Friday, November 30, 2018

Rock 'n' Roll San Antonio Weekend

Well, despite not being fully prepared (due to this prolonged sickness I'm finally almost over), Rock 'n' Roll San Antonio weekend is here!

I'm currently registered to run the half and am looking forward to experiencing the sights (and hills...yikes) of 13.1 miles in a new city. To date, I've only run 10 miles of training, so I'm not expecting a lot from this race experience other than just that...the experience. This will also be a good training run on my way to the Princess Half Marathon in February.

Some things I'm looking forward to this weekend include:
  • Running a brand new (to me) course 
  • Extra bling for running both Rock 'n' Roll New Orleans and Rock 'n' Roll San Antonio
  • Experiencing Christmas in a new city
  • Seeing the River Walk all decked out for Christmas
  • Visiting with my brother and sister in law again and spending time with family
  • Expo shopping
Things I'm not looking forward to:
  • Running hills
  • Hills
  • More hills
  • Did I mention the hills?
I had to seriously laugh out loud last week when I was reading a review of this race course that called it a "flat course". Clearly the person who wrote that has never run a race in Southwest Louisiana...with zero inclines or even the slightest bit of a hill. We shall see what I think about the course after running this race! 

Ready or not, here we come!

Be sure to follow along on Instagram for all of our race weekend fun!!

Have you ever run Rock 'n' Roll San Antonio? Any advice?

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Thanksgiving 2018

Well, the holidays have officially kicked off and I'm absolutely in heaven. This is definitely one of my favorite times of the year!

We had a lot of fun over Thanksgiving weekend! This time is so special to me, especially when shared with family and friends!

Jason had to work on Thanksgiving day, but Brayden and I were able to celebrate it with his side of the family. We had a huge luncheon with a ton of family! The food was delicious, too.

On Friday, my usual crew of friends (plus one this year) went Black Friday shopping. We started our morning around 5 a.m. and had a blast checking out the fairly empty stores. Although there were a lot of good deals out this year, none of us really "needed" much, so we didn't purchase as much as we have in years past. We still had a ball, and we've already started brainstorming new shirt ideas for next year!

After a full day of shopping, we celebrated Thanksgiving with my family that evening. Talk about worn out...but we still had a fun time together! 

For our annual Friendsgiving, we started off with part one at a local crafting shop called "Junkin Gypsies". I've been here once before, and that's where my door hanger came from. This time around, the owner offered a 2 hour workshop at different times throughout the day where people could create a choice of five items. Shown here are our works of art and three of the five options that were available that day. This really was a ton of fun! I can't wait to go back to make another!

Last but not least, our friends got together yet again for our Friendsgiving part 2 celebration! At the last minute, we decided to move the shindig to my house so we could watch the LSU game and relax. Although LSU lost, we still had a great time! And yes, those are matching sweaters, because nothing says friends forever like matching sweaters! Amiright?

Also, I decided to do my weekend version of vlogidays once again! I had so much fun doing this the past two years and I've loved being able to look back on our family and how much Brayden has grown and changed over the years.

Here, you'll find weekend number 1 for 2018!

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Did you do anything exciting this past weekend?

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Tips For Staying Healthy During the Holiday Season

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! The holiday season is always a tough time to stick with healthy choices and exercise (at least for me, it is)! I know I devoured a few too many goodies last week during Thanksgiving and want to get back on track before Christmas arrives, so I thought of a few tips and I wanted to share them because they might help you, too!

Tips For Staying Healthy During the Holiday Season

#1 Plan Ahead and Don't Overdo It

Going into a party or festive gathering can cause a little anxiety, especially when trying to live a healthy lifestyle (which may seem impossible to keep during the holidays)! Sure it's easy to say "oh, this is just ONE party, I'll work it off later.." bur if your schedule looks like mine, I have several Christmas parties to attend this year...and that's before Christmas even arrives! Having a game plan and sticking to it ahead of time will help a lot! If asked to bring a side dish to a party, bring a healthy option. Others will thank you for this, too!

#2  Make Time to Exercise

Yes, the holidays are SUPER busy and our schedules are jam packed. Follow me here for a minute, though....there's 24 hours in a day, right?  Well, taking 30 minutes or even an hour away from those 24 hours is not a whole lot of time. Let's break it down even more - there's 168 hours in a week - setting aside 3 to 5 of those hours for exercise is totally doable. Your body will thank you later, I promise!

#3 Wash Your Hands

Here's where the nurse in me is coming out - hand washing cannot be stressed enough. Its' cold and flu season, people. Wash your hands and do it often! This will definitely help to keep you as healthy as possible this holiday season. Even my 2 year old knows how to wash his hands! Keeping a tiny hand sanitizer in your purse is a great option as well.

#4 Get Some Sleep!

Rest. Rest. Rest. Getting adequate rest is so important and will help your body rejuvenate for another day. Even though it's a busy time of year, making time for adequate sleep (8ish hours a night) will help you stay rested and energized for the day ahead!

#5 Don't Deprive Yourself 

I mean, it IS the holidays after all - if you see a delicious looking dessert or dish you want to try, go ahead and do so. This does not mean eat all the things! I know if I deprive myself too much, then I go overboard later. Just remember to keep in mind tip number one - don't overdo it! Remember to keep things in moderation and you will be ok!

I hope this holiday season is off to a great start for you! Stay safe, happy, and healthy! 

Any tips you would add to this list? Leave it in the comments below! :) 

Tuesdays on the Run

It's the Tuesdays On The Run Linkup with ErikaMarcia and Patty

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving

It's the day before Thanksgiving and that means tomorrow officially kicks off the holiday season! (Even though some have already decorated for Christmas - myself included...whoops.) With all the hustle and bustle this time of year can bring, I'm realizing a few very important things.

I want to just hit the pause button on today...
Truly immerse myself in this special time with my family...
Slow down and enjoy the moment...
Savor the memories this magical time of year brings...
Be thankful...truly thankful...for all of the blessings that surround me...

We say all of these things year after year, but do we truly live them out? I'm making it a mission to do just that this year, because these moments can slip by so quickly. This really is a magical time of year and it always seems to go by so very fast.

Thankfulness is another mission I am trying to live out this holiday season. I know this phrase is so overused but it's a very, very true one - we are so blessed and really have SO much to be thankful for.

Do you have a roof over your head? You're blessed. Do you have a mode of transportation? You're blessed. Do you have running water and food to eat? You're blessed.

A couple  of years ago, a church in North Carolina shared a video about thankfulness and it totally put things into perspective for me.

Take a watch and see what you think!

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and truly take time to savor the moments as they pass by! Happy Thanksgiving!!

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Three Things Thursday

It's been a week, what's been going on?

 #1 I've been sick.

As in one trip to the doctor and two trips to urgent care, two steroid shots, once antibiotic shot, and SEVERAL prescriptions kind of sick. I somehow came down with bronchitis and had a cough from you know where for three, going on four weeks. I'm FINALLY feeling on the mend, but my left ear is still plugged and my right back hurts from what I think is a bruised rib from so much coughing. I have another appointment with my ENT on Friday to see if she can help with the ear thing. I've never had a sickness drag out this long, but the weather changes from hot to cold and back again and it's miserable!

All of this sickness means my Rock n Roll San Antonio training has taken a serious turn. I did manage to run that 10 miler in the state park a few weekends ago, and that seems to be the highest mileage I'll be able to achieve before running my next half. I'm not going in to for any crazy goals in Texas anyway, I just wanted to run a new race in a new area and experience some Rock n Roll fun outside of the New Orleans/Dallas area!

I did manage to return to Orangetheory this week for a workout on Tuesday and it felt amazing. I'm hoping to go back for a second one this afternoon if my back cooperates.

#2 New Furniture

I. Am. So. Excited!! Back in May, we ordered a new table for our little breakfast area. Our old table was sentimental in Jason's family and was fun to have for a while, but it was definitely time for something new. I fell in LOVE with a table at Ashley Furniture and although I was told there was a production delay, they said I would have the table by the end of June. Well, when I called in June to verify, I was told that production time had been pushed back to AUGUST. Huh?

I asked to speak to the service manager and he was super nice, told me I could cancel my order if I wanted to, but said he thought I should stick it out if I really wanted the table. Well, Jason and I looked around at other furniture stores and couldn't find anything else we liked better...and I didn't really NEED the table right then and I decided to stick it out.

Fast forward to August. I called again to check on dates and guess what? I'm sure you time had been pushed back to the end of October. I called in October and...yep, it had been pushed back again, this time to November. What in the world?!

So, I spoke with the service manager again and he said that although the date had been moved, he could see that it looked as if 40 tables and 200 chairs were set to be loaded on a truck in Mississippi in November which looked promising. I must have called a million times since then to check on dates, but the dates continued to remain the same!

Which means delivery day! I'm so excited that I'm going to have my new table for the holiday season!!

Stay tuned to instagram for pictures and updates!

#3 Christmas Decor

Speaking of the holiday season, who's ready?! I am!! Well, not yet...but I'm getting there! I always decorate for Christmas on the weekend before Thanksgiving, so that's the plan here for this weekend and I cannot wait! I am leaving out a few fall items (like table decor) for our annual "Friendsgiving" that's usually held the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

It's going to be a great weekend!

So, how about you? When do you decorate for Christmas? I'm not judging...I just love the holiday season in general and this time of year is just the best!

Friday, November 9, 2018

2.5 Year Toddler Update

I might be a month behind on this one, but better late than never, right?!

Last month, Brayden turned 2 1/2 years old and has grown, developed, and changed so much in just 6 short months! I'm not going to lie, I'm super sad that his baby features (chubby cheeks and thighs) are slowly fading away.

Clothing: Mostly 2T and some 3T
Diapers: Size 5 - working on learning to use the potty has been an interesting time!
Shoes: Size 7 and some 8's
Weight: 34 pounds (estimated)
Height: 36 inches (estimated)

In his last update, I mentioned that he hit a "word explosion" right before turning 2. Since then, those words have turned into more words which turned into phrases and he hasn't looked back for a single second. His current favorite phrase is to say "I want _____"! It's also hilarious to hear how he mispronounces things. Take orange pumpkin for example - "ooo-range pun-kin". I just love it!

His favorite place ever is the park. He also still LOVES the splash pad! Anywhere water is, that's where Brayden wants to be. We keep a pair of boots at both my house and my mom's house so he can splash in the puddles after it rains.

Like the rest of the country, he’s super obsessed with the “baby shark” song and it’s so cute to see the look on his face when the song starts. We’ve listened to it at least a million times!

He also LOVES his momma which of course melts my heart. I've heard before that there's just something about the bond between a little boy and his mom and "they" were right!

As far as food goes, Brayden loves it, especially "ice cream" aka frozen yogurt. Other favorites of his include pizza, spaghetti, tacos, waffles, chicken nuggets, cereal, chips, refried beans, french fries, fruit, and of course, candy (which is totally limited). He's not always open to trying something new, but once you convince him to take a bite, he will usually want more.

Favorite TV shows include Puppy Dog Pals and Mickey Mouse, but he now asks for Little Einsteins by name as well as "Paw Dogs" which is also known as Paw Patrol.

Landmarks are something he's picked up on as well. For example, he knows when we've made the turn to go to the park, my mom and dad's house, the frozen yogurt place, school/church, etc. 

Over the summer, we had all kinds of exciting adventures like swim lessons...

...seeing the 2017 World Series trophy on its tour...

...feeding the giraffes at the San Antonio Zoo... Astros game...

...and Sea World in San Antonio!

Brayden travels really well in the car and we love going on new adventures and exploring new areas!

He LOVES animals of any kind, especially dogs! My dogs still aren't super agreeable to allowing him to touch, but we can convince them every once in a while with a little snack or treat!

Just like any boy, Brayden loves playing in the dirt. I ended up purchasing a giant plastic container that I keep topsoil in for him to play with. He loves using his shovel and bucket to repurpose the dirt (aka put it all over the backyard)! Another new fascination as of late has been dinosaurs. Being a boy mom sure is interesting!

Since moving up to the two year old class at school (where we also added an extra day), I've seen a huge change in the information Brayden absorbs. He knows his numbers of 0-10 and even surprised me the other day by counting to 10! He also knows his colors very well. We are currently working on letters and shapes, too! He's come a long way in just 6 months and I love seeing the new things he says and does every day!

Personality wise, Brayden is still a pretty chill, happy, and sweet kid although he has his moments/days just like most toddlers. He's easily redirectable when he's upset by reminding him to use his words and asking what he wants. We are loving and cherishing this time with this sweet kid we've been blessed with!

Thanks for following along in our journey! Stay tuned for his next update at 3 years old! :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Racing Mistakes

How many of us wake up on race morning and don't have it all together? As much as we try to prepare ahead of of time the night before, sometimes things just don't work out. Many pre-race nightmares have occurred about alarms not going off in time, missing a race bus, etc.

So, what kind of mistakes have I made in the past that am trying to avoid in the future? I've come up with a list to share with you today so you can avoid making these mistakes too.

It's vintage runDisney (before runDisney was even a thing)!

#1 Fitness Tracker/Garmin/Watch

For my VERY FIRST half marathon ever (that really cold one at WDW back in 2010), I made it all the way to the bust stop at Pop Century and realized I left my Garmin charging in the room! After turning around and running back to my room to retrieve it, I made it back to the bus stop to encounter a now SUPER long bus line. I thankfully made it to the start line on time, but still...I always plug in my Garmin to charge in a visible location and I make it part of my routine to put on while I'm getting dressed on race morning. Never. Again.

#2 No TP!

So, this one my be kind of funny, but at Rock n Roll New Orleans this year, it took me SEVERAL miles of port-a-potty stops before I finally found one that had toilet paper. Had I added Kleenex to my flipbelt, this all could have been avoided. Definitely noted for next time.

#3 Prepare for Weather

This one can be tricky because weather can change at the drop of a hat. Take Princess Weekend of 2015 in Florida for example - on Friday for the 5K, we were bundled up in layer after layer with near freezing temps and by Sunday, we were in short sleeves. Craziness. My husband was not prepared for the 5K and had to purchase additional clothing items at the Expo. Now, we always pack for any and every weather situation.

#4 Fuel

Y'all, Disney spoiled me with full marathons on this one. RunDisney has bananas, chocolate, gels, more bananas, and plenty of fuel to keep the full marathoners going for 26.2 miles. On my first non-Disney full attempt at Rock N Roll New Orleans, I realized my mistake on this - not all races equal the same and by mile 22, I was STARVING. I've run the Rock N Roll full marathon two additional times since this and am always prepared with extra fuel on my part.

#5 Travel Time

I've had some close calls in my years of running races with nearly missing an expo or nearly missing my chance to make it to day-of race registration. We always try to plan a little extra travel time to make sure we are at the race start way ahead of schedule. For out of town races, that means driving or flying in the day before and for local races, that means setting the clock just a bit earlier in the morning.

So, there you have it - my racing mistakes and ways I've adjusted so they don't happen again in the future!

What's your biggest racing mistake? Any advice to add to the list?

Tuesdays on the Run

It's the Tuesdays On The Run Linkup with ErikaMarcia and Patty

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Halloween 2018

Happy November 1st! I hope you all had a safe and Happy Halloween. We had SO much fun this year, especially now since Brayden understands Halloween and the festivities a bit more.

He dressed as Bingo from the Disney Jr show, Puppy Dog Pals (which he has coined "Puppy Duppy Dogs")! We also found this costume at the little Disney Store inside of JC Penney and Brayden loved it.

Brayden loved the dog's costumes...they did not! 

Our evening started out early (5 p.m.) due to the threat of heavy rain later on in the night. We began at a local church where they were hosting an event filled with games and jump houses. Brayden's not too much into jump houses yet, so we played a few games, then moved on to the next event.

The amount of popcorn and dum-dums consumed last night was pretty intense!

Despite that, we had so much fun last night!

Our next few events were trunk-or-treats hosted at local churches.

The dino and shark were HUGE hits! Brayden stared at the shark for a few seconds, gave him a high five, then a slow grin came over his face and he said "BABY SHARK"! It was too funny!

After we finished there, we stopped by my mom and dad's house to say hello!

We had a wonderful evening and loved hanging with our little guy! He enjoyed himself so much (especially the suckers) last night!

Around 9 p.m., a crazy storm passed through with the threat of a tornado. Thankfully, we didn't have to relive that one again

What did the adults do to enjoy Halloween? Well, we took an educational, historical, for-a-good-cause tour that happened in our hometown last weekend!

After visiting plantation homes a few weekends ago, my mind has been consumed with historical things and life in the 1800's. When I read about a local project happening the weekend before Halloween that had to do with historical things around my home town, I immediately knew I wanted to do it!

You see, there's several graveyards here that have been around since the 1800's and have fallen under disrepair. After a "great fire" in 1910, many many hurricanes, flooding, and just normal wear and tear, they were in need of serious fixing up.

Also, the great minds behind this project wanted to give remembrance and honor to those who formed our city. There's a lot of rich history here, and some of that history I never knew about, even living here my entire life.

This event went better than expected (sold out at 600 tickets) and was called the Living History Cemetery Tour.

At our first stop, we met several familiar names to our town - we mainly recognized them because roads and parks were named after them. This was an awesome way to hear their story and how life was like in their time. All of the actors at each site were standing near the grave of the person they were portraying and the monologues were spot on. This seriously was one of the coolest things I've ever done here!

Brayden plays quite often at a park that was named after this lady! I had no clue the story behind "Lock Park" and it was neat being able to put two and two together!

This was a self-driving tour where we drove to four separate graveyards that were only about a mile apart from each other. Each graveyard had about 4-5 characters present.

This guy was a steamboat captain and captivated us with his tale. Out of all the actors, he was my favorite!

This lady portrayed the only woman to ever be executed by the electric chair in the state of Louisiana.

Our final two stops included graveyards where our town founders are resting. It was really neat to hear their tale of how our city became what it is today! If you're interested in seeing video, check out my instagram highlights under the "Louisiana" tab!

When I say this was one of the coolest things I've ever done here, I mean it. This tour was educational, it brought life to our city's founders and important people here, and it helped keep their memory living on. They also raised several thousands of dollars to keep these cemeteries clean and repaired. Everyone on the tour was incredibly respectful of the lives that were resting there and I heard nothing but praise for this event. Having been a first year thing, I think it went off incredibly well!

I hope you all had a great Halloween! Any fun Halloween events take place in your neck of the woods?

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