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You excited yet? I’m pretty buzzing, it’s been a brilliant week all round. Just as in previous years, this week leading up to Christmas is one of the most enjoyable for me. Last night we went and did our ‘big Christmas shop’. I’ve had to store some things in a big box in the kitchen as we don’t have the cupboard space!

To be fair to myself, I haven’t went as crazy as I usually do – I realised that when I buy excessive amounts of crap I can sometimes feel a need to eat it all up before January. What I’ve tried to do is get the foods I absolutely adore, for example After Eight chocolates are a favourite of both mine and James. I do like cheese, but instead of buying 6 different varieties, I’ve gone for some brie, garlic cheese and cream cheese. James has some Pringles, but I have bought some popcorn kernels to make fresh popcorn so I have a healthier snack. Instead of buying a big tub of Ben and Jerrys I’ve got a couple of the mini pots. I’m also going to be getting a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables from the Green Grocers on Christmas Eve. My main issue is having eyes too big for my belly, so I’ll be eating what I fancy, but keeping an eye on portion size so I don’t over do it!

I have been trying to eat well this week, but I have definitely been enjoying more treats and snacks. Big salads, all variations on my Winter Superfood Salad have become a lunchtime staple:

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This was beetroot, feta, roasted nuts and some balsamic vinegar. Simple yet so delicious. For breakfast I’ve been enjoying porridge again:

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I made some gingerbread porridge by mixing some black treacle and ground ginger into oats made with egg whites and tinned pumpkin, then I topped it off with some lemon cream cheese – I love gingerbread with cream cheese icing and this was my breakfast version of that!

On Wednesday night I went out for a meal and Christmas cocktails with the women from my office. I can’t call these girls colleagues, they are so much more than that, we are pretty much like family now. Basically the whole evening was a massive love fest – I am so lucky to work with such amazing people! I got  dressed up for the occasion:

IMG 7377Dress: Oasis // necklace: Next // shoe boots: New Look 

This dress is very figure hugging! I almost went and bought some body shape wear, but with my new shoe boots giving me some height I thought I that as long as I stand up nice and straight and pull my core muscles in I’d be fine. I’m really glad that I took that picture as I did have a body love wobble, but I don’t think I look too bad at all. The meal we had was amazing. We went to Oldfields, our usual place which is a restaurant that has an emphasis on serving local food:

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First up was an expresso martini from a cocktail bar round the corner from the restaurant, then for my starter I had local camembert deep fried in breadcrumbs with a spicy chutney. My main was a whole sea bass served with creamed bacon and greens. For dessert, I had to go for my all time fave pudding – sticky toffee of course! I was stuffed after the meal, but enjoyed every single bite.

Workouts this week have been great again:

I was over the moon about the run on Thursday. I had planned to go to the gym but was not feeling it one bit. I had a last minute Christmas card to post, and suddenly I just had the urge to run. 

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I haven’t ran in several months – I gave up running due to my hormonal issues as running can be quite stressful on the body. As things have been moving in a positive direction with all that, and because I’m feeling so much more in tune with my body right now, I thought ‘why not’. Honestly I cried, I have not felt so good exercising in a long time. I felt amazing running along with Lady Gaga in my ears, and although it was just 15 minutes, I ran non stop and felt really strong. I’m not about to win any races, and I’m still not sure what role running has in my future, but for yesterday at least I loved it.

On the Love List this week…

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Well in addition to everything else in today’s post, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying doing Christmassy things including wrapping all my gifts, watching films, writing my cards and making some healthy-ish treats – I think I’ll have to share them with you next week or over the weekend on Facebook! Also…

Looking forward to tonight’s Funk and Soul Christmas Party at the Boiler Shop Steam Room in Newcastle, so excited! // this chocolate avalanche from The Londoner, it looks incredible! // approaching 2014 with a completely different perspective to how I usually see a coming year // warm oversized wooly jumpers //  saving £60 on the food shop using my Nectar points at Sainsbos 

In case you missed it:

What’s on your Love List this week? As I said earlier in the week I love this lead up to Christmas as much, if not more than the day itself. I have a really brilliant weekend coming up spending a lot more time with the people I love, I couldn’t be happier, although I have to admit I’m a bit sick of drinking alcohol already! Do you do a big ‘christmas food shop’? 

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