If you are a regular blog reader, you know I love yogurt (minus those days I may have been on a crazy diet where I couldn’t eat yogurt.) When I was asked to participate in a yogurt taste test, I jumped at the chance!

The Great Yoplait Taste-off! 

I was asked to have myself and friends compare Yoplait Greek 100 Strawberry Yogurt to Chobani Simply 100 Strawberry Yogurt. I’ve been a fan of both brands for awhile, so I figured this was a win-win for me.

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The Yoplait…

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The Chobani…

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All together in an artsy manner…

I decided the best thing was to put the yogurts in bowls.

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I just had one friend help me with the taste test, so it was a blind test for him and I covered my eyes and let him feed me. (Yes, yogurt ended up on my chin. No, I didn’t take a picture.)

We did finish off both bowls after I opened my eyes.

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So…we were supposed to pick our favorite, right?

They were almost too different to decide. Yes, both are 100 calorie Strawberry Greek Yogurt…but…they were totally different. I got his opinion before telling him what was what, but we both basically agreed on the following:

Yoplait: Sweeter, more fruity, more “dessert-like”.

Chobani: More subtle fruit flavor, creamier, more “yogurt” taste.

In my opinion, they were both tasty, and I would buy either again though maybe in different flavors as lemon is my go-to yogurt favorite—he said he’d probably only buy the Chobani as he doesn’t like the sweeter yogurts.  I think if pressed we’d both say we liked Chobani better but honestly, I hate making decisions like that, and both were just different enough that it seemed too tough to decide!

Verdict of the taste-off: Chobani wins, but just barely. (I’m told that 4 out of 5 Americans preferred Yoplait though!)

(Disclosure statement: This taste test was sponsored by Yoplait, but I was given the creative freedom to honestly express my opinions. )

I’ve taken the Yoplait Taste-off, now it’s your turn! Let me know who wins yours!

Yoplait Greek 100 Yogurt:
- 100 calories
- Available in 12 flavors (does include lemon!)
- To find Yoplait Greek 100 nearest you, please use the product locator found on the Yoplait website

 

 

I have so many blog posts I’ve started and haven’t finished…yet. I have one on my final thoughts (final being relative) on the Whole30 diet I went on. I have one on general life as a freelance musician and how I have negative thoughts towards my own career because I allow other people’s thoughts too much credence. I have an unwritten one on the half marathon I ran earlier this month without really training, one on my thoughts on talent and music, and a couple other great ideas on well written blog posts…in the future. This is not one of them.

But who cares, right? This is my blog, and I’ll say what I want to. Tomorrow I plan to post about yogurt. Soon I will post about another local 5k that I want to help promote. I’m still running the contest about the Heart to Heart race on June 7 that you should enter.

My morning was spent helping to “score” a video that I’m helping a friend put together for an event. It was totally out of my comfort zone, but I’ve learned recently that I am much more capable on the violin and with other styles of music and coming up with just, well, STUFF off the cuff that I’d thought. I’ve learned, mostly, that I can do anything I set my mind to, and allow myself to do! I like to think of myself as Locke from Lost and no longer want anyone to tell me what I can’t do.

And I had a great weekend: worked my butt off for a variety of church performances, had a nice hike in the woods with friends, had a great dinner out at Basso and a few other wonderful home cooked meals, had lots of great conversation (I learned that I get very defensive of my alma mater and all that goes along with it!)

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I’ve also learned that hiking in Missouri is mostly just walking in the woods. And that’s okay, especially when the weather is beautiful.

And it has been!

I keep saying I’ll be less busy soon, but I just keep saying YES to all manner of interesting musical projects and it just keeps being too busy. I’m struggling with balance at the time, but I’m okay with that. Right now my life is work heavy and a bit stressful, but I know there will be a time it is the opposite, and it’s important to think cyclically rather than day to day, at least as a freelancer.

How are you enjoying the lovely spring weather?

I see a lot of “spring cleaning” posts out there in the blog world. I’d like to add my own two cents.

As a woman who has trouble maintaining her weight, I have made some mistakes in the past by listening to people who say “give away clothes that don’t fit.” I think that’s a huge mistake, and I don’t intend to make it again.

1. DO give away clothes that you hate or don’t wear even when they do fit.

2. If clothes are too big but you still like them, take them OUT of your closet or drawers, and put them in a storage bin.

3. If clothes are too small but you still like them, again, take them OUT of your closet or drawers (Or if you have extra closet or drawer space, and this goes for #2 as well, put them in a rarely used area.)

That way, when you gain or lose weight, as many of us will invariably do so, you will still have clothes you like that fit! And if you gain or lose weight, and determine that you no longer like those clothes, well, give them away then. Trying to fit into a pair of smaller pants won’t encourage you to lose weight any more than keeping bigger pants around will encourage you to gain weight.  But if you have a variety of sizes on hand then you don’t have the added insult of having to waste money on new clothes while thinking of all the perfectly good jeans (for instance) you used to own that fit and looked good at that higher (or lower) weight!

All that being said, purging your closet can be great, and we all have clothes in there that we won’t wear EVER, and you should definitely give those away. But don’t make the same mistake I did of giving away perfectly good clothes that would have fit again in the future. Clothes really don’t take up that much space. Just put them away somewhere, and if you change sizes, go through them then and figure out if something fits that didn’t before.

And buy more shoes. Shoes always fit.

(Have you entered my giveaway for a free 5k/10k entry for a race in June?)

I have a giveaway for you today! Aren’t you excited?

If you are a local reader who runs, you should be. I think this event looks fun and the logo is really cute—I’m told it will be on the t-shirt for the event too.

Final Logo, 2014

Creve Coeur Heart to Heart 5K, 10K and 1.5 Mile Fun Run/Walk

Here’s the some of the information from the website:

Date: Saturday, June 7, 2014 ~ Race begins at 8 a.m.
Location: Creve Coeur Government Center, 300 N. New Ballas Road
Description: This certified course loops through a portion of the Creve Coeur business district and our beautiful residential streets.
Entry Fee: Fees vary depending on race entry and registration date. Fee includes T-shirt, chip timing (5K & 10K only), finisher’s medal and post-race snacks and beverages. (Starts at $30 though, which I think is very reasonable for a race like this.)

I’ll be running (in exchange for this blog post and some other publicity I get a free entry) and I should mention that it’s ON MY BIRTHDAY! I hope you all come and run, but ONE of you will get a free entry. The contest runs from now until next Wednesday. Even if you don’t win, I recommend you sign up to run. It’s the perfect amount of time between now and then to train for a 5k, even if you haven’t run before, or if you want a longer race, the 10k is a great option. And like I said, I’ll be there and it’s my birthday, and last year’s birthday was no fun at all, so this year will be better no matter what!

If you don’t win, or don’t want to enter the giveaway but want to run the race, here’s the direct link to register.

To enter, all you have to do is sign into the rafflecopter and leave a comment on my blog. Make sure you use a real email address as that is how I will contact you if you win! Easy peasy, and I’ll pick a winner after the contest ends. Good luck! (Note: I don’t care if you comment below or not–I couldn’t figure out how to set up the rafflecopter without asking for something. But then again, I do LOVE reader comments, so if you like!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Isn’t tax day the greatest? I finished mine yesterday, and, for a self employed musician who had to file “married, filing separately” trust me when I say it wasn’t a happy day. Such is life. But that’s behind us now (well, my bank account is still crying…) and this small business owner who can now have awesome affordable health insurance is looking to a brighter future!

I think I went over the hump of “busiest time of the spring” and am looking forward to a little more breathing room. I won’t really have any until mid-June but it’s nice to have a few crazy busy days behind me.

Even though I mostly worked over the weekend, I did manage to get outside and enjoy some of the nice weather!

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Saturday I did some judging for the Music Federation. I got to hear a lot of great performances by some young children, and felt more inspired for my own teaching!

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I got nervous when I saw the alto sax and brass listed, but it turned out that another judge took over my room for those kids.

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Then I played a concert on Sunday that was actually quite a lot of fun. Mozart Requiem is always enjoyable and intense…it’s the very last thing that Mozart wrote and just amazing to think about his short life and what he accomplished in it. I haven’t done nearly as much…

SUNDAY, APRIL 13, 2014 - The WUSTL orchestra and choirs practices and performs the Chancellor's Concert Sunday in the 560 Music Center.</p>
<p>Photo by Jerry Naunheim Jr./WUSTL Photos

Students, note this is how you play at the tip of the bow. See how I am not over the fingerboard? Also, watch the conductor. You just never know what is going to happen. It’s also important to try to get as many lines in your forehead as possible.

One thing I’m dreading is the upcoming hearing for my divorce, but I’m also looking forward to having it be DONE. This process has been long and challenging, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Things that are awesome: omelets with a little parmesan cheese in them. Way better than non-parmesan cheese omelets (which I ate for many many days of whole30).

Man, the weather today is just gorgeous. If I weren’t recovering from a half marathon that I ran fairly untrained on Sunday (ha!) I would totally be itching for a run. Instead I did upper body at the gym. I upped the weights on my bench press for a couple of sets and felt both stronger and weaker, because that was HARD.

Thanks so much for your comments on my last post. If you’d been reading my blog the whole time I doubt it was surprising but I just wanted to spell it out and clear MY air.

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It’s amazing how people react to hearing about a divorce. I most appreciate the folks who just say they are sorry and that they understand how difficult it must be. I least appreciate the people who ask nosily what happened (yes, because of course there is a short and polite answer to how a 14 plus year relationship ended, and naturally I’m going to tell YOU, random colleagues…). One of the best things a friend said right afterwards was that while she knew I was very sad at the time, in 6 month to a year I would indeed be okay, and possibly far happier than I’d ever imagined. I didn’t necessarily believe her at the time, but the hope that she gave me was so wonderfully helpful. Also helpful were the people who offered me their couch, their time, meals and drinks, and just random acts of kindness to let me know they were there for me.

It is still hard for me to read articles that (probably) well meaning people post on various forms of social media about “how to have a happy marriage.” I find most of those articles to be completely ignorant of the fact that many of us in “failed” relationships did the same things, and sometimes it just isn’t enough. Never assume that people getting divorced didn’t do everything possible to try to avoid being in that place (other than say, not getting married in the first place, but gosh, aren’t we certainly pushed to do THAT!) 

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But anyway. Enough about that. Like I said, I have a million thoughts, and hopefully the next time I have a friend going through a divorce, or breakup, or another traumatic event, I will be able to give them better help having been through this myself.  Or maybe I’ll just end up giving them the exact help that I would have wanted and it’ll be completely wrong for them, but…that’s the way it goes, isn’t it?

See, isn’t this great? Now I can ramble on and on what I’m actually thinking about, and you can READ it. HAHAHAHAHA. Honestly, I hope I don’t sound bitter, because I’m not. I’m just moving on, and enjoying my life and finding new things that make me happy and satisfied.

I was talking yesterday with a non musician friend who was saying how they thought my career was really interesting. It’s easy to lose the comparison trap in the music world—somebody is always doing something better—but I try to take a deep breath and appreciate what I am doing.

Sometimes the state of my bank account does concern me and I wonder why I do this—but yet!–how many people get to be lower middle class doing what they love? (Is there a middle class anymore? Maybe I’m just poor ;) )

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Running related: I was thinking about it the other night and I realized that there was only one year of running in between my first half marathon and my PR half marathon. So if I really want to try to get better than where I was, it should only take a year or two of consistent running, and it’s very possible, and that I can be better than I ever was. So that’s my new goal, and with this gorgeous weather, it’s certainly easy to want to run! (my knee is being funny so I’m waiting a few more days to test it out…I will tell you guys more about my half the other day, but I felt like doing something different today.)

Violin related: I’m currently listening to Martinu’s Third String Quartet. What a cool piece! I’ve recently started using Spotify to listen to stuff and there is a wealth of great music on there.