Monday, October 31, 2016

November 2016 Goals + October goal recap

October was such a crazy, busy, wonderful month. The go-go-go madness from September didn't slow down any. In fact, October may have been even busier. Thankfully, I have some free time in November, so I've scheduled myself a nap for November 19th. A little pathetic, right? October held our engagement (!!!), wedding #5, the world's steepest 5K, a quintessential fall day + a quick trip to Roanoke for a hike on the Appalachian Trail. Phew. Plus all the little things that don't always make the blog.

I guess where I'm going with all this is my October goals ended up being kind of a joke, I write them down & do more frequent check-ins with myself to make sure I'm on track, but, that's been pretty much a NOPE all around. I hate to admit it, I probably could have tried harder at a few of these, but just didn't. In my world, that means it's time to regroup, set myself up for some easy wins & not make crazy goals since the holidays are coming.

Even if I didn't crush my goals, I'm here to be honest, so this is me, checking in with how well I didn't do in October. If you missed my original October goals post, you can find it here.

Celebrate 2 years | Nailed it
I'd say this one was the one we managed to really rock. Like literally. Our 2 year celebration ended up with me and a ring on my finger. And a great long weekend worth of hiking & exploring.

Jump into 5K training | FAIL
I didn't start, I haven't registered for my 2 x 5K (though I still intend to) & I don't think I ran 3 x per week a single time in October.

Decorate the MacMod estate |  Pass
We hung up one picture, though it's huge & is my absolute favorite. A print of the US made up of license plates. And a coffee sign in the kitchen. We're still sorting through frames and prints for the rest, but, I'm actually going to consider this a win because we're making progress. I had grand illusions that we'd hang everything on the walls in one afternoon & then our house would look like it leapt off the pages of HGTV magazine. Which is silly, because 1. Hanging pictures is tough shit & 2. None of our artwork looks like it belongs anywhere near HGTV.

80,000 steps per week | Fail
I didn't even hit 70,000 steps most weeks, I hit 80,000 the first week of October & it has been downhill since.

Track all meals in MFP | 30%-ish
I tend to not bother attempting to track when I'm eating meals out or drinking more alcohol than normal. It's just a pain to do, and if I'm going to eat the damn food anyways, I tend to have a "why bother" mentality. I've been back on track since getting back from Roanoke. I like it as a tool to help me plan healthy meals for Mr. Sass & I.


What am I going to work on in November?

Jump into 5K training | Like for real this time. Time to put up or shut up. I'm running out of time.

Unpack // Trash 2 more boxes | I live here now. It's fairly permanent. We don't have any plans to pick up and move in the next few years, so it's safe to unpack. Clearly I don't need anything that's in those boxes or I would have unpacked them already. But I can handle 1/2 box per week. Unpack it or pitch it.

Send out Save The Date's | I would like if people actually showed up to our wedding.

Maintain Weight | This one is 2 3 4 fold for me, this means staying active, getting plenty of sleep, drinking lots of water to stay hydrated & using MFP aka eating well, since the more I use MFP the better I seem to eat. I've worked hard to lose the 5 - 7 LBs of marathon weight I put on in 2015, so I'm not trying to undo all that.

That's it - simple, to the point, get that 'ish done goals.

What are some of your November goals?

Linking up with Holly & Tricia  + AngeGretchen & Kristen

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday Five #45

Happy Friday, friends. :) After being away last weekend I just kind of derped my way through this week. Nothing went wrong, but nothing really got done either. Unless you count finishing up the first season of Stranger Things & painting my nails. Thankfully I count both of those as productive things.

What are you up to this weekend? I'm back on the Basic Train - I'll be messing around in the kitchen, cooking up something pumpkin-y & heading out for a hike, hoping to catch some fall foliage. I'm also busy debating whether or not I want to...
A. Pass out candy for Halloween
B. Close the blinds & sit in the dark drinking wine & watching Netflix
C. Make plans with a friend so I'm not even at the house.

Arguments for all positions will be accepted, as will alternate suggestions. Side note : the doorbell is broken, making option B all too easy.

Anyways, on to some Friday Five, including funnies, since I omitted them last week & there was practically an uproar. Or, you know, a few sad comments, same thing.

one // After hating on everyone asking me if we had a wedding date set yet, we finally may have found a winner. Just have to write a deposit check & sign the forms, but other than that it's all ours. And keeping it under wraps until we've told all our people. :) Taking suggestions from any Pittsburghers on photographers, DJs, florists & other ridiculous vendors I've surely forgotten.

two // Not sure that I've ever mentioned it here, as it was slightly pre-blog, but I spent last fall coaching a local masters rowing program here in Pittsburgh. I also rowed my way through HS & college, before coaching a local HS team. So, when a friend and former rower of mine texted to ask if I could fill in Thursday morning, I couldn't say no. They were prepping for a race this weekend, and wanted to get in one more practice, but were short one warm body. Jessie to the rescue. My hands are a blistered mess, which I expected, but it hurts worse than I remembered, and washing my hair is going to be the death of me until these heal up. And this picture really doesn't do some of these justice. It BURRRRRRNS.

three // Mr. Sass is a hunter, but the house rule is, you "catch it", you eat it. Which, is why on Tuesday night we had squirrel stroganoff for dinner. It was about as good as it sounds. Let's just say, I made sure he ate the rest of the leftovers the next day for lunch. And I hope he never catches a squirrel ever again.

four // How cute is my Momma from our visit to Black Dog Salvage last weekend? She was so exited! We got to peek around the shop, she saw a few cast members from the show Salvage Dogs & then we grabbed some coffee. Perfect Mother // Daughter date!

five // And, on to the funnies...

What are you up to this weekend?
Are you passing out Halloween candy?
What's your favorite Halloween candy?

linking up with Heather, Amanda, AndreaTifDella & Katie

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

October 2016 Link Love

If you're anything like me, you love discovering new blogs & interesting articles, interesting perspectives, something different. And I don't know about you, but I feel like sometimes I see the same 50 pins on my Pinterest homepage - and all I want is something different. I also love giving love to other bloggers out there, because this shit is hard & no reason we can't pass out a little extra love.

All this to say, I'm excited to start monthly Link Love posts - where I highlight some of my favorites from the month. News articles, blog posts, recipes, crafts, whatever. I'm excited to share & I hope you'll find some new things you haven't seen before. Or, if you've got a post you think might fit the bill - send it my way {theacquiredsass at gmail dot com}

It's officially soup season around here, so I loved this fun take on Chicken Boo-dle Soup - the perfect meal to eat before trick or treat. Or just if you're a grown up & like to be festive. Whatever.

But, just 'cause it's fall doesn't mean I can't keep eating coleslaw. I can't get enough of the stuff, and whether it's creamy, or vinegary I love it just the same. So this Fall Coleslaw with toasted walnuts sounds perfect.

Since my love for fall is strong I loved this decorative fall letter tutorial, I bet Hobby Lobby would have everything you need!

If I'm already decorating & making soup, might as well make a cocktail to join in the fun, like this Caramel Apple Spice Moscow Mule.

As we get closer to the holidays remember to love the life you have. And that the holidays can be whenever you decide them to be. A reminder and a blessing for all of those whose lives revolve around crazy and every changing work schedules. But, as much joy as the holidays bring, there can be stress too, thankfully, these 11 things you can do to improve your marriage are easy, little things you can start TODAY. And you don't have to be married for these to be a good idea. These apply to anyone in any relationship.

Finally, since I'm trying to up my Instagram game, I loved these 15 photo ideas for Instagram, Helene even includes a few good hashtags for each. P.S. Are you following me on Instagram? If not, you can follow me here.

Linking up with Amanda to share the love.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Weekend in Hashtags

Running late on a post this morning - but that's okay by me, because it's the sign of a weekend full of fun, and not a lot of spare time. So, I present to you, my weekend Saturday morning in hashtags. And pictures, 'cause everybody loves pictures. I met my Mom & brother in Roanoke, VA. My brother & I spent Saturday morning hiking!

#TimeToHike #AppalachianTrail







#LooksLikeImFalling #ButImNot #Promise #ItWasWindy






What was the highlight of your weekend?
What's something you & your siblings love to do together?
Anyone done this hike before?

Linking up with Holly & Tricia  

Friday, October 21, 2016

Friday Five #44

I've got exciting things happening this weekend - I'm jetting out after work to visit my Momma & brother. They had planned a weekend trip & I'm crashing the party. I'll drive to VA after work & meet them at the hotel in a little town outside of Roanoke. So, if you've got any must see's or eats in Roanoke - pass 'em along!

In case you missed it, I posted Our Engagement Story + When are you getting married & other dumb questions about my wedding - a  satirical take on all the crazy questions I've been getting. But...while I'm busy counting down the hours 'til 5PM it's time for some Friday Five. I hope you'll share your favorite bits from the week in the comments, or tell me what's up for this weekend!

one // I went full on basic last weekend when Ciara , Katie & I headed to Soergel Orchards just north of Pittsburgh. There was apple picking, cider drinking, donut eating, wine tasting & even hard cider tasting. It was crazy crowded, but we didn't mind.

two // Fall feelings continued into the week. I picked up pumpkin gnocchi + pumpkin chipotle pasta sauce during my weekend shopping trip. So it was "Pasta Tuesday" around here this week. While I think calling the package of gnocchi 3.5 servings is generous, it was very tasty!

three // I've never been a beer fan, but I want to be. I want to be able to love on some craft brews. And also not be the odd man out, drinking a water when we head to new breweries. So, I take a sip of every beer I'm offered, but still think they're pretty blah. I did try this one though & didn't hate it. Progress.

four // Since this is apparently turning into the Fall edition of Friday Five, I may as well share one of my favorite pictures from our Poconos trip. This was taken near Tobyhanna Lake in Tobyhanna State Park.

five // And some funnies to round out the week... No funnies because while I was searching around the Interwebs I started watching Stranger Things on Netflix and now I'm two episodes deep, which happens to be about two episodes past my bedtime. So now I'm just home alone and creeped out until Mr. Sass (thanks for all the comments last week, I think the BF just became Mr. Sass) gets home. Sorry folks. We'll be back to regular programming next Friday.

What are you up to this weekend?
Who has watched Stranger Things - no spoilers, please!

linking up with Heather, Amanda, AndreaTifDella & Katie

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

When are you getting married & other dumb questions about my wedding

I don't know about you, but one of my favorite things to do is answer stupid questions with sarcastic answers, all while using a serious tone. Thankfully, my quick wit allows me to handle such a task quite easily. Watching people's faces as they try to compute sarcasm versus serious cracks me up - and, in my humble opinion serves them right for asking me a dumb question they probably have no business asking.

The only thing getting engaged did was open up a whole can of questions that 99% of the people asking don't need to know the answer to. So, after getting annoyed the first few times I finally just started screwing with people. And watching as they try to decide sarcasm versus serious. Do they have to play along or risk offending me? Or am I kidding & they can laugh? Fine line to to play with my dear friends, as ain't nobody tryin' to be on my shit list.

If you've been engaged at any point ever I'm certain you'll be able to relate to these ridiculous questions that people start asking 4.3 nanoseconds after you announce your engagement to the world. If you've never been engaged, do me a favor - don't ask this shit, at least not right away. I would wager a guess most brides have no idea. And trust me, if they do, they'll tell you.

Q : When are you getting married?
A : Never, if you keep asking that.
Alternate : A destination wedding, to Moscow, in June.

Q : What are your colors?
A : My dress will be white - or maybe more of an ivory.
Alternate : Black.

Q : Do I get a "plus 1"?
A : Not even sure you get an invite yet, so don't push your luck.

Q : I'm busy XYZ date next year, it won't be that day will it?
A : Actually, now that you mention it...maybe we did just pick a date.
Alternate : So happy to hear about your other social engagements, let me just put that down in our big book of things to consider when picking a date.

Q : My cousin's niece had a sister with a neighbor that did this thing - are you going to do that thing?
A : No.
Alternate : OMG, that sounds so neat, and affordable, and necessary for a wedding. Can you get me more details on how they did that?

Anyone else have any questions? :)
I promise I don't bite - but I also promise we seriously haven't picked a date yet.

Linking up with Amanda to share my frustrations.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Hell on Hills 5K Recap

My friend sent me the link to this inaugural 5K a few months back. At the time I was still undecided on whether or not I would run a fall half marathon. I wavered back and forth for a month or two, but finally decided I wasn't willing to put in the hard work to run 13.1 miles this fall. Instead, I registered for the Hell on Hills 5K.

Hell on Hills claimed to be the world's steepest 5K. And the start line was indeed at the bottom of Canton Avenue. Known by name to Pittsburghers, it's claimed to be the steepest street in the US, boasting a 37% grade, steps rather than a sidewalk, and pavement that switches to old school cobblestone halfway up.

I laid out Flat Jessie the night before - unsure how the cold temps would feel. But I made the right outfit choice.

There was no parking at the start line, as it started on a small neighborhood side street. Instead, parking was set up down the road, with a shuttle to take all the runners to packet pickup, which was offered day of only, before having runners walk up a short hill to reach the start line.

When packet pickup info went out, I saw no mention of a bag check for the start line, a big no-no in my mind since everyone would have a shirt to pick-up & this was a point to point rather than a loop course. I inquired on their FB page & suggested bag check. I had a response within the hour, and by that evening a confirmation that there WOULD be a bag check.

Packet pick-up was otherwise smooth. Though the race was small, only 230 runners, only 3 port-o-potties made for a long line at the start, so I opted to hold it. At 8:30 the announcement was made to head to the start line, about a 3 minute walk away. So, I shed my sweatshirt (in 39 degree weather mind you) and checked my bag before heading to the start line.

30 minutes later, we finally started race prep. A few last minute thank yous and thoughts from the race director, the playing of "Climb Every Mountain" en lieu of the National Anthem + a few technical difficulties. Finally, at 9:11 AM we were off!

I was a little surprised at how good I felt running up Canton Ave. After that I figured every other hill would feel like a breeze. Nope. What I failed to remember is, just after cresting Canton, just when you think it's all over, you turn the corner and an even longer hill states you down. I walked a few steps in the middle, looked at my watch at the top, and thought, oh good, only 2.8 more miles of this shit to go. 

Mile 1 : 10:27

The start of mile 2 was a steep downhill, so much so that I leaned backwards rather than forwards. I was afraid if I leaned into it my legs wouldn't be able to keep up. To gauge the steepness, this road also had stairs, rather than a sidewalk.

As we all know, what goes down, must go up. You know, the famous saying. Of course, just on the other side of the bend we found a steep 1/4 mile+ uphill.

Also, man does this elevation chart make molehills out of mountains. That shit was steep. And literally uphill both ways.

Mile 2 : 10:12

There was a small reprieve at the beginning of mile three. It felt flat at the time, but the slight downgrade explains why I was holding an 8:30 pace with no problem. Mile 3 flew by, the race director was cheering on the side of the road, and encouraged us by letting us know there was just one more hill. She lied. We round a corner - the finish line is in sight. But instead of turning to go towards it we're directed down a huge hill, that we then have to run back up. What a cruel joke.

Mile 3 : 8:32
.26 : 3:36

Final : 32:49

Finally, the finish line!

My sick new medal...and my free banana (not pictured).

It was a sick joke of a walk to pick up the shuttle, which involved some Pittsburgh stairs, and walking up a few more hills. All in all, for a first year race I thought this went pretty well. The shuttle had some kinks to be worked out. As did the finish line festival - which was not fully set up when I finished, though I finished 10+ minutes behind the overall winner. But definitely a unique race to run!

Linking up with  Marcia x Patty x Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Our Engagement Story

If you've been here a while, then you've met "the BF". If not, you can read more about our love story here. But if not, he's no longer the BF, we're engaged! 

Which means two things.

1. Now I can't call him the BF. 'Cause, he's not anymore. But, just keepin' it real, I am way too lazy to type fiance every time I want to mention the man. I could type out his name, it's not long, but, he's asked me to not 100% reveal his identity to the Interwebs, which, I can respect. So, like, do I go with PH - for pre-husband? Just H? For husband, since he will be? I'm taking alternate suggestions. Like maybe just first letter of his first name? Chime in.

2. Now I have to plan a wedding. Help.

But, before all that nonsense - and no, we haven't picked a date yet. I want to talk our "engagement story".

We booked this trip way back in June. We saw the BF would have a 3 day weekend (which never happens), so we decided to each burn a vacation day or two and make a long weekend out of it. Then we saw a B&B pop up on Groupon that sounded good, and before we knew it we were headed to the Poconos.

When we book in June it never crossed my mind that I would be proposed to on our trip, but as it got closer the thought creeped into my mind. I talked it over obsessively with a few girlfriends, who all agreed, that while it wasn't 100% certain, this definitely was a golden opportunity.

Thursday, our first day of the trip, we headed to the PA Grand Canyon. We were definitely underwhelmed, expecting rim trails and lots of vistas, rather than two individual state parks on either side with short sidewalks to average views.

Then we headed to an old "fire tower" we had seen advertised - hoping we could see some of the great leaves we had spotted on the drive up. But what we found was this...

A janky, rusted out "fire tower", where for just a mere $3 (one swipe of the credit card) we could climb to the top. So of course we did. And the views from the top were worth it. Sketchy when the wind blew through, but worth it.

After we descended down the fire tower it was time for a stop at a nearby brewery for dinner, followed by the final drive to our first B&B. Cherry Mills Lodge.

The next day we headed to Ricketts Glen State Park, which is known for the Falls Trail. A trail that allows you to see over 20 waterfalls in a single hike. After no hint of a proposal on Day One, I started my hike with low expectations. Thinking clearly my friends had no idea what they were talking about. The BF wasn't acting funny, he wasn't extra sweaty, none of the "typical" signs.

We got to the third or fourth waterfall, maybe 1 mile into our hike, we hopped out into the middle of the creek, to get a better view of the waterfall. I snapped a few pictures & started to hop back towards the trail, but he stopped me.

One he said my name, and grabbed my hand, I knew what was happening. He said a few quick things, and before I knew it he was down on one knee, pulling a ring from his pocket. I nodded profusely, yes, yes! He slipped the ring on, but apparently in a fit of nervousness missed my emphatic head nodding, and a few minutes later asked me if all of this meant "yes". IT DID!

Once we finally hopped back over to the trail I pestered him for details, did he ask my parents? Yes. In fact, I almost screwed it all up when I went home last minute to visit them one weekend. Had he been planning this for a while? Yes. The ring had been in the safe since August. Did anyone else know this was happening? Yes. Literally all of our friends. Props to them for keeping their mouths shut.

The proposal was perfect. On a hike, which is absolutely "us" - one of our favorite things to do together, and part of what brought us together.

Being nosy like I am I loved hearing all the details. Like, he had planned it for the day prior, but changed his mind when the PA Grand Canyon was underwhelming. He had distracted me so he could untape the ring box in his pocket. And how he was so afraid he would accidently drop the ring in the water, which was why he was holding it with two hands like his life depended on it.

Any good engagement stories to share?
What's something that you & your SO share together?
Any new nickname suggestions for the BF?

Linking up with Holly & Tricia  

Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday Five #43

Happy Friday! Even though I worked a short week this week the days dragged on & 5 o'clock can't come soon enough! I've got big plans, like a local 5K, All You Can Eat Crab Legs with some friends + a whole day of fall, including apple picking, apple cider & a big ol' bowl of homemade soup.

What are you up to this weekend? And what's your favorite soup? Drop me a link in the comments if you have one - and serious bonus points for anything I can make in the crockpot.

Now on to my favorite post of the week & some Friday Five!

one // If you missed it - shame on you for not following me on Instagram (@15minutes_late) but the BF & I are engaged! So, I guess technically he's not the BF anymore & I need to find him a new name, while not 100% revealing his identity to the Interwebs, because he's asked me not to. But back to the point. WE'RE ENGAGED! I'm excited to share more of the story + pretty fall pics next week. But here's a teaser in the meantime.

two // Is anyone interested in planning my wedding? I would say besides having good food & good music I don't care about many of the other details. So, don't expect centerpieces that will wow you. Because my thoughts on weddings are still pretty much this - from a post I wrote way back in April.

three // Mmm. Taco Tuesday for the win. When I lived alone, my meal prep game was strong, but I really only needed to make 2 - 3 meals for the whole week. Now I'm making 5+ a week, since the BF eats double+ what I do. So, having defaults, like Taco Tuesday, or Pasta Monday & Soup Wednesday (which BTW I just recently made up & have no ring to them) is such a lifesaver. This weeks tacos were ground venison, plus squash, onions & peppers from the garden & topped off with some homemade spicy salsa and homegrown lettuce. Mmm.

four // I talked back in the beginning of the summer about how I was cutting back on posting through Labor Day. Well, Labor Day has come and gone - and you may have noticed I'm just over here with my three posts a week, or some weeks, like this one, I just don't show on a Monday. Whoops. Anyways. I think 3 posts per week is here to stay. I'm loving the flexibility it gives me. And while I may pop in randomly on other days I never want to skip out on real life for the Internet. Ya dig?

five // And some funnies...

My face when someone asks me if we've set a wedding date has been less than a week folks, less than a week.


linking up with Heather, Amanda, AndreaTifDella & Katie