Summer Walks, Morning Lap Swim, Home Projects, & Food!

Hey, everyone and happy Monday!

I hope you had a great weekend. I just got back on a 6-mile walk/jog, and it felt so good. I have to fit them in the early morning now that the southern heat is finally in full force. I believe starting my day with a walk sets a good tone, and usually puts me in the best mood. I can sit down without getting antsy or feeling like I need to do something. Are any of you like that? Just constantly restless? Long walks are my cure (or cleaning.)

Last week was a good one. I told myself I was going to fit in walks, stay active, and get projects completed around the house, and that’s exactly what we did.   Since I finished a few projects/recipe shoots, I’ll have a lot coming at you this week! Tomorrow, my cinnamon chips are going live! 😃

One thing that I’ve been enjoying is morning lap swims. We are so fortunate to have a swimming pool (and gym that I’ll be using after it’s safe again) in the neighborhood. From 6 am to 8 am it’s open for lap swim. I thought it would be a healthier way to wake up and get active before it’s too hot out. I walk about a mile down to the pool, swim for 45-minutes, and then walk a mile back. I like to make my coffee to enjoy for the walk there/back. I bought some waterproof headphones that have made swimming so much fun. Everything is better with music.
On Tuesday, I did a 4-mile walk. It was in the middle of the afternoon, so there was no way I could keep on going. It was SO HOT. This is what convinced me that morning walks were the way to go, even if I’d rather spend that time on the couch drinking coffee.

I was having a problem with bad acne for a few weeks. I think it was because I started drinking too much crystal light and that stuff is pretty much garbage, but it tastes so good 😆 I immediately stopped drinking it, started having juices in the morning, and my acne is gone. Like it never happened. I feel the juices have been amazing for skin, digestion, and they’re so refreshing! This one had a cup of papaya, one lemon, one lime, two inches of ginger,  1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, one cup raspberries, one cucumber, and five large carrots. I always bring my neighbors the leftover juice since they love them too, and juices are usually only good the first hour of making them fresh.
The rest of Tuesday, I spent working and hanging out with the pups in the backyard. It always makes my heart so happy watching them play in THEIR own yard.
I was up at 5:30 on Wednesday with my green tea watching the sunrise before I headed out on my walk to the pool. There is nothing more peaceful than this.

I did my 45-minute lap swim and then headed back. I like to sit by the pool with my coffee afterward to dry off a bit! I’m so addicted to coffee where I get headaches if I don’t have it by 7 am. I know I know….but, I did cut back, and I don’t drink it after 10 am (unless I visit a coffee shop or genuinely need it.)
Fresh juice for breakfast! This one had large carrots, clementines, red apple, 1/2 of a papaya, a cucumber, apple cider vinegar, two lemons, ginger, and a ton of celery.  
The extra for the neighbors! 💜 How cute are these little bottles from Hobby Lobby? You can use them for salad dressings too.  
Roses from my front garden 😊 pad thai, gluten free, rice noodles, dinner, chicken, food, cooking, recipe, carrots, Thai recipe
On Wednesday night, we were returning the favor, and had the next-door neighbors over for Pad Thai night! I made sure to post that recipe the next day, so make sure to check that out if you haven’t yet! 😊 
The only photo I took Thursday! Oops! It was a writing day for me, but I did watch The High Note, and it was really good!!!
Kyle and I headed out for a five-mile walk on Friday morning. He’s been joining me on walks when he gets off work or early mornings. Oh, and how about those wildflowers? 😊 Those are the ones I planted in late February. 
On Friday afternoon, I shot the video and recipe for my cinnamon chips! I’m posting tomorrow. 😃 
THEY ARE SO GOOD & I make a dairy-free cream cheese frosting for dipping. 
After making the cinnamon chips I prepared a ton of meatloaf for the weekend. I wanted to have it ready to go into the oven when we got back from the pool. That way we weren’t starving before I actually got around to making it. I am so in love with this meatloaf I could eat it for literally days! We often do that. I’ll have to give it a designated recipe page as well. I think my meatloaf recipes are always thrown into recap blog posts. 
One thing I have been obsessed with lately is my ice cream maker. I added frozen peaches and Bai strawberry lemonade (and it’s so sour!) to the ice cream maker to make a frozen lemonade to bring to the pool with me. It would be good with champagne added to it as well.

The frozen lemonade was so refreshing, especially in the heat. 
Dinner time! 😋  
PERFECTION if I do say so myself. 
We had roasted red potatoes and Greek salads on the side. We started watching Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga before bed and it was pretty good. Kyle didn’t like it, but I was cracking up the whole time.
On Saturday morning, we headed out for our five-mile walk!  
I had a Canyon Bakehouse gluten-free bagel with Earth Balance butter and blackberry jam for breakfast. It’s such an underrated jam. 
I worked on finishing my front “doormat” Saturday afternoon. I love how it turned out!
I’ll have a blog post about it this week! There are a few things I could have done differently that would have made it look better, but now I know for the second round! 
Pizza and salad night! ♥️ 
Our Sunday morning walk! I was getting a lot of DM’s about sharing my walks, so I’ll for sure start to.
Gluten-free toast with butter and jelly! 😋 
On Sunday, we started the back porch project. We wanted to paint the bricks white and the concrete lighter. I am still up in the air about doing the stencils, but still considering it. We will finish it up this week, but I LOVE LOVE LOVE it so far! 
Makes me so happy!
We had planned on doing a pool picnic with the neighbors, but a CRAZY storm just came out of nowhere, so we did an inside picnic instead, 😊 I made my favorite tuna salad on gluten-free on bread. I also threw in a few turkey sandwiches since not everyone is a fan of tuna. 
I found this basket at an antique store and thought it would be perfect or little sandwiches! 
Between this storm and the Sahara dust storm…😳

Overall, it was such a good week, and I can’t wait to top it! 💜

Questions for you!

  1. Did you get the Sahara dust storm where you live?
  2. Do you have any plans for the 4th of July?
  3. What combo should I throw into the ice cream maker next?



  • Anna

    You should do an update of your fitness related things post. Are you still taking things intuitive as in march? Or has it changed? That would be good to read about.
    You had wonderful week , can’t wait to read about the 4th of july celebrations and your overall week.
    Take care and be blessed.

    Reply to Anna
  • Jessie

    Please share meat loaf and ice cream recipe. I have an ice cream maker too and would love more recipes

    Reply to Jessie
  • Ashton Jury

    No plans for the fourth, just staying home and watching Hamilton on Disney+. I’d love to see a coffee flavored ice cream up next! Your bread on the sandwiches looks delicious and its GF what brand is it? I’ve only found GF english muffins that I really like. Also no dust here in California, but I gotta say I’m jealous of those awesome storm clouds you guys get in the south! Have a fun fourth!

    Reply to Ashton Jury
  • Shawnee Saunders

    How do you buy so much produce for your juices while also trying to stay in a budget? Everytime I try to it costs so much! But I would love to juice more.

    Reply to Shawnee Saunders
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Shawnee!

      Trader Joes always has inexpensive produce! I buy things in bulk like carrots, lemons, celery, and only a few expensive produce like apples, peaches, etc. Also, Pineapple is a good fruit that isn’t too expensive and it can go a long way!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • harriet

    Great recap, your painted “doormat” is awesome would it be okay if I showed it to one of my clients, she’s ask me to find a “doormat” that’s not your standard doormat if you get me. That storm photo looked incredible I bet it was a goodie. We were meant to have snow this weekend, but it turned into icy sleet, was not fun. for the 4th of July my crossfit is putting on a USA hero WOD then we are having an American theme party after so thinking of making your cinnamon chips with the dip to take. Hope you have a great week

    Reply to harriet
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Oh, absolutely!! I should have that post up today!

      I can’t believe you’re going to have snow! 😮 but it does kind of sound good right now! lol

      I hope you enjoy those cinnamon chips! Have ana amazing weekend!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Alicia

    Did you get the Sahara dust storm where you live? Fortunately, no.. but our weather has been extremely hot and muggy 😪
    Do you have any plans for the 4th of July? Just relaxing with family. Excited for the long weekend
    What combo should I throw into the ice cream maker next? Something with banana and fudge!!

    How is the wedding planning going? We had to delay ours because it was too stressful to me with everything going on. Hope you’re hanging in there with all the changes!!

    Reply to Alicia
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Sounds like the perfect way to spend the 4th!!

      oh a banana fudge ice cream would be good!

      We haven’t come across any issues since we decided on 2021 ♥️ Sorry you had to delay! But it’s going to be beautiful regardless!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • marcella

    Here in TX we did get the Saharan dust pretty bad on Saturday night.. my boyfriend and I were sitting on my porch and it was making my throat really dry, thankfully it’s gone now. For 4th of July I will probably just go on a nice 4 mile run and have some watermelon! Also probably make some Tinto de Verano 🙂 My favorite drink after studying abroad in Spain in college. I love cookies + cream so I would suggest that for your next icecream flavor!! However where I live there’s an icecream place that started in Austin called Lick and my FAVORITE flavor is beet + mint – I know it sounds bad but it’s so good and such a pretty color!! Maybe if you just juiced some beets and used that, haha I’m not sure how they make it.

    Reply to marcella
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Oh no! & yes, glad it’s gone!

      Your 4th sounds PERFECT! especially with the addition of watermelon.

      Ohhhh beet plus mint?? ewwwww but I’m sure it’s good. I’m just a hater when it comes to beets 😆

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Becky

    Your painted front “doormat” is such a creative idea! I’m looking forward to hearing how you did it and how long it holds up in the future. I would also love your meatloaf recipe!

    Reply to Becky
  • McKayla

    Hi, Taralynn! Thanks for sharing your beautiful and inspiring life, your blog posts always make me happy! 🙂

    I’ve been swimming laps every day too this summer, since it’s super hot and I’m pregnant, so that’s been my go-to exercise lately haha. Would you mind sharing which headphones you use for the pool? Swimming with music sounds amazing!!

    Reply to McKayla
  • hillary

    1. Nope. No I don’t think we have dust storms in Iowa.
    2. No plans for the 4th. Maybe ride my bike and catch up on my reading.
    3. You should try a ice cream made from the juices from your juicer. With a coconut milk base.

    Reply to hillary
  • jenny

    no dust storm here, working hospital for the 4th this year (boo), and curious whether your ice cream maker can handle chunkier recipes too (like crunchy mix ins ie pistachio or a rocky road with chunks of chocolate/nuts etc).

    loving your new recipe posts and all the walks you’re enjoying. I enjoy my walks alone but sometimes its nice to have my husband along to pass a couple hours quickly too! glad kyle is getting out with you at times too. lately it’s been so humid that some of our walks feel a little oppressive if its not first thing in the morning. not sure I’m ready to jump in a cold pool early in the morning though– very brave of you!

    hope you have a happy 4th!

    Reply to jenny
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Jenny!

      OH YES! My ice cream maker makes all kinds of heavy-duty flavors. We did s’mores last year with graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate mixed in.

      Surprisingly the water feels nice when it’s cooler in the mornings! ♥️ Have a great 4th with your family!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Milena

    Hi Taralynn!

    it looks like you had a really good week 🙂

    I’m like you, I constantly feel like I have to do something and it costs me to just sit down and do nothing!

    I am so into juices lately! I buy them in my neighborhood but your posts make me wanna prepare them on my own. Maybe I will try soon! 🙂

    Here in Barcelona it’s super hot and there was no rain in weeks. I have a summer break from job and I can enjoy the city without tourists, so that’s pretty cool. We are rediscovering all the places with my boyfriend and taking new pictures 🙂

    Have a nice 4th of July and take care <3

    Big hugs,


    Reply to Milena
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Milena!

      Hope you had an amazing week as well.

      Ohhh making your own is super fun and you can customize it EXACTLY how you want it 😊

      Have a great day, girl! xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Madeline

    Did you get the Sahara dust storm where you live? Yes! Caused bad allergies but we had beautiful sunsets.

    Do you have any plans for the 4th of July? No, we’re still minimizing social contact where we live so it’ll probably be a low-key BBQ at home for us (no complaints).

    What combo should I throw into the ice cream maker next? I’m really into sour and citrus fruit combos… cherry limeade, cucumber or mint lemonade, pineapple (with lime? mango?). Have you made a Dole Whip yet? That sounds familiar but maybe I’m just thinking about one of your trips to Disney.

    Reply to Madeline
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Yes, those sunsets were gorgeous!

      A low-key bbq is exactly what we plan to do!

      Ohhh i think a cherry limeade maybe my next go-to!

      YES, I made the dolewhip!!! it’s so good. You can buy the mix on Amazon.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Suzanne

    I recently found your blog posts again after a few years and love them!! I’ve been desperately needing some inspiration for new recipes, decor, and motivation to get up early! 🙂 I did my first morning HITT class today in months. It felt great. Can’t wait for next week!! I also did some of your pinterest workouts a couple weeks ago!

    Reply to Suzanne
  • Lina

    Awe! This makes me miss swimming so much but everything here is still shut down due to covid.
    Question, are you going to share the blog posts about the house build and some things you would’ve done differently now that youve gone through it?

    Reply to Lina
  • Selma

    Reading your blogs just makes me feel calm, absolutely love it! Can’t wait to see more about the projects around the house! Thanks for sharing

    Reply to Selma
  • Kelly Matchett

    I can’t wait for the door mat post!

    Do you find your hair gets dry swimming everyday?

    Love the recaps! They make my week hah

    Reply to Kelly Matchett
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Kelly!

      I wear a swim cap for laps! and when I casually go to the pool, I avoid getting my hair wet because of the dryness! I will say that Alfaparf has the BEST products for dry hair!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Emma

    Maybe a pina colada type ice cream? I did a strawberry coconut last week and it was really good! I bet subbing in some pineapple would also be tasty 😊

    Reply to Emma
  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Now I want to go for a swim! It’s been years since I’ve gone for a dip in the pool or the ocean…! ❤️✨

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Reply to Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

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