good things : summer bucket list

Happy 1st day of summer, friends!!! I haven’t done any bucket-listing for awhile, but summer just begs to be bucket-listed. There are so many fun things to do and plenty of time in which to do them! Here are my top 10:

Cheesecake Frozen Yogurt Pops

pinned here via here

1 :: get ice cream at Lugia’s

2 :: go to Hamlin Beach

3 :: make my own greek frozen yogurt pops

4 :: spend a FULL WEEK at home

5 :: have corn on the cob, watermelon, and chicken on the grill

6 :: go for a long, hot run on the canal and/or Genesee River

7 :: take a day trip, complete with packed picnic lunch (Canandaigua? Pennsylvania???)

8 :: have strawberry lemonade

9 :: make s’mores

10 :: go to an outdoor concert/drive-in movie/summer festival on a warm night

and bonus!

11 :: have dinner outside with friends by the water

via martha stewart

What’s on your bucket list?! If you need any ideas…look no further than Martha Stewart’s definitive guide to all things summer. We’re talking 60 ice cream desserts, no-cook recipes, party ideas galore, and an index that makes it unbelievably easy to lose a few hours in summer planning. Have fun! And happy summer!!!

staying inspired : easter edition

Things that made today so wonderful:

:: hope ::

“The Lord is alive and well in your heart. His resurrection resulted in Christ taking up residence in your soul and transforming your life. By faith you believed and God gave you grace upon grace. Because He has risen from the grave, He has given all who confess Him as Lord, abundant grace on earth and the promise of heaven with Him. “For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ” Romans 5:7. He is all you need.”

– Boyd Baily, Wisdom Hunters Devotionals

:: chocolate ::

(Which is loosely related to hope.)

:: running ::

no excuses


No excuse for my mom and me not to go for a little run around the block.

(Where she ran her FIRST, but definitely not last, outdoor mile!!!)

:: sports ::

1. Watching Bubba Watson win the Masters in “double overtime.” (Thank you, Mom, for that.)

2. Watching Moneyball : “He hit a home run and he didn’t even know it.” (Thank you, Jonah Hill, for that.)

Really, what else could you ask for? Faith, food, family, fitness and fun. All of my favorite things on a beautiful, meaningful day. Hope you guys had a great day, too! Happy Easter, everyone!

beka stays real : top ten super bowl thoughts

I really think that yesterday, as a whole, was one of my favorite Super Bowl Sunday’s. Here are my Top 10 Super Bowl Thoughts:

1. Exceptional pregame coverage by NBC Sports. As in so exceptional we (and by we, I mean I) asked my dad to go pick up take out instead of going out for lunch during the Road to the Super Bowl (which was an NFL Films presentation, but still). Priorities, people.

2. Aaron Rodgers, please never leave Green Bay. But if someday in the far and distant future you are no longer playing QB for the Packers, please go into broadcasting. You are a natural.

3. The Steve Gleason Story. You will be better for watching this:

4. Absolutely loved Kelly Clarkson’s rendition of the National Anthem. Sing it, girl! And the simple drums in the background were just perfect.

5. When Tom Brady threw the ball while in the end zone to no one in the middle of the field…we all kind of looked at each other and wondered…safety? Yes, a safety to start a Super Bowl. The five people who placed a prop bet on that are probably very happy…and very rich.

6. Bradshaw’s “I should score oh wait maybe I shouldn’t” roll across the goal line was one of the weirdest things I’ll remember from any Super Bowl, ever.

7. As for the many Patriots’ dropped balls…the Packers can give you their therapists numbers, I’m sure. But overall, an outstanding game in all respects. Love when it comes down to the final drive. Love the passion and respect both organizations displayed. Great, great game.

8. I live on the middle floor of a three level apartment building. Lucky for my neighbors, my mom has no verbal/physical control over her actions during football games. She spent half the game shushing herself, going from “OH YES!!!” to “Oh, sorry!!!” in the same breath. At least I know I’m my mother’s daughter.

9. Loved this commercial:

10. And this commercial:

11. Bonus thoughts. I’m thankful for the following: a) Quickish. b) Everyone who worked so hard to end the lockout so we could get to experience last night’s game and the 2011 season in it’s entirety, especially since it was such a good one. c) Miscalculating how many points were needed to claim the Family Fantasy Title…and winning by one point even though I picked the Pats! d) Popcornopolis.

In closing, Peter Tebow said it best via Twitter: “So, football season is over… #whattodo”

Amen, brother. Only seven months until preseason…

beka stays real : super sunday ramblings

I love this blog. I really, really do. I love the purpose behind it and that it all works together for a common goal…but sometimes I miss this blog, my photo blog which was not actually a photo blog because all I did was ramble on ad nauseum about life, because I usually did just that: ramble on ad nauseum about life. There have been occasional rambles here. This post and this post come to mind. But mostly the content featured here has been concise, directed, informational. And while it makes for a good business plan…it can sometimes lack in fun. And who wants that?!

So I’m going to keep posting in a linear fashion, following the outline that this blog is based upon. But I’m also going to make a concerted effort to ramble every now and again. Because that’s just how I roll.

Here’s what’s on my mind this afternoon:

1. I loved (LOVED!) the NFL Honors show last night. Alec Baldwin: great choice as host. Lenny Kravitz: not as great. Best consistently inspirational leader: Drew Brees. Best reason to love Aaron Rodgers that has nothing to do with his MVP status: “I was a big Niner fan as a kid…thanks for drafting me.” Hands down my favorite moment of the night.

Dear NFL, please do this show every year. I love it that the players got a chance to clean up and be recognized for their on-field achievements. All in all: fantastic event.

2. It’s Super Bowl Sunday, which means it’s my favorite day of the year that is not Christmas. My mom texted me this morning at 6am with this greeting: “GOOD SUPER BOWL MORNING!!! Are you watching T.H.E. show?!” Of course, she meant the special Super Bowl edition of Mike and Mike in the Morning, and of course, I was watching. Super Bowl Sunday = 18 hours of uninterrupted football programming. To some this might seem excessive but think of it this way: it’s the last chance to savor relevant NFL coverage until AUGUST.

(Which also makes today my most bittersweet day of the year.)

3. Stage 5: Acceptance


Or something like that.

4. I tried to make my own version of the Milk & Honey granola I’ve been obsessed with enjoying lately. Mostly so I don’t continue to spend an inordinate amount of money shipping in granola from Chicago. I used this recipe as a base and it turned out great! But I think I might make a few tweaks next time around – dark chocolate cocoa powder, more honey, and possibly coconut oil. I’ll keep you posted.

5. Yesterday I purchased a $100 Kitchen Aid food processor for $30. I felt like I won the lottery. Which, in terms of culinary appliances, I pretty much did.

6. I totally dropped the ball on Super Bowl snacks this year. (I want to insert a snide remark about how this is similar to a certain playoff loss I recently witnessed…but I’ll refrain.) It’s really an epic fail for someone who loves food and football in disproportionate amounts…I don’t know what I was thinking. So the rents, who are here for the big game, and I are headed out to Wegmans for some last minute groceries. Hopefully we’ll get back before kickoff because I’m sure it’s going to be like the mall on Black Friday over there.Which is to say: stampede.

7. This season my parents and I did a family fantasy football league. Right now, one point separates my dad and I…so it all comes down to tonight! We’ll either tie or declare a victor! And don’t think for a second I’m hoping for a tie so that we can share the victory. Um, no. I lack any semblance of grace when it comes to competition. I’m going for the win!

I picked the Pats. He picked the Giants. Here’s to hoping the Hood doesn’t let me down.

What are you guys doing tonight? Who are you picking to win? And what are all of you prudent think-aheaders going to be snacking on? Please do tell!