This is probably the coolest picture ever:
Yes — that would be Matt on our hike yesterday! He’s fun to hike with because he’s part monkey, part Tigger… and a former gymnast :) We were all obsessed with this fun swinging bridge!
Matt and I and three of my grad school friends all went for the hike, which was about 5 miles worth of trails (~2.5 hours) over in Eno River State Park!
We hiked the Cox Mountain and Fanny Ford Trails. A perfect activity for a perfect fall day. I love hiking because it’s great exercise… but it doesn’t feel like it because you’re too busy having fun!
(Can you tell Elle — second from the right — used to be a figure skater? :) I was so impressed with her graceful pose! Ha)
Here are some of my favorite photos from the day:
What a gorgeous day. I’m loving fall in North Carolina!
After hiking, we headed over to see Matt’s brother, Chris, and his wife Jess in Raleigh!
It was great seeing them and catching up on their newlywed lives :) I still can’t believe the last time we saw them was their wedding in June and they only live 30 minutes away!
They made us an awesome dinner, too: Baked Tilapia with a Homemade Olive, Tomato, & Cilantro Salsa Topping (from a Rachel Ray cookbook):
SautÃ©ed spinach and rice:
Plus a roll. All together now!
Yum! Thanks again for treating us, Chris and Jess :) Next time we’ll host you!
And now — I’m off for a busy day at school! We have food science lab tonight (stay tuned for another fun recap), plus I have a bunch of group project meetings beforehand, too. This is definitely crunch time with school, especially since I’m leaving town on Wednesday morning and missing a test, which I have to make up tomorrow morning! Yikes.
How do I combat stress? Exercise! No matter how busy I am, I never put exercise on the back burner (unless I really physically need a rest day, of course). If it means getting up early, so be it. I know I’ll be glad I did! This morning, I met my friend Jillian on campus bright and early at 6:20 a.m. to go swimming in the UNC pool!
We’ve discovered we can park on campus until 7:30 a.m., so that makes things way easier. So lucky to have this resource at my disposal — it was nice to mix things up with some non-impact exercise! We swam for about 45 minutes. Jillian swam in college, so she’s super fast — it was good motivation to try to keep a respectable pace, myself ;)
And I’m off — have a wonderful day!