Friday Favorites: Fitness, food and fashion

Happy Friday, indeed! If you’re in the U.S., you may have today off of work. If that’s the case, good for you! I don’t. In fact, this is just a regular weekend for me. I’m teaching BODYATTACK this morning and two classes at Orangetheory Fitness tomorrow morning. All the while, Dave is enjoying a five-day weekend thanks to the thoughtful ownership of the Golden State Warriors (yes, after winning the title, they deserve it!). But of course, festivities are ahead for us both after the work is done for me.

Our first Fourth of July in the East Bay

We’re getting together with some friends for a pool party at a hotel in the afternoon tomorrow. And we’ve got the after-party scheduled to take place at our house as well. Rudy (our little maltipoo) can’t wait to host for his first time, and he just may be getting a bath tonight to prepare for company. Although we won’t be taking in the amazing fireworks and fun of the City of San Francisco this year like year’s past, we’re going to make the day as festive as possible with some good friends.

But it’s Friday, so let’s get to business. I’m keeping it short and light today, so you can get on with your plans. 

My latest “Friday Favorites” from the week

Here’s a look at the things that have been making me happy lately, in no particular order …

My favorite new healthy dessert

Truth be told: I don’t know how or why these were sent to me, because I don’t recall getting an email about it (but I think these may be a delayed delivery from a giveaway I won on another blog months ago), and I love them. Dark chocolate bars with probiotics? Yes, please. I’ve gone through half the box in about a week-and-a-half. I read up a bit on the health-focused company who makes these and found out the products are made in the United States and are all about supporting digestive health.

Attune Probiotic bars on Friday Favorites by A Lady Goes WestSeventy-two percent cocoa in these beauties, if that means anything to you.

I’ve always been a fan of dark chocolate, and the rich flavor of these Attune bars is quite delightful. You can break the bars up into little squares or eat them all at once. I’ve gone back-and-forth doing the two, most of the time with some warm soy milk to complement. Looks like they are available at health-food stores, so keep your eyes peeled.

My favorite new duds for cheap

I’m in need of new clothes. The weather in the East Bay is totally different from what we experienced in the City over the past few years. I don’t need all of my leggings, sweaters and boots during the summer like I did there. Right now, I need actual warm-weather clothes. That being said, I never shop and have been in a bind to find something to wear to recent outdoor events. So yesterday, in light of the upcoming holiday, I decided to drop by an ol’ favorite, Old Navy, for some cheapies to fill in the gaps in my wardrobe.

Old Navy finds by A Lady Goes WestCan you see a theme among this clothing? Light, bright, summery and perfect for hot days in the East Bay. And my swimsuit? Only $20! Nothing I love more than a bargain for cute stuff.

I was in the store for about an hour, tried on about 30 things and came away with a ton, without spending much at all. I loaded up on solid color tanks, which were all on sale for $10 and less. I also got a tunic, some awesome cut-off shorts, a flowery shift dress and my outfit for Fourth of July, consisting of these shorts and this top and … an American flag swimsuit. Awesome deals, that’s for sure. I’m thinking about going back for this romper, but Dave is not a fan of rompers. We call them “girl pleasing,” if you know what I mean. Oh, and I scored a sweet patriotic tank for Dave too. Overall, a successful shopping trip, and you’ll be seeing these items on me throughout the warm months, because I don’t know when I’ll shop again.

My favorite new home-gym set-up

If you missed my post earlier in the week about learning Les Mills choreography, then you also missed out on a chance to see the fancy new Les Mills SMARTBAR that I’ve been using at home. The folks at Les Mills sent it to me for review, and I’m a huge fan.

The Les Mills SMARTBAR on Friday Favorites by A Lady Goes West blogIt doesn’t exactly fit in with my decor in the spare bedroom, but I make it work.

Next week, I’ll start memorizing all of the new BODYPUMP and BODYATTACK songs that I need to debut and teach for our quarterly launch in the Bay Area, and I’ll be putting this SMARTBAR to use to practice. This is not your average barbell. It’s extra cool, because the weight plates easily slide on and off the bar, and they can be used as dumbbells without the bar as well. Nothing but the best from my friends at Les Mills.

My favorite links of the week

Did you miss out on some of the good stuff on A Lady Goes West this week? Here’s what happened …

And a fun one. Do you have an iPhone and find yourself talking to Siri? Here is a list of questions you can ask to get a funny response: “14 questions that get snarky replies from Siri.” Dave tried the zero one the other day with me, and it was pretty amusing. 

I hope you have a wonderful and festive weekend, my friends. I’ll be checking in on Instagram until we meet again on Monday. Happy Fourth of July to my American brethren! 

Read more Friday Favorites

If you’ve enjoyed browsing through this post, see below for previous editions or visit the the link-up hostesses, HeatherClare and Katie

  1. A snack, a purse and a ritual
  2. A delivery, a bra and a guy
  3. A sweet, a wine and a read
  4. A drink, a gadget and a plan 
  5. A time, a bottle and a powder
  6. San Francisco edition
  7. Beauty edition
  8. Beach vacation edition
  9. Hidden meanings
  10. Kicks, a book and a bowl
  11. The very best sweatshirts
  12. Party hosting and froyo
  13. Fourth of July daytime activity
  14. Beauty basics edition
  15. Workplace edition
  16. Shopping, sales and a show
  17. The foods I always buy
  18. Sushi, a game and pants
  19. Fitness apps
  20. Delicious and healthy products
  21. Comfort, fitness and function
  22. Beauty, buddha and blog events
  23. Dining, the city and gift ideas
  24. POPSUGAR, sweets and such
  25. A bunch of fun stuff
  26. e-book, food, picnic and tunes
  27. A link, a superfood and a mask
  28. Pants, shoes, food and links
  29. Dining, protein and goodies
  30. Shopping, events and a book
  31. A gym bag, pumpkin and juices 
  32. Workout gear, a top and a massage
  33. prAna, a watch, tea and more
  34. Tasty stuff and gift sales
  35. Decor, bars, boots and a drink
  36. Flowers, music and more
  37. Coqueta, a brush and food
  38. My people and the holidays
  39. Beauty, bling and entertainment
  40. A hodge-podge of goodies
  41. Just a few special things
  42. Tasty food, drinks and moving
  43. A bunch of feel-good stuff
  44. Home, car and fitness finds
  45. Sweets, cooking, beauty and blog
  46. Gold, yoga, photos and more
  47. Celebs, scents, games and more
  48. Food, shoes, stretches and fun 
  49. Purse, snack, plant and more
  50. Fresh, healthy, clean and square
  51. Pilates, sneaks and much more
  52. Quite a few good things
  53. Food, jewels and sweat etc.
  54. Fun stuff and a giveaway
  55. Goodies and a yoga giveaway
  56. Orange, bikes and healthy food
  57. Food, tech, sparkle and more
  58. Clothes, home, a roller and more
  59. Florida, tech, tea and more
  60. Toiletries, gifts and more
  61. Fashion, food and a giveaway
  62. Events, surprises and a puppy
  63. Good stuff and a giveaway
  64. Bling, crunch and pet goods

Questions of the day

What are your plans for the Fourth of July, my U.S. friends?

What are you up to this weekend?

Do you have any recent favorites to share?

 Ashley signature

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How to have the perfect date-night at home

Dave and I are suckers for a good “weekly ritual.” In the first few years of our relationship, every single Sunday was pizza night. All of our friends and family even knew about it. Yet, once we moved to San Francisco, we turned that Sunday night into taco night. Well, the tides have turned again, because we’ve been back on a pizza kick as of late. And it feels good to be back.

Because we tend to go out to dinner on Saturday nights, Sunday nights are our official “date-nights” at home. We’ve been doing them for so long that we have a routine down. It’s a special time that we can be excited about each week, even though it means the weekend is just about over. And knowing you always have pizza on Sunday night, well that’s something to look forward to in itself.

How to have a perfect date-night at home by A Lady Goes WestSometimes we like to eat our pizza at the coffee table on the floor. Why? Just feels fun.

While at times we make our pizzas, usually we pick up an oven pizza. And believe me, we’ve tried nearly every single brand. However, our go-to is DIGIORNO, so you can imagine my delight when the folks at DIGIORNO asked me to try out their new pizzeria! thin line. Yes, please. I knew it would be a perfect addition to our date-nights in. Here’s how we make those nights happen …

How to have the perfect date-night at home

Having a special night at home doesn’t have to be expensive and is something you can enjoy with your significant other any time. I’m a big fan of nights at home now more than ever because we have our little puppy and want to stay home as much as possible to keep him company.

How to have the perfect date-night at home by A Lady Goes West blog

If you’re in need of some fun and quality time without breaking the bank, here’s how to create a good scene in the comfort of your own place …

  • Music. Turn it on. But not too loud, so you can have some conversation over it. Our favorite stations for date-night on Pandora include the Frank Sinatra station and the Michael Buble station, yet the real winner is by far the Olive Garden station. We put the music on the TV in the living room, so it spreads throughout the house.
  • Candles. That goes without saying, right? But you don’t just want to put candles at the table, you also want to have a scented candle going when you’re in the kitchen and hanging out. I love vanilla, cinnamon and warm scents.
  • Pajamas. I don’t know about you, but I can’t relax at home if I’m not in my comfortable clothes. In order to enjoy myself during our date-nights at home, I like to wash my face, pull my hair back and slip into some loose and comfy attire, which easily transitions to laying on the couch to watch TV. Nothing fancy around these parts. It’s just not my thing.
  • Wine. Because, wine. I only ever drink wine on the weekends, so Sunday night is my final night before the week begins to un-wind with a nice glass. On date-nights, Dave and I open a bottle of red wine to enjoy alongside our meal. And it’s also a night when I like to pull out the nicer wine glasses, once again, just because.
  • Games and activities. We’re both a little competitive, so we like to sit around the coffee table and enjoy Scrabble on many nights at home. And yes, we often make a wager. Other games that are fun to play? Yahtzee, trivia and even cards.
  • Conversation. True story: I think we have our best conversations while sitting at the table, because all distractions are put aside. Yet, before we even get to the table, sometimes I pull out my handy “The Book of Questions” by Gregory Stock just for a little extra. And that’s always a great dialogue. If you don’t own that book, get it now! I’ve even brought that out for family nights in Florida and you wouldn’t believe the things those questions get people to talk about.
  • Tasty food. Of course, a night wouldn’t be complete without dinner. Oven pizza is such a great meal on your date-night at home, because the preparation is easy and the clean-up is quick, which is probably why we’ve always done it. Not to mention, you don’t have to worry about eating with your hands when you’re at home with your significant other — they don’t mind. (Although full disclosure, I like to eat my pizza with a fork and knife. Dave continues to make fun of me for this.)
  • Dessert. We always have a sweet bite on date-nights. Whether it’s something as simple as chocolate-covered dates and milk or perhaps a slice of cheesecake, I don’t like to end a good night without a treat. Extra points for getting something ultra-decadent and sharing it. (Another full disclosure, I do have trouble sharing when it comes to dessert.)
  • A show. Whether you have a TV show that you watch together or a movie lined up, the best thing to do once the food and table is cleaned up, is to plop on the couch and relax with some entertainment. Right now, we’re watching season 3 of “Orange Is The New Black” on Netflix, so that’s been keeping us occupied on nights at home, snuggled up with our little pupster.

And with all those elements, you’re bound to have a good one. Now let’s get back to those tasty pizzas …

Introducing DIGIORNO pizzeria! thin Pizzas for your date-nights

I’m being totally honest when I say that we’ve tried nearly every brand of oven pizza over the years, and many are not good. Yet these pizzas are good, otherwise I would not have wanted to share them with you. 

DIGIORNO pizzeria thin pizza review by A Lady Goes WestOn Sunday night, we made two pizzas side-by-side in the oven. Don’t mind my jorts, but I hadn’t changed into my “comfortables” yet after a day out at the fair.

The crust of these pizzeria! thin Pizzas is the best. It’s thin and crispy and drizzled with olive oil, so it has the perfect, taste, texture and consistency. And also, it’s preservative-free, which is always a good thing. In addition, these pizzas have no artificial flavors and are very easy to cook.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Place the pizza directly on the center rack and bake for about 15-17 minutes. Pull it out of the oven to cool for about five minutes before you dig in. Enjoy.

You can find four flavors of the DIGIORNO pizzeria! thin line available in stores now, including Primo Pepperoni, Spinach & Mushroom (totally my personal favorite), Margherita and Supreme Speciale. While I loved them all, I was a major fan of the Spinach & Mushroom, because I do like that combination on my pizza. Mushrooms and veggies make me happy.

DIGIORNO pizzeria thin pizza dinner for date-night by A Lady Goes WestMy plate from our most recent date-night featured some mixed kale salad, three slices of the Spinach & Mushroom and a slice of the Primo Pepperoni. What a good meal, prepared in a flash. And yes, I even pulled out the cloth napkins.

Nutrition-wise: 1/4 of the pizza has 310 calories, 15 grams of protein and about 25 percent of your daily calcium, which is not too shabby for a dinner. Suffice to say, Dave and I thoroughly enjoyed our date-night with these pizzas, and I think they will be making another appearance again soon.

And by the way, DIGIORNO is so excited about this new line that the company is encouraging anyone who tries it to share their feedback and pictures using #YouBeTheJudge on the DIGIORNO Facebook or Twitter page. So if you pick one up, make sure you do that. But limit your time on social media during your date-night, folks. Be present. 

That’s all for now. I’ve got work and a couple of classes on the agenda for today. I hope you’ll be back to join me tomorrow for “Friday Favorites.” 

Please note: I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls, and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Questions of the day

Do you have a weekly ritual?

What’s the perfect “date-night” in for you?

What’s your favorite pizza topping?

Ashley signature

 

 

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