I think I might do two recaps a month because the events from the start of January feel like ages ago! I had some good times during my last few days at home before returning to Milwaukee. My family had a game night where we played Exploding Kittens, Uno, and Yahtzee. We also had a fancy "clean out the fridge" night where we finished random bags of crackers, cheese, pepperonis, vegetables, and pickles. We nommed while watching NCIS: New Orleans.
My mom and I went to a local vegetarian restaurant called Black Walnut Kitchen. We had some great French pressed coffee. I have been here three times now and have enjoyed my meal each time. To keep the ingredients local and in-season, the menu has looked different on each visit!
I had their Indian Vegetable Biryani dish that had vegetables, rice, yogurt dressing, raisins, and lots of spices! It came with their house salad that has really good buttermilk dill ranch dressing.
Chilling out enjoying the last day at home. I hung out in my mom's new attic studio space (it's only partially finished in these photos) doing some computer work and cuddled a lot with my dog. He's such a sweetie!
Below we have the cat using Buzz as a pillow and him not having a care in the world about it.
Back to Milwaukee! I had one sugary coffee drink on the way back because my new year's resolution to cut it out completely slipped my mind. Once of twice for the month of January. When I got back to Milwaukee, I continued with the minimalist game challenge where you get rid of the same number of items as the days of the month. This was a messy process so I only took pictures at random when I remembered. Needless to say, I completed the "game!" I didn't think I had that much stuff, but I did! My room feels so much tidier without all the extra stuff. I want to try the challenge again in May before I move, but only for 15 days.
My roomie and I went ice skating at Red Arrow Park. We tried to go on the last day of November but it was closed, so we got our redemption! We had a great time, and neither of us wiped out during the two hours we were there! Afterwards we headed to Belair for tacos. I was so hungry I didn't bother taking photos. I was surprised when one of the bills I received as change had the name "Ryan" with a heart next to it written on it. Ryan is my boyfriend's name, so this incident just seemed slightly unbelievable! How strange!
Back on campus! I returned to campus the week before classes resumed to do some training in the research lab I work in. We just started working on a new component of our study, so there was a lot of work to do! Basically I spent the whole last week of break working at my two jobs.
Ryan got a cool plant for his apartment from Fresh Thyme Market. I'll have to make a trip there to check out their selection, because he got a way better deal on this cute pot than I got on my plants in the Third Ward. I also discovered a weird latte flavor that's pretty good. I ordered two cases of Nut Pods coffee creamers last summer in a failed attempt to cut down my sugar consumption while drinking coffee. These looked good online, but I tried them in coffee and they were all terrible! The vanilla lemon flavors have been sitting in my cabinet for months. I finally found a use for them! When I steam soy milk for lattes, I add few tablespoons of the creamer and a packet of stevia and it turns out quite pleasant!
Meal prep for the first week of school. I made a pasta salad with Banza noodles, broccoli, tomatoes, olives, string cheese, and Italian dressing, along with a pot of spinach tortellini soup. The soup was good, but the tortellini sucked up all the broth after being put in the fridge so it turned out more like a regular pasta dish.
More cooking adventures! One of my upcoming posts features the recipe below. I tried a dish at Cafe Hollander called "Sweet Potato Noshers" and was inspired to create a version at home. Below is a simplified version Ryan and I made one morning that doesn't contain the full list of ingredients and also has scrambled eggs instead of sunny-side up. More on this to come!
The first snow of Milwaukee happened right before the start of classes! All hell broke loose weather-wise later, but on that night Ryan and I took a walk around town and made snow angels all over the place for people to find later.
Date nights: a huge bowl of ice cream, wine, and the movie "Clue." I found out that when the movie was first in theaters, each theater received just one of the three possible endings! That movie is always good for a laugh. And another when we convinced ourselves to go salsa dancing at the Milwaukee Art Museum, but due to the weather and not entirely feeling it we went out for drinks instead. The third picture from the left looks random at first, but if you look on the top left shelf there is a garden gnome encrusted with disco ball mirrors! So funny!
Ryan and I took a walk through Lake Park to enjoy the first, fresh snow. You can read more about it in a separate post here.
The first week of classes started with a bang. I did some cooking during the weekend to get ready for week 2. I made Moroccan Winter Detox Soup (my favorite lately), cream cheese stuffed bagel bites, and slow cooker Cajun soup.
Week 2 of school ended up being pretty crazy. Three of the five days were canceled, one due to a heavy snowstorm and the other two from the polar vortex. I was definitely feeling a little stir crazy by the end of the week! I did as much school work as I could and practiced making home lattes. The cold started seeping into our apartment, but we managed to stay fairly warm. Ryan and his roommates had a game night for some friends in our apartment complex. We played games and drank hot chocolate and it helped lift everyone's moods.
That wraps up my January! Now a little bit on my resolutions if you're curious:
Overall, my new year's resolutions are going pretty well. I met my blog goal of publishing one post a week and made vast improvements on my minimal spending challenge. I still made some unnecessary purchases, but fewer than usual and I was able to save an okay chunk of money even after all my school expenses. I'm also still deciding on a practical grocery budget. I have only had two sugary coffee drinks so far this month, so that is pretty much on track as well. I am still struggling with my meal prep and portion control. My goal was to make a set meal plan to follow, but recipes have been hit and miss so that is still in the works. I also made gains in following the physical activity guidelines, but I am still not quite there. I'll unabashedly blame part of it on the weather during which time we had to stay indoors for safety, but the other part was totally on me! Lastly, I met met my minimalism challenge goals and donated/trashed 495 items! Now I'm going to try to adopt the "one in, one out" rule going forward.
Thanks for reading! :)
Hi my name is Emilee and these are my adventures as a young adult living in Milwaukee. Here I will share my experiences as I navigate through college. Thanks for stopping by!