Thursday, November 30, 2017

Runner Gift Guide

The Christmas season is officially upon us and with that comes an onslaught of shopping craziness! Checking off lists, debating over the perfect gift for that special someone or friend, finding great goes on and on!

Know what?

I love it! The holidays are my favorite time of year and I absolutely love everything about it, including the frenzy of it all!

After lots of time and thought into gifts for the runner/Disney fans in my life, I've come up with (what I think are) five great gift ideas and I decided to share some of those ideas with you today!

#1 Legend Compression Socks

Runner Gift Guide

I've been a fan of Legend Compression socks for a while now and own them in several colors. My favorite part about Legend is their motto of "Right Not Tight" - these compression socks and sleeves aren't impossible to get on and they aren't overly tight, offering just the perfect amount of compression for better performance and faster recovery! Yes, I am an ambassador of this company and yes, I will receive a credit if you use this link for purchase, but so will you! Check it out for $15 off your first purchase!

#2 Lillian & Co Bracelet

Runner Gift Guide

Although these bracelets aren't geared specifically for runners, how could you not love them with slogans such as "I Can Go The Distance" and "Keep Moving Forward"? These Lillian & Co bracelets are available in silver, gold, and rose gold and you can stack them to wear more than one at a time! I absolutely love these precious bracelets and might have one or two on my own Christmas list this year! (If you google it, you can usually find a coupon code somewhere for 10% off any purchase. Shoot me an email if you're having trouble finding one!)

#3 Gone for a Run

Runner Gift Guide

Y'all - this site blows my mind. If you ever need a gift for any runner in your life and are stumped on what to get them, look no further. Gone For A Run has gift ideas for just about anybody that ranges from shirts to Christmas ornaments, jewelry, and medal displays. Seriously, go check them won't be disappointed!! I'm pretty sure just about every runner on my Christmas list received something from Gone For A Run as a gift last year! All orders over $65 receive free shipping!

#4 Endure Jewelry

Runner Gift Guide

I first noticed Endure Jewelry at the Princess Half Marathon expo several years back. Their jewelry is absolutely gorgeous and there's a wide variety of race experiences to choose from (not just runDisney inspired events). There's even a "build your own" option! If you're looking for high quality running/race inspired jewelry, this is the place to go! Free shipping on all orders of $75 or more!

#5 Runner Gift Box 

Runner Gift Guide

A couple of years ago, my sister-in-law combined several of my favorite running related items and put them all together as a gift box of sorts! It was such a thoughtful and clever idea and definitely a gift I'll remember for a long time! She knew I liked KT Pro Tape as well as GU and Raw Threads, so as you can see in the photo above, this box had a little of it all! So, if you're in the market for a gift for your favorite runner, think about some of the things they use while out for a run and combine them into one gift box!

That's it for 2017! What's on your Christmas gift list this year (running and non-running related)? 

Thanks to Running on Happy & Fairytales and Fitness for hosting this Friday Five linkup!

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Vlogidays Weekend Edition #2

This past weekend was filled with so much fun that was jammed into just a few short days! We had a blast sharing a "Friendsgiving" event with our friends, having Thanksgiving with our families, going Black Friday shopping, and ending the weekend with a visit to Magical Winter Lights, a light display right outside of Houston Texas!

Join us for my own little weekend version of vlogidays where we share all of our fun and special times with you!

 I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!! 

If you missed out on previous vlogiday posts, check them out below! :)

Monday, November 27, 2017

10th Anniversary Vacay - Day 6, Jamaica

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and a great time spent with your family and friends! Initially, today's post was supposed to be the vlogidays weekend #2, but the computer isn't cooperating with me tonight, so a recap of our next day on the Disney Fantasy is coming to you instead! Stay tuned for a recap of our amazing weekend - hopefully tomorrow!!
    Our Jamaica day arrived and was honestly one of the cruise days I was looking forward to the most. Why, you might ask? Well, a little zip-lining adventure was in our future and this was an item I had on my "must do" list for years! I. Couldn't. Wait!

    We arrived in Jamaica, only to discover that we were the only ship in port!  That didn't last long, though....

    Not long after we docked, so did the Allure of the Seas, one of the largest cruise ships in the world. We were excited to see the ship, but it would come back later to bite us in the tail. You'll see what I mean here shortly....

    Anyway, we had breakfast then joined our excursion group a little later. We were excited to get our excursion started!

    The bus driver who took us over to the Good Hope Estate was super enthusiastic and kept us entertained the entire way! He was awesome!

    I've read that there's a lot to do here, but zip lining was on our main agenda! We booked the Chukka excursion that took you through 10 traverses!

    After a little briefing on the do's and don'ts, we were ready to go!

    This was my first time to zip line, so I was incredibly nervous!

    Here's where the whole "two giant cruise ships in port" came back to bite us in the tail. You see that reaaaally long line of people waiting to get started? Yeah. That happened a couple of times on the route. This excursion was simply too over-booked which was sad. I had a GREAT time, I just wish we didn't have to wait so long for everything.

    Melissa and I went this one alone and left the boys back at the port! :)

    I was able to scratch "Ziplining in a tropical location" off of my must-do list! This was everything I dreamed it would be (minus the long wait times). I'm not a huge fan of heights, but it was amazing to be at the top of the trees, looking down on the world!

    "Lady T" was an awesome guide! I even asked her if she could just follow us to each site! She was too funny and even called me "Pocahontas" at one point! Haha!

    After re-boarding the boat, we met back up with our husbands, then took time to eat a little lunch! We were starving as the zip line took way longer than expected! Lunch ended with an ice cream cone of course!

    This guy at the port was hysterical! He had everyone on the upper decks doing a little chant with him! So funny to watch!

    The sunset was another gorgeous one!

    Pirate night was up next and my husband might have purchased a new hat for his ensemble!

    This is one of my favorite menus on board...but I was incredibly disappointed that they removed my coveted pot stickers from the menu. Sad times, Disney. Sad times.


    We found a spot on deck 12 to watch the pirate show (which was COMPLETELY different from what we remembered) as well as the fireworks!

    After fireworks, we browsed through the buffet line and had a few bites to eat. We were still so full from dinner, we didn't have much.

    This guy was waiting for us when we returned to our room!

    That was the end of another great day! Up next is our second and final at sea day! Stay tuned! :)

    Wednesday, November 22, 2017

    10th Anniversary Vacay - Day 5, Grand Cayman

    When I last left off with our 10th Anniversary cruise recap, we were leaving Cozumel and heading to Grand Cayman. This actually turned out to be one of my favorite days of the entire cruise!

        My morning began with a run around the jogging deck. I'd planned to fit my regular 3 weekly runs in during the week but also wanted to give myself plenty of time to rest and rejuvenate. Our excursion that day didn't start until later in the morning so I figured it was the perfect time for a run!

        Our excursion that day included a visit to Stingray City. I'd never snorkeled with stingrays in prior to this cruise so I had no clue what to expect! 

        When we arrived at the sandbar, there were at least 50 stingrays swimming all around the docked boats. Each boat had its own bucket of feed and those stingrays sure knew what the bucket meant!

        We got in the water and before long, stingrays were swarming our area. Every now and again, I would feel one swim up against my leg. It was the oddest yet coolest feeling!

        Such gentle creatures!

        Why, hello there! :)

        This was definitely one of the coolest excursions I'd ever done!

        Our boat captains even let us hold a stingray for a photo!

        Such an incredible experience!

        On our way back to the port, I kept my eye out for the local restaurant offerings along the way. We ate at Hard Rock last time we were in Grand Cayman and this time we wanted a local fare. We had several hours to kill, so we headed over to Rackam's which was one of the restaurants I spotted on our way back to the port. Their menu offered seafood which sounded perfect to me!

        Bonus: we had an amazing view of our ship from our table!

        I ordered the fish and chips since we were in British territory and it was delicious!

        After dinner, we walked over to the shopping area and both Melissa and I purchased a Grand Cayman charm for our Pandora bracelets! We also sat for a few minutes and enjoyed a little free wifi!

        Our evening dinner was in Enchanted Garden and I began by ordering broccoli cheese soup off of the kids menu. :)

        One of my favorite dishes of the cruise included turkey and dressing...reminded me of Thanksgiving!

        Dessert that evening was fabulous, too!

        Our assistant server offered to take a picture of us in the restaurant. Come to find out, he used to work for photography on board the cruise line!

        The remainder of our evening was spent in the adult area watching Match Your Mate!

        This show was hysterical as always! It's definitely a must-see on every cruise we've taken!

        It wasn't long before we called it a night! We had another fun day ahead - this time in Jamaica where I had the opportunity to cross an item off of my "must-do" list - zip-lining in a tropical location!

        Thanks for following along! :)

        Tuesday, November 21, 2017

        Vlogidays Weekend Edition #1

        As a return from last year, our holiday season will be shared again with you guys on my YouTube channel in my own little version of "Vlogidays - Weekend Edition"! The fun began this past weekend with several holiday themed festivities, including a few photo sessions and we began the house decorating process!

        I had so much fun sharing our holiday season with you guys last year, and I had even more fun re-watching the videos this year and seeing how much Brayden has grown! It's so much fun to look back over the memories and reminisce a little!

        Instead of sharing blog recaps of our weekends over the next 2 months, you'll find these video recaps instead. I hope you enjoy! :)

        Have a happy Tuesday! If you're in the preparations for Thanksgiving, have fun!! :)

        Monday, November 20, 2017

        17 Mile Long Run

        This past weekend, I ran my longest run in this marathon training cycle - a 17 miler!

        On Friday night, the little band of runners that remain from my old running group posted on facebook about their morning running plans. A few of us who had longer mileage connected and I was invited to join them on Saturday morning! You have no idea how happy their invitation made me (for several reasons) - #1 My run was going to have to start at 5:30 a.m. due to a crazy Saturday schedule, not to mention it's still super dark outside #2 Dark = dangerous #3 Seventeen miles is a long time to run alone.

        When my alarm went off on Saturday morning, I was actually excited about my run!

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        We were also informed by the weather man that the highs would be in the 80's on Saturday and the lows would be in the 40's by Saturday night (a cold front was making its way in).  Despite the heat and humidity during the run, a breeze was blowing all morning which actually felt kind of nice!

        Our run began around 5:45 a.m. and we kept it at a nice and easy pace, which I liked (and so did my knee)!

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        As we talked, the miles ticked on by and before we knew it, we had hit mile 6 and the sun was beginning to rise!

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        Although I don't like the mosquitos and random wildlife that I've seen down River Road, I do enjoy the sunrises!

        Our first loop was right at 10 miles which meant I had 7 left to run. We stopped back at our cars at the end of the first loop to hydrate, take a gel, and potty. It was at this point that I realized I was running out of time and if I didn't go, I would be late for Brayden's Christmas pictures. So, I said goodbye to my running group friends and set out solo for the remainder of the run. 

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        As I was running, I realized how much I missed having company during these long runs. Having a buddy helps the miles go by so much faster!

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        Throughout the run, the temps rose higher and higher. I was really a nasty mess by the end of it all. Thankfully, I finished in just enough time to hop in my car and head back home to pick up Brayden for his pictures!

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        I'm so glad to say that my knee didn't give me much trouble during this run and neither did my hamstring. I was seriously so worried about both!

        17 Mile Run Dopey Training

        Although it was a slower pace from my norm, I really enjoyed the run and so did my body. I think I'm just going to have to learn to take it slower on my long runs from here on out if I want to make it across the finish line of Dopey in one piece!

        I'll have one 20 miler left as far as super long runs go and then I'll be done! I can't believe the time has already passed by so fast! Seven weeks and counting until Dopey and Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend! Can't wait!

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