I officially survived my first Panama City Beach trip! It was fun, but I’m super exhausted – I definitely live the lifestyle of an old woman compared to my friends, as in regularly going to bed before 12 and waking up before 8. On the trip, however, my internal body clock woke me up at 8 even though I had only gone to sleep four or five hours earlier! Madness, I tell you! This trip was also my first time back at the beach in over six years. The beach was nice, but unfortunately August must be the month of seaweed because the ocean was chock full of tiny chunks of green ick that had a nasty habit of getting stuck in your bathing suit.
I don’t have any delicious dining experiences to report, but I do have a crap ton of bar reviews.
Cashew Cookie Lara Bar
I actually liked this flavor better than Peanut Butter cookie – the cashew flavor wasn’t as overwhelming as the raw peanut flavor, so I was able to pick up on the sweetness of the dates. The bar was also much less greasy than the bars with peanuts in it, which was especially good for a beach side snack.
Chocolate Coconut Chew Lara Bar
This is probably my least favorite Lara Bar out of the five flavors I’ve tried. I’m not a huge fan of coconut and I’m beginning to discover that for some reason I don’t really like the taste of unsweetened cocoa powder either. It almost has a gritty taste (I know that’s more of a texture, but that’s the only word I can think of to describe what I’m tasting). Overall it wasn’t terrible, but this flavor wouldn’t be my first choice.
Oatmeal Raisin Walnut Clif Bar – Okay, I’ve finally decided that I’m not into Clif bars much at all. I love the flavors, especially this one (Blueberry Crisp is still my favorite, though), but the texture is just too gritty for my taste. I love the minimal ingredients on Lara bars, but with Clif bars, I just taste gritty sugar. Like I said, the flavors are good, but overall I feel like I’m eating a mystery bar hiding under an organic label.
Chocolate Almond Fudge Clif Bar
Like the Chocolate Brownie bar, this bar was very chocolate-y, but it was also gritty and I didn’t like the intense cocoa powder flavor and after taste. I guess I like chocolate in it’s solid, over-sweetened form? The almonds were a nice touch to this bar, but overall I didn’t really enjoy it.
In other news, school starts on MONDAY! Geeze, it feels like I just finished studying for exams and relishing in the relaxation of summer!! I feel like I’m the only one completely dreading school – most bloggers seem to be excited for the routine that school brings! I will be excited to have something to keep me busy during the day, but I wish I didn’t have homework and studying to do once I finished class for the day. I’m also excited about roomie dinners starting up again, as well as the countdown for fall, although in GA fall weather doesn’t really arrive until November. I’m going to miss the summer fruit, the free time to read and watch movies, and most of all the free time to come home whenever I please. Call me a homebody, but my favorite place to be is home with my family. At least I have some interesting classes that will hopefully make me look forward to class more.
– Food Principles
– Nutrition for the Lifespan
– Writing for the Web
– Web Design
– Introduction to Nutrition Science
I have to say, this summer was probably one of the most eventful and fun summers I’ve had in a while. Here’s a list:
– I started a new job at the library and made three new friends
– I started exploring the food side of Athens by dining at seven local restaurants. We are going to continue to dine out around Athens, even if we only get a chance to once a month.
– I read a TON of books, probably around 20 or so. My favorites were Water for Elephants, Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, Castmember Confidential (I just finished it – it’s about a guy’s experience as a photographer at Disney World. It’s pretty surprising, but I think his experiences with weird Disney employees is more of a rarity than commonality), and a few others that I can’t remember at the moment.
– I went to Disney World (best vacation EVER), Savannah, Charleston, and Panama City Beach – so much fun!
– I was able to live in Athens and at home – best of both worlds!
– I baked a lot of tasty treats for work, like Blueberry Coffee Cake, Cinnamon Muffins, Oatmeal White Chocolate Cranberry Scones, etc.
– I managed to NOT read through the Harry Potter series for the first ever. Ever since I got the first three books a billion years ago, I ALWAYS re-read the series every summer and Christmas. Seriously. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve read the HP series. I honestly never get sick of them (except maybe the first, just a little), but at the beginning of the summer, I made the decision to only re-read the series at Christmas so I could read new books during the summer. Right now I REALLY want to start reading the series, but now that school is about to start, I’d never have time to get through the entire series.
I have a lot of goals for myself this school year. I want to relax and dial down the stress I put on myself to study constantly. I want to enjoy more time with my roommates and be more spontaneous. I want to explore more of Athens by going to more restaurants and the Farmer’s Market. I also want to volunteer at the animal shelter and the co-op. I want to cook more interesting and challenging foods. Most of all, I want to become a better writer – sometimes I feel like my writing is really slopping and juvenile, mainly because I’m always rushing to type my thoughts before I forget them. Hopefully my two web classes will help me clean up my writing and help me discover my own writing voice.
So, this post was a little on the serious side…hopefully I’ll have some food stuff to talk about next time! What are some of your favorite summer memories? What are your goals for this school year or post summer months?
PS – I just read that Emma Watson is in the running to play Lisbeth in A Girl With a Dragon Tattoo, which is why she cut her hair. I love Emma Watson, but I’m a little wary about seeing her possibly play Lisbeth. I’m not sure she could pull off Lisbeth’s quiet intensity. I still think Mia Wasikowski should play her, but whatever.
PS again – Does anyone have any advice for contacting companies about samples? I’ve contacted a few and have received replies, but I really don’t know how to go about asking for free samples. And what kinds of companies should I pick…any recommendations?