Labor Day weekend is one of my favorite holiday weekends because the weather tends to cool down, it’s an excuse to eat summery foods, and I always spend most of the weekend outside. On Friday night a group of my friends organized a polo outing at Hickory Hall Polo Club in Whitestown, Indiana. The match benefitted the Make-A-Wish foundation and is especially close to my friend Lauren’s heart – she has helped grant 15 wishes during her time in Indy. I am so very proud to be her friend and Make-A-Wish is an organization I would love to learn more about.
The Make-A-Wish kids wore blue superhero capes and one of the kids received a horse, which was her wish. After the second chukker (or quarters), a small propeller plane dropped candy parachutes from the sky for the kids. It was like an Easter egg hunt on steroids.
I was asked to bring cookies (what else?) and I threw together one of my favorite summer salads since I only had a few minutes after work before I had to head to the ‘burbs. I always have canned corn and black beans in my pantry, so you can make this year round; although, fresh corn on the cob makes this even better. Mix corn, black beans, cherry tomatoes (halved), cilantro, and lime juice. Add tortilla chips and it’s a filling and healthy snack. I’ve compiled (below) a list of a few of my favorite dishes for Labor Day.
On Saturday my friend Annie and I went adventuring in Eagle Creek. Kayaking is one of my favorite activities and I am thankful to have another adventurous friend. It was the best day to sit out on the water and catch up on life. Annie is a few years older than me, so I take her seriously when she says thirty is just another year. We rented a double kayak for two hours and it was only $30 total – a deal for some much needed relaxation among nature.
This blog is my outlet to hopefully inspire you to actually make one of the recipes I post, but it’s also a place to be myself. Random Libby thoughts that you might be able to relate to. So here it goes: We took a photo after kayaking, I posted it, and then I kept thinking about it a few hours later. I didn’t think I looked great or as ‘fit’ as I wanted. You are your own worst critic and I know that I look healthy and more importantly, strong. I’ve added muscle to my arms and I may not have six-pack abs, but at least I am less bone-y than I used to be. Tiny people are not immune to criticizing their physical imperfections.
A few weeks ago an older man in my class asked me how long I have been doing Pilates because he said he could tell I am really strong. This was not a pick-up line or a comment about me looking pretty. Rather it was him recognizing my work to build up my strength over the last two years. Along with physical strength comes mental strength. It was the best compliment he could’ve given me. I mentioned it to my instructor to let her know how much I appreciate her as an encourager in my life. She constantly pushes me to challenge myself.
Instagram has a feature where you can see what photos your friends liked from public Instagram accounts that they follow. It’s a little creepy, but I occasionally browse the feed out of curiosity and for suggestions on who to follow. Now, I browse this feature in small doses because I soon realized that the majority of my male friends only liked photos of celebrities in bikinis. Add a few ESPN photos with the bikinis and it’s an accurate depiction. To be fair, I probably like way too many photos of dogs and baked goods, yet I wonder if these guys (that I know) actually expect us to look like that?
No filter will ever make me hot, but as long as I feel strong, I think that’s something to be proud of. Even today, I witnessed a man tell his wife at J.Crew that she was too big to buy a pair of pants. I am sure my facial expression said it all. I know not all men are like this (and I hope I find one of those men), but the point is this: Embrace what God gave you. He forgot my boobs, gave me muscular legs, and decided I wouldn’t be any taller than 5’5. I’ll take it.
I hope y’all have a wonderful long weekend- explore outside, fire up the grill, and give your badass, strong self a little extra love. Also, be thankful that swimsuit season is almost over.
A FEW RECIPES PERFECT FOR LABOR DAY
- Pulled pork – throw it in the crockpot and you’re good to go
- Lemon bars – a tart farewell to summer
- La Croix cocktails – Because you have an extra day to recover
- Shake Shack burger – Labor Day is not complete without burgers on the grill
- Chipolte’s guac
- Watermelon, feta, mint salad – To get your fill of watermelon before it is too late