A Whole Lotta Thank Yous

Hey ya’ll!! I’m baaaaaccckkk! Dana and I got in last night at 10:45 pm from our anniversary vaca adventure. We were in three countries within a week and a half! Before I share any more details, I want to give a huge thanks to my guest posters for taking the time to write for Beautifully Nutty. In case you missed them:

Katie: How to Survive a Hard Run
Rebecca: Simple Meal Planning Tips
Jackie: Spicy Chicken Dip
Hailey: Decide to Be Happy, and Be

Dana and I had a seriously incredible and climate diverse vacation. It felt great to be together and to celebrate our two-year anniversary. Thank you for all of the anniversary wishes as well!

I am wiping my sleepy eyes this morning as I am slightly jet-lag going from west coast time back to central time zone. I know it’s only a difference of two hours but I’m sensitive to my sleep. You all know that by now. But waah wahh, I’m tired because I was on vacation. No one is going to throw a pity party for me that’s for sure!

I’m still working on gathering photos from my phone, Dana’s phone, and the camera, so the recaps are going to have to wait a bit but I thought I could at least share with you where I went.

We started the trip by spending a few days in Ucluelet and Tofino, BC on Vancouver Island, then we drove to Victoria, BC, crossed back on the ferry over to Vancouver, then Seattle, then down to California where we hopped on a three-day cruise to Ensenada, Mexico.

Canada, United States, and Mexico. Not bad, huh?

We spent a lot of time in the car needless to say but we got to enjoy some incredible views along the way.

vancouver island

 

Not to mention some seriously windy roads through the mountains.

I just about lost it on our 2.5 hour car ride out to Ucluelet. It didn’t help I had come off of a day of travel with very little sleep, eaten a less than stellar veggie burger, and the icing on the cake of course is that I get motion sickness fairly easily. Again, waah waaah.

(I tried to capture the zig-zag roads)

vancouver

 

That’s about the extent at which I’m going to get into vaca today. I’m thinking I will spread it out a bit. I think it will take a few posts. Look forward to them!! :wink:

It’s always hard to come back after vacation, but at the same time I get very excited to get home and see Moose, and my family and friends again.

I want to give a huge thank you to everyone who took care of our Mooser baby while we were away. I can’t wait to see his huge puppy face!

moose

Dana (my travel agent and husband) did such an amazing job planning this trip for us. If you’re ever needing to book any type of trip, let me know and I can get you his contact information! Thank you, Dana for all of your time spent planning this awesome getaway for us!

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So guess what came to my door step the day before I left for vacation?

My Cosmedix prize! Remember back in September when I went out to New York for the Bethenny Frankel show and premiere party? I mentioned I had won a basket of $500 worth of Cosmedix swag. I anxiously awaited this basket of goodies and it’s finally here!

cosmedix cosmedix

 

I can’t wait to try it all out! Thank you Cosmedix!

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I didn’t do a whole lot of food prep for our trip, but one thing I did make was a batch of Katie’s nummy bars! These served as our breakfast for the first few days and were SO good! I looked forward to eating them every morning and will absolutely be making another batch in the near future. I may even try almond butter instead. We will see! Thanks for the tasty recipe, Katie! xoxo

katie's bars

 

I am feeling very out of the loop with what is going on in our world, in the blog world, and with my family and friends. Did I miss anything big? How is everyone doing? I’ve missed you all!

 

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (again) & Lobster Madness

Oh boy I have a lot to say today. Grab a seat and let’s get to it!

On Sunday we had a fairly leisurely morning. We woke up, made some scrambled eggs with cheese, looked through the newspaper, cut a couple of coupons, and finally got ready to run to the grocery store.

scrambled eggs

When we go to Turks and Caicos, we will be staying in a villa and will be cooking the majority of our own meals on our own, so this weekend we spent a lot of time getting food together for our trip. We planned out each meal and snacks, wrote out all of the ingredients that we need for each dish, and then went shopping. I think we now have the majority of our food. Next, I will just need to work on the food prep. I will absolutely be sharing this with all of you once it gets a little bit closer.

Changing gears a bit…

If you have been following me for a while, you know I have been dealing with some ongoing health issues, namely Ulcerative Colitis. I am working towards holistic ways of healing and living, and am SO close to finally being healed. It’s like a loose tooth that’s just about ready to fall out. I feel like I need one last final nudge to really heal my gut.

Therefore, I have decided to follow the Specific Carbohydrate Diet for the next week or so before our trip. I followed the SCD this summer but could only handle it for so long because I drove myself absolutely crazy. I know this will be a more short-lived experiment, and have prepared myself mentally for it.

I will begin with the intro diet for 2-3 days and then after that progress as the plan says.  I will limit myself on raw fruits and veggies for the week, and instead eating primarily cooked veggies and fruits. The plan states that you can be stay on the intro diet for up to a week as needed, until symptoms subside, but since I don’t really have many symptoms I have decided to give the intro only 2-3 days.

It will give my colon time to relax, kick up it’s feet and HEAL. I have a really good feeling that this will be what it takes to finally heal.

You can read about my journey through SCD this summer:

You will definitely notice a change in my food intake over the next week.

The SCD involves a lot of food prep, so yesterday afternoon I was in the kitchen efficiently working away.

I made SCD ketchup, hard-boiled eggs, bone broth soup with pureed carrots, cooked carrots, baked chicken, and grape juice gelatin. Farmer’s cheese is also allowed in the intro diet but I was not a fan of it, so I’m leaving it out.

kitchen food prep

eggs

 SCD Ketchup Recipe

SCD ketchup

For the soup: I used homemade bone broth and added a bunch of carrots. I covered the pot and let the soup simmer with the carrots for 20 minutes or so, until I was able to pierce through the carrots with a fork. Then I used an immersion blender to puree it all together.

SCD ketchup and bone broth with carrots

I munched on some mini meals/snacks while I cooked away…

banana and pb

Let the SCD begin. I’m ready.

When we were out at Target yesterday doing our grocery shopping, I just so happened to walk by a clearance shelf and notice this little gem of a Christmas ornament.

It’s Moose with a scarf on! Of course I had to buy it. Again, he’s totally unimpressed, but at least he humors me for a photo.

moose ornament

Double Date Night

Last night we got all prettied up to get ready for a date night with Betsy and Matt at Stella’s Fish Cafe.

dana moose and melanie

Stella’s is actually the restaurant Dana and I ate at right before he proposed to me! So each time we are there I can’t help but reminisce. I’m thinking an engagement flashback post is in order….but not today!

stellas

Bets and Matt were waiting for us in the same cozy booth Dana and I sat in three years ago on engagement night. What are the chances, right? I had to let everyone know how excited I was about that. :wink:

We chit chatted away, sipped on some wine, and got ready for our lobster dinner. On Sunday evenings Stella’s has a special where you can get a whole lobster for $19.99. That’s a pretty good deal if you ask me. ALSO, Bets and Matt had a gift card that they wanted to share with us, so we really got dinner for a steal!

betsy and matt dana and melanie stellas lobster stellas asparagus stellas

This was my first time ever tackling a whole lobster. Dana had told me about his first experience eating one and explained that the inside of the lobster body is this nasty looking green stuff. Supposedly, it is a delicacy to some and the people of Maine told Dana that about half of people eat it, and half leave it alone.

Well, I wasn’t expecting to see what I saw when I opened up the body of that lobster. I definitely eat with my eyes so as soon as I saw the green goop, I knew there was no way I was touching that body. I handed Mr. Lobster’s body over to the garbage pail. I had to get that image out of my mind in order to enjoy the rest of the lobster.

dana melanie matt betsy

It was a messy double date but SO much fun! I love those two so incredibly much. Thanks for a great night you guys! xoxo

On the way home I got the idea into Dana’s head that we should stop at Cherry Berry for frozen yogurt. Most of our date nights end this way and I am totally okay with that. Considering I knew I would be starting the SCD the next day, I decided it would sort of be like my Fat Tuesday.

I went fairly easy on my serving size along with my toppings (compared to what I usually do). I went with Chilly Nilly and Cookies and Cream and the added just a few brownie pieces, cookie dough, one mini Reese’s peanut butter cup, one Oreo, one frosted animal cracker, two maraschino cherries (yum), and a cherry gummy. Yes, that’s keeping it minimal for me.

cherry berry frozen yogurt

As always, Cherry Berry never fails to please me.

What an amazing day!

I have a big day planned today as well. I better get to it. The treadmill is waiting for me. Dun dun dun…

How was YOUR weekend?!

Gluten Free Cereal Bowl

I owe my wonderful breakfast yesterday to my new and dear, fellow blogger, fellow Paleo’er friend, Shannon. While in Boston we swapped recipe ideas, and she shared a breakfast one with  me that I knew I had to try.

You ready for this?

In the bowl: blueberries (I actually used frozen then thawed because that is what I had on hand), a heaping handful of fresh Driscoll’s raspberries, a handful of chopped walnuts, chia seeds, unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and a drizzle of honey.

photo

Oh my gosh. I loved this. It’s just like Shannon said, “it’s like eating a bowl of cereal, except Paleo style.” Coming from a gal who loves a heaping bowl of cereal with milk, I was happy to find an alternative that was more healthful and fit my lifestyle right now.

Lunch was eaten at work but it still deserved a photo because it was truly delicious. In the to-go Gladware container: mixed greens, mini bell peppers, olives, tomato, black beans, avocado, and Newman’s Own Lite Honey Mustard. Man, I’m good. Winking smile

photo-002

After work I headed over to hang out with my babes, Bets and Emmy (my cousins who I love to pieces). They were making cake balls for a family birthday party and were pretty hilarious in the process.

Em, don’t quit your day job to start making cake balls.

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I am so proud of both of them; they are both going through major career endeavors and have worked so hard to get where they are. Open-mouthed smile

Dinner last night was embarrassing being that it was completely unstructured.

When I got home I snacked on a handful of grape tomatoes from the garden which by the way have become completely out of hand. The branches are so long that they are falling into the next plant and pushing them over. We have A LOT of tomatoes. I’m not complaining though!

After the tomatoes, I moved on to a few large handfuls of trail mix. After the trail mix, I needed something salty of course, so I dug into the pickle jar. After that, I was full.

Not a very balanced meal at all. Well, wait a minute…grape tomatoes, nuts, raisins, pickles….yes there were chocolates in the trail mix, but overall, it could have been a lot worse.

I needed to get the body moving, body movin’ get your body movin’, so I harnessed on Moose’s new leash and went for a stroll through the neighborhood.

photo-004

When I say harnessed on his leash, I mean I harnessed it on myself. We bought a new leash for Moose that attaches to his collar like normal, and the other end of it attaches to a band that goes around the owner’s waist. It is hand’s free and has a bungee cord which allows enough give that I’m not being ripped out of my shoes if he sees a squirrel, but not so much give that he is ever too far away. I’ll try to remember to take a picture next time.

This was my first time using it on a walk with just Moose and me, without Dana, who he listens to a lot better than me. It went pretty well though I must say. I will definitely be doing it again. I would love to make that an evening routine. It was gorgeous out with the sun setting and the temperature cooling down.

It was the perfect way to end the night.

Now, I am off to tackle my Friday to-do list, and then we have a wedding to attend tonight, oh and did I mention my brother and his girlfriend are coming into town from up north? It is going to be a great weekend.

Have a beautiful day!

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It’s time for the Sneaky Pete’s Giveaway winner to be announced!

Random.org picked comment #2.

Congratulations Jamie A.! Jamie if you could email me at beautifullynutty@gmail.com with your full name and address I will have your beverages shipped right to your door!

Thank you everyone for participating!

Pasta Bolognese Per Request

Hi friends! I hope everyone is having a good Monday so far…

It’s time to recap a super awesome Sunday that was spent with my husband and the dog. It started with BOGO coffees at Caribou. I stuck with a decaf coffee with sugar-free hazelnut (num) and Dana went for the Milk Chocolate Mocha with a shot or two of espresso.

Let the Father’s Day fun begin! Today was all about the hubby. Moose even made sure to get his dad a sweet card for Father’s Day. How thoughtful, right?

For breakfast I made myself a pb banana sandwich (I ate half of it before remembering to snap a photo). I ate my banana ‘wich and sipped on my coffee while we cut coupons.

Once again, the coupons were completely lame this week. We cut two measly coupons. TWO. And they were for household type things so they weren’t even exciting.

Next, we hit the Sunday usuals: Target and Costco. We stocked up on some good eats and even bought Mooser a new chicken. His last one had to be tossed due to a terrible stench that really raunched up his breath each time he played with it. Gross.

We got a few things done around the house, I completed a relaxing yoga session, and then I made Dana a special Father’s Day sandwich.

This beautiful creation is made up of:

  • Two pieces of whole wheat bread
  • 1 slice of lower-sodium turkey breast
  • 1 slice cheddar cheese
  • Sliced tomato sprinkled with onion powder and pepper
  • Mustard
  • 1 drippy egg.

All grilled to perfection with love.

I LOVE making special meals for the ones I love.

In the afternoon, we had to run a few more errands which included plans to take the pooch out for a walk around the lake. Our plans were hindered when the clouds opened up and mother nature watered our grass from 1:00-5:00 pm. I wasn’t sure if it was going to let up, so I decided to head down to our treadmill to get a little walk in just in case. I walked for 35 minutes while watching The Blind Side. Such a great movie.

Towards the end of my workout, the skies had cleared up and Moose really wanted to take his dad out for a Father’s Day walk :wink:, so we headed out. It had cooled off quite a bit after the rain and the sun was even peeking through. It was a perfect evening walk with my guys.

Since today was all about the dads, I told Dana he could have whatever he wanted for dinner. His decision: Pasta Bolognese. My version of course.

I started by sautéing 1 cup diced yellow onion, 2 minced garlic cloves, and 1 cup of chopped mushrooms in a light amount of garlic infused olive oil. After about 3 minutes, I added a jar of No-Added Sugar Ragu, added a shake of garlic powder, basil, and oregano. I gave this a stir, covered, and let simmer while I prepared the rest of the meal.

In a separate pan, I started browning up a package of lean ground chicken and began boiling my water for the pasta. Once the meat was browned, I sprinkled it with oregano and garlic powder. I like to flavor each part of the dish when I can. I added the meat to the sauce, then finished the sauce by adding about 3/4 cup of chopped green olives.

Once the pasta was finished cooking to al dente, I drained it and served up two heaping plates full of pasta and Bolognese sauce and topped with parmesan cheese.

Great decision, honey.

After dinner, we just had to have dessert because it was Father’s Day after all. So what did we decide to do? Head to the Frozen Yogurt shop down the road of course. Jeez louise this is the third Sunday in a row now that we have done this. We are getting a lot better at controlling our frozen yogurt pour and limiting the toppings at least. Last night we spent $7.00 between the two of us which was our cheapest fro-yo purchase yet.

Last night I chose non-dairy, non-fat Valencia Orange Sorbet mixed with the tiniest bit of sugar-free vanilla fro-yo (to get the orange creamsicle effect). I topped it with gummies and was extremely happy with this combo. You are probably aware by now that I usually opt for the chocolately, rich toppings when it comes to my fro-yo and ice cream, but I am trying to cool it on the dairy, and since the only sorbet flavor option they had last night was orange, I didn’t think topping it with cookie dough and brownie pieces sounded very appetizing. The gummies were just perfect.

Any time I eat gummies I am reminded of my childhood, and my college years. Growing up we had gummies as a special treat, and through my college years, my girlies and I would buy a huge bag of mixed gummies from the grocery store when we were having a girl’s night in. Sweet memories.

What a great Father’s Day weekend with my papa on Saturday, and Dana on Sunday. We will be celebrating Father’s Day with Dana’s parents next weekend. Let the fun continue.

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I keep forgetting to tell you all, that last week I DID reach my June Yoga Challenge weekly goal. When I posted on Friday I had only completed two yoga sessions and my goal is three per week. Well, you better believe that after I posted on Friday I hit up the yoga. I am really loving it and am feeling pretty sore from it as well. Work it baby!

I still need to share that awesome Lemon Blueberry Bar recipe with you all that I made on Saturday. I didn’t forget! It’s still comin. Have a great Monday.

Going Away Party and Welcome Home Party

Last night we attended a going away party for our good friend, Luke. He will be moving out of state to begin a new job and although the feelings are bittersweet, as we are sad that he is leaving MN, we are also VERY excited for him in his new endeavor and are so happy for him.

We celebrated at Bar Lurcat in Minneapolis. Our friend, Krystle did an amazing job of putting this party together. The atmosphere was very relaxed as we sipped on our wine, snacked on mini sliders and other appetizers that were served, and all mingled and chatted the night away.

Here is the man who were celebrating on behalf of, pictured with his beautiful girlfriend (and one of my best friends), Kate.

Cafe & Bar Lurcat is located in the Loring Park area in Minneapolis. I don’t go to this area often, but really should. It is beautiful and has an almost Tuscan-like feel to the side streets. There is also a nice park located right behind where we parked our car (pictured below). There are other restaurants I wouldn’t mind exploring, or it would be fun to bring a picnic. I want to go back!

It was a really great night. We haven’t been out in a while due to traveling and me not feeling the best, so it was definitely a lot of fun. Luke, can’t wait to come visit you! Congratulations again!

Although, we enjoyed going out, Moose on the other hand wasn’t the most impressed. We gave him his alone time for a few hours, and by the time we returned, he had gotten over the fact that we left him in the dust, and welcomed us the best way he knows how: smothering and kisses.

So much love from our big man, who btw is shedding like CRAZY right now.

Now, it is Saturday morning, there is a steady rain falling outside, and I just baked up a lemon blueberry treat to bring to mom and dad’s tonight in celebration of Father’s Day. Sounds cozy right? I’ll share the recipe with you later gators.

Off to take on the day…have an awesome Saturday!

Baby Love

Hello world! How was everyone’s Saturday? Mine was seriously awesome.

My morning started out with a bowl of my very standard cinnamon Cream of Wheat with stevia and a little brown sugar, but to switch it up a bit I added some leftover white rice which added a different texture to the dish. I also added a few bites of banana.

After breakfast we headed to the city of our alma mater, Mankato, to visit a good friend of mine who recently had a baby girl. Their beautiful baby was born less than two weeks ago and she is such a doll. Dana and I had such a good time visiting with our friends and oogling over their precious miracle.

I love babies!

Since we were in Mankato, we just HAD to go visit our old campus. We headed over to Minnesota State University, Mankato to cruise the campus, notice renovations and reminisce.

I asked Dana to snap a picture of me in front of the library since I spent a whole lot of time there in my day (nerd-alert). Dana on the contrary, said he hardly spent any time in there. The difference between us though is that I need complete silence when I study, whereas he prefers noise whether in the form of television or other people.

It was good to be back. We also drove by our old houses, apartments, favorite bars and hangouts, and the Mankato Mall. Seriously so many memories packed into one city.

While we cruised, we ate our packed lunches: Peanut butter and grape jelly, veggie chips, and a banana.

On our way home we stopped at the Medford outlet mall so I could hit up the Nike Outlet Store since it was on our way home. I really like Nike workout apparel. They have such fun colors and their clothes are very comfortable which is the most important thing I look for when buying workout clothes. First, comfort, second for cuteness. I controlled myself and just bought one pair of workout shorts. These particular pair are a brownish gray color with pink and white details on the sides. Cute and comfy and at discount price. Score!

When we got home, we pumped some air into our bike tires and biked to the store to return our redbox movie from last night. Then it was time to give some major attention to our large furry baby. Into the car we went. Destination dog park.

Look at the excitement in his eyes peering over the back seat.

He went crazy sniffing every square inch of the dog park, making sure to leave his scents along the way.

He found the other dogs and immediately tried making friends with them all. Unfortunately for Moose, many of the dogs steer the other way when they see him coming. Poor guy. Is it because he’s so big?

It’s okay, he still had plenty of fun.

He did manage to steal the heart of this young lady.

But it was short lived. We wore Mooser out at the dog park. We loaded him back up in the car and headed home.

It was a warm one around here yesterday at about 92° or so, but there was a nice breeze which made for a really pleasant day. We dragged out the doggie pool and filled her up. Talk about spoiling this guy today. If only he liked the water. We had to pretty much force him in the water for this picture. He warmed up to it after a while, probably after the water warmed up a bit.

Such a big baby, but I love him.

For dinner we fired up the grill to cook up a random combo of shrimp, mushrooms, and green beans. We seasoned simply with salt and pepper and let the grill add the rest of the flavor.

Num! After dinner we threw the ball to Moose to really wear him out, and enjoyed the beautiful night. What an AWESOME day.

Wait, Wait, Good Boy

Thursday was an eventful day at our household….

I’ll give you a hint.

It was garage sale day at our house! We finally went through a million boxes that were piled up in our basement, got our business together, and set up for a one day sale. We had little expectations as to how well we would do.

We had a little rain in the morning that pretty much soaked all of our stuff, but besides that, the day was beautiful and it actually turned out to be quite productive. We didn’t have too much stuff leftover at the end of the day which was of course the goal. We boxed up the unsold items, and plan on bringing them into Salvation Army. What a great feeling to have so much stuff cleared out of our house. It’s like a breath of fresh air. I can’t believe how much junk accumulates over time.

For lunch, I made myself a sweet potato (did not eat the skin) with peanut butter. This is actually an old photo because the picture I took today looked extraordinarily unappetizing. Let’s just say the dollop of peanut butter didn’t look like a dollop of peanut butter.  I thought I would spare you.

After the sale, we took Mooser out for a long walk around the neighborhood. I was wishing I had brought my camera with me because there were so many beautiful flowers along the way. Oh well, next time.

For dinner we grilled up a couple of boneless skinless chicken breasts seasoned simply with salt, pepper, and onion powder. To top the chicken, I made a small batch of guacamole with ingredients I had on hand: 1 1/2 avocados, 1 small handful of chopped cilantro, a little salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and dash of lemon juice. I served my chicken on top of a small salad and Dana made his into a killer sandwich.

While we ate dinner, Moose did too. But first, he had to “wait.”

“Wait.”

“Good boy.”

That is what happens each time we feed Moose. If we don’t say “good boy,” he will just sit there and stare at his food. Our family learned that the hard way when we were out of town, and they were taking care of the dog.  We forgot to leave them the magic words and he wouldn’t eat well for them. Whoops! Now they know the secret words and will probably never ever forget. :smile:

Happy Friday! Have a beautiful day.

The Day Before The Half Marathon

Well, ladies and gentlemen, I survived my first half marathon today! Unfortunately, it was a pretty painful run for me, but I will be saving these details for tomorrow’s post. All that matters though is that I finished!

Recap from yesterday

I did my best to get a good mix of carbohydrates and protein in my diet yesterday. Friday I stocked up on the carbs as well (that was when I wasn’t feeling well and only bread and fruit tasted good to me). I was building my glycogen stores!

Anyway, I began my day with my standard as of lately: Cream of Wheat sweetened with stevia, a touch of brown sugar, and cinnamon.

After breakfast, we walked a few blocks down the road to cheer on a friend of ours who was running a 5k race in our neighborhood. It was a gorgeous morning and it felt good to stretch the legs on our walk to the race.

We spent a couple of hours out there, cheering (she did awesome btw), supporting, and chatting before heading home.

I was starving by the time we got home so I snacked on a banana some peanut butter.

I made sure to drink A LOT of water throughout the day to hydrate myself well for race day.

We relaxed for a while, gathered some items from Dana’s parents for our upcoming garage sale, and eventually ate lunch. I heated up the last of the grilled chicken breast, sauced it with Kraft’s Asian Dressing. On the side, I had green beans.

In the afternoon, Kevin, Dana, and I headed out to pick up our race bibs, race chips, shirts, etc.

I was EXCITED! Team Ortho did a wonderful job with the production of this Minneapolis Marathon. We have run one other race with them when we ran the Get Lucky 7k in March (which was great too). Everything from registration, to race-info pickup, to the actual day of the half marathon, was very well organized and the volunteers were great too!  I would recommend their races to anyone.

When we got home from picking up our stuff, we fired up the grill. I wanted to make sure we get dinner in at a decent hour so that we had plenty of time to digest it, and sleep it off, so that we wouldn’t feel icky in the morning. I planned a protein and carbohydrate packed dinner. I gotta take care of my boys. On the menu: Super lean turkey burgers and sweet potato fries on the grill, and ketchup obviously.

The rest of the night was spent preparing for the run. I laid out my running gear, pinned my number on, placed my race chip on my shoelaces, packed our bag, charged the iPod, iced, stretched, and did anything else I could think of to make the next morning go as smooth and painless as possible for us. I’m a planner.

We got a good chuckle from the doggie when Dana put a backpack on his back. Moose is all ready for school. He’s always such a good sport, not to mention the cutest thing ever. I wish I knew what he was thinking at that moment. Probably something like, “Really guys? Again? I’m the brunt of your joke…again? You’re going to have to start paying me for this kind of entertainment.” Love you Moosey.

We got to bed around 9:30-10ish, and slept pretty well surprisingly. Excited to fill you in on the race details. Stay tuned!

Running in the Rain

Yesterday morning we headed towards the lakes for our run. On our way we spotted a coyote! Can you see it? We have heard so many people saying they have seen coyotes around the cities this year. They are sort of creepy looking.

We planned our run around three lakes in Minneapolis: Lake of the Isles, Lake Harriet, and Lake Calhoun. We parked a half mile away from our starting point so that we would complete 11 miles.

The radar wasn’t in our favor, as there was definite rain heading our way, but we knew we needed to get our run in. Here is our before the run photo, so nice and dry.

About half way into our run, the thunder began, then the lightning, and the downpour. I’m not talking any sprinkles here, we’re talking sheets of rain. We looked like we had jumped into the lakes and swam 20 laps as we were completely sopping wet. I have to admit though, there was something about running in the rain that was exciting and enjoyable. It’s not like we were running to get to our car because we had the chance of staying dry. Instead, since we were already soaked, why not bask in the moment because how often do you really get the chance to do this? Not very often.

Our after photo in the car…

Eleven miles is the farthest distance either of us has ever run before. All in all, the run went pretty well. We were ecstatic to have completed this distance and are feeling excited about our half marathon NEXT WEEKEND! This will be the farthest distance we will run now before the race. This week will be 1 or 2 small runs and some strength training as well.

While I tend to love stormy weather (as long as no damage is done), Moose on the other hand has different feelings. I took these photos from a storm last week. I was home with him in the morning getting ready for work. As he followed me around the entire morning,I was contemplating whether he was protecting me, or really just terrified of the storms.

Moose in the kitchen while I made breakfast. It looks like I put him in the corner for a time-out.

Moose under the table by my feet while I ate breakfast.

And Moose sitting directly behind me while I did my hair and makeup.

I’d like to think he was protecting me, but let’s be real here, he is a super huge baby when it comes to storms. I think it is the cutest thing.

After our run, I immediately hopped in the shower to warm up. I then iced my knees as they were feeling a bit sore from the run. Then, we were off to the in-laws to celebrate Greg’s birthday. They made us super juicy delicious cheeseburgers which were a great recovery meal for us. Bring on the protein, baby. I had to opt out of the veggie salads, but munched on some chips on the side instead. Who am I? This does not sound like me. It WILL be short-lived. I want my veggies.

Birthday dessert followed. Chocolate Mousse Cake from a local Bakery called Wuollet. OmG, this stuff was heavenly. What’s ironic is I had just told Dana that I wanted to lay low on the sweets this week before our race. But, are you kidding me? Like I’m going to say no to this. Yea right. DIVINE.

After our get together we went home, hung out with the doggie, watched a recorded episode of Glee (when they go to Nationals), and relaxed. I snuck in a handful of sugar snap peas. I know I shouldn’t have but I had a serious craving for something green.

Now, it’s Sunday morning and I am clipping coupons with the hubs before we head out for our usual errands. We are hoping to plant our veggie garden today! Catch up with you later.

Two Tickets to Paradise

Well friends, we are all packed up…

And we’re off. Off we go into the wild blue yonder flying high into the sky. For those of you who may have missed it, Dana and I are going to be spending a good chunk of time in the beautiful Dominican Republic. We plan to lay on the beach, swim, go on at least one tour of the countryside, hike up the waterfalls, rest, eat, drink, and do whatever the heck we want.

We do plan to continue training for the half marathon while we are there. All of our running gear is packed and we will hit the beaches a few of the mornings for beautiful, scenic jogs.

I had a hard time saying bye to this little man. He gives the most painstaking puppy eyes that get me every time.

This photo of Moose and Dana was from Wednesday. Moose was NOT that happy looking when we left for our trip. He is going to be in very great hands though and will have a blast going for walks, runs, and probably getting even more attention that he gets from us.

Paradise awaits. I am off. I have a few posts planned for you all while I am away. Hope you enjoy them. I look forward to catching up with you when I get back!