Thursday, June 30, 2011


Today marks the end of my 30-day challenge. I'm kind of surprised I was able to stick to it and post something every day. Well, there were two very minor bumps in the road. Here's a few things I learned from this challenge.

I actually had something to say.
Sometimes even more than once a day.
It's really difficult to find the time.
Sometimes it made for very late nights, throwing off my sleep schedule.
It was fun!

Would I do it again?
Not right away.
But, I do hope to continue blogging regularly.

For now, I'm exhausted!
With a long weekend ahead of me.


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

And so it goes...

On my walk to the shuttle this morning, the clouds in the sky over campus were gorgeous! I simply had to pause, pull out my cell phone and snap a picture.

Then, I don't know why, but I turned around to look at the sky behind me. The clouds looked to have such an amazing texture to them.


But pausing to take the pictures caused me to run late.
And need to walk faster than my shoes were prepared to take me.

They fought back by taking a bite out of my foot. I'll spare you a picture of that.


I slipped back into my flipflops but without much relief.

I hobbled my way to the nearest Walgreens to get some bandages for my owie.

I wasn't even hungry, but I couldn't resist
...the bag of animal crackers,
...the package of molasses cookies,
...the box of raisins.

And that's how beautiful clouds led to me skipping lunch and snacking. all. day. long at work.

Don't worry.
I punished myself by doing a hill repeat workout tonight.
Nearly 3 miles.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I Want...

Here are just a few items currently on my Wish List.
iFitness Ultimate Race Belt

Nathan Quickdraw Plus handheld water bottle

Road ID The Wrist ID Sport

Moving Comfort Endurance Tank

Moving Comfort Sprint Skort
Hi-Tec Sabi Mid
My birthday is in 42 days. Just saying.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Very first delivery

Farmers, at least in Minnesota, have really been having a tough time this season. Cool temperatures and lots of rain have not produced very good conditions. Many CSAs (community supported agriculture) in the area have postponed the start of their deliveries because of this.

Fortunately for us, the folks at Treasured Haven Farms have decided to stay on schedule. We only purchased an every other week package, and our first delivery was scheduled for today.

After work, we rode our bikes to our pick-up location to pick up this week's yumminess.
Baby Leaf Lettuce Blend, Green Onions, fresh green Shallots (scallions), assorted Radishes
Looks to me like the makings to a very delicious salad.

With a few cherry tomatoes and chopped walnuts, topped with a Mediterranean vinaigrette.
Our box was lacking in quality and variety, but I'm sure that as the season progresses, both will improve greatly! Right now, I'm just very grateful for what we did receive. :)

It totally still counts, right?

I woke up about 3:30 this morning, 'cuz, well, I needed to use the potty.

And then it hit me....I DIDN'T POST ANYTHING HERE YESTERDAY!! I was frustrated with myself, considering I had been so good - making it 25 straight days blogging.

I did post a cookie recipe yesterday on my recipe blog, however, so I'm totally still going to count it. It should still count, right? Right? ☺

This will not count as today's post, since it is more like a make-up post.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Run for the Roses 5K

This morning was my first 5K of the year! So fun!
I wanted to be sure not to miss the beginning, so I set my alarm for 5:30 am. I wanted to be on my bike by 6:30. Well, Sallie had other ideas. She wanted her breakfast at 5:00am, and told me so by nicely jumping. right. on. my. chest.


I fed her and crawled back into bed for just a few more minutes. I finally rolled out of bed shortly before 6am. Ate a quick breakfast. Consulted Google maps for my bike route. Got dressed. Woke Jeff up to say good-bye.
And I'm off...
My commute to Roseville went remarkably well. It only took me 45 minutes (I'd planned for 1 hour)! I got a little turned around in Como Park, so I was really pretty surprised when pulled into the parking lot at City Hall at 7:20.

It was a really nice way to start the morning! Getting there so early was perfect, too. It gave me lots of time to stretch and relax and prepare for the race.

At 7:55am, the horn blew and the skaters were off. I immediately regretted already putting my phone away in my pocket and missing out on an opportunity to take a picture. Oh well.

Then all the runners toed up to the start line. Well, I wasn't exactly right in front.

My goal was to take it slower in the beginning and not get too caught up in the excitement at the start. I wanted to pace myself, so I'd be able to increase my speed later on during the race.

For the most part, my plan worked!

Average pace for mile 1 - 9:53 min/mile

Shortly after the first mile, I picked up my pace a little and wished the guy running next to me good luck on the rest of the race. The distance between me and the other runners in front of me was lessening, and it felt great! I even ran through the water stop, taking only small sips from the cup they handed me (spilling most of it down the front of my shirt).

Average pace for mile 2 - 8:20 min/mile

The hills on the course hadn't been too bad up to this point. Unfortunately, just after picking up my pace again, I was faced with the first big hill of the race. It nearly took it out of me, but I was able to persist!

There was a group of fire fighters that ran the entire 5K in full uniform. They were behind me for most of the race, but after the first big hill two of them passed me by.

I thought, I can't lose to a someone running in full fire fighting garb! I mean I'm just wearing a tank top and shorts.

So, I pushed myself and passed one of them. The other had gained way too much distance on me. I was only able to stay ahead of the one I passed for a couple paces, actually.

It wasn't too long after this that I felt simply like I was going to vomit. I tried to keep pushing myself through it. I mostly continued to run through the second water stop, but I did pause for a moment to take a bigger, better swig.

The remainder of the race seemed to be uphill!

The worst was right before mile marker 3. It was a real doozy!! I had to walk a bit after getting to the top. Luckily the course turned to a slight decline. The end was near! I was feeling sick. Again. I tried to pick it up and push myself, but I just couldn't. I somehow did manage to maintain my pace. Sweet! :)

Average pace for mile 3 - 9:15 min/mile.

According to my GPS, I actually ran 3.3 miles.

After the race, I ate a banana and a piece of raisin bread. Enjoyed a couple cups of water. Waited for my friend to finish the 10K.

All finishers were given a rose.
I headed back home around 9am. I didn't want to push it on the ride. I figured I earned a nice, slow, easy ride after already cycling 8 miles and running a 5K.

Again, around Como Park, I got totally turned around and ended up needing to stop to consult my map a few times. All in all, I biked an extra 1.3 miles. Boooo!!

Despite the extra mileage, it was a great ride and good way to cool down after my race.

I was definitely excited when I got home and had to fill Jeff in on all the details. The runner's high  didn't last too long before I curled up for a nice afternoon nap. Ahhh.

What a perfect day and great start to my summer race schedule!

UPDATE: The final results are in for this race. I'm so pleased with them, so I thought I should definitely update this post.

Time: 30:19
#83 out of 164 runners
#10 out of 31 in my division
Average pace: 9:45

Friday, June 24, 2011

C'mon Weekend...You're going to be such fun!

I have got a jam-packed weekend, and I. Am. So. Excited!

Here's the rundown.

5:06am Roll out of bed. Feed the dog. Eat a couple homemade (just last night) cookies for fuel.
5:43am Warm-up. Run 2 miles (sub 10:00pace. whoo!). Cool-down.
6:30am Shower. Get ready for the day. Leave to catch shuttle.
7:10am Shuttle to downtown. Walk to work.
8:00am Work, work, work. Booooo.
9:47am Make everyone's day by sharing my delicious homemade cookies (peanut butter, oatmeal, choc chip. Yum!)
4:30pm Walk to shuttle. Shuttle home.
5:45pm Get ready for dinner!
7:15pm Dinner with friends. Whoo hoo!!!

6:00am Wake up.
6:30am Bike 9 miles to get to 5K in Roseville.
8:00am Run for the Roses 5K. Whoo hoo!!!
10:00am Probably rest and relax. I'll be honest. I'll probably take a nap.
3:00pm Head to Whole Foods and then to a park for a picnic with friends. Whoo hoo!!!

Sleep in as late as I feel like!
Possibly bake bread and/or a cake for my niece's birthday celebration on Sunday.
2:30pm Bike to my parent's house (weather permitting)
4:00pm Dinner/birthday fun. Whoo hoo!!!

I'm exhausted after just writing all that out.
But I'm also really excited!

Dinner tonight is with some rather new friends.
Tomorrow's picnic is with some college friends. We haven't gotten together in close to 1 1/2 years! Since then, one has had baby #2 and another is apparently "very pregnant" with baby #3. It should be lots of fun to see them all again.

What are your weekend plans?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Beware of Cooler Temps

It wasn't raining this morning, so I figured I'd go ahead and ride my bike into work -- even though there is a 40% chance of rain when it will be time to go home.

With temps in the 50s, I figured I'd wear jeans and a long-sleeve, button-up shirt to work. Yes, I could wear jeans every single day to work, if I chose. Since it was so cool, I threw on my rain jacket as well.

Perhaps I ought to have dressed more like this...

Big mistake!

I. Got. So. Freaking. HOT!!

After about 4 miles, I had to stop and take off my jacket. Only to discover that my shirt was pretty much drenched. Ew.

Thankfully, I always keep a sweater at my desk, so I dried off with some paper towels and switched into my sweater. Sure, my yellow bra is slightly visible through the white knit, but at least I'm not sitting in my cold. wet. shirt.

Note to self. Temps in the 50s does not necessarily mean it's time to bundle up. Also, it's a good idea to bring extra clothes.

On a slightly unrelated note, I was looking over the information for my 5K on Saturday.
Courses: Challenging rolling hills courses in scenic Roseville.
Yikes! Not only hills, but challenging hills? Why did I not notice that beforehand? Will receiving a t-shirt and rose really be worth it? OF COURSE! :)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Vic's On the Minneapolis Riverfront

Last night, I had a company dinner at Vic's. Our whole office went out (12 people) as a little thank you for all our hard work. Boy have I got them fooled. lol.

I love this little area of Minneapolis, and I wish I were able to spend more time down there. It had been pretty rainy all day yesterday, so the patio was very wet! Sitting outside would've been fun, but I prefer to stay warm and dry. The patio is pretty large with great views of the river and the Minneapolis skyline.

If you're into wine, they have a pretty incredible happy hour. $2 bottles of various house wines at 2pm, $3 bottles at 3pm, and $4 bottles at 4pm. After 5pm, their bottles go back to regular prices, which are still very great prices.

I got a BLTA Salad with extra bacon. It was really tasty! And, I got. so. very. full. Oh, the A is for avocado. Yum! Most everyone else got steak or pork or chicken. Something a little meatier. haha! I kill myself. Many of the entrees that were ordered were huge and some still resembled the animal a bit. Ew. I much prefer my meat off the bone and no longer resembling the animal from whence it came. I love meat; I just don't like to work very hard to get my meat.

I didn't mean to get all political. This is supposed to be a restaurant review afterall, so this is just a warning to be careful what you order. :)

The service was pretty good - despite how busy it got and how large of a group we were. The bruschetta and pepperoni flatbeard were delicious appetizers and came out pretty quickly. Unfortunately, it did seem like our food took a. long. time to arrive.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this restaurant!

Rainy Day Wednesday

This morning it was POURING when it was time for me to head to work. Since I've gotten a few new followers, let me just say, My commute starts with a 5-7 min walk from my apartment to the free shuttle (thank you UST!) that takes me to downtown Minneapolis. From there I have about a 20-25 min walk to my office building. Minneapolis is awesome because I can walk the entire way inside! I ♥ the skyway system (well, I have to use some tunnels, too). It helps keep me all nice and dry!

Ok, so back to the downpour this morning. It was coming down hard. And heavy.

Oh, and have I ever mentioned my absolute distaste for umbrellas? I've never found one to be particularly effective, and I usually end up getting pretty drenched. It's totally possible that this is partly user error. Still, I will use an umbrella if it's just a light rain with barely any wind.

This was not the case this morning. I know it's only a 5 min walk, but a person could really get soaked in just that short amount of time. So, I decided to donn my rain jacket.

Oh, yeah. And my matching rain pants.

I checked it out in the mirror. Definitely dorky.

But I decided I'd rather be dorky than dripping plus I was running late and needed to get out the door pronto, so I slipped into my flip flops and headed out to catch the shuttle.

I snapped this picture in the restroom after getting downtown.
Do you know how hard it is to get a decent self-portrait in a bathroom stall? I took like 15 shots and this was the only one vaguely presentable.
You can even see the beads of water on my jacket!
I was super dry underneath, though! Yeah! They work. :)
I thought it was going to be nasty all day, but I don't think it's really rained much after I got into work.

This is great news for me because 1) I can ball up my rain gear and carry it in my purse (which is what I did during my skyway walk to work. Otherwise, I'd have been super drenched with sweat. Ew.) and 2) I can go for a run when I get home. Only 45 days until my 1/2 marathon!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Happy Summer!

It's finally, officially here!

I heart summer.
I love the heat and the sunshine.
The long summer nights.
The carefree, laid-back days.
Exercising outdoors.
Fresh air.

I love every.single.thing.about summer!

Today, it rained off and on. Needless to say, I spent the entire solstice inside. Bummer.

Let's just hope it's not an indication of how the rest of the summer will go!

What did you do to ring in the summer?

Monday, June 20, 2011


I got a pedicure!

Well, I gave myself one. It felt soooo goood!

It just felt good to soak my tired tootsies and give them some much needed attention!

Cutesy tootsies!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

Hope everyone had an enjoyable Father's Day!

Don't be confused if this post just popped into your RSS reader or on FB or in an email. I *really* did think I published it on Sunday night but just noticed Tuesday night that it wasn't there. I freaked out! I haven't missed one day in my 30 day challenge...or so I thought! ARGH! So, I've post dated this to say it published late Sunday night (when I thought it had published). Take that Blogger and Blogger app on my phone!!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

What Have I Done?

Last weekend, my friend, Laura, and I spent a lot of time chatting while driving. I kept mentioning various experiences I'd had at various jobs, and she requested a write a post that lists all the various types of jobs I've had. I can't think of anything else to blog about right now, so here goes.

Bait store (family business)
Fast food restaurant order taker
Grocery store cashier
Retail clerk
Resident Assistant at college
Office worker on campus
Appointment setter / telemarketer
Flight attendent
Records specialist at a publishing company
HR Assistant
Bookstore Manager at a theological seminary
Classified substitute (in MN, they're called paras...teacher's aides, etc)
Receptionist / Office assistant
Drive-by rep (with Jeff) for a foreclosure investment company
Documentation specialist at a milling company

Future career: high / middle school teacher

I don't think I missed anything. Feel free to ask me any questions about any of these jobs.

What kind of jobs have you had? Any that have been more memorable than the others?

Friday, June 17, 2011

5FF - Places

Lisa asked for a post on my favorite places in MN. I thought it would be a great idea for this week's Five Favorites for Friday, so here you go (in no particular order).

I'm probably partial to this place because it's my hometown. :) I lived there from mid-3rd grade through graduation. It has a cute downtown, lots of area lakes, parks, beaches. Big Ole makes an appearance at one of Broadway, and the Kensington Runestone isn't very far away.

Inspiration Peak
from the Ottertail County Website
This is a little wayside park north of Alexandria in Ottertail County. It is so beautiful up there! Growing up in Alex, my family hiked to the top several times in my youth. I always loved it and have such great memories of going there. One day I'd really like to go back again.

Big Lake Wilderness Lodge

from their website

We first took a family vacation here the summer of 2008. We had so much fun that the next summer, we convinced even more of my family to come along. I've been a bad blogger and I can't seem to find any pictures online from 2009. Oops! We all made the trek up to Ely again last summer.

Big Lake is about 20 or so miles outside of Ely. I love it there because they have free access to kayaks, canoes, and paddleboats. They also have free day passes into the Boundary Waters for canoeing/kayaking or hiking. It is so gorgeous in northern MN!

Minneapolis Chain of Lakes

This series of lakes is so fun! You can circle them by walking, biking, blading. On Lake Calhoun, you can even rent kayaks, canoes, paddleboats and other fun non-motorized water toys. I think it's so beautiful! And I just enjoy being around so many people, outside, enjoying nature.

Even though I grew up in a small town, I grew into a city girl. I love the buildings and the parks and the people that come with living in a big city. I love the Minneapolis skyline. I love the skyway system. There is easy access to bike lanes, the light rail, and public transportation. There are museums and theaters and sports venues. The Mississippi river is at one end and Loring park at another.

In writing this post, I've realized that there is a lot to MN that I've never really explored. Hopefully, I'll have an opportunity to view and see more of this great state in the next year. :)

If you live in MN (or ever have), what are some areas/things I should put on my MN bucket list?
If you're not in MN, what are some of your favorite places where you live?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Thankful Thursday #10

I had a great day!

I'm thankful for frozen pizza! So fast. So easy. So tasty! Hitting just the right spot after my 17+ mile bike ride.

I'm thankful for google maps. Even though it sometimes creates the funkiest routes, it's still super helpful when navigating around on my bike.

That's it for now.

I'm off to finish enjoying my pizza and watch Megamind.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Yesterday, I decided on a half marathon to run. Today, I planned out my training schedule.

I'm super excited! It'll be my first half since 2003.

My first training run was only two miles, and boy, were my legs tired during the run! I definitely have my work cut out for me.

But I can do it, right?!

I've got a few other races I'm hoping to run as well. :)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Today I am feeling fat...and that just ain't right the day after a weekend of kayaking, running, biking, and hiking!

I ate like crap today.
I'm 99% sure that's why I feel so icky now.

I can't wait for our CSA deliveries to begin. Fresh veggies just sound sooooo gooood right about now.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Back home

Well I'm back from my adventure weekend, and it was an hilarious blast. So much fun and laughter. :)

Naturally, when I went to download my photos, our computer flipped out!

Hopefully we'll get it up and running soon. In the meantime, I'm safe and had a fabulous time (read: I'm totally exhausted now).

More on Pedal & Paddle coming soon.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Uff Teri Adaa I like You

Day 12

I first heard this song during an episdoe of Outsourced totally funny sitcom, if you haven't seen it. So sad it got cancelled. It is such a happy song. Makes me want to twirl and sing and dance.


Apparently, the video can't be embedded, so go here to listen and watch and dance and sing.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Movies I've recently watched

Day 11

Hope you're all enjoying a beautiful Saturday! I'll be out kayaking 11 miles. I just hope I survive and the weather is clear. Warm would be terrific as well.

While I'm out enjoying the sunshine, here's a few brief movie reviews of flicks I've seen recently.
  • Die Hard - Ok, I know I'm I couple decades behind in watching this, but I just saw it for the first time in the past couple weeks. I loved it! I don't honestly know why I hadn't watched it before (probably that whole R rating thing). It was fun of action and adventure. Mostly ridiculous, but it was fun to watch. Who doesn't like to watch Bruce Willis being a badass? Seriously. I would definitely watch this again.
  • Jennifer's Body - I thoroughly enjoyed this movie! Maybe it was just the sexy Megan Fox, but I really like Amanda Seyfried, too. It captured my attention right away, and I really enjoyed the story. I thought it was going to be a lot scarier and give me bad dreams, but it didn't. Bonus!
  • Green Hornet - I didn't really care for this movie much. It took too long to get going in the beginning, and a lot of the violence seemed ridiculous and unnecessary. My favorite character was the bad guy, Chudnofsky. He was hilarious - in a scary, mobster, bad guy kinda way. Overall, though, I didn't really care for the story or the way it was told. I wouldn't recommend it.
  • Tangled - This was thoroughly enjoyable for me! I loved the unique telling of the story of Rampunzel. I loved the music and the animation. It was definitely a cute, feel-good movie! I would watch this again and definitely would recommend it.
If you've seen any of these, how would you rate them?
What movies have you seen recently? Are there any you would recommend?

Friday, June 10, 2011

Five Favorites for Friday

Day 10

Today's will be just a quick post. I just finished my final, and I'm pretty much all packed for my weekend Pedal and Paddle. Laura should be here soon to pick me up. I'm so excited. And nervous.

Confession: I haven't gone on a bike ride at all this month!

Five quick favorites:
  • Color - To wear - green/orange. To admire - vibrant red, orange, yellow
  • Car - Toss between my first real car ('89 Dodge Daytona, red. Oh, how I loved that car) and my most recent car ('08 Scion xB, RLS 5, gold)
  • Author from my teenage years - Mary Higgins Clark
  • Flower - gladiolas or lily of the valleys
  • Race I've run - Earth Day Half Marathon in St Cloud, MN 2002
Have a beautiful weekend!

Send me all kinds of well wishes as I kayak and bike around northern MN tomorrow and Sunday!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thankful Thursday #9

Day 9

Ok, so the first 8 TT weren't numbered, but I thought it might be fun to start numbering them, so here we are to #9 (pathetic considering I started this over a year ago) and my first numbered post.

Today I am grateful for:

Band-Aids - They help heal, and more importantly, they keep me from getting blood all over the carpet at work (see yesterday's post).


Pop-Tarts - Ok, so these are actually Wal-mart's brand, but they are so tasty and quick and easy and just perfect for when you're in a hurry and don't have time for an actual breakfast.

My husband - He has got to be one of THE most supportive, encouraging husbands out there. I am so grateful BUT I was especially grateful at how understanding he was during/after our first scuba lesson. He helped calm me down and even helped me not to give up but to get back in the pool the next day. He is nothing short of amazing. Last night, he helped me get ready for my Pedal & Paddle this weekend by finally installing the computer he gave me for my birthday last Aug on my bike

and attaching a mirror to my helmet.
I figure a 45-mile bike ride will be a good time way to get used to riding with a mirror. So, we'll see how that goes.

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Are my feet fat?

Day 8


I bought these shoes back in Oct or Nov.

Super cute shoes from Marshalls
I thought buying shoes would be safe while I'm trying to lose weight. Something that would last and still fit even after a drop some pounds.

I know, I know. I should be working.
Or studying for my final.
I loved these shoes when I first brought them home and the first few times I wore them.

Now, they are T-I-G-H-T!
And painful.

Can you see the indentations? Ouch! :(
So, I ask again. What's the deal? Can feet get fat?

Oh, and I'm so desparately in need of a pedi, that my pinkie toe started bleeding this afternoon.

Ok, so maybe it wasn't completely spontaneous.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Target Tuesday #1

Day 7

I was flitting around blogland today, and I came across Target Tuesday.

It has been super summery hot the past couple days here in Minnesota, so I thought I'd see what summery things I could find.
Summer Fields Bedding
Peita Flat Thong Sandal

Tiered Maxi Skirt
Halter Maxi Dress
And oh my goodness, I WANT THIS DRESS!! It's convertible into, like, a bajillion different styles.
Multi-Style Convertible Maxi Dress
Okay, shopping trip is over for now. I should really to get back to work.

Stay cool about there!

Oh, and why not stop over at Fabulous but Evil to see what else is hot at Target this week.

Monday, June 6, 2011


Day 6

I'm so not looking forward to this week. Yes, I know that Monday is nearly over. Well, the work day at least. I have so much to do this week!

I can't believe that my Pedal & Paddle weekend is already this coming weekend. Friday afternoon, I'll be heading up north for a weekend enjoying the outdoors. I'm super excited.


Before I can go, I have to ...

Study for, and take, a final
Do Laundry
Schedule some blog posts
Hopefully get in a bike ride
Get a pre-weekend massage
(I think I'll be needing a post-weekend massage as well)

Which means it will be a very busy week!
But, the reward at the end will make it all worth it!

Provided I can make it through the week.

Just a a follow-up note on my post from Saturday. I did go back on Sunday for the 2nd pool session. I did feel a lot more comfortable in the pool, but I still didn't do all the exercises. In fact, I mostly hung out in the shallow end by myself just getting used to being surrounded by water and using the regulator. I did push my boundaries and felt good about it! I have a lot of practicing to do, but luckily, I also have a very patient, understanding husband that will encourage and help me. Not this week, though. Way too much else going on.