Friday Faves

Hi friends! Happy Friday! What are you up to this weekend? Any fun fitness events on the horizon? Festival 520 is happening here in Tucson (at La Encantada) if you’re local and want to check it out. The day is packed with fitness classes from local studios, and is sponsored by lululemon. You can check out my recap from last year here! I’m going to go check it out (even though I can’t take any of the classes) and say hi to some of my favorite Tucson fitness friends. After that, we’re off to my cousin Cal’s wedding (!) and heading back to SD on Sunday. It’s been an amazing week, and my heart is happy from spending time with so many of the people I love so much.

Dinner at reforma

Now it’s time to dive into the usual Friday Faves! It’s always fun to share some of the things I’m loving + hear some of your faves, too, if you’d like to shout it out in the comments section.

#1: Kyle and Meg are back!

Kyle and meggie

They moved to the Berkshires for Kyle’s job a year and a half ago, and this week, they MOVED BACK TO TUCSON. My cheffer brother has received a few opportunities on the restaurant front, so I’m really excited to see what his next step will be. He’s already accomplished so much at such a young age, and I’m really proud of him. Most of all, I’m so happy that they’re back here in Tucson! I’ve missed them so much -and haven’t seen Meg in over a year!- and Tucson always felt a bit empty with them gone.

We were able to catch up last night over a delicious dinner at North in La Encantada. 

Dinner at north

I didn’t get a ton of food pics, but I did snap one of this dessert… out the 3 we ordered.

Chocolate tart

This week, we hit up the trampoline park with Meg’s sis and her little guy,

Trampoline park

W miss rose

and also got to see Viesa! 

Tom and vies

If you’ve been reading the blog for a while (thank you!) you may remember this furry face. Viesa was our dog when we lived in Tucson (the first time) and Georgia, but since she and Bella had a “I love you”/“I want to eat you” relationship + a scary incident that landed us in the animal hospital in the middle of the night, we started to look for a new home. Meg’s sis Ashley and her husband adopted her, and were able to make Vies the queen of the castle. We still get to see her often, so we were happy to get some sloppy face kisses from this amazing dog. 🙂

I also took the girls to the zoo yesterday afternoon while everyone was at work, and the boys went out golfing.

At the zoo

Liv loved it (P chilled in the Ergo, and snoozed), and the Tucson zoo was just the right size for us to conquer in a couple of hours. At the San Diego zoo, we can usually see about 1/4 of the park in that time. (And there was that one time I got us lost in the monkey area for an uncomfortably long period, so there ya go.) 

Turtle on the move

 My first matzoh ball soup:

Matzoh ball soup

Whenever I’m sick, my friend Mara says, “Just make some matzoh ball soup.” I wasn’t about to attempt to make something if I hadn’t tasted the real deal. Thankfully, my chef uncle had made a batch for Passover, and introduced me to this heartwarming soup. Pure comfort food. It was so good!

-These humidifiers. When we got into Tucson and our family fell into a symphony of hacks and sneezes, I figured we needed something to counter the dry air. I went to Target and grabbed a couple of these travel humidifiers for our hotel room, and have been diffusing lavender in water with an oil diffuser. Our hotel room smells like a spa, and it has helped a lot.


-Chicken bone broth. I think the homemade stuff has extra benefits, but in a pinch, this will do the trick. I heat it up to drink from a mug, and it feels wonderful on my sore throat. It’s a little bland, so I’ll add a squeeze of lemon juice and pinch of salt.

Bone broth

-These black ballet flats. (Use code “FRIEND” for extra 25% off). I got a pair at Nordstrom Rack and can already tell I’ll wear them a lot. The leather is super soft and I love that they kind of look like pointe shoes minus the lambs wool and gel pads I used to hide inside. 😉

-How to take yoga poses for Instagram. 

-Can’t wait to try these overnight oats.

-This lip sync conversation.

-What is trans fat, and why should you avoid it?

-Fit Expo! I’ll be presenting at the San Jose Fit Expo in a few weeks if you’d like to stop by and say hello. I’ll be making some healthy creations over in the Healthy Living pavilion, including some Amazeballs. If you’re in the area and would like to check it out, all of the details can be found here.

Screen Shot 2016 04 28 at 11 57 40 PM

Screen Shot 2016 04 28 at 11 56 38 PM

I leave you with the P smile of the day.

Smiles for days

Happy Friday, friends!



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  1. Shannon on April 29, 2016 at 8:51 am

    I love your friday posts, but the P smile of the day is always my most favorite! What a happy happy girl!

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:10 am

      thank you! she smiles at everyone and everything. it’s pretty amazing 🙂

  2. Taylor on April 29, 2016 at 8:58 am

    Fun!! Enjoy the rest of your time with family and friends!

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:10 am

      thank you, friend! have a great weekend!

  3. Katie M on April 29, 2016 at 9:06 am

    I miss North so much!! Your snaps looked delicious! Oh and RA Sushi, YUMM, now I can’t stop thinking about it. Yay, you are coming out to my neck of the woods, Nor Cal! I hope you get to stay in San Francisco since San Jose isn’t too exciting but I really hope I can come to see you at the convention center! Looks like a great event!

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:09 am

      RA! we were talking about that when we left. so good!!
      yep i’ll be up in your neck of the woods! i think we’re staying in san jose, but if san fran is close, maybe we can go explore for a little while. i’d love if you came to say hi!
      have a great weekend <3

  4. RachelG on April 29, 2016 at 9:08 am

    Matzah Ball Soup=Jewish penicillin! lol 😉 One Passover you and the fam will have to travel to Connecticut and come to our sedar. Tzimmis (carrots pureed with prunes and red wine), potato kugel, brisket, kosher wine. Not at all healthy but 100% good for the soul. 🙂

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:09 am

      that sounds like it needs to happen 🙂

      • RachelG on April 29, 2016 at 11:48 am


  5. Kayla on April 29, 2016 at 9:25 am

    Matzoh ball soup is THE BEST! My favorite comfort food… and really favorite food too.

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:08 am

      it was seriously amazing. i could see myself craving it now

  6. melissa on April 29, 2016 at 9:57 am

    I don’t think I ever knew you were on pointe! have you blogged about your ballet days before? would love to hear about it especially since you’re so into barre now

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:08 am

      it’s not a long story haha. since i taught at the dance studio, and was teaching ballet to the itty bitties (3 year old ballet/tap combo), the owner wanted me in ballet. up until that point, i had done jazz, tap, hip hop, irish, but hadn’t touched ballet since elementary school and here and there in middle school. so, i got back into it in high school. it wasn’t my favorite class, but i was glad i did it 🙂

  7. Jacquelyn on April 29, 2016 at 9:58 am

    I’ve been seeing flats and ha my eye on them for a while! I think today might be the day I purchase 🙂 I’m totally going to look for that bone broth. I do make my own sometimes but this would be so awesome to have on hand. Enjoy your last few days in Tucson! XOXOXO

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 10:06 am

      they are way more comfortable than i was expecting!
      hope you have a wonderful weekend <3

  8. Erin @ Her Heartland Soul on April 29, 2016 at 10:53 am

    So excited for you to get to see Viesa!! I forgot about her but seeing her picture took me back a good five years. Haha

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 11:05 am

      haha seriously. i missed her so much!

  9. Cassie on April 29, 2016 at 11:01 am

    Love that smile! I used a Boba wrap for my little but as she was not so little but still felt most comfortable in my arms, I found myself in a dilemma. She was about 6 months old and I didn’t really want to spend ergo money on a solution. Best baby gear I have ever purchased. I’ve used it every day since. Love it.

    • Fitnessista on April 29, 2016 at 11:04 am

      it’s funny because the ergo didn’t work as well for liv. she was much happier in the babyhawk. since p is biggger, the ergo is perfect. i’m so happy she loves it!! i was shocked when she fell asleep. i was like FINALLY haha

  10. Crystal on April 29, 2016 at 11:04 am

    I’m sad that I’ll be missing the expo…I’m headed to the bay area a few days after. Too bad, it would be cool to meet you after reading your blog all these years (I totally remember Viesa). Another time!

    Have a fabulous weekend Gina 😀

  11. Tracy on April 29, 2016 at 11:19 am

    Yay for the return of Meg & Kyle! I used to love Meg’s blog posts!

    TGIF! Enjoy the rest of your time in AZ!

  12. Sarah on April 29, 2016 at 11:22 am

    Since your brother cooks for a living (lucky guy), I was wondering if you/he’d like to do a post on how to stay in shape when you’re around food all the time and how it’s like for his wife with such a crazy schedule?

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:27 pm

      sure, i can ask him!

  13. Amy Ramos on April 29, 2016 at 11:25 am

    OMG!! You are going to be in my hood at the Fit Expo!?! I love it! I think I might visit you!

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:27 pm

      yesssss! i would love to finally meet you!

  14. Courtney on April 29, 2016 at 11:29 am

    Yes! Viesa! What a beautiful dog. I am so glad you can visit her every now and then. It is so hard to have to separate from a beloved family pet, but I would say she has the best of both worlds!
    Thank you for introducing us to ready made bone broth! My friend makes her own but I never have tried because the process gives me the creeps LOL! Last thing, P loves so cute in those jean shorts. Those little legs are precious.

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:27 pm

      yes, i’m so glad we still get to see her often! it definitely all worked out for the best
      i’ve made it a couple of times but the carton stuff works in a pinch! haha and yes, i love her little legs so much

  15. Cara on April 29, 2016 at 11:39 am

    Lots of fun stuff in this post, love it! And I’m with previous posters, P’s smile is the highlight!!!

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:26 pm

      thank you! 🙂

  16. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on April 29, 2016 at 11:51 am

    Aw…have fun with the rest of your stay! So jealous I can’t go that Lulu event. I’m down with some respiratory funkiness. I suspect I will be laying low key this weekend.

  17. Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine on April 29, 2016 at 11:58 am

    O man, I miss matzoh ball soup so much!! Used to be my favorite!

  18. Ashley @ DownHomeDuo on April 29, 2016 at 12:20 pm

    So glad you are having a great time back home! P is so sweet and Liv’s little denim dress is too cute.

    Umm… also didn’t know that bone broth was sold premade like that. I *try* to keep some in the freezer, but what a great idea in a pinch!!!

  19. Katie on April 29, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    I thought that I spied Viesa in a snapchat!! How special to still be able to see her so much :). Happy Friday!

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:25 pm

      yes, it is amazing! hope you’re having a great weekend

  20. masala girl on April 29, 2016 at 1:32 pm

    it’s been a long time since we’ve seen viesa! glad she’s doing well 🙂 i cant believe kyle has even more and better restaurant/chef opportunities, he was already doing so well in NY!! I cant wait to see what he’s up to soon 😀 i hope you post more of his awesome creations too! ;D
    good luck at the expo! i’d totally come if i was anywhere near… but i’m on the other coast 😉

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:25 pm

      thank you! it was so great to see her 🙂
      and yes, i will definitely post more of his creations! so excited to see what he does next

  21. Laura on April 29, 2016 at 2:17 pm

    This is a crazy Mom question…how does it work with all of you in a hotel room? Do you go to bed with them at 7:30/8? Do they stay up late and you hope they get enough sleep? Then you have to stay in the room for naps? I am pregnant with #2 and would love to hear the logistics!

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:24 pm

      no worries, i used to wonder the same thing!
      with p, we get a suite, so that she can sleep in one room while we hang out in the other room. we’re either at the hotel or my mom’s house for most naps (my mom has a pack n play set up in one of the rooms). we’ve been putting p to bed at my mom’s house or the hotel, and someone will stay with her while we play with liv. p goes to bed at 7, and liv goes to bed between 8-9 but can hang later on vacation. so we’ve either put her down at the hotel at 7, and hang out in the other room with liv, or we’ve put her down at my mom’s house and woken her up to go back to the hotel when we’d usually dream feed her (at 10:30 or so). this way we can “dream feed” her (even though she’s definitely awake haha) and put her back to sleep at the hotel

  22. Kat on April 29, 2016 at 3:03 pm

    Omg this post is so nostalgic!! I can’t handle it. I started following your blog in the Viesa days, and remember Meg was doing some fashion posts. Is she still blogging? Loved her outfit posts!

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:22 pm

      yes! it was like we traveled back to 2010 🙂 she’s not blogging super consistently, sadly. i love her posts!

  23. Kailey on April 29, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    Ohh my goodness I just realized the San Jose Fit Expo is on my birthday…is it bad that I really want to buy a flight from Detroit as a gift to self?!

    • Fitnessista on April 30, 2016 at 2:21 pm

      amazing! if you do it, i’ll take you out for a bday margarita 🙂

      • Kailey on April 30, 2016 at 5:02 pm

        *this* close to pulling the trigger haha, seriously that’d be amazing

  24. mary on April 30, 2016 at 6:53 pm

    Did Kyle and Meg just miss AZ? I did two years in Pennsylvania once. It was ok but I missed the wild west.

    • Fitnessista on May 1, 2016 at 4:03 pm

      kyle got a couple of job opportunities in tucson. his contract was up in the fall, so they were planning on moving back soon anyway

  25. Courtney Bentley on April 30, 2016 at 8:05 pm

    Matzah ball soup is ALWAYS the way to go when you are sick! I make my own bone broth and use that and make it from scratch! its the best ever! xo C

    • Fitnessista on May 2, 2016 at 10:49 pm

      i was surprised by how good it was

  26. Jessica @ Fit Talker on May 2, 2016 at 9:02 am

    I guess I didn’t realize how long i’ve been reading until I saw the picture of Viesa and immediately said “I know that face”.

    Time flies when you’re having fun, right?

    • Fitnessista on May 2, 2016 at 10:46 pm

      awwww so awesome! thank you for reading for so long <3

  27. Stephanie on May 5, 2016 at 10:02 pm

    P looks so much like her uncle!! 🙂

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