Summer is Here: A Queen City Weekend 👑

Good Morning, Everyone! I hope you’re having a fantastic week so far.

I promise I won’t get in the habit of sharing recap posts on Wednesday, but this week has been pretty eventful. Kyle had his good friends visiting, and I wanted to make sure to take a step back from the computer a bit and spend my time in the moment.

With trips to the farmer’s market, playing tennis in scorching temps, walks with friends around the city, and fighting the humidity, it finally felt like summer down here in Charlotte.

Let’s get to the recap so I can show you what I ate, what I did, and where I went last week 🙂 
I was all over the place on Monday. I spent the first have of the day walking the dogs, writing my last recap post, and getting other work-related tasks done. Around 10 am, I was ready for breakfast. I decided to make a smoothie so I could take it with me on the go. I wanted to head to Whole Foods and pick up some new cleaning supplies so I could tackle the kitchen. Once in a while, I’ll spend several hours scrubbing every cabinet and cleaning the appliances. And when I’m in the mood to clean, there is no breaking it.

Banana-Green Smoothie
• 1/2 frozen banana
• 8 ounces unsweetened vanilla cashew milk
• 2 cups fresh spinach leaves
• 1 tsp spirulina powder
• 3-4 ice cubes
• 1 scoop vanilla orgain plant protein powder
• shredded toasted coconut chips on top
I spent about an hour and a half on the kitchen, and then an additional two hours tacking laundry and scrubbing the floors in the house. I do love hardwood floors, but goodness they are a lot of upkeep!

For lunch, I had a turkey wrap with carrots and hummus. I was super hungry and didn’t even use a plate, but stopped to eat mid-clean! That’s why it’s not pictured.

I dove into the leftovers for dinner.

Around 5 pm, I had an arugula salad topped with northern beans, honey roasted pecans, and honey mustard vinaigrette. After dinner, I took Leo and Grumples for a two-mile walk.

I decided to spend the rest of the evening shaving some hair off of Grumples. His hair grows so fast, and it’s way too hot to carry a coat like that, so we sat out on the driveway for about two hours while I shaved him. It’s the strangest thing, but he LOVES it. He get’s excited when I bring out the razor. I kept it on a long setting, so I didn’t shave him bald. I’ll take Grumples to the groomers twice a year, but maintain it myself when I need to.

After shaving, I brought out the dog shampoo and gave him a hose bath on the side of the house. He was looking fresh and ready to go to the vet in the morning.

After having a cup of coffee and walking the dogs two miles early in the morning, Grumples and I headed to the vet around 9:30. Last year, he was about fifteen pounds overweight, and guess what? He lost all fifteen pounds over the course of one year! I am SO proud of him. The long walks, sticking to healthy treats (green beans) and reducing his food worked. He has so much energy, and he seems to be in a better mood.

Our walks have been more enjoyable too since putting him in training with Leo.
I was super hungry when we got back. I made breakfast around 10 am, and it was delicious! I made my go-to protein pancakes (recipe coming soon), roasted almonds, two eggs over medium, and mango slices. 
For lunch, I had a sweet potato tortilla (BFree foods) with turkey, lettuce, and avocado with a said of cotton candy grapes and harvest snaps. The Harvest snaps and grapes were half eaten by the time I remembered to take a photo. I also tried the Bai antioxidant super tea and it was so delicious!

I always visit my parents during the week so I packed a salad for dinner and headed their way. The dogs LOVE wrestling around in the backyard and chasing bubbles. 
My dinner salad was delicious.

It had Applegate turkey, arugula, northern beans, butternut cinnamon squash, avocados, tomatoes, cucumber, onions, and honey mustard vinaigrette.
On Wednesday morning, I headed to my appointment in Charlotte. I had to take a photo to show you guys how light my hair has gotten since getting the balayage! I’m kind of loving it. It’s always fun to change things up.

Smoothies are a must in the summer and my favorite breakfast to cool me off.

Mango-Passion Fruit Smoothie
• 1/2 cup frozen mango
• 1/2 cup frozen passion fruit (i bought a bag at Whole Foods)
• 3-4 ice cubes
• 1 scoop vanilla orgain plant protein powder
• almond butter and almonds on top. 
For lunch, I had a BFoods wrap filled with avocado, egg, and grilled chicken. I had some random bites from leftovers on the side! After my nightly dog walks, I decided to make a healthy one pan dinner!

I always start with the carrots first since they take the longest to cook. I season them with a bit of salt, pepper, and sesame oil and cook them for 12 minutes at 400 degrees. Then, I add the salmon and broccoli to the tray with the carrots and cook an additional 13 minutes. The cooking time for the salmon depends on the size of the fillet. I seasoned this salmon with a dry rub (locally made) and sesame oil. 
I love healthy dinners that are easy to throw together!

I’ll usually add the leftover salmon to a salad the next day.
Leo forgets how big he is now…

I spent the evening having tea and falling asleep to the NBA playoffs. 
I met up with a friend at Not Just Coffee on Thursday morning. We went over some cool blog stuff and made plans to work together this summer to create some awesome content. I’m excited for a new chapter!

While I was there, I had a vanilla almond milk latte and a sesame kale salad. 
For dinner, I had fresh watermelon, arugula with leftover salmon, and a two egg omelet. 
I headed to the farmers market on Friday morning to pick up some fresh watermelon, pick some strawberries, and grab some delicious peaches. 
For breakfast, I had arugula with almonds, a two egg omelet, and strawberries! 
My sweet Grumples 🙂
One of my favorite power shots! Whenever I do a week of intermittent fasting 17:7, this is how I break my fasts. I also love the health benefits of apple cider vinegar on any regular day as well.
I know my dinner was completely ugly, but oh well! I had a bowl of rice, ground turkey, guacamole, and kale crackers. 
Kyle always meal preps at my house on Saturday, so I offered to do it for him since his friends were coming to town. I had a lot of people asking what goes into the meals, so here is the layout. They have rice, sweet potatoes, ground turkey, and baked chicken. It only takes about an hour and forty-five minutes to prepare. If you guys want, I can do an entire meal prep video! 
Becca and I made plans on Friday night to go see Adrift! We were so excited to see it, and it ended up being an awesome movie. I definitely recommend it to everyone! We love our makeup free/comfy clothes movie dates 🙂 
I was up super early on Saturday morning to join a tennis clinic. I was a little nervous to join the group since they are pretty advanced, but I’m so glad I faced my fear and went. I had the best time! I can’t wait to go back and play with them again. We played for about three hours. The best way to advance your game is to play with people who are better than you. A year ago, I would have never been able to keep up, but I get better and better the more I put myself out there.

After tennis, I headed home to get cleaned up and made my way uptown to see Kyle and his friends. 

We all made our way to the mall because they wanted to look at shoes. I grabbed a latte at Nordstrom Cafe and walked around with them. We stopped at Chopt on the way home to pick up a bite to eat before making our way to the Taste of Charlotte. I downed a huge Chopt salad because I was so hungry! I was running off a banana and RxBar after playing tennis and walking the mall for a couple hours.

My salad had arugula, kale, chicken, edamame, butternut squash, chickpeas, tomatoes, cucumber, raisins, grilled chicken, quinoa, and hot honey vinaigrette. 
We walked around the Taste of Charlotte for a bit and then headed back to the house later in the evening. 

While everyone slept in, I met up with Meighan for a three-mile walk and breakfast! We have been wanting to try Lincoln’s Haberdashery for a while now. It was the perfect morning to walk there from Uptown. 
But first? Iced coffees with a splash of almond milk. 
The food was AMAZING! I ordered two eggs over easy and fresh fruit. Meighan ordered the smoked salmon with cream cheese on the baguette with onion and capers. I loved the menu and the cute spot! Add this to your Charlotte musts 🙂 I’ll have to update my Charlotte section soon.

Later in the afternoon, I tagged along with Kyle and his friends on some fun adventures! Around 6 pm, I walked down the block to B.Good for a power bowl. I’m obsessed with this dish! The guys were grilled jalapeno cheddar burgers, and I had my heart set on this salad. 
The power bowl salad had quinoa, eggs, chicken, sesame carrots, chickpeas, brussels sprouts, kale, and a tomato vinaigrette. Now, I want it again!
Around eight, we headed to an event to watch one of their favorite authors speak.

I fell right asleep when we got back. 
On Monday morning, I walked down to Queen City Grounds to try out their new coffee shop. I’ve been slacking on all of these new places popping up in Charlotte, so I made up for it this weekend. After walking the dogs, I walked back down that way to grab some black drip coffees to go. And yes, they were both for me. I also picked up some pure bliss bars that were extremely delicious!

Coffee verdict? DELICIOUS.

After I spent Monday morning blogging, I headed out for a three-mile dog walk with Grumples and Leo. Kyle went to the gym, and I had no desire to join. Walking the dogs is my favorite way to stay active. Other than tennis of course.
Once everyone was up and back from the gym, we decided to go get breakfast and play some tennis.

We actually went to Lincoln’s Haberdashery! I’d be OK with eating here every day.

I ordered two eggs with fruit and a side of oatmeal that I knew everyone would share with me. The oatmeal was SO GOOD! You have to order this if you go. It comes with steel cut oats cooked with almond milk, bananas, flax seed, and brown sugar. 
We played tennis for about an hour, but couldn’t handle the 95-degree heat any longer.

I decided to run to Whole Foods to pick up some things to make dinner. I went with Kyle’s favorite…salmon!

While I was at Whole Foods, I picked up these Smart Sweets! I can’t believe this whole bag of gummy bears is 90 calories with only 3 grams of sugar. I only ate a few at a time because the fiber content scared me.
Salmon is one of my favorite meals to make and Whole Foods always has the freshest fillets. I roasted the salmon at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. I seasoned it with lime, sesame oil, gluten-free soy sauce, sesame seeds, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, chili flakes, and brown sugar.

I also made my favorite green bean recipes!

Salmon, green beans, roasted carrots, sushi rice, and guacamole! I had a glass of kombucha too. I could seriously eat this every day. We had such a fun time with Kyle’s friends, and it was sad to see them leave.

I’m excited to get back on track and start my week (even though it’s Wednesday.)

I hope you all have a great rest of your week!

Questions for you.

  1. What are you currently trying to improve?
  2. Do you ever get into cleaning moods?
  3. Do you like to go to the movies in your comfy clothes?


  • Annie

    Charlotte looks beautiful!

    Reply to Annie
  • Sara

    Where is your cross top from

    Reply to Sara
  • Step

    It must be so hot there

    Reply to Step
  • Michelle

    A meal plan video would be great! Where do you get the containers for them? Are they microwavable?

    Reply to Michelle
  • Casey

    Great post Taralynn! Keep them coming…. Yes I would love to see a meal prep video, tks!

    Reply to Casey
  • trish

    I’m so confused by Kyle’s meals. You made 15 meals. Does he eat 2 a day 7 days a week? The same meal? What happens to a meal if he eats something else for dinner? Does it get wasted? Also is there a reason for eating the same few foods twice a day every day? Does he have food allergies? Is he a major picky eater? I’m a picky eater and I can get on kicks where I might eat the same thing a few times a week but it’s not twice a day for seven days!

    lol, I just don’t get it.

    Reply to trish
    • Taralynn McNitt


      He brings 3 meals to work 5 days a week.

      He has a shake when he wakes up, a meal at 11, a meal at 2 a meal at 4, and a shake before bed.

      He just has the macros/protein/carbs specifically to fit his diet/workout regime. It makes his workdays easier. He’ll switch up the carb source sometimes, and use different seasonings for the chicken.

      He doesn’t follow this diet on the weekends. He just eats his shakes, and the meals he wants.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    Summer is certainly here in Arizona!

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Mary

    Sounds like a fun weekend!

    Reply to Mary
  • Nara

    I made your gummy bears this morning! A hit with my kiddos!

    Reply to Nara
  • Brit

    I agree about the taste of Charlotte being hot and crowded! The heat coming from the food trucks and people was atrocious.

    Reply to Brit
  • Haley

    Thank you for doing these recap posts! Many bloggers have strayed from them and only stick to Instagram. Please never change!

    Reply to Haley
  • erin

    Are you a full time blogger?

    Reply to erin
  • Anonymous

    What brand of tennis shoes do you wear

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Nessa

    Your tennis skirt is cute! What brand is that?

    Reply to Nessa
  • Abbey

    Wow your skin is absolutely glowing in that picture of you and Kyle together! Maybe all the tennis is giving you rosy cheeks! 🙂 Its great that you are pushing yourself to be a better tennis player.

    This was a fun post, I love seeing all the summery activities. I hope you have a great week! 💜

    Reply to Abbey
  • Beth

    Sounds like a fun weekend! What author did you hear speak?

    1. I’m currently working on improving my guitar skills…I’m just a beginner and it’s really tough but I’m working on it.
    2. I definitely get into cleaning moods – although I wish I got into them more often!! 😉
    3. I only go to the movies in leggings. It’s a necessity. I refuse to wear real pants there.

    Reply to Beth
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi Beth! Definitely a fun weekend 🙂

      That is such a great skill to pick up! My brother and Kyle play really well. I try, but I’m so bad! lol

      Lol same same!

      Yay for leggings at the movies!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    I am trying to improve my eating habits. I eat healthy most of the time but have a terrible sweet tooth that I think is actually an addiction to sugar. I know it will be hard for me but I think I will set the goal of not eating refined or added sugar for 1 month and see if that helps.
    My cleaning modes are usually focused on the floors because my dog sheds a lot!

    Quick question- how often do you fast? And how do you do it?

    Reply to Anonymous
    • Taralynn McNitt

      That’s a really great goal! 🙂 Sometimes we drift towards sugar when we are tired or not fueling with nutritious food during the day.

      I’m not a hardcore faster. I just cut off (recently started) my eating window at 5:30 or 7 pm and then going 16 to 17 hours. I only do it when it fits my schedule/lifestyle.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Susie | Mile High Dreamers

    So many delicious eats! There’s just something I love about summer time food, it makes me so happy! And Grumples and Leo are the cutest ever.
    Actually, after reading some of your posts, I’m determined to try and lower my cortisol levels. Even though I haven’t had them officially tested, I pretty much know as a teacher with a high trauma population that my stress levels are constantly through the roof. I already work out regularly and eat clean, but I’m also going to try some adaptogen herbs and meditation! Hopefully over the summer I can find some management strategies before school starts again.
    LOVE cleaning moods. I find cleaning so therapeutic and calming! Ben is the same way, which is nice because our house is always clean haha.
    And there’s no other way to go to the movies! Big sweatshirts and leggings all the way!

    Reply to Susie | Mile High Dreamers
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Susie!

      Thanks so much 🙂 I have to agree with their cuteness. Summer food also makes me so happy!

      That amazing! What a great goal. The perfect way to go back into the school year feeling calm and collected.

      Hahaha yes! Kyle loves to clean too!

      WOOOO! Just the best way to watch a movie!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Hilary

    Looks like a fun weekend!

    It’s great you’re sliding into a hobby like tennis. Do you still play golf?

    Reply to Hilary
  • Alexis

    I’m never in a cleaning mood but will always be down for comfy clothing (anywhere really)! LOL!

    I love events like Taste of Charlotte! We have Taste of Chicago and it’s fun to try so many different types of food. Which restaurants did you sample?

    Reply to Alexis
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Lol same here!!

      I love events like that too, but it was like 100 degrees, 9 pm, and so crowded, so I didn’t sample any of the restaurants. I wish they would have it earlier in the year!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    Love reading your recap posts each week. Your hair looks gorgeous with the balayage!

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Leah

    Ok, so tell me more about leftover salmon. I’m super weird about leftover fish. Do you reheat it or eat it cold on your salad? I love it, but I hate cooking it every time I want it, so I need to start liking it as leftovers!

    Reply to Leah
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Leah!

      I never reheat my leftover salmon. I’m so weird and picky about leftover fish too! I just break it apart and eat it cold on my salad the next day! 🙂

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Linda @ the Fitty

    LOL do you have a before and after photo of crumpled?!

    Reply to Linda @ the Fitty
  • Katie Meshko

    Yes comfy clothes all the way when it comes to movies! <3 Great post girl, looks like a very fun weekend!! I absolutely love trying out new coffee places.. it's such a fun thing to do -looks like you got lucky with that one! LOVEEE the bayalage on you. Also – I need to get my hands on some of those gummy bears ASAP. :p
    XO, Katie |

    Reply to Katie Meshko
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Katie!

      Thanks for stopping by to read 🙂

      I totally agree about comfy clothes every time! I heard somewhere that some movie theaters were going to create a dress code and I was like “NOPE.”

      There are so many new coffee spots in Charlotte that are calling my name! So fun to try them out 🙂

      Thank you so much! It’s fun to have a hair change now and then 😀

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Shannon

    Hi Taralynn!

    1. Currently trying to stop grazing on sweets. Trader Joe’s just has too many fun cookie and candy options! I think snacking in general is something I’m also trying to work on. And trying to get into running more.
    2. I like your idea of cleaning the entire kitchen top to bottom, I need to try that! I recently discovered using a paste made out of baking soda and vinegar to clean tough stains and it works like a charm! Might need to tackle my bathroom soon.
    3. Movie dates are my favorite, especially to escape the summer heat. I’m glad to know Adrift was good! I’ve been wanting to see that. I just saw Ocean’s 8 and would definitely recommend that movie as well.

    Reply to Shannon
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Shannon!

      Trader Joe’s is dangerous! I’m the same way with buying all the snack foods as well.

      That’s a great idea for cleaning!

      I can’t wait to see Ocean’s 8! A fun cast 🙂 I’ll add it to my list!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Elisabeth

    I tried your roasted salmon recipe last weekend, it was soooo delicious!

    What are you currently trying to improve?
    I try to deal with my anxiety and stress. These last weeks, most of the days ended with me being physically and mentally exhausted. I have to cut back my caffeine intake and restart a regular yoga and meditation routine (it helps a lot)

    Do you ever get into cleaning moods?
    Not too often (I have a regular cleaning schedule). I’m more into the “I need to get rid of EVERYTHING” mood when I’m really upset (I really need to improve my stress management 😀 )

    Reply to Elisabeth
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thanks, Elisabeth! So glad you enjoyed 🙂

      That sounds like a great plan to start feeling better. Sometimes slowing down is the best thing we can do for ourselves.

      That’s a better mood to be in rather than going out and buying everything when you’re upset.

      You got this, girl!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Amy

    YES! Would love to view a meal prep video!! 🙂

    Reply to Amy
  • Shannen

    I am trying to improve my rating habits again! I did really well for a long time, but went on vacation and never got back on track after 😝 so definitely working on that!
    Yes! And between those cleaning moods I despise cleaning! Haha
    Always comfy clothes for the movies! I hate sitting for two hours in an outfit that I feel like I can’t relax in.

    Reply to Shannen
  • Anonymous

    What kind of dog is leo and grumples

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Anastasia

    What a wonderful week you had! That power bowl from B.Good looks AMAZING! I’ll have to try to recreate it somehow because we don’t have the restaurant anywhere near me!
    1. The number one thing I am trying to improve right now is my mindset! I am trying to be a lot kinder to myself. I feel like I can be my own worst critic sometimes for no reason at all. Isn’t it funny how people can give you a million compliments but you’ll only focus on that ONE negative comment someone made? Definitely trying to focus on the complements rather than the criticisms!
    2. I LOVE cleaning. It is very therapeutic for me. I have an Australian Shepard who sheds 24/7 so I am always sweeping and vacuuming but I secretly don’t mind it at all. The house always feels so much better cleaner and I always feel more productive in a clean environment.
    3. There is nothing better than going to the movies in comfy clothes AND sneaking in your own treats 🙂 Although, once I tried to sneak in a salad and waffle fries from Chick Fil A and I got caught because they could smell it!! hahah

    Have the best week ever!! You are an inspiration!! <3

    Reply to Anastasia
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Anastasia!

      Yes! I want to recreate it as well 😛

      1. I can 1000000000000 relate to that. I was just having that conversation with one of my friends yesterday. It’s a great thing to work on!

      2. I bet it’s hard to keep up with the hair, but totally worth it! Austrailian Shepards are beautiful.

      3. Hahahahah that is so funny! They probably wanted you to throw it out so they could eat it 😉

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Mel

    When will you post the poke bowl?

    Reply to Mel
  • Aria

    Love your hair!

    Reply to Aria
  • Meghan

    Looks like you had a really good time! It is nice to just be in the moment and not worried about work or social media while spending time with people. One of my goals this year has been to be more in the moment. I was a die hard snapchat fanatic for awhile but I’ve been trying to take a step back and just be in the moment instead of always ‘snapping’ things. One other thing I’ve been trying to improve upon is having structure in my day with food. I’ve been working on planning out my meals for the week instead of just picking up a bunch of random healthy stuff and then being too lazy to put together actual meals. I find that just sticking to a few core foods for the week keeps me on track much more than having lots of variety. I love to clean if I have a good few hours to devote to it, it’s one of my favorite ways to spend a day off actually. I love being able to play my music and just putz around cleaning. I always go to the movies in comfy clothes! It’s much more relaxing

    Reply to Meghan
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Meghan!

      Thanks so much for stopping by to read! That is an awesome goal. I’ve definitely been trying to do the same.

      I can relate 100% That’s why I’ve been making myself fit meals in instead of grazing all day and all night.

      Cleaning is definitely therapeutic! Especially with good music.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    What a fun and healthy weekend, Taralynn! 🙂
    I personally don’t like going to the movies… it’s rather expensive and I get bored easily, my attention span isn’t long enough to focus so long! Haha! 😛

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Reply to Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

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