The days are moving by quickly here in Destin, where I am spending the New Years holiday with my family and James.  So far today James and I have gone exploring in the state park (and found an alligator marsh!), traveled to Destin for lunch at The Back Porch, and risked our lives by attempting to buy something at the outlet mall for our family photo shoot tomorrow on the beach.  I really, really despise shopping at overly crowded places…but, it was a practice of patience for me.  Now we are back, chilling in the quiet afternoon, watching the sun set on what’s already been an amazing day.

Before I get into my first flashback & quest, I wanted to share something fun – my siblings and I (plus our boo’s) are having a competition to see who can make the best tasting and looking breakfast.  James and I drew the first morning, and luckily we’ve been prepared via a Google doc for over a month now.  😉  We decided to do breakfast parfaits in mason jars with layers of goodness (from bottom to top): strawberry jam, crumbled country biscuits, white gravy, spicy sausage, hash browns, shredded cheddar, fried egg and topped off with hollandaise sauce!  The rims of the mason jars were dipped in raw sugar and garnished with a slice of lime and grapefruit.  It was a lot of fun to make, easy to execute and absolutely delicious.  I attached a photo below. We had one more ingredient that we totally forgot to add and was ready to go – crumbled fruity pebbles (only the green) to sprinkle on the very top.  It would have added a little color and been fun to talk about.  Oh well… next time!

2013 Quest #1:
Speaking of food, 2012 has been the year for eating.  Which has been really wonderful in a lot of ways, I’ve learned so many new things and met so many people through my food adventures with James.  It has been a great source of happiness to share the eating experience with others, I wouldn’t take a second of it back.  However, I do need to lose a little bit of weight due to being a little overindulgent.  Luckily I don’t think this will be too hard of a task.  I’m already in decent shape, and with my Half Ironman training I know that I will be more health conscious in the coming months.  I know this blog started off as an accountability tool to lose weight, but I don’t want to turn it back into that again.  However, I do plan to keep you guys updated on my return back to peak health! So for 2013, I want to learn how to balance my new passion for food with the importance of maintaining an ideal body weight range.

2012 Flashback #1:
This year my sweet red-headed niece Lucy Bug was born.  I wasn’t there for the birth like I was for Anna, instead I arrived later that day to spend the first night with Christy in the hospital.  There I got to snuggle with a Bug and spend my first one-on-one time with her.  Lucy is now almost 6 months old and couldn’t be any sweeter.  Little human beings are so special…there is something in their eyes that seems to be forgotten in the aging process, but once you hold a baby you are reconnected with that powerful purpose.  The purpose of our existence, the reasons we are so unique, and the knowledge that we will continue on for a very long time because of these young ones.  Lucy reminds me of how important my own life is.

542fd566516011e2a58222000a1fb810_7 f8c3e5f0514111e2999e22000a1f8afc_7 5ef5738a514111e2aadd22000a1fbd6a_7 42d15d5251cf11e2bfbf22000a9f1935_7 2a4b0a5a51dc11e2b48222000a9f1915_7 bdb5191e514811e29d3822000a1f90e8_7