The Black Horse Diner mount ephraim
The Black Horse Diner (Mt. Ephraim)

Black Horse Diner (Mt. Ephraim)

Last weekend, my parents came up to visit.  During that time we decided to eat the Black Horse Diner in Mount Ephraim.  I’ve been to almost all of the diners in Camden County, so I’m typically wary of the ones I haven’t been too.

We arrived around noon on a weekday, and it was crowded.  Being crowded is always a good sign.  We were quickly seated, but by the time we left, there was a long wait. Rarely do you see a wait at any diner!

Black Horse Diner Atmosphere: B
The Black Horse Diner looks like it might have once been a fast food restaurant and remodeled.  It was clean and open.  The outside was cobblestone, and the inside had plenty of booths and tables.

Black Horse Diner Coffee: B
The coffee at the Black Horse wasn’t good or bad.  The waitress did leave a pot at the table, which was nice.  I don’t have anything bad to say about it, but there was nothing that stuck out either.

The Black Horse Diner mount ephraim

Black Horse Diner Service: B
The service at the Black Horse Diner was interesting.  While the Black Horse Diner was busy, our waitress was all over the place.  She was friendly, but everything was slow.  She took our orders slowly; the food was slow, and even just paying was slow.

Black Horse Diner Food: A
The food at the Black Horse Diner is a very traditional diner.  The Black Horse Diner menu has nothing unique or exciting but has everything a standard diner does: all-day breakfast, seafood, steak, and a few Greek specialties.

After eating junk and sugar all weekend, I opted for a Greek salad with salmon. To be honest, I thought the salad wouldn’t be overwhelmingly big.  I thought it would be a small diner salad.  When it arrived, it was one of the biggest salads I’ve ever received.  Even though I had run earlier in the day, I was stuffed afterward.  The ingredients were fresh, and it had everything a standard Greek Salad should have, including anchovies (my favorite).  The Greek dressing was excellent, as well.  It’s one of the better Greek salads I’ve had.

The Black Horse Diner mount ephraim

To be honest, my favorite part was that the salad was served in a bowl that resembled an upside-down lampshade.

The Black Horse Diner mount ephraim salad

Black Horse Diner Cost: $18
For my salad and coffee, the cost was $18.  For the portion size (usually enough for two people), that is a great value.

Overall thoughts/Would I come back to the Black Horse Diner (Mt. Ephraim)?
I enjoyed the Black Horse Diner and was pleasantly surprised by the quality of food.  The Black Horse Diner is one of my favorite local diners. It seems like The Black Horse Diner follows the “how to be a diner rulebook” to a tee.  Not that there are many rules of dinering, but they had all-day breakfast, are open 24 hours, have multiple booths and a full-length bar.  The only thing missing is a bright metallic building.

Summary:
Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Service: B
Food: A
Cost: 10-15
Overall: B

You can see all of the diner reviews here. 

Questions for you:
What is the biggest restaurant salad you’ve received?

Blogging through 2016
A Recap of 2016 LOLZ Blogging

I’ve been blogging since 2011, and it’s changed a lot.  When I first started blogging, I used to pretty much be able to tell you every running blogger out there.  That’s because there weren’t that many.
Thinking out loud, now with the internet explosion, anyone, and everyone blogs.  That’s not a bad thing, but many blogs get lost in the sea.  Plus with so many different social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook, it’s easy to just microblog from those too.

So in 2016 what went on with LOLZ blogging?

Believe it or not, I blogged less in 2016. For the most part, I stopped blogging about my personal life. Maybe I grew up, or maybe I finally realized no one cared what my favorite color was.

I kept my blog focused on running, more gear related posts and of course diners.  Occasionally, I blogged about life too, but it was mostly running related.  It’s not that I don’t have a personal life, but due to my husband’s job, there are a lot of things I can’t share on the internet.  My life does not revolve around running but my running blog pretty much does…

Plus many of my friends don’t run and don’t use a lot of social media, it’s not appropriate for me to post about them via the blog and to be honest, half the time my life isn’t terribly thrilling.  I run, work and come home.

So what happened in the world of LOLZ blogging this year?

Since it’s my primary focus, I recapped running here.

In Actual Blogging:

Number of posts: 276

Most Viewed Posts: 
Asics FuzeX
Losing Toenails: A Runners Rite of Passage? (From 2015)
Dropping 9 minutes from my Half Marathon Time

Top Referrers (Where did people come from?)

Random places on the internet
Twitter
Facebook

blogging referers

Looking Back:

Honestly, I love blogging, and I enjoy it.  I put a lot of time and effort into blogging, and I plan to still keep doing it.  It’s not my full-time job, and I doubt it will ever be.  Due to the nature of social media and how much self-promotion you must do now, it’s very hard for anyone to make a full-time income from blogging.

I promote products that I like and have used.  Personally,  I cannot imagine promoting brands and companies I cannot foster relationships with. Would I like to make more money blogging?  Sure but who wouldn’t…There is a lot of balance with that.

I would be lying if I didn’t say several brands lost my respect as a customer based on bloggers they chose to represent them.

Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your mindset, there are hundreds if not thousands of bloggers now.  The internet is saturated with bloggers vying to work with brands.

But that is the nature of blogging!  At the end of the day, I’m fortunate enough to shut my computer down and not worry about followers, blogging or the internet because it’s not my full-time job.  I respect people who want to do that, but that is not the lifestyle or career for me.

In 2016, my blog posts, stats, and views went down, and I’m fine with that. In 2017, I predict as a platform blogging will continue to decrease.



blogging stats

Many bloggers will go the route of microblogging on social media platforms versus lengthy blog posts.  I won’t be excluded and I’ll be both amazed and proud of myself if I reach 276 blog posts next year too.

I always find it fascinating to see where people are from so here are some of the top countries!

blogging info

Questions for you:
How has your blog evolved and changed this year?  
What is your favorite social media platform? 

Enjoying the Holidays

This Christmas, my parents, came up from Virginia to visit.  Even though I’m 26, I’ve never actually spent a Christmas at my own home. We’ve either gone to my husband’s parent’s house or my parent’s home for the Holidays.  It was the first time we spent it at our house.

family shot

I enjoyed seeing my family, and we had a lot of fun.  As most people know, my father was in the military, so we moved around quite a bit.  We never adopted a lot of traditions for Christmas.  We open gifts, have a turkey and spend most of the day relaxing or driving around looking at Christmas lights.  That is exactly what we did this year as well.

Christmas dinner

christmas turkey

My husband and I went out for a morning workout while the rest of the house was sleeping. After getting ready for the day, we opened a few gifts for each other. Of course who doesn’t like to give and receive gifts but seeing family was even better.

Dad

A tradition my husband and I do have, is cleaning up during the holidays and donate things we haven’t used in a full calendar year.  We were able to donate 5 bags of appliances (goodbye George Fireman grill), running shoes, random trinkets and everything in between.  Moving around so much (this is the first year we haven’t moved in 12 months), we don’t like to accumulate things.

tim-and-i-1

Believe it or not, this year I did not get any new running gear! I did not need any new running gear either.  My inlaws sent this beautiful Kate Spade purse I’ve been wanting (to match my Penguin wallet and sweater…and life).  I also got a few new pairs of pants to update the wardrobe.  It was a perfect Christmas.

 Kate Spade Penguin Wallet

We also went to view Christmas lights at the Shady Brook Farm in Yardley, PA.  If you’re local it’s a great place. You get to drive through and look at the festive Holiday lights and it’s an incredible layout. Yardley Christmas Lights

My photos don’t do it justice, but I would highly recommend going.

Yardley Christmas Lights

Questions for you:

How were your Holidays?

Do you typically travel or stay home?

Training Last Week: 800s and Tempos


The last week of training went by with nothing of note.  As most people know, I work in a run specialty store.  While it’s not as crazy as a department store, we still are extremely busy during the holidays.

Most of my week was centered around work (how thrilling), but I was able to get runs in too.

Monday: 60 minutes easy
Tuesday: Workout 6X800s
Wednesday: 50 minutes easy/ART from Dr. Kemenosh
Thursday: 65 minutes easy
Friday: 65 minutes easy
Saturday: Off
Sunday: warmup+40 minute tempo run+cooldown

Total: 50 miles

Easy runs were just that and uneventful.  I have nothing of note with those.

Tuesdays workout: 6X800s (ranging in pace between 6:02-6:07 per mile)

The goal was to be closer to the 3 min mark (6 mins per mile), however, due to running on the road versus the track, my times were a little slower.  I prefer to do my speed work on roads because it’s easier to get space on the road and I race on the road.

Sunday: 40 min Tempo Run (average 6:44)

My workout was supposed to be on Christmas Eve, however, due to my schedule that didn’t work out.  Oddly enough, I had plenty of time the morning of Christmas and was able to get my tempo run done before 9.

The workout itself went well.  The goal was 6:43 pace and my average was 6:44.

Thoughts:

I have no complaints with my training week.  It was a boring week of training but many weeks are like that.

Next week I’m hoping to find a New Years 5k but there aren’t many close by.  I haven’t raced since the Dallas half marathon and I’m itching for a race.

Posts from the week:
A Look Back at 2016 Running
How to Stay Motivated

Questions for you:
How was your Holiday week?
Do you have any New Years plans?

Jumbars
Jumbars (Bethleham, PA)

Jumbars (Bethlehem, PA)

While visiting for the Runners World Festival, my friends recommended going to the JumBars in Bethlehem, PA. Jumbars is well known in the Lehigh Valley and Chef Paul Hoffert is a well-known chef.

Jumbars Atmosphere:
Jumbars is tiny but cute.  Jumbars is not exactly a diner but more of a mom and pop shop in downtown Bethlehem.  Each of the tables has a slightly different tablecloth and different design.  It’s one of my favorite restaurant atmospheres because the dining room is quirky and fun.  It reminds me more of a coffee shop or cafe but shares a lot of characteristics of a diner too.

Jumbars Coffee: F
I hate to give any restaurant or diner, a bad coffee review but the coffee was cold.  I actually didn’t finish the cup because it was cold and did nothing for me.

Jumbars coffee

Jumbars Service: C
The service at the Jumbars wasn’t great either.  It wasn’t the worst, but the food took quite a long time to come out.  I think about 30 minutes the first time.  When I asked for something, the waitress forgot about it, so we had to ask someone else.  The waitress rarely came over…otherwise I would have asked for a different coffee.

Jumbars Food: C
The Jumbars menu is small. Jumbars is actually only open until 2 pm and known for their breakfast and lunch but they don’t serve dinner.  A few items that stuck out to me on the Jumbars menu include the sticky buns, roasted walnuts, mixed greens with goat cheese, and jumble berry.

I ordered the hummus appetizer as well as the beet salad with salmon.  I’ve been craving beets a lot more lately and the beet salad sounded good. Jumbars app

They forgot the salmon, and when I asked about it the waitress mentioned: “just don’t touch it and we can take it back”.  The salmon took another 15-20 minutes to come back.

Jumbars Salad

The food portion itself at Jumbars was small.  I liked the food a lot, but I wish I had more of it.  I was glad I ordered the hummus appetizer because it had a lot of flatbread and made it into a full meal.  The beet salad was more of the size of an appetizer than an entrée salad.  In summary, the food was good, however, the portions were tiny.

Cost: $$
For my salad, coffee, and hummus appetizer, the cost was $22.  The cost was high, and while the food was good, I wish I had more of it.

Overall/Would I come back to Jumbars?
I want to give the Jumbars a second chance because it does appear to be a local favorite.  I know now that the food portion isn’t big, so I’ll definitely keep that in mind.  I’m hoping I might have had a bad experience and I do hope to eventually go back and see.

Summary:
Atmosphere: A
Coffee: F
Service: C
Food: C
Cost: $12-20
Overall: C

You can see all diner reviews here.

Questions for you: What is your favorite local restaurant?  

 

%d bloggers like this: