Thinking Out Loud Thursday

by Lisa on Thursday: Sep 29, 2016

Today I’m linking up with the weekly Thinking Out Loud blog hop for some random thoughts from the week.

Thinking Out Loud

  1. This week I finally went ahead and ordered my 2017 Erin Condren Life Planner. I’ve been using one for the past two years and just love their style and functionality. I was waiting for some kind of sale, and I eventually got 15% off, so I decided to jump on it. Their shipping times are notoriously slow so I didn’t want to wait until too close to the end of the year. It should be arriving soon though, and I’m very excited!
  2. The weather here has started to cool off finally. We had a very hot and humid summer and went many weeks in the 90s with very high humidity. It feels a little strange to have days that don’t even surpass the high 50s in temp. While it’s nice to not be as sweaty on my walks, it’s a little sad to know that winter is on the horizon.
  3. I don’t know about you, but when fall hits, I kind of go into “winter nesting” mode. I start stockpiling things for the house, doing a ton of cleaning and making sure I’m ahead of schedule on things that need to get done. It’s kind of a subconscious thing, but I guess it makes sense since winter weather can hit at any time starting in October, and it can really throw things off.
  4. On the plus side, this has led me to do some much needed deep cleaning of the house! Things had really piled up in the lead-up to the wedding, and I really haven’t spent much time undoing the damage.
  5. One exciting thing that’s happening this fall: I will be hosting Thanksgiving for the first time ever! Now that D and I are married, it makes more sense for our families to celebrate together instead of us running around from house to house trying to fit in visits with everyone.
  6. This means that I will need to learn to cook a turkey. Yes, you read that right. Lisa the Vegetarian is going to be cooking a turkey. While I won’t be eating it, I know my guests will be expecting their traditional Thanksgiving meal, so between D and myself we will figure it out. I wanted to do a practice turkey a few weeks in advance, but I’m not sure if we’ll have enough people to eat it all. Wish me luck on this!
  7. But on the flip side, I will also have the ultimate freedom to create as many veggie dishes as I want. If you read my post last year about “how to survive the holidays as a vegetarian”, you’ll know this is a great thing.
  8. If you haven’t checked them out yet, catch up with some of my latest posts: My September Sephora Play! Box Review and Vegetarian Meal Highlights from Tokyo.


Have you every hosted a holiday? Any tips for a first timer?

Has the weather cooled off where you are yet?

Thinking Out Loud | New York City Edition

by Lisa on Thursday: Sep 08, 2016

This past weekend my husband and I headed down to New York City for the long weekend. We had a great time and I’m going to do the recap Thinking Out Loud style.

Thinking Out Loud

  1. The main reason for this trip was to see the Perfume concert. Perfume is a J-Pop group that we’ve both been fans of for several years. They specialize in electronic-style pop and add in a lot of cool technology to their shows. The show was amazing and well worth the trip. I don’t know how they’re able to dance in those high heels for two hours straight!
    Perfume Pic from Gallery
  2. Perfume was playing at the Hammerstein Ballroom on 34th street, and this was the second time we’ve seen them perform there.
  3. When we went to their concert last time, we stayed at a hotel that was literally next door to the concert venue. Because of the extreme convenience, we decided to stay there again. The hotel is the Wyndham New Yorker, which unfortunately isn’t my favorite. The rooms are very tiny and they don’t really have many amenties, not to mention the age of the hotel makes it feel a bit rustic. I’ve found that it’s quite difficult to find a nice hotel room in the city in general, so we take what we can get.
  4. The first night we were there we had a nice Italian dinner at Casa Nonna which was a few blocks from where we were staying. I found it randomly while searching nearby restaurants on Google maps. I had a spaghetti dish with marinara sauce, tomatoes, basil and garlic. Delicious!
    Casa Nonna - Vegetarian Dish
  5. On day 2 of the trip, we had reserved tickets to see a small gallery exhibit that was featuring Perfume for the weekend. The gallery was displaying all sorts of fashion featured in Perfume’s music videos and concerts as well as some of the technology they use as well. It was a nice complement to the show.
    Perfume Gallery Dresses
  6. Threats of Hurricane Hermine followed us the whole weekend. On the drive down, it seemed like we were heading directly into the path of the storm, and every few hours a news alert would be issued on my phone from Weatherbug. However, we didn’t see a drop of rain the entire weekend. Definitely a false alarm.
  7. On the second day, we decided to just go wandering a little further uptown, so we meandered through the streets of Times Square and slightly north of the area. I’m not sure what was going on there, but it seemed to be some kind of Brazilian festival. There was some awesome live music being played and tons of food tents and vendors selling hand made goods. It went on for blocks and blocks. It was cool to stumble on something like that!
    NYC Times Square Brazilian Festival
  8. In the evening after we finished our exploring and dining, we settled into the room with some wine and watched random movies on TV. This trip, we happened to catch the two most recent Muppets movies. They were surprisingly funny!
  9. Another very New York thing we ended up doing: eating $1 pizza slices on the side of the street! We had walked by this pizza shop earlier in the trip, and the food just smelled amazing. It was kind of fun to just stand up at one of the outdoor tables and watch people walk by as we ate. New York pizza is the best.
  10. The drive to New York generally takes us about 4.5 hours, which used to seem like a long drive, but now goes by pretty fast. Thankfully D is okay with doing the city driving when we arrive (we usually drive to our hotel and then keep the car in a lot until we’re ready to go back home). I’m a fairly nervous driver as it is and I can’t imagine navigating the streets of NYC in a car myself!


Have you ever been to NYC? What’s your favorite thing to do there?

What destinations are within driving distance of where you live?

Thinking out Loud Thursday

by Lisa on Thursday: Aug 25, 2016

Today I’m linking up with Running With Spoons for Thinking Out Loud Thursday!

Thinking Out Loud

  1. I’m writing this post at 5 in the morning, and I’ve already been awake for two hours! Yeah, not so good. I’ve been having a ton of trouble getting a full night of sleep lately and have taken to waking up between 2-4 AM and not being able to go back to sleep. Not very fun.
  2. On the flip side, at least I’m being productive during the extra hours I suddenly have during the day.
  3. Before starting on this post, I spent some time with my planner, looking ahead into the first few weeks in September. There’s just something so calming about working on my planner. Anyone else feel that way?
  4. I’m looking forward to the weekend because my birthday is on Sunday! D and I will be heading to my family’s house on Saturday to celebrate and then will be going out to eat on the day of. My birthday completely snuck up on me this year what with all the excitement from the wedding/honeymoon.
  5. Whenever we go out for dinner on my birthday, I inevitably end up picking a Mexican restaurant as my choice. Mexican food is my absolute favorite, and unfortunately it seems so difficult to be able to find a good one in the area where I live.
  6. For the first time in many years, I’m actually looking forward to the fall season. Generally, fall is a depressing season for me because I know that it means winter is around the corner, and where I live, winter is fairly bad. But this year, there is a lot less life stress in general, and I find myself actually looking forward to the subtleties of the season.
  7. In the meantime, I’m still enjoying the last remnants of summer. The weather hasn’t cooled off yet, which is fine with me, and I’ve been getting out and doing a lot of walking during the work week.
  8. Which is great because I recently joined a Step Bet. I’m in the last two weeks of the six week bet right now and I’m still hanging in there! I thought it would be a lot easier than it is, but the step goals they give you really keep you on your toes. I’ve been averaging 75,000 – 80,000 steps per week since I started.


Are you looking forward to fall or dreading winter?

Do you have good Mexican restaurants where you live?

Thursday Thoughts

by Lisa on Thursday: Apr 21, 2016

It’s been a few weeks since I last participated in Thinking Out Loud Thursday, so we have a lot to catch up on!

Thinking Out Loud

  1. The biggest news is that my bridal shower was this past weekend. It was amazing! Our extended families got to meet for the first tim,e and I got to see a lot of people I haven’t seen in quite a while. We were very spoiled that day. I will write a more comprehensive recap post soon.
  2. Now that all the invitations are out, it’s been very exciting to come home and check the mail everyday. It’s 2 months to the wedding – crazy!
  3. In other news, for the past few days, I’ve been catching up on the latest season of Girls. I’ve watched the series off and on anytime it appeared for free on demand, but the last season was a bit on the boring side. I’m pleasantly surprised to be enjoying season 5 a lot more.
  4. I especially like that a portion of this season takes place in Japan. I’m noticing that I can understand a lot of Japanese when I’m listening to small talk, which is a good sign. However, when hearing full conversations, I’m pretty lost. D and I are planning to do a lot more studying of the language before our trip.
  5. D and I have also been spending a few nights a week watching the NHL playoffs. Our team, the Bruins, didn’t make it into the playoffs this year, but we’re following a few other teams.
  6. Interestingly, I had absolutely no interest in hockey before I met D, but after watching a season or two with him at the beginning of our relatioship, I actually became interested. Now it’s something we can talk about together and have fun with.
  7. Tuesday night I was up at 4 in the morning not sleeping, and I filled up my shopping cart on Etsy with $45 worth of planner stickers. I decided to back slowly away from my phone and didn’t place the order. I’m proud of myself for not spending!
  8. This week I met up for dinner with my future maid of honor and her new boyfriend. It was great to catch up and we ended up eating at a new restaurant nearby – Wahlburgers
    Wahlburgers - sweet potato tots

  9. They had a portobello burger which was decent, and I also got a side of sweet potato tots, which were delicious. Overall though, the experience didn’t live up to the hype. There were some glitches during the meal with service and my friends didn’t enjoy everything they ordered. Still though, we had fun and it was long overdue for us to have some time to catch up on life.
  10. It’s spring, and today it’s going to be 70 degrees. I’m happy!

I’ll be back later this weekend with this month’s BoxyCharm review. I hope everyone is having a great week!

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Vegetarians: do you prefer veggie burgers or portobello burgers?

What TV shows have you been binge watching lately?

Wedding Thoughts and Updates

by Lisa on Thursday: Mar 31, 2016

Today’s Thinking Out Loud is going to be based on what’s been on my mind non-stop: my upcoming wedding! We’re now slightly less than 3 months out from the big day, so it’s no surprise that there’s a lot to think and talk about.

Thinking Out Loud

  1. Two weeks ago, D’s sister and I went to look at bridesmaids dresses. I wasn’t sure what we were going to find, or even what I was hoping for other than the color being purple. However, it didn’t take us long at all to find a beautiful, long purple gown that fit all the requirements of the other girls. It was so much easier than I thought it would be to find something, and since then, all the girls have ordered their dresses!
  2. The day after that, D and I visited a florist that had been recommended to us by our venue. We met at her home, and she was extremely sweet and accommodating to what we did and didn’t want. She didn’t even seem to mind when D prefaced our appointment with the statement: “My fiancee doesn’t like flowers” (which is true – I don’t). Flowers – booked!
  3. Last week, our order of invitations arrived. They came out great! I was nervous during the ordering process that some detail was going to get messed up, but it turns out I had nothing to worry about.
  4. Now I have 100 invitations strewn about on my dining room table waiting for me to do all the addressing, stamping, stuffing and sending.
  5. Before I can send them out though, I have to finish putting together our wedding website. I decided to code one from scratch, since I am a web developer and all. It hasn’t been too much work to get something up, but there are a few details left and a lot of pictures to add. Then we’re good to go!
  6. Also this week we met up with our officiant for the second time to go over our choices for the ceremony. She told us we were really on top of things and organized (that’s one of the biggest compliments anyone can give me “you’re so organized!” 🙂
  7. Next week we’re going back to the cake shop to finalize our cake design. We think we know what we want, and it’s just a matter of printing out some ideas we found online and bringing them with us.
  8. As if that wasn’t enough wedding activity for the past few weeks, this coming weekend we scheduled a dance lesson so we can start working on our first dance. Then on Sunday, I’m going to pick up my wedding dress, which has already come in.
  9. I’m super nervous to try it on, but at least this isn’t going to be a fitting appointment. Apparently they want you to come in to pick it up and pay the balance first, and then schedule a fitting afterward.
  10. And, last but not least, my bridal shower is scheduled for two weeks from this coming Sunday! We have already begun receiving gifts in the mail from people who won’t be able to attend. It’s been unexpected and fun.

Whew! That was a whirlwind. I knew we’d been busy lately, but putting it all down at once makes me realize how much it really has been.


Tell me one of your random thoughts from the week!

If you’re engaged/married, what was the most fun part of the planning process? The most stressful?