Hi from VA! + Friday Faves

Hi! Happy Friday!! What are you up to this weekend? Any fun plans on the horizon?

We’re here in Richmond, VA! The second I found out we would be here for the wedding (which is actually in Orange), I texted this little lady to see if she’d be free to meet up.

Dinner with brittany

Brittany and I have been blog friends turned real life friends since the early days of yore. I’m always so happy to see her. We originally had plans to catch a spin class and then dinner, but our flight ended up being delayed a couple of hours. Instead, we enjoyed a delicious Indian feast at Lehja and walk around the mall afterwards. It was so great to catch up!

Dinner at lehja

(We shared the chaat of the day, which was crispy kale with a sweet reduction; the Pahadi Baingan, which was eggplant with kale, tomatoes, fennel and spices; and the Seafood Kerala Curry with sea bass, shrimp, scallops, coconut, mustard, chilies and curry leaves. After my first trimester Indian food hiatus, it felt good to be back in the game haha.)

In standard Friday fashion, here are some faves from the week and around the web! 

This pic of my brother Kyle.

Kyle cooking

It’s crazy to think that the same guy who used to dig and make mud pies with me out in the yard (which we set on the wall to dry) is creating and plating the most beautiful healthy meals. Yesterday, he did a 4-course demo in NYC for food and spa media, including Food & Wine. He is doing amazing things, and I’m so proud of him. (PS, buddy if you want to hook a girl up with that tart recipe, I need it in my life.)

Headspace app. So in all fairness, I haven’t been able to give this a full whirl (10 days) for a solid review, but I’m loving it so far. It’s a free 10-day meditation app, with focused meditations for each day. The guide’s voice is positively lovely (soothing with a slight English accent), and as someone who’s always looking to expand their meditation strategies, I think this is a wonderful app.

Dad doesn’t babysit and sometimes mom works late. All the YES.

Can’t wait to try this cinnamon quinoa bake. 

Lulu maxi! What are you doing to me??

A new bowl obsession! We decided to venture out of the standard Tiki Port, and hit up Northside Shack. Thanks Northside, for totally shaking up my acai bowl rating system. For starters, they give you EVERY fruit: mango, pineapple, strawberries, blueberries, grapes, kiwi, coconut, and top with ground almonds and chia seeds. The pitaya base I tried was a little more sorbet-like (I like more of a thick smoothie texture), but everything else was perfection. They are definitely in my top 3, but I can’t figure out where! (Tiki Port and Cafe by the Bay also reign supreme right now.) 

North shore bowls

Guess we need to go back. 😉

Pitaya north shore

Little braids and updos are the best. 

Livs hair  1 of 1

The Girl on the Train. I started this on the plane yesterday, and am fully sucked in. I can’t wait to finish it and see what happens. If you liked Gone Girl, I highly recommend this one. It’s very well-written, suspenseful, and an easy, quick read. 

Jessica Alba: woman crush everyday. 

Filed under things that made me way happier than they should have

Chills all over. 

Thank you to POPSUGAR for featuring this ab workout!

Hope you have a very happy Friday! <3 I’d love to hear about things you’re loving this week.

Reading anything new? Taking any fun fitness classes? Also, who’s running Rock n’ Rock San Diego this weekend? 



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  1. Sarah @ Sarah's on the Run on May 29, 2015 at 6:31 am

    Central VA is one of prettiest places in the country in my opinion! 🙂 Have fun!!

  2. kristin | W [H] A T C H on May 29, 2015 at 6:32 am

    isn’t it so fun to watch brothers succeed?

  3. Dietitian Jess on May 29, 2015 at 6:40 am

    Girl on the Train was awesome- make sure you also check out the other Gillian Flynn books! PS I want a hair tutorial- so pretty!!

  4. Ashley @ A Lady Goes West on May 29, 2015 at 6:46 am

    Hi Gina! Oh man, I had my fair share of travel mess-ups over the past couple of days trying to come back to the Bay Area after a week away in Florida. Sorry about your delay, but it happens. And I am in need of an acai bowl in my life. Congrats to your brother on all his success! Have fun this weekend! 🙂

  5. Brynn on May 29, 2015 at 6:47 am

    Yes to Jessica Alba! How fun you get to see your friend. I always love when travel works out in my favor. Happy Friday!

  6. Morgan @ Morgan Manages Mommyhood on May 29, 2015 at 6:54 am

    Ooh, definitely need to check that book out! Loved Gone Girl and read all the other Gillian Flynn books but I haven’t been able to find anything similar!

  7. Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie on May 29, 2015 at 7:02 am

    I am dying to read The Girl on the Train!! I am waiting for it to be available at my library and as soon as it is, I am diving in head first into it!

  8. Erin @ Her Heartland Soul on May 29, 2015 at 7:13 am

    So much bowl envy! And have fun in Virginia! I just met Brittany at a blog event and thought she was the sweetest! Bloggers are the best!

  9. amber conger on May 29, 2015 at 7:13 am

    Ohhhh that hairdo is the cutest! I just started reading The Vacationers and The Girl on the Train is on my summer reading list!

  10. Hayley @ Full of Life on May 29, 2015 at 7:29 am

    I keep hearing about The Girl On The Train and think it needs to be my next book…however I don’t love reading scary books like Gone Girl before bed (haha I’m a wuss)! Also, Liv’s braids are always absolutely adorable. <3

  11. Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious on May 29, 2015 at 7:56 am

    I’m on a majorly green juice kick again. Must be the 100 degree temps in AZ this week. Time to stay indoors for the next 4 months. Have fun in VA I’ve never been there!

  12. jess t on May 29, 2015 at 7:59 am

    Welcome to Virginia. 🙂 Orange is an adorable little town and a beautiful area.

  13. Lauren Vacula @ alovelysideproject.com on May 29, 2015 at 8:32 am

    Have a great time in VA!!! If you are in the mood to shop- hit up Tyson’s Corner. Then hit up Eddie V’s for dinner- awesome location sitting in the sky with live jazz. Get some great seafood!!! (if you’re into that sort of thing). :):)

    xo, Lauren @ http://alovelysideproject.com

  14. Sarah on May 29, 2015 at 8:34 am

    Current read: Girls with Swords

  15. Lauren @ The Bikini Experiment on May 29, 2015 at 8:50 am

    Congrats on your brother’s success! That’s really awesome. We had a lot of delays the last time we traveled. I think it’s al the storms and such. Hope you enjoy the weekend!

  16. Kim on May 29, 2015 at 9:03 am

    Welcome to Richmond!! If you have some free time before you head out to the wedding, I highly recommend the Greek Festival going on right now – its the best festival in Richmond in my opinion (and the most amazing greek food!)

  17. Amanda on May 29, 2015 at 9:55 am

    YUM to the Indian food! My husband and I have been talking about how we’ve both been craving curry, then our Blue Apron box came… with curried chicken thighs! Can’t wait to make them tonight 😀

  18. Jacquelyn @justjacq on May 29, 2015 at 11:28 am

    One of my coworkers always says he has to babysit his kids and it drives me INSANE!

  19. Laura @ Semi-Vegetarian.com on May 29, 2015 at 11:40 am

    The Duck Tales video… I die. Literally LOL-ing over here!! Where in the world did you find this gem?! Made my day, for sure. 🙂

  20. Holly on May 29, 2015 at 12:05 pm

    The Cinnamon Quinoa Bake is amazing!!! I’ve made it several times and it’s a huge hit!

  21. Erin @ Erin's Inside Job on May 29, 2015 at 12:48 pm

    Have a great time! I just watched that Chandelier cover before I clicked on it. So good.

    I did not like Girl on the Train. I didn’t really care about any of the characters and I guessed the ending before the book was half over. Maybe I compared it too much to Gone Girl, but it didn’t stack up to me.

  22. Heather@hungryforbalance on May 29, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    VA is so beautiful! Glad you get to enjoy it, even if there were some travel snags. It seems like there are always snags while traveling, you know?
    That “babysitting” article- ridiculous!
    Thanks for sharing that recipe- I have it bookmarked to make later.

  23. Fiona @ Get Fit Fiona on May 29, 2015 at 4:18 pm

    I’ve had a few other people mention The Girl on the Train to me too, I’ll have to read it soon.

  24. Julia @ Lord Still Loves Me on May 29, 2015 at 7:35 pm

    Your brother is a cutie! I am impressed with how well he has done for himself, and I think its great how close you two appear to be!

    Have a great weekend, Gina. 🙂

  25. Laurie on May 30, 2015 at 12:44 am

    I know you’re primarily gluten free, but you absolutely cannot leave Richmond without going to Sugar Shack Donuts. Not the slightest bit of exaggeration, they are the best donuts I’ve ever had. Even the plain glazed will change your life. Edo’s Squid also has pasta and seafood options that are out of this world. It’s a tiny little restaurant, but definitely a Richmond treasure! Also, anywhere in Carytown is great for walking and experiencing Richmond’s unique atmosphere, particularly Can Can Brasserie. Oh my god, I could recommend places for days! Lucky you got here just as the beautiful magnolias are blooming all over the place!

  26. Michelle on May 30, 2015 at 8:03 am

    oh man I had a baller acai bowl for lunch yesterday. A co worker came into my office and thought I was eating chocolate pudding for lunch. 🙂 Copied straight from the website it was: BLENDED ACAI, CASHEW, RAW CACAO, BANANA, CASHEW MILK. TOPPED WITH GRANOLA, BANANA, CACAO NIBS, AND COCONUT.

    • Fitnessista on May 30, 2015 at 8:07 am

      ok this needs to happen

      • Michelle on May 30, 2015 at 8:11 am

        hahaha. come to Boston! I need to learn how to recreate it so I don’t keep spending 10 bucks a pop!

  27. Cristal on May 30, 2015 at 9:42 am

    I finished reading The Girl on the Train a couple weeks ago. It was so good! Very suspenseful! I loved it!!

  28. Carrie on May 31, 2015 at 4:14 am

    Gina, can I ask your readers (and you) if anybody has any recommendations for somewhere to visit near Montreal in June? My husband and I are on a family visit to relatives but would like to take a few days away just the two of us. Not expensive but not super cheap. We want it to be comfortable and special/memorable. Don’t mind if interest is natural, museum, views, culture etc. Thanks, 🙂 Not very experienced travellers and want to make the most of the time (come from England).

    • Carrie on May 31, 2015 at 4:28 am

      Just to stress I know you are nowhere near Canada but I know you have readers from all over the world. 🙂

  29. Jenny McDaniel on May 31, 2015 at 5:53 am

    Will there be a June workout challenge?

    • Fitnessista on June 1, 2015 at 4:21 pm

      no, but i will post workouts to do leading up to summer shape up! they’ll be in your inbox tomorrow 🙂

  30. Carrie on May 31, 2015 at 4:55 pm

    I love Livi’s braids!! They are ways so cute. 🙂 Do you think you could show us a few eaiser ones in a tutorial some time? I have been hoping for this (in my mind) for a while now. I have limited hair skills with my little lady. 🙂

    • Fitnessista on June 1, 2015 at 4:20 pm


  31. Jaime M on May 31, 2015 at 7:24 pm

    That qunioa bake is awesome! I haven’t had luck with it in a pan, but in a muffin tin, it has worked perfectly every time. So good with almond butter and maple syrup!

    • Fitnessista on June 1, 2015 at 4:20 pm

      excited to try it!

  32. Stephanie on May 31, 2015 at 7:27 pm

    Hey Gina,

    I’ll be home visiting SD soon, but haven’t done an orangetheory workout there yet. Do you have a preference as far as the PL or La Jolla studio? I bet parking at the La Jolla one is awful! I looked ahead at the schedules and all the classes are open. You are so lucky, most of the classes at my studio are full/waitlisted weeks in advance!

    Thanks 🙂

    • Fitnessista on June 1, 2015 at 4:20 pm

      i personally prefer the PL studio, but i haven’t been to the la jolla one! when i’ve passed it, parking hasn’t looked too bad. if you can, take a class from allen, jolen, kat, or tee!

      • Stephanie on June 1, 2015 at 4:21 pm

        Will do, thanks for the tip!

  33. Shaina Anderson on May 31, 2015 at 11:30 pm

    I’ll add that to the list of 47 books I have been wanting to read but can’t find the time. 🙁

    Livi’s braids are so cute!! I can’t wait for Ry’s hair to be that long.

  34. Brittany on June 1, 2015 at 10:22 am

    It was so great seeing you, as always! Now I need to come visit you in San Diego. 🙂

    • Fitnessista on June 1, 2015 at 4:14 pm

      dooooo it 🙂

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