Weekend Dispatch

Monday, August 6, 2018

Last weekend I made a last minute decision to take a little blogging break. After heading to central Pennsylvania to visit my sisters and their families, I returned home and was still in a laid back vacation mode and decided that I wouldn't push myself to write posts that just didn't feel organic and natural. There's something so satisfying about going to central PA where the pace seems slower and more laid back. My sister Holly lives directly behind a farm, and it's a complete juxtaposition to wake up to roosters crowing and cows mooing at the crack of dawn instead of hearing cars rushing by my window at home. It's always good to spend quality time with those we love, and that's exactly what we did. This week's Weekend Dispatch is combined with part of last week's which was never published since I took a break.

One of the things Emma wanted to do when we were in PA was go to Knoebels Amusement Resort. We hadn't been there in two years since we went camping (for the first time ever!) in July 2016. We spent the day there on Sunday. If you live in the NJ/PA area, it's a great day trip and a very cost-effective option for an amusement park. There is no admission fee, and you pay for only the rides you want to go on. I always enjoy our trips to Knoebels. If you go, be sure to ride The Phoenix and The Twister roller coasters, and a waffle ice cream sandwich is a MUST!! Here are a few of my other must-dos. Oh, and the Ferris wheel is never a bad idea! For more info on Knoebels, click HERE.

If you are a big fan of 80's music, then you know that Boy George is touring this summer with Tom Bailey (best known as the frontman for the Thompson Twins). On Friday, my sister, my niece, and I saw the concert at The Stone Pony Summer Stage in Asbury Park. It was amazing! Boy George and his band were phenomenal, and if you were a fan of the Thompson Twins (and I was a huge fan!), you'll love Tom Bailey. The Summer Stage is always a great show no matter who is playing. Check out the schedule to see the lineup for the remainder of the summer, and you can get info on the Culture Club/Tom Bailey tour HERE.

So I know I'm totally late to the game here, but have you watched The Affair? I tried to watch it back in 2014 when it premiered on Showtime, but it airs on Sunday evenings which don't really work for me as far as TV watching goes. I did watch some of it, but never followed through. A few weeks ago, I installed the xfinity app on my iPad and decided to give it another try. I started from the very beginning, and before I knew it, I was hooked. As you can guess from the title, the main plot of the show focuses on the affair of two married people, Alison and Noah. But this show is so much more than that. There are several sub-plots that are equally as good and engaging including family tensions and betrayals. It also explores the emotional/psychological impacts the affair has on everyone involved. It's set in Montauk and New York City, and the cinematography is so well done. Added bonus: Joshua Jackson.

If you are looking for an easy and nutritious meal, you can't go wrong with a grain bowl. They take seconds to put together, and although there are hundreds of recipes out there, you don't need one. You can use whatever ingredients you like or have on hand to create the perfect grain bowl for you. I like this recipe for quinoa and roasted broccoli grain bowls (p.s., I don't include the grapes) because I can use leftover broccoli and it includes one of my favorite cheeses: goat cheese. Start with a base of quinoa or rice and just add your favorite elements from there.

My list of favorite podcasts is every-growing, so much so that I now officially spend more time listening to podcasts than I do to music. When someone in a private Facebook group I belong to recommended the Second Life podcast, I was skeptical. The premise of the podcast is interviews with successful women who have reinvented themselves. They have made complete career changes, followed their passions, and are reaping the rewards of making such drastic decisions. Having been in the business of blogging for almost 10 years, I thought I had enough of those stories. But I was pleasantly surprised when I had my first listen to this podcast. It includes interviews with Lauren Conrad who went from being an actress to an entrepreneur and Ali Webb, the founder of Drybar.

So, tell me. What do you have planned this weekend?

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