Our first trail run + one of the best days of the year

Happy National Coffee Day!! This is like the best day ever! I will be sure to celebrate all day.

Running shoes + coffee. Is there a better pair? I hope you are nodding your head yes to this. Winking smile

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I convinced the boys to hit up the trail with me so I could throw down some miles. Remember I’m a chicken? I think a snake or mountain lion is going to stalk me.

The boys walked while I ran a couple loops.

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As I was passing them, Bam started running after me. I was stoked he wanted to be my running buddy, but a little worried he would see a butterfly or squirrel and chase after it. You see, he has the attention span of a gnat. But to my surprise he kept up. He did stop a couple times to sniff, but quickly caught up when I called him.

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He even led the way a couple times.

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I freaking loved trail running, and can’t wait to log some more miles with the Bamstagram!

I did a 5K in a little over 30 minutes. From what I hear, you don’t really focus on splits or time while trail running because the terrain is so varied. That is perfect because lately I’ve just been focusing on loving the run. Though next time I will be smart and wear my Pro Compression socks as my legs were itchy the rest of the day.

Any trail runners out there?

What are your best tips for a new trail runners?

How are you celebrating National Coffee Day?

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Saturday happenings + places you don’t recommend

I usually take Sunday off from blogging, but I have a little extra time. Mike + Bam are still snoozing, I’m still off work and I’ve probably had way too much coffee. So here I am, hanging out with you guys. Good morning!

This random week off has been so incredible, I have done many new things, and have truly enjoyed life to the fullest.

Yesterday we explored the beach by Spanish Bay golf course. We walked through the hotel lobby, onto the pedestrian trail from the golf course to the beach boardwalk.

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Spanish Bay is owned + operated by Pebble Beach company. A lot of folks who play Pebble, stay here because I think it’s a bit cheaper. To be guaranteed a tee time at Pebble, they require a minimum of 2 nights stay at one of their resorts. Pebble Beach Company owns 3 golf courses, Spy Glass is the third one in case you are wondering.

You are welcome for the fruitless information. Winking smile

I was surprised at how long the boardwalk went on, which made for a really cool adventure.

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After days of sun, the fog refused to lift, which made for a cozy afternoon. It was still in the 60’s. Perfect coffee weather if you ask me. So we tried a new to us coffee shop, Book Works in Pacific Grove.

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When visiting a new coffee shop, I always ask what their ‘claim to fame’ or most popular dink is and order it. This one happened to be Sweet Italian and another one I can’t remember. We got both to try and loved the one I can’t remember the name of. Oops.

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Because I am a chicken and don’t want to go by myself, I convinced Mike to check out a trail we drive by all the time. That was a great life decision.

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It was beautiful, I can’t wait to introduce Em + my trail running shoes to it.

The redwood trees were a pleasant surprise.

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We ended the day roaming Fisherman’s Wharf. Where we had a late lunch at Peter B’s {I do not recommend} and climbed rocks until someone got his feet wet and cried. Ha, not really but that boy does NOT like getting his shoes wet.

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I hear the boy stirring around, better wrap this up. We have some friends coming over for smoked ribs-a Mike specialty and I want to run and get the house in order before then.

I hope you have a fantastic Sunday with friends + family!!

How did you spend your Saturday?

We always talk about places we recommend, is there anywhere you don’t recommend? A restaurant or touristy place you feel it’s overpriced?

I feel like Fisherman’s Wharf is a bit overpriced and not too exciting. I would recommend walking through, {it really is a must see when coming to Monterey} and then finding someplace else to eat. Like Cannery Row or La Bicyclette in Carmel. Just my 2 cents fo free though.

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Bam is training for his first 5K

Yesterday I set out to take Bam for a long walk. He LOVES being active and outside so we are quite the pair.

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Bam was full of energy and not interested in walking {that’s a JRT for ya}, so we ran like somebody left the gate open.

He doesn’t know it, but he is training for his first 5K. Dude is more of a sprinter so I am working with him on slowing down a little and building endurance. I don’t have any experience training with a dog, so we are taking it easy.

Now I just have to find a dog friendly race.

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In other news, Mike and I went to brunch and it had to be the most simplistic meal I’ve had in years. No fancy pants ingredients or spices or ketchup or hot sauce {though I LOVE sauces}, just sea salt and coarse cracked pepper. It was so perfect. Real food is so good.

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Late afternoon I met with Michele for 40 minutes of pool running which made for a very active day around here. I am loving my fitbit so much I kinda want to marry it. Not really, but I get really excited when it buzzes when I hit 10,000 steps. I am constantly amazed at how much I underestimated my activity level before. Nerd alert.

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{calories burned are not accurate}

Better get ready, Mike and I have a super fun weekend planned.

Do you run with your furry friend?

If so, what’s your best advise?

Do you like simplistic meals or prefer lots of flavor + sauce?

Both, but I really love sauces.

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Finding my running mojo + a Friday favorite

Looks like I am finding my running mojo again. I’ve been feeling like the characters in the movie Robots. Every time I think my body mechanics are all in order, I’m sidelined with a new issue. Which of course slows my training down and creates a snowball effect.

It took some confidence building, but I finally did my first post injury punks 5K yesterday. I was quickly reminded about how running does not come naturally or easy for me, which is probably why I love it so much.

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Pretty sure I saw a turtle pass me but I only stopped twice. Once for a light and another for horrible heartburn. I’m still confused at that since I took Tums before. I’ll take it though!

I celebrated with a pedi. Not really, my Flintstone feet needed it.

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The heartburn continued even after lunch, a Zantac + more Tums so I did the logical thing and got a coffee. Told ya I wasn’t a smart one.

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I snuggled with Bam on the couch until I felt a lot better and got a second wind. So I went pool running. Maybe that has some redeeming value from the coffee logic earlier.

Doubt it.

A 30 minute therapy sesh later, I was feeling like a million bucks.

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On the way home I saw the sun was setting so I pulled over to snap some pics.

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Usually the fog rolls in and we don’t get to see them that often. But when we do, it’s kinda special.

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A little Friday favorite love <3

I recently found Jenn on Instagram. She is an ultra runner who got bit by a rattle snake twice about a month ago. Her courage and resilience is incredible! Go check out her page and send some positive thoughts her way.

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How do you find your running or workout mojo?

Any fun plans this weekend?

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Mizuno Wave Rider 18 preview + fun stuff with Pro Compression

I woke up to some liquid stuff falling from the sky. Not sure what it is since it hasn’t happened in a long time but I am enjoying it.

This week Bam and I tag teamed 30 minutes of running/walking/sniffing. He is quite the running partner! Maybe we can find a 5K to run together.

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Good news, Bam finally got off the soap Mizuno box so I could share the new Wave Rider 18’s. He expects treats and belly rubs just so ya know.

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I will be sure to do a full review after I throw down some more miles. But so far, I am in love.

We finally found our new local Mediterranean restaurant after a year. Something so simple made us incredibly happy! I had the chicken kebob with rice and a salad. The raw onions were quickly pushed aside. Yuck.

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After lunch Mike had an appointment, so I wandered around City Hall and not gonna lie, to get in some more steps on my fitbit. Winking smile

Monterey is rich in history and beauty.

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Indian Summer is bringing it this year!

I have made good on my promise to fill my days with a bunch of stuff I want to do but find excuses for. Cooking isn’t usually something I enjoy, but I do enjoy a nice home cooked meal, so I made a Shepherds Pie. I used lean ground beef and no lamb because homie over here does not eat poor little lamb chop.

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I’ve made it before so it’s a pretty safe bet for my non existent cooking abilities. Mike liked it and we didn’t die, so I’m calling it a win.

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Now for some fun stuff with Pro Compression!!

Give ‘em a follow on Instagram and use coupon code INSTA for 40% off and free US shipping.

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For those of you running the Chicago Marathon, Lauren has partnered with Pro to put together a shake out run through Millennium Park. Deets are below if you are interested.

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One thing you want to do soon that you keep finding excuses for?

Share your fail proof recipe.

What colors/pattern/design would you like to see Pro Compression come out with?

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PUMA: Performance + Comfort

The following post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of PUMA Fitness.

Recently I have shared my new found passion for making small, healthy changes which has pretty much been the complete opposite of my stubborn all or nothing approach. Hey, I never claimed to be smart.

I have also focused on living and doing things I have always wanted to, but somehow come up with excuses not to.

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Yesterday I recruited the boys to soak up the morning sunshine and climb rocks on the beach. We don’t do this often enough.

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Well, some of us tried to dig through rocks for crabs. Turns out that didn’t work out so well, but thanks for giving yourself a free pawdicure buddy.

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We don’t see the sun this early in the morning every day, so it’s a treat when we wake up to it!

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After we climbed rocks, walked along the beach and one of us (not gonna rat him out) rolled around in seaweed and smelled like dead sea life, a nice fluffy cappuccino sounded amazing. So we stopped into a little café in Pacific Grove to get our fix.

My view:

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His view:

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My view was better. Smile

Now, let’s talk about this uber schweet PUMA gear I’ve been rocking lately.

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PUMA sent me two outfits to try out. The first one is all about performance.

Gym Tank is comfortable and stylish. I’m a huge fan of racer backs – I rock them on the daily, so the criss cross style get’s two thumbs up for mobility. Plus it’s super cute and I’m not even going to pretend that isn’t a factor with workout gear.

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3/4 tights are my first pair with a pattern and I am definitely digging them. They have a wide waistband, which I love because I like to wear pants super low and always roll them down. Major bonus points for not digging into my sides or giving me muffin top.

Mobium XT shoes were a fun change to hike in. They are lightweight but still felt comfortable and stable. Plus you can’t go wrong with the loud color scheme.

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The next look is fashion comfort. Muhahaha my favorite!

I’m gonna be real honest here, when I opened the package and saw these wide Capsule Pants, I thought there was no way in heck I would like them. But then Emily told me to try scrunching the ankle bands up. Girlfriends a genius! Turns out I am totally into them.

They have an extra wide waist band with a draw string for extra comfort. Is it weird that I really like the large front pockets? Yah, don’t answer that.

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Narita V2 shoes are comfortable and flexible which made it fun for climbing rocks and walking on the beach. I think they would be a great ‘kicking it on the weekend’ shoe as well.

Gym Loose Tank is a definite winner! It’s on the see-thru side but a fun colored sports bra really takes it up a notch. I would also feel comfortable wearing it with a loud tank and yoga pants to grab coffee or green juice with a friend.

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Have you ever worn PUMA gear?

If you could wear whatever you wanted all the time, what would it be?

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Surprise week off

Goodbye summer.

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Ha just kidding, this is the beach. It’s been summer for the last year. And everyone reminds me this weather is highly abnormal, it’s usually cooler. I just tell them to leave me alone, ignorance is bliss.

Really though we do see some change in seasons here. The leaves will change color and fall and hopefully some rain. Boy do we need that, so I am looking forward to the season change.

There was a mix up on my work schedule and that turned into me scoring the whole week off. I don’t even know what to do with myself. Oh wait, yes I do!

I put together a list of things I always want to do, but seem to find an excuse not to. Now let’s just hope I don’t catch the bug that knocked Mike down all weekend. Sorry, getting sick is not in my plans. But these are:

  • Go for a hike
  • Take Bam for long walks

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  • Get fresh pressed juice and/or wheatgrass shot
  • Run and/or pool run
  • These new Mizuno Wave Rider 18’s sure help put a kick in my step.

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  • Strength train
  • Try a new recipe
  • Do some fall cleaning: dusting, wipe down appliances, etc.
  • Play with my camera
  • Hit up the farmers market

If you had an unexpected week off, what would you do?

What are you looking forward to this fall?

Anyone have a favorite fall recipe, please share it!

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Grandma therapy

The other day I told Mike how much I was missing my little grandma and he said, why don’t you just go see her?

Duh.

So yesterday I made the trip to Fresno to see her for the day.

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Grandma loves to cook for people, so I requested her famous fried potatoes, steamed greens and “grandmas choice” for whatever else she wanted to make.

She did not disappoint. We had friend chicken, bacon (a staple at her house), fried potatoes, greens, beans, cornbread and sweet tea. She even made brownies for dessert. I know!

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My mom came over to visit as well and we had a great time sitting around the kitchen table catching up and eating delicious food.

We still give her crap for pulling her car into the garage, putting it in neutral and pushing it in so the door will shut. She’s 86 years old. Ha!

After a bit we moved the party out to the backyard to continue our chat and so Bam could chase birds and squirrels like a crazy man.

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Oh, just in case you were wondering, grandma finally ripped up her tomato plants. Ha! But she left the peppers. I think she’s getting ready to plant her fall/winter garden. Every year she says she does not want to plant another garden, but every year she does. Ha!

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Then we found Uncle Charlie’s BB gun and did a little target practice with a wheelbarrow, the fence, trees and metal posts that are coming out of the ground. It was just like the good ole days. I kinda wish we lived in the country so we could ride ATV’s and target practice anytime we want, but it would be pretty hard to give up the beach life.

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There is never enough minutes to hang out with grandma, but I treasure the time I have with her. Before we know it, Thanksgiving will be here and I’ll see her again. I am counting down the days. 67 days, 15 hours, 55 minutes and 34 seconds in case you are wondering.

What reminds you of grandmas house?

What food{s} does/did your grandma make?

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Vegas deets: where we stayed + trouble we got into

I just can’t let Vegas go. Every time I see pictures or videos of the Bellagio or Sin City on social media I miss it so much.

I had a few questions about where we stayed and other random questions so I figured a post with the deets was in order.

Mike scored a schweet package through Allegiant Air for 2 round trip flights from Monterey and 4 nights at The Luxor for about $500. We left on a Sunday and came back on a Thursday so it was probably less crowded and cheaper.

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We loved our stay there and would definitely consider staying there next time. It is located at the beginning of The Strip so the convenience of not fighting traffic to get in and out as we had a rental car was a big selling point for us.

But it is now my dream to stay at the Bellagio with a view of the fountain show.SmileWhich I am pretty sure you already know that was, hands down my #1 favorite thing we did in Vegas.

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Walking The Strip was #2 in case you were wondering.

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Mike would like to offer you some life advice. He said don’t do it. He made that mistake twice. Don’t worry, I am taking notes for his 3rd wife. Winking smile

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This is one time, in Vegas I got yelled at for taking selfies of us. Ha!  #imnotescaredofyoucowboy

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We also drove out to Red Rock Canyon which was incredibly beautiful.

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Mike has blisters on his paws so we didn’t do any hiking, but it’s on my list for next time.

can’t.even.handle.this.beauty.

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Another day we drove to the Hoover Damn and took the damn tour. Mike is a history buff so it was a great experience. I couldn’t help but think of the National Lampoons movie Vegas Vacation. Yes, I am so mature like that.

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I bet if you ask Mike really nicely (and if you’re interested) he might do a guest post about the Hoover Damn.

Other notable things we did:

  • The Shark Reef tour at Mandalay Bay.
  • Walked through the Pawn Stars shop.
  • Margaritas + beer poolside at the Luxor. Ah-mazing, I kinda wish we went more often.
  • Mike’s Art Of Shaving experience.
  • Drove to St.George, Utah-my first time there and already planning to go back!
  • The Arizona state line-again my first time in AZ as well.
  • Dinner at Texas De Brazil. <-go here and send me love notes. We were totally Templeton status walking out of that place.
  • This guy.

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  • I wanted to do the gondola ride at the Venetian, but couldn’t justify $18.95 per person for 10 minute ride. Is it worth it?
  • Worlds largest chocolate fountain.

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I could keep going, but I’ll stop here.

Until next time, Vegas.

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What should be on everyone’s list to see or do in Vegas?

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Wednesday favorites and 1 not so fav

This post was actually supposed to be Tuesday favorites, but I took an early morning shift at work at the last minute. As much as I love being up with the birds, I have no desire to beat them to blog. #sorrynotsorry

Speaking of early bird, I caught one of the most gorgeous sunrises I have ever seen while walking to work.

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I hope this doesn’t come out the wrong way, but I am so thankful for where we live and my job. Every day I think, I can’t believe they actually pay me to come here. mind.blown.

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No filter on either pic. There’s no way I could alter God’s beauty.

I saw these boots at REI last weekend and could not stop staring. The North Face nailed it with the touch of blue.

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A couple weekends ago I was shopping in Carmel with my friend Melissa and she pointed out these Starbucks-esque nesting measuring cups. They begged me to take them home to live with us so I did. M picked up a set as well so we are twinners.

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This peach balsamic vinegar from Whole Foods rocks my face off. Especially drizzled over fresh strawberries and watermelon salad.

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A couple weeks ago we were shopping and Mike met the manager who brought the balsamic line in. He convinced us to try it. We were shocked at how incredible this stuff is. So we bought a half bottle (it’s sold by weight) and turns out we have made some solid friendships with it.

I’m not afraid of spiders, I feel like this with snakes, but I know some of you can relate to it. No doubt this girl does. Winking smile

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Last weekend Mike put the John Mayer station on Pandora and Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran came on. I pointed at it and demanded Mike download it now. Lucky for me he loved it just as much and we had it on our phones within minutes.

It makes me want to fling my hair and dance around the house in an Etta James Sunday Kinda Love way.

This super loud sound bar thingy the husband randomly threw in the shopping cart is definitely not an SCB fav. I even protested like the man does when I say I need more running gear.

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I am laughing because I was trying to convince Mike that he is deaf and I really like to sleep in peace and quiet. Oh and that he should have planned ahead and brought the SUV. He said something like shut up and drink your coffee. Can’t argue with that. Winking smile

It’s cool, I figured out how to sync the sound bar via Bluetooth on my S5 so I can remotely mute it when I’m in the bedroom while he is watching tv just to mess with him. There is no way he thinks I’m that smart. Even I surprised myself.

The end.

What are your current favs?

Share the last thing your significant other got that you don’t approve of.

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