about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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    What’s Cooking?

    Personal Bests

    5K - 23:28

    10K - 52:35

    15K - 1:38:14

    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

    Marathon - 3:50:58

    A Look Back.

Christmas & New Year’s 2014!

As promised, I am back with a holiday recap!  Last year it took me until January 23rd to recap our holidays, and while I’m still a bit late this year (which is no surprise), it feels a bit less absurd.  We’re just finally coming out of the holiday fog and getting back into real life.  The cookies have all been eaten, air mattresses deflated, and the decorations are packed up.  But the memories and holiday magic still feels so fresh in my mind – this year was a great one!

We travel a lot and visit family all over throughout the year, but we decided last year that, at least while our kids are still so young, we want to spend Christmas in Seattle at our home.  We’re just beginning to start our own family traditions, and it’s so fun finding all the holiday adventures here in our area.

Our Christmas officially kicked off on the 22nd, when Grandma (and her fiancé, Jim!) arrived!  Both boys just loved having them here.  On their first day here, we took a trip to the Space Needle to go see Santa in his rocket ship (a fun tradition we discovered last year!).  We got this amazing commemorative photo!


Cullen was so excited to tell Santa all about the garbage truck he hoped to get, and to take a ride in the rocket ship.  Graham thought this Santa was even worse than the first one.  Maybe next year!


On Christmas Eve, Cullen and my mom spent hours baking delicious Finnish Fingers – a childhood Christmas staple in my house growing up! 

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And I spent most of the afternoon working on our Christmas Eve dinner!  We had a nice spread of mashed potatoes with vegan mushroom gravy, roasted Brussels sprouts and green beans, butternut squash, cranberry sauce, and Field Roast celebration roast.  Absolutely delicious! 


Annual family Christmas photo!  I love this group so much.  We missed my older sister and her family, but with two little kids herself, we were happy they were celebrating in their own house too. 

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Such a nice treat to have Sarah join us again this year!  The boys love her, and I got spoiled by having company on my daily walks with the pups. 

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We stayed up much later than intended on Christmas Eve, as the “simple” train set I bought for the boys ended up taking three hours to assemble.  Parenting right of passage, right?  I mostly just watched.  :)


Christmas morning came early, and Cullen couldn’t wait to come downstairs.  He was adamant that he wanted a very particular garbage truck that had a side loading lever, so that is exactly what he got!  Graham got a few new trucks to add to the mix as well. 

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Which were, of course, stolen immediately.  Saw that one coming! 

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Last year, Cullen was super overwhelmed by gifts and doing everything too quickly.  So my plan for this year was to just go super slow and follow the kids’ lead.  We opened books and spent lots of time reading them…

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And ate a delicious breakfast of pancakes, eggs, and yummy fruit salad. 

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And when all the presents had been opened, I attempted to give one more gift to myself – a cute picture of the boys together on Christmas!

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Or not.  Stinkers. 

My mom and Jim left the following Saturday, which was also Casey’s birthday!  It was so nice having them in town. 

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The next time we see them we’ll be in Ohio for their wedding!

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And just as my family departed, Casey’s arrived!

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We had a strange cold spell the entire time Casey’s parents were here – it was so sunny and gorgeous out but it was really cold, at least by Seattle standards.  I kept dragging the family out anyway, determined to breathe in some fresh air. 

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We ended up spending a lot of time at home during their visit, simply because the kids were just too cold outside (wimps!!).  I took advantage of all the helpers around the house by taking lots of long walks with the dogs and trying out a new yoga studio.  It was glorious!

On New Year’s Eve, we finished out 2014 with a ferry ride over to Bainbridge Island just as the sun was rising. 

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Chilly but so so beautiful.  I love it here so much!

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We spent New Year’s Eve surrounded by friends in the early evening, and then curled up on the couch watching the ball drop that night.  Casey and I stay up every year despite hating ourselves for it the next day. 

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On New Year’s Day, Mimi and Grandpa headed home after a wonderful visit.  We were so lucky to have both of our families travel across the country to see us this year, and it made for such a special and memorable holiday.

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These two are readjusting to life with mom during the day, after being completely spoiled by two weeks of constant snuggling, book reading, and endless attention.  The holidays are getting more and more fun with each passing year!


Hope you all had a wonderful holiday season as well.  I’m sad that it’s over, but I’m already looking forward to all the fun that this spring and summer will bring. 

Thanks to all who entered yesterday’s barre3 Challenge giveaway!  The giveaway post has been updated with the winners – make sure to check back to see if it was you!  And if not, don’t forget about the code available for 15 days of free online classes available to all.

Barre3 Challenge: Kick-Off (& Giveaway!)

I mentioned in my pre-holiday fitness post that I had some fun things to share with you regarding the barre3 Challenge!  Well today is the day – the first official day of the Challenge program, and I’m so excited to share it with you guys and to get started myself. 

December 18th FB shareable

If you are new here, you can read more about my love affair with barre classes here and here.  I’ve been going to classes regularly for over two years now, and it has had a remarkable impact on both my physical and mental health.  And I know I’ve said it a million times, but I’m going to say it again.  Besides being a killer workout and a positive community, one of the things that has me coming back again and again is the childcare! Having good childcare available has made all the difference in being able to consistently fit in workouts, even when Casey is traveling. 

As a mom who has at least one kid attached to me most of the time, it’s a wonderful way for me to disconnect a bit, clear my mind, and spend sixty minutes mindfully breathing and focusing on myself.  Fitting in classes means early morning wake ups, scheduling and planning ahead, and coordinating with others.  And because of this, I view it as a real treat so I make sure to push my absolute hardest and take full advantage of each and every class.  As a former gym girl, I never imagined I’d get so into a fitness studio class, but I absolutely love it. 

So let me get to the barre3 Challenge details, and hopefully some of you will find that you love it too!

January is a great month for goal setting, healthy outlooks, and lifestyle changes.  Starting TODAY (January 5th), barre3 is hosting their Challenge – a month-long exercise and nutrition program designed to help you kick your new year off on the right foot. When you sign up for the Challenge, you also receive this awesome Challenge kit:

  • Personal Tracking System
  • barre3 Challenge Glass Water Bottle
  • barre3 Challenge Tote
  • barre3 Wristband
  • Weekly Challenge emails
  • Live Q+A’s with (founder) Sadie Lincoln
  • Weekly 10-minute Online Workouts
  • Weekly Seasonal Recipes

Daily Garnish Blog Asset Kit

How cute is that bag??  (Also, access to the Challenge is 40% off today – only $19.80 for the month-long program plus the kit pictured above!)  Here is how the program itself works.  Every week participants will:

  • Do four 60-minute workouts either at a local barre3 studio or online in the comfort of your home
  • Do one 10-minute online workout
  • Try one healthy barre3 recipe

Sounds reasonable, right?  Of course, anyone who does the Challenge can tailor it to best fit their schedule and lifestyle.  If you don’t have a local barre3 studio, you can do all online workouts, or if online isn’t your thing – head to the studio as much as you can!  My plan is to try to make time for three studio classes, and then supplement with a 60-minute and 10-minute online workout at home each week. 

I’m kicking off my Challenge tomorrow morning at 6am at my local (Roosevelt) studio.  Seattle friends – come join me!

Giveaway:  My friends at barre3 have offered to give THREE lucky winners FREE access to their Challenge!  All three winners will receive unlimited access to barre3’s exclusive Challenge, one month of online workouts, plus barre3’s signature Challenge kit. 

To Enter:  Leave a comment on this post telling me one of your New Year’s resolutions!

Timeline: Since the Challenge starts today, we’ll make this a quick one!  Giveaway ends tomorrow (1/6) at 3pm PST – winners will be announced on the Daily Garnish Facebook page (and I’ll add an update to this post as well). 

Freebie:  Just so there is something for everyone, we also have a special promo code for 15 days of free online Barre3 workouts!  If you are on the fence about starting a barre program, free access to the online workouts is a great way to try it out!  Enter the promo code barre3DailyGarnish here to redeem and enjoy! 

I’ll be sharing my Challenge progress and updates each week through the month of January, in addition to some other fitness updates (I’m squeezing in some yoga these day too!).  Back tomorrow with a holiday recap – happy Monday, friends!

This post is not sponsored or compensated.  I love Barre3, and I am so excited and grateful to have something that makes me happy, helps me stay active, and keeps me involved with the fitness community.  I’m excited to share it with you guys!

UPDATE:  Here are the giveaway winners – thanks to all who entered!!

  1. Sarah — To lose weight!
  2. Sarah b — Have a healthy baby in September!
  3. Sharon – I know it’s cliche, but I really want to finally lose those extra 20 lbs. I’ve been carrying around for the last 2 years. I’ve been really good at keeping up with a consistent exercise routine, but have fallen off the wagon when it comes to my diet. This year I am determined to turn things around! I wish I had a barre studio close to my home. Crossing my fingers :)
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