Tag Archives: healthy living

5-Week Home Workout Challenge (Week 4!)

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What’s that you say? You’re ready for another week of at-home workouts courtesy of the interwebs? Well, I’ve got just the thing for you!

It is STILL super hot where I’m at, and I’m trying not to get down on myself so much for not getting outside much. It is just. so. stifling. (and humid and bright and BUGGY!) It’s weird that I used to think of these types of workouts as being a good resource to bust out in the dead of winter. But now that I’ve clocked quite a few years in the southern reaches of the U.S., I can say they are, without a doubt, my SUMMER WORKOUTS. Especially for the dog days we’re in right now.

Tuesday:

You may or may not know this about me, but Keaira LaShae is my workout QUEEN. I’ve discussed my favorite of her workouts HERE.

Wednesday:

Ok, indulge me for a moment. THIS is why I love YouTube so much. This is a great workout…and it was just hanging out on YouTube on this channel for Hennepin Healthcare. A channel with 4k subscribers and 9 workout videos randomly posted 3 years ago for some sort of weight loss program they were doing. No idea how I stumbled upon it but so glad I did! There are literally all sorts of gems like this just waiting to be found!!!

Thursday:

This is the third in a nice little trio of tough workouts this week…

Friday:

And this is the much needed relief! Also a nice way to end the week after a somewhat stressful work week.

Saturday:

Wow, amazing how easy this feels after the beginning of the week. Again, this instructor’s videos are so low-key…this time I realized it might be the houseplants?

Sunday:

Have I mentioned how much I hate bouncy cardio? And there’s been a lot more of it this week than I care for. But HALLELUJAH we have powered through!

Monday:

And one more appearance from our queen! Truly amazing how worked my abs felt after this and I GOT TO STAND THE WHOLE TIME (not a crunch in sight!).

Oh my goodness, I only have one more week to go!

P.S. Week 1 and Week 2 and Week 3 – in case ya wanna start from the beginning and catch up!

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5-Week Home Workout Challenge (Week 3!)

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Hi guys! Another week of working out at home has come and gone. I gotta say, I’m really glad I had all these workouts in the pipeline. Totally eliminates any need to think once workout time rolls around. (Have I mentioned how much I hate making decisions?) I am a compulsive list maker (and list FOLLOWER — I derive great satisfaction from doing things in order) and a lot of that comes from my need to batch make decisions.

Even if these specific workouts aren’t your jam, I really recommend giving THAT part of this process a try. Spend some time mapping out a workout plan for the month (or whatever time-frame suits ya best). I think you’ll be surprised how freeing it feels in the day to day when that one itty-bitty decision is already done and dusted.

Ok — *steps off decision fatigue soap box* On to this week’s workouts!!!

Tuesday:

I knocked this out on an evening my husband was out of town and it was the perfect way to kick off a chill evening at home while solo. #SelfCare

Wednesday:

Yep, you guessed it! More “no jumping” HIIT workouts. Can you guess one of my fave workout search terms?

Thursday:

Another Yoga With Adriene video this week because I love her. This sequence, especially, is a favorite because I sit a lot throughout the week.

Friday:

This workout kicked my ASS in that 35 minutes! I’ll definitely be returning to this channel to try more of Coach Kel’s videos when this challenge is over. 🙂

Saturday:

Was a bit sore after that barre workout so this was perfect. Plus, lazy weekend vibes.

Sunday:

This is a fairly rigorous ab workout, but I love how chill it still feels. IDK if it’s the vibe of the instructor or the way the exercises are arranged or what!

Monday:

Welp, I’m pretty terrible at belly dancing. Still fun though, lol.

And there you have it, ladies and germs! Week 3 is in the books!! Only 2 more weeks left.

P.S. Week 1 and Week 2 – in case ya missed ’em!

5-Week Home Workout Challenge (Week 2!)

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I survived another week of my home workout challenge! *thunderous applause*

Now for the full disclosure part… I took three days off. One day I had horrible shoulder pain and spent the day wrapped in a heat wrap. One day I had horrible knee pain and spent the day with an ice pack. And one day I was at a state park and spent the day swimming in a lake.

But here’s the thing, I listened to my body and cooled my jets. And ya know what? My workouts were ready for me to pick back up after each of those days off. So, even though they weren’t done in consecutive days, I’m gonna call this week’s worth of workouts a win!

Wanna know what they were?

Tuesday:

Pulses of death? Challenge accepted.

Wednesday:

Honestly, this is low-key a workout for your eyeballs. And if you work at a computer all day, I can’t recommend it enough.

Thursday:

Sweet little gentle workout. She prefaces at the beginning that she’ll be giving minimal verbal cues so that the music can be enjoyed…but I would have preferred the verbal cues.

Friday:

You’ll learn over the course of this challenge that I’m not a fan of jumping.

Saturday:

I am, in fact, a person who gets bored easily! No repeat exercises in this one.

Sunday:

Hurts so good. Not doing this enough is probably what caused that previously mentioned knee flare up. *face-palm* It’s feeling right as rain now!

Monday:

A simple dumbbell workout gets the job done every time.

That’s it for Week 2! I’ll post again when I’ve made it through Week 3. ‘Til then! xoxo

P.S. 30 Days of Ballet Training and The All You Need is a Clock Workout

5-Week Home Workout Challenge (Week 1!)

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I love finding workouts on YouTube and I’ve been building a playlist of favorites over the past few months. Once the playlist hit 45 videos, I thought, “LET’S DO THIS!”

Now that I’ve completed Week 1 of this Home Workout Challenge, I thought I’d share here. Just in case anyone wants to give it a go! No gym membership, class pass, or leaving the house necessary. Just you showing up for yourself (oh, and an internet connection)! Feel like accepting the challenge? Do one workout a day, whatever time suits you best. (I’m a 7:30 pm girl, myself.) And start on a Tuesday — Mondays have enough going on as it is!

Tuesday:

Starting off simple with ten minutes and some light hand-weights.

Wednesday:

Admittedly not a huge fan of the terms “fat-frying” or “bikini-body”…but this is a good workout nonetheless. If you can get past the weird interactions between the instructor and her sidekicks.

Thursday:

YouTube workout pro-tip: If there’s an instructor you like, travel back in their archives. This Blogilates throwback is from 2011!

Friday:

My quads were saying HELLOOOO! the morning after this one.

Saturday:

Really just a glorified rest day if you’re already pretty into yoga. But a great excuse to roll out the mat and stretch!

Sunday:

Looks easy. Is, in fact, NOT EASY. You will likely flail around.

Monday:

Before there was YouTube I totally was one of those people who had cardio dance DVDs. You too? Then this workout should feel familiar.

That’s it for Week 1! I’ll post again when I’ve made it through Week 2. ‘Til then! xoxo

P.S. How to ditch your gym membership and arguably the greatest YouTube workout of ALL TIME! 

January Grocery Haul

As I mentioned in my How I’m Kickstarting 2018 post, I want to spend more time in the produce section than anywhere else in the grocery store. So, to hold myself accountable, I thought I’d share a recent grocery haul. (I also want to start experimenting with more daily life micro-blogging in 2018 and thought this might be a fun one for that!) Here’s what I got and why I consider these items staples…

Bananas – Versatile because you can pair them with so many things. I love to have one with almond butter for my breakfast but they’re also great on top of oats, quinoa, granola, yogurt, etc.
Nectarines – Hand fruit is always good to have … on hand …for a quick portable snack. Down here in South Florida even the trash apples (sorry red delicious!) are kinda pricey but I’ve found nectarines to be affordable year-round.
Avocados – Good healthy fats for your brain and skin.
Zucchinis – I’ve cut way back on grains since our Whole 30 experiment so I love spiralizing zucchinis to replace noodles in any dish.
Pesto – Great as a topping for those spiralized zucchinis (easy lunch!) and really yummy on potatoes, too.
Bell pepper – Add an extra color to your salads or chop into sticks for a raw vegetable side with lunch.
Red onion – Great salad element (they really take it to the next level!), especially when you throw in something sweet too – like raisins or chopped dates. All about that taste balance!
Lemon – For detoxifying lemon water.
Broccoli – Yummy to add to soups or steamed up as a side.
Green lentils – I like to add these in place of grains to bulk up soups and stews for a healthy, protein-packed winter meal.
Kale – For salads or steaming but never for smoothies because my blender just isn’t strong enough, lol.
Sweet potato – Packed with Vitamin A and Beta Carotene so it’s great for your eyeballs!
Gluten-free wraps – Throw some avocados and veggies in, wrap it up!
Kefir – High in probiotics so it’s good for the gut.
Almond milk – Add it to smoothies, use it in baking, pour it over granola.
Walnuts – For salads and snacking. They’re great for your brain because they pack that Omega 3 fatty acids punch!
Kombucha – Because I’m addicted.

What are your grocery staples lately? Any tips for spending more grocery-time in the produce department and away from the convenient lure of frozen, packaged foods? Let me know! 

How to Make Your Own Fitness Challenge

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Today marks DAY 5 of my 10-Day Ballet Challenge and I’m LOVING it! Ballet is exercise that I enjoy, and although it’s a work-out it doesn’t feel like work in the same way that some exercise does. And as someone who easily succumbs to decision fatigue, I love waking up and knowing my work-out for the day is already sorted.

So, maybe you’re not so keen on living out your ballerina dreams but still find the idea of an at-home fitness challenge a little bit alluring. I’m here to help! (TBH, planning is half the fun of these things!) Below are the steps I followed to make my very own fitness challenge and YOU CAN TOO…

Decide on the length of your challenge.

I love yoga too much to spend too many days away from my mat. I decided on 10 days sort of at random. If you get bored easily or are just looking for a way to mix up your routine, a week or two is a great time-frame. Of course, I LOVE the 30 day yoga challenges I’ve completed so you could always just go for it!

Choose the type(s) of work-outs and exercise you’d like to include.

I chose ballet because it’s a work-out I love but I only incorporate it into my normal work-out regimen a few times a month. I wanted to challenge myself to more. Maybe you have something similar in mind. If not, think about the types of work-outs you enjoy. Pilates, HIIT, Hip-Hop, Cross Fit? And you could totally go for more than one type! Perhaps you want to cook up a Tabata/Theraband Challenge. Go for it!

Head to the internet for free resources.

Jump on YouTube, Pinterest, or your favorite fitness blogs for work-outs and inspiration. Watch entire videos to make sure they’re a good fit for your fitness level and preferences. Save your favorites! When else can you watch a ton of fitness videos without feeling guilty for not following along?

Create a list of all your work-outs.

Combine everything you found with any existing favorites and make a master list of all the work-outs you want to complete on your challenge! Note: You don’t have to have a work-out video for every day of the challenge. One day might include a 5-mile jog or a circuit of body-weight exercises. Just make sure to include those on the master list too!

Arrange the work-outs within your designated time frame.

This part is like a puzzle! For my 10-day challenge, I took my 2 longest work-outs and put them on Days 5 and 10. Spread out your harder challenges–placing them at the end of the week or every 5 days or however you see fit! Then arrange your other work-outs as a lead up to the more challenging days. Make sure you take note if the work-out is focusing on one part of the body. You might not want to work out arms three days in a row! If your challenge is longer than 10 days, consider incorporating a rest day or an active rest day. (Exp. 21-Day Aerobics Challenge might include “go for a walk” on days 7, 14, and 21.)

Announce your intentions.

Accountability! I feel like I’m way more likely to finish out my ballet challenge because I blogged about it. You might be the same. Let some people know what you’re up to, either IRL or on social media, so you follow through.

Keep a Fitness Challenge Diary.

This is a new aspect I’m trying out and so far I’ve found it helpful. You can record your progress, how you got on with certain work-outs, and what’s working and what’s not. Great to have on hand when you create your NEXT fitness challenge. 😉

Celebrate your success!!!

Completing a goal you set for yourself is the best feeling! Why not reward yourself? Need some inspiration? I love this list — 23 Ways to Treat Yo’Self Without Buying or Eating Anything.

Have you ever completed a fitness challenge? Would you consider creating your own? What types of exercise and work-outs would you include? I’d love to know!!!

On Morning Routines (+Vitafive Coupon Code!)

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It is officially Autumn. And Autumn always seems to bring on the busy, don’t you think? For us, Chet’s semester is in full swing and I’ve been finding my footing at a new part-time job. (More on that later!) When things start getting a little hectic and To-Do lists start to lengthen, I have a few tactics that simplify my morning routine and set me up for a great day ahead…

Taking vitamins. With changes in weather (and changes in how many gross people you’re going to encounter on a daily basis….HelloooOO Back to School Time!) comes the possibility for picking up all sorts of ookies. So, I’m super stoked to always have a month’s supply of vitamins on hand. My vitamins come from vitafive, the brilliant and budget-friendly subscription service. I take my pre-packed, daily dose each morning. (Scroll down for why I love getting my vitamins from vitafive.)

Keepin’ it simple. While I love smoothies, egg bennies, and avocado toast as much as the next girl; keepin’ breakfast simple helps me streamline my morning (and allows me a few more minutes for scrolling through my IG feed). I stick to oatmeal most mornings and leave longer recipes for less busy seasons of life.

Peruse the news. I like to allocate time in the morning to hit up a few favorite websites. I scan for articles that look interesting, read a few, and save the rest for when I have some free time. That way, later in the day, I won’t feel pulled from productivity to click my way into a time-sucking, internet black hole.

Wash hair the night before. I used to dread my morning routine simply because washing and blow-drying my hair always felt so. damn. DAUNTING. Yes, it took me an embarrassingly long time to figure out I could just wash my hair the night before and have much more pleasant mornings. No, I will never look back.

Forward focus. While at bedtime I like to reflect back on something I’m grateful for, my mornings tend to be more forward focused. Whether sketching out my day in a planner, writing a To-Do list, or just taking a second to get internally amped; I find it helpful to pick at least one thing I’m super excited for in the day to come.

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Bonus for Finding Delight readers: vitafive is offering 30% off your first box with the coupon code beth30 (all lowercase). Just enter the code at check out. No commitment necessary. You can cancel any time.

Need a little nudge to place your order? Here’s what I love about vitafive:

  • Vitafive has a ton of different vitamins that you can order in various combinations. Pick from one of their pre-formulated packs or create your own custom pack! I love the Essentials Pack for general wellness (multivitamin, D3, and Omega 3) and am currently taking the Active Pack (calcium, D3, and CoQ10) to help me keep up with these chock-full days.
  • Stacked up against supplement prices at Whole Foods or GNC, vitafive’s cost breakdown of $1 a day is totally affordable.
  • It’s incredibly convenient to have all your vitamins pre-packaged together for each day of the week. They’re all in one place and ready to go! Not to mention, you don’t have to keep up with multiple bottles running out at different times and remembering to re-purchase. Vitafive will just send you your next month’s supply.
  • They’re gummies! Sure, I CAN swallow pills but that doesn’t mean I WANT to. Vitafive’s gummy vitamins taste great!

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Time to get to work!

Thank you so much, vitafive! I love starting my day with your vitamins.

P.S. See my comprehensive review of the Vitafive Vitamin Subscription HERE.

Review: Vitafive Vitamin Subscription

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Here’s the deal. I KNOW I feel better when I take vitamins. Remembering to take them consistently is something I always promise myself I’ll be better at. But the thing is, for YEARS, as hard as I tried I just couldn’t fall into the routine. Some brands gave me a stomach ache unless I swallowed them just the right time after eating a meal. I would miss the window once, twice, and then never pick them back up. Others I remembered to take for weeks…and then forgot to re-purchase once I hit the end of the bottle. I sorta resigned myself to this pattern.

But then I found out about vitafive. Holy smokes! Why didn’t someone think of this sooner? As you may know, I’m all about eliminating decision fatigue and automating aspects of life to use that brain space for more important things. I’ve found ways to do this with my money, my clothes, even my snacks! Why not my vitamins, too?

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So, here’s how this genius system works! For about $1 per day vitafive will ship you a 4 week supply of gummy vitamin packs. You can either choose from one of their pre-formulated packs or create your own custom pack. I opted for the Essentials Pack which includes a multivitamin, Vitamin D3, and Omega 3. Other pre-formulated options include:

Beauty Pack – Biotin, Vitamin C, Omega 3

Active Pack – Vitamin D3, Calcium, CoQ10

Brain Pack – Omega 3, Vitamin D3

Heart Pack – Vitamin C, Omega 3, CoQ10

Sleep Pack – Multivitamin, Melatonin, Vitamin D3

Immune Pack – Vitamin C, Vitamin D3, Omega 3

(There are also packs for kids!)

health without hassle

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I love the convenience factor! Your daily vitamins are pre-packaged together for each day of the week so they’re all in one place and ready to go. This is absolutely perfect for tucking in your purse as you head out the door or packing in your lunchbox along with your food. And signing up for the subscription service means you don’t have to think about re-purchasing a bunch of different bottles at different times as you run out. You’ll simply receive a package with your next month’s supply!

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And look how cute these little gum drop vitamins are! There’s something to be said about the convenience of a gummy, too. I’m not embarrassed to say that, even as an adult, swallowing pills isn’t all that fun. If there’s a way around it I’m all about it. It certainly helps that this particular option tastes delicious. So, they’re fun to take post-meal or as a little mid-morning “snack”. They’re also all gluten free and vegetarian (some are vegan, too!).

I definitely wouldn’t want to swallow a huge horse pill on the beach. A delicious dose of gummy vitamins? Yes, please!

I would recommend vitafive to ANYONE looking to live a little healthier, searching for consistency when it comes to taking vitamins, or seeking an easy and fun vitamin option!

And great news! Vitafive is offering Finding Delight readers 30% off their first box with the coupon code beth30 (all lowercase). Just enter in this code at check out. No commitment necessary. You can cancel any time. So check it out! And let me know if you do. I’d love to hear if you like these little brain space savers as much as I do!!!


This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own. 

My Top 4 Healthy Lifestyle Intentions

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This post was inspired by BetterHelp.com which provides online therapy with licensed therapists.

I for one don’t feel like I need a new year to set new intentions, goals, or dreams. In fact, I kinda think summer is a great time re-commit to healthy living. The weather is warm and ready for outdoor exercise. The fruits and vegetables are fresh and plentiful. The daylight hours stretch for maximum productivity. The world feels full of possibilities…. making changes to your life feel possible.

With that in mind, I thought I’d share my top 4 intentions for healthy living, as well as how I’ve been applying these intentions in my every day life. If summer has you itching to set some new Healthy Lifestyle Intentions, then this post is FOR YOU! 

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1. Make time for dedicated outdoor play every day.  I’m not talking about those moments of fresh air between house and car, car and work. I’m talking a dedicated half hour to soak up some Vitamin D. No need to reinvent the wheel. Just go for a walk or plant things in the dirt. Kick around a soccer ball or splash in the pool. If it’s raining, grab an umbrella and go for a stroll anyways. Or do some yoga under an awning. If it’s snowing, throw on your coat and boots and go for it. Just get outside!

My current favorite way of doubling down on this intention is taking all my phone calls outside. Phone rings…I head outside. But for my dedicated 30 minutes of play time, I’m a long-time lover of a casual walk or a quick dip in the pool. My living situation/climate makes both options super easy (year round!) and for that I am thankful. 

Pictured above: A trail through Biscayne Bay National Park, the perfect place for an afternoon stroll. 

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2. Keep healthy hacks on hand for the unhealthy foods you most often crave. I for one think that, if you love burgers/ice cream/pizza/burrito bowls/brownies, you can have your cake and eat it too. Just be honest with yourself about the things you love and LEAN IN. Prepare for those inevitable days when you’re feeling a Papa John’s delivery by always keeping a crust and some topping options in your kitchen. In doing so, you’ve just made it RUHL easy for yourself to get a pizza in the oven and in your belly. No phone dialing necessary. Once you’ve figured out the craving hacks that work for you, give the necessary ingredients a permanent place of honor on your weekly food shop list.

Lately, I’ve been loving banana soft serve as a replacement for my frequent need for fro-yo. I portion and freeze bananas so that I can pop them right into my food processor (usually with a scoop of frozen blueberries or some peanut butter) and have a delicious evening dessert in seconds. 

Pictured above: My “fried” pickles, a hack for my very favorite restaurant appetizer. 

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3. Take consistent breaks throughout your work day. Your work is a marathon not a sprint. There will always be another project, another email to answer, another meeting, another goal to cast your eyes upon. As this is the case, what’s the use in pounding the pavement so hard on one task that you’re too exhausted to give your all to the next? Give your brain space to breathe. Get your legs out from the confines of the underside of your desk and STRETCH. It may seem counter-intuitive at first but your productivity levels will thank you.

My approach to this intention is ever changing and has evolved and shifted along with my professional life. Currently, it centers around choosing priorities for the day and working to complete those top priorities first. This allows for larger breaks later in the day (a perk of working from home!). I also try to break those priorities down into 45 min – 1 hour long tasks and break for 10 – 15 minutes in between each task. 

Pictured above: Cool drinks on my balcony, a great place for a break when you work from home. 

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4. Schedule outings with friends and partners that are fun-focused, not food-focused. Yes, grabbing brunch is a great way to spend some quality time with your bestie. Dinner and drinks is a classic recipe for a great date with your boo. But they aren’t the only options. They’re the easy, no thought needed options. Why not plan a trip to the art museum with your gal pals or a bookstore adventure with your boyfriend? I’m not saying you should eliminate food-focused outings all together, just that switching it up can go a long way in getting you out of an eating-out holding pattern. Oh, and huge bonus points if you can plan something active and/or outdoors! Summer is the perfect time to make this switch.

Since moving to Miami, Chet and I instituted #AdventureSaturday. We check out new-to-us parks, head to the ocean, or just stroll around some shops. It’s a great way to spend time together and, because we are having experiences instead of meals, we make lasting memories.  

Pictured above: Playing a video game at the arcade, one of our favorite outings. 

Have you set any new intentions lately? What were they? Do you have any tips for tackling the ones listed above? Share below! xoxo

mid-week round-up

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Ladybugs are taking over my apartment! Where have they all come from? Should I catch them and put them out in my garden? Oh, Summer. I hope the rest of your work week flies by and your weekend lasts a lifetime. For the rest of my week, I’m foreseeing more backgammon games, smoothie experiments (I have an idea for how to make a Nutella smoothie. We’ve already conquered the cinnamon roll smoothie. #healthyfoodhacks) (LONG LIVE THE MAGIC BULLET!!!), and a trip to see some black bears. OH, and good luck to all the tiny speech kittens at nationals. Be amazing…so I can be super impressed when I continue my annual summer ritual of tuning in to the live stream of your final rounds. : ) Now for some links…

Coke unveils some new green-scamming tactics.

We iz from da same famlee??

One of these days I’m gonna try this out.

Gorgeous tumblr if you’re feeling scroll happy.

Love these simple, weeknight meals.

Whoops, I’ve seen all the docus on this list. Check ’em out!

Caring creatures.

Is YouTube to blame for the destruction of our last real movie star? (Great article but I’m gonna go ahead and place the blame a little more squarely on Scientology and peripherally on internet journalism/YouTube.)

Check yo’self…before you scientifically wreck yo’self!

A huge standing ovation to Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri.

And just another reason I need a yard.