatoes/Warm Bacon Vinaigrette/Pickled Mustard Seed/Nature’s Farm Eggs
Braised BBQ Beef Brisket & it was PHENOMENAL.
Herbed Porchetta. Dessert: ?Mini Lemon Meringue Pies &?Mini Strawberry Vanilla Cheesecakes with Cheerio Crust & Pickled Strawberries. Cheesecake isn’t my go-to for dessert. I like it, but I don’t crave it! THIS CHEESECAKE was crave worthy. The Cheerio crust was such a great idea. Our side of the table demolished these and then hunted for more! We headed to the fields again to take sunset shots of the group! I found this pretty lady bug
Back to this coffee addiction. I had the worst headache by the time we got back to the hotel. I thought maybe tons of water and a light run could cut it loose, but nope. I ended up getting a latte with an extra shot of espresso because I couldn’t tolerate it anymore. Right after I drank the tenth sip, the headache went away. I instantly fell asleep after drinking the cup.
“Since caffeine narrows the blood vessels that surround your brain, when you stop taking it they expand again, and that can cause pain”
I knowingly have a caffeine addiction, so I’m going to try to ween myself off the amount I’m taking in. I will try my best to stick to a cup and a half in the morning and then no more after noon. It’ll be tough, but those headaches are an indicator that I need to do something about it.
I woke up around 5:00am to go for a light run followed by a walk around The Forks. My run was only about two miles at a very slow pace. I was more interested in taking photos!
I walked for almost two hours. I did a couple set of stairs and calf raises. Breakfast was at 8:30 and we sat around talking about the changes General Mills is making and some of our thoughts. I will again share more with you about that in another post. I just grew so much respect for General Mills after interacting with them and hearing all about the changes they are making and have already made.
*Amy (Super Healthy Kids), *Donna (Cookistry) *Kelsey (The Nap Time Chef), *Brittany (Eating Bird Food)!
*Tina (Carrots N’ Cake), *Kristen (Fit Bottomed Girls) *Julie (Peanut Butter Fingers), *Gina (Fitnessista),
Photographer: Joe Dickie
We all headed to the airport around ten to catch out flight! I had some snacks in Chicago. Coffee from Starbucks, Field Trip Turkey Jerky (All Natural Gluten Free Turkey Jerky, Cracked Pepper), Banana, & a That’s It Fruit Bar. Our flight had us get off the plane so they could fix it for maintenance and then we had to get right back on it about fifteen minutes later. I landed in Charlotte around 8! I picked up some dinner because I didn’t feel like grocery shopping. I had a kale salad from Whole Foods that had almonds, apples, cranberries and seeds. I also had a grilled piece of chicken on top.
I was so excited to see my boy on Friday morning! I gave him a bath and then we played in my parents backyard for about an hour. I had to catch up on my August Fit Challenge! I pulled an older workout that I missed instead of a free day.
One Hour Running/Walk Workout. (this is one of my favorites)
Walk five minutes, run five minutes, walk five minutes…etc. for one hour.
*Need easier? run 1 or 2 minutes/walk 9 or 8 minutes for one hour.
*Stretch 10-15 MinutesKyle and I met up with some friends at Mac’s Speed shop and we split grilled wings.
I had such a fun week and I cannot wait to share what I’m doing on Sunday morning with you all!
Again, Thank you General Mills for inviting me along on the trip!
Questions for You!
- Have you ever given up caffeine completely?
- What is your favorite Cereal?
- What show (or book) are you currently obsessed with?