Advertisements

Enjoying the Holidays

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?

Advertisements

Happy National Coffee Day

There are very few “foodie” holidays I celebrate but National Coffee Day is one of them!  September 29 th is National Coffee Day and many participating locations are giving out a free cup of coffee.

Some places you might be able to get your favorite coffee for National Coffee Day are: Wawa, Cumberland Farms, Dunkin Donuts, Tim Hortons, and maybe even your favorite local coffee shop so celebrate National Coffee Day!

It doesn’t matter if you are celebrating National Coffee Day with hot or iced coffee, find your favorite participating shops for more info. Is National Coffee Day better than the first day of fall? Maybe.

National Coffee Day

Why don’t I celebrate most foodie holidays?  Because there are so many, in fact, there is a food “holiday” almost every day…See this master list.  It’s no secret that I enjoy coffee so National Coffee Day is a big deal!

National Coffee Day

Coffee, however, is one that I do.  I drink coffee almost every day.  I like the taste.  I’m also in the minority that drinks decaf afternoon because I want to sleep. Even though every day is “National Coffee Day” to me, having a day makes it more fun.

My top 3 favorite places to get coffee are Wawa, Starbucks and a local place down the road.  Oh look, even at my wedding, we had a coffee bar. So it’s true, every day is National Coffee Day for me.

coffee station

There isn’t a lot of coffee I don’t like.  My favorite way is to top with whipped cream.  It gives a little bit of sugar, and the bottom is more creamy since the whipped cream eventually melts into the coffee.  So it’s dark and bold at first, then more creamy and “dessert-like” at the end. For National Coffee Day, I’ll probably hit up a few spots including a diner.

Want free coffee for National Coffee Day?  Here are a few places celebrating National Coffee Day: 

Wawa: Wawa is celebrating National Coffee Day with free (any size) coffee (if you download the app)

Krispy Kreme: Krispy Kreme is celebrating National Coffee Day with a free 12-ounce cup of coffee and a free glazed doughnut

Dunkin Donuts: Dunkin Donuts is celebrating National Coffee Day and being in business for 66 years.  They priced a medium hot coffee for 66 cents on Thursday.

Starbucks: Starbucks is not giving free coffee for National Coffee Day but will donate a coffee tree for every brewed cup of México Chiapas coffee you buy.  Today’s cup can help a farmer’s future.

Tim Hortons: Tim Hortons is offering a free Tims Reward through the Tim Hortons App for National Coffee Day. The deal is good both September 28th-September 29th.  To redeem your free coffee at Tim Hortons, you must order through the Tim Hortons Mobile App and the purchase must be greater than 50 cents.  Then you’ll receive a free reward good for free coffee, as well as other beverages, or a baked good

national coffee day

Finally because who doesn’t like a little bit of history about the beverage they love? 

History of Coffee: “According to a coffee history legend, an Arabian shepherd named Kaldi found his goats dancing joyously around a dark green leafed shrub with bright red cherries in the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula.”

History of Coffee and How is Spread Worldwide: Interesting video documentary/video to celebrate National Coffee Day.

national coffee day

Questions for you:

Are You Celebrating National Coffee Day?

How do you like your coffee? 

Four Years of Shamrockin’

With one of my favorite road races coming up this weekend, I thought it would be fun to look back at my last four years of running of the Yuengling Shamrock half marathon.

Throwback Thursday or Thinking Out Loud?

Either theme works I guess.

I’ve run the Shamrock half marathon four years in a row. This year will be fifth Shamrock and 29th (?) half marathon.Shamrock half marathon VA beach

2012: 1:33.30 (recap here)

At the time, this was also my half marathon PR.  It was my fourth half, and I ran it while on college Spring Break.  I don’t remember a lot about this race except my brother ran the race the year before in a time of 1:33.31.  Granted he didn’t train, and I did, but it was sibling rivalry at its best.  It was my fourth half marathon at the time, and I was running it after taking four months off of running for swim team.

2013: 1:25.14 (recap here)

2013 remains my fastest time on the course.  While it was windy, I surprised myself.  I trained hard through the Upstate NY winter.  I didn’t race much (because racing in -20 stinks).  At the time it was a half marathon PR, although it was short lived because I Pred again a month later at the Nike Women’s half).

This was my favorite year, not because I Pred but because I got to watch dad finish his full marathon as well.

This photos reminds me it was very cold and windy

This photo reminds me it was cold and windy

2014: 1:25.29 (recap here)

2014 was a letdown race.  After my course PR the year before, I expected to PR again.  Looking back, I should have known I was not ready to PR.  I wasn’t in the same physical shape, and I also had a lot going on that weekend.

We had a huge Oiselle meetup, and I didn’t eat my usual evening race food (Similar to last week when I ate Octopus.  I swear it doesn’t happen often).  I felt lethargic and run down during the race.  In fact, it’s one of the few goal races I failed my nutrition goals. I put socializing first but honestly I had a great time with the team.  Even though I didn’t run to my full potential that day it was still a great event.  I went to PR at the April Fools half marathon two weeks later.

But I did get this sweet photo...

But I did get this sweet photo…

2015: 1:33.04 (recap here)

Last year I raced injured.  To be honest, it was dumb and set my injury recovery back more.  I ran the half at roughly the same pace as the first half of the Phoenix full marathon.  I had more important things to worry about that weekend like my final touches on our wedding and hanging out with both sides of my family.shamrock 3

One of my closest friends Kris ran the half as a tempo.  She ran an entire mile with me, and it was the closest glimpse to elite running as I’ll get.  Not sure if there is a reality TV show called “Running with the Stars” but sign me up.  (Kris is running the full this year…so missed opportunity).

shamrock 2

 

2016: ?!

Will I run a 1:25?
Will I run a 1:33?
Will I break this strange pattern? 

Who knows…It’s been two months since my PR at the Carlsbad half.  I’ve been training consistently with no major set backs, and Shamrock is a faster course.

However, it’s forecasted to pour rain.  You can’t control the weather so we will see how it goes.  40 degrees and pouring rain aren’t ideal for racing or for my hair (hashtag knot city).  My goal is to have fun, race as hard as I can for the day and to see as many of my friends as possible.

Shamrock is one of my favorite races and a race I recommend to anyone.  The course is flat, and crowd supported, plus the after party can’t be beaten.  Logistics wise, it’s one of the biggest races I run that you can find a hotel close to the start (or finish).

It was fun to look back and see my racing the last few years there.  I can’t wait to make it 5 in a row.  I think Shamrock is the only race I’ve been able to run that long straight (knock on wood).

Questions for you:
What is your favorite race? (Let me know if you are running this year)
Do you have any St. Patricks Day Plans? 

A Quick and Enjoyable New Years Trip

Last week I was able to go home and see my parents for New Years. It’s hard to believe I hadn’t been to my Virginia Beach hometown since the RnR Virginia Beach race in September.

I’m close with my family, so it was nice to spend a few days with them.  It was a great few days and we got to relax, enjoy New Years and run the Resolution Run.

My mom made the best Christmas gift.   When I was younger, I used to play with American Girl Dolls and had everything for those dolls. My mom has a small business and sews outfits for them (as well as other custom made items), so she made a LOLZ running outfit complete with runderwear and all.runner american girl doll

When I was much younger, my hair was dirty blonde, so this was me at about age 10.

You can go to her facebook page here if you are interested in her stuff.  She makes everything from American Girl doll clothing to baby blankets and bibs.  She ships too! 

My family, husband and I just spent time relaxing and hanging out.  Plus drinking coffee from one of my favorite coffee shops.

Jojacks Coffee

Is that enough whipped cream?

After running a 5k PR at the resolution run, we came back to enjoy family time.

An adorable photo of my 16 year old cat.

An adorable photo of my 16 year old cat.

One of my favorite desserts that mom makes is her Chocolate Ribbon Pie. It’s a pie made from cool whip, cream cheese as well as chocolate pudding. I’ve never attempted making it because I know I would be disappointed that it doesn’t taste like moms.

Chocolate ribbon pie

Chocolate ribbon pie

After a delicious and fun New Years lunch, we headed back north. I never realized how short the drive from Virginia to New Jersey is when you don’t stop ten thousand times along the way. It’s only 5.5 hours!

Questions for you:
How was your New Years?
Do you like pie?

%d bloggers like this: