lifestyle


Fall 2019 fitness routine and goals

pictured: Sign Hill Trail, see original post here /

The fall season is in full swing, and this means adjusting our workout schedules to fit in with the changing weather patterns and season. I had every intention of sticking to my summer workout routine, alas, I started having pain in my left hip.

Let me tell you, hip pain is no joke. It can be bad! It hurts to walk, it hurts to sit, and it can also hurt when laying down. I tried stretching it, resting it, going to a Chiropractor; nothing worked. I was soon diagnosed with Bursitis in my hip. I was told to rest it, and at the same time, strengthen the muscles in my legs. Um, how do you do that while resting your hip? Ugh, I am still trying to find a solution.

Long story short, my hip still hurts, and it isn’t getting better. I am working on the exercises prescribed to me, and this season, I will have to do a light workout routine in order to let my hip heal.

I don’t have a weekly routine like I have had in seasons past. For the fall 2019 season, my workout routine involved exercises prescribed by my doctor, yoga once a week to stretch everything out, swimming, and walking. Can I just tell you, this is really boring!

So, hopefully this routine allows my hip to heal while strengthening my leg muscles so my hip can heal properly.  Which types of exercises are you doing this fall?

Shop my favorite workout gear:

Thanks for stopping by!

XOXO

Cathy


Homemade Baked Ziti recipe

If you have been reading here for awhile, you know I have three kids, and a very busy schedule. Types of casseroles are an important dinner option for me since they can be made ahead. Casseroles only need to bake in the oven when it’s time to cook dinner, so they are super convenient. This makes prep convenient with my schedule, and it makes feeding my family a home-cooked meal even easier.

My kids love pasta; don’t most kids? Since pasta is a huge hit at my house, and quite possibly yours, a casserole version is key on busy days. My homemade baked ziti recipe is both easy to make, and well loved by pasta-loving children. That’s win-win!

Homemade baked ziti is an easy and delicious casserole you can make on the spot, or ahead of time when your schedule gets the best of you. So without further ado, here is my homemade baked ziti recipe with instructions. I hope you love it as much as my kids do!

Homemade baked ziti ingredients:

  • 1 lb. Ziti pasta (you can substitute penne if your market doesn’t carry ziti)
  • 1 jar Rao’s Marinara (you can make your own, or use another brand, but this is the most authentic on the market, in my opinion-my ancestors are from Italy, so my family is used to authentic Italian food)
  • ½ cup chopped green onions
  • Sliced provolone cheese
  • ½ cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • ¾ cup mozzarella
  • 2 pounds bulk Italian sausage, cook before mixing into casserole. (can substitute 1 pound ground beef and 1 pound ground pork if you don’t like sausage)

Homemade baked ziti cooking instructions:

Step 1: Cook pasta

Step 2: Mix pasta together with sauce and meat in a mixing bowl.

Step 3: Pour half of the mozzarella into the bowl and mix together.

Step 4: Pour half of the pasta mixture into the casserole dish.

Step 5: Cover the pasta mixture with the remainder of mozzarella cheese.

Step 6: Pour the last half of the pasta mixture on top.

Step 7: Smooth out the top of the casserole with a wooden spoon.

Step 8: Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top of the casserole.

Step 9: Layer provolone cheese slices on top of Parmesan cheese.

Step 10: Top the casserole with green onions.

Bake 35 minutes at 350. Remove from the oven, serve, and enjoy!

There you have it! A really easy casserole the whole family can enjoy. It makes about twelve servings, so there is a good chance you will have plenty of leftovers to eat on another busy day, or bring to work for lunch. I hope you and your family, friends, etc love this homemade baked ziti recipe too!

Thanks for stopping by, and manjia tutti!

XOXO
Cathy


Canon G7X Mark II review

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You might be looking at this post and wondering why I am writing about the Powershot Canon G7X Mark II on a fashion, style, and beauty blog. Well, it does tie into fashion-I swear! Just keep reading. . .

One of the big things that hurts my back when I attend New York Fashion Week, or when I am traveling, is carrying around my heavy DSLR. Fashion week and travel in general, require a lot of standing and walking. To alleviate the back pain and shoulder pain I experience when traveling, or attending fashion week, I needed to lighten my load. That load being my very heavy Nikon DSLR.

Last January I did some research. I found out about this amazing camera which could replace your DSLR. The Canon G7X Mark II is this tiny little point-and-shoot camera which packs a ton of power. It has all the settings a basic DSLR offers. You can go from auto mode to manual mode. You can adjust the ISO, the f-stop, and more! While you can’t switch out the lens, the built-in zoom lens has enough “zoom” to get clear and crisp close-ups of the runway, outfits (pose at that painted wall!), and travel sites.

canon g7X mark ii review

On my Nikon DSLR, I have to go into the menu and scroll through it in order to adjust my ISO etc. It is time consuming, and sometimes I can miss the shot because I am fiddling with my camera settings. When it comes to travel and fashion week, speed is of the essence. The Powershot Canon G7X Mark II has this fabulous dial underneath the dial which lets you switch modes. This dial lets you quickly adjust the camera according to the light-without going into a menu to adjust your settings. This is a huge game changer in situations where the light keeps changing and you need to be speedy to get the right shot.

Here is an example of a photo I took of a model walking the runway at the Son Jung Wan show last February during fashion week. My Canon G7X Mark II did a great job of capturing a moving model. I was also able to adjust the settings quickly for the tricky lighting. Another thing that was tricky about this shot was her jacket. It has sequins, which are difficult to photograph; especially on a moving object. I thought the camera did a good job considering I was shooting from my seat and not the photographer’s pit.

son jung wan fall 2019 nyfw

The Canon G7X Mark II is also great at capturing depth and color. Here is a photo I took in Hawaii. One of the breathtaking things about Hawaii is the shades of blue in the Pacific. The ombre waters are stunning, and I feel like the camera did a great job capturing them. I purposely focused on the water and blurred the lava rocks. I like how it turned out. Who knew a point-and-shoot could do this?

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In addition to being able to adjust the Canon G7X Mark II like a DSLR, it has a flip up screen which allows you to shoot in selfie mode. Sometimes you want a higher resolution selfie; or maybe you just want to have some fun. Either way, the flip up screen is a lot of fun. You can see a selfie taken with my Canon G7X Mark II below. I took this selfie with my daughters on a recent hike. We had fun flipping the screen and turning it in order to get the view in the background. My DSLR definitely does not do that!

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DSLR Alternative

All in all, the Powershot Canon G7X Mark II is an amazing alternative to a DSLR. It can switch from auto to manual mode. The camera comes with easy to follow directions, and there are plenty of YouTube videos out there to help with specific settings that might not sound logical in the manual. I found it easier to learn than my DSLR. Despite not being able to change lenses, the built-in zoom lens is adequate for travel, blogging, and taking runway photos from your seat.

You don’t have to be a blogger to use this camera! So many people bring their DSLR to their children’s sporting events, talent shows, plays, music performances etc., the Canon G7X Mark II is a great alternative which can take beautiful videos and photos. The resolution and quality rivals a low to medium level DSLR. It also offer wi-fi capability which is great for uploading photos to a laptop or iPhone while on the go.

Lighten your load! The Canon G7X Mark II is compact and lightweight. I can carry a smaller handbag at fashion week, and when I travel, than I did back when I carried around my DSLR. The small size is great for travel, and it won’t break your back. Love that!

When I purchased my Powershot Canon G7X Mark II, I also bought a large memory card and a second battery. It’s always nice to have a back-up battery when traveling in case you take a ton of photos all day and need to swap the battery. For a memory card, I recommend Lexar. They make great cards. Always get a big one to store videos and keep yourself from running out of room while traveling.

Shop the Powershot Canon G7X Mark II camera and accessories online:

I am in love with this camera, and I take it everywhere I go so I can snap photos of my kids, and to blog! If you have any questions about it, please feel free to ask in the comments below, or shoot me an email.

Thank you so much for your support!

XOXO

Cathy

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