Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Very Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas Everyone! Hope you all are able to enjoy the holidays with family and friends. We had a GREAT Christmas this year. 

We woke up and opened presents at our house and then headed over to my sisters house (still in our pajamas) to open presents with my family and have breakfast. My sister made chocolate chip pancakes (which were ahhh-mazing!!), eggs, and seasoned potatoes. 

It was so fun to watch the kids open their presents and get so excited over everything. Everything except, my presents. I've gotten them saving bonds for every birthday and Christmas since they were born. They definitely don't notice (or miss) a gift from me since they have such a large family (including FOUR sets of grandparents!!) but on their 18th birthday, I'm sure they'll be thrilled with the $$ that's piled up. My niece some how managed to con 'Mr. Sprinkles-and-Glitter' into opening her Barbie dream house for her- which came with approx. 340,940,038 different pieces that all had to be individually cut off and opened. I don't know how he did it- but she patiently waited as he cut off and opened each little piece.

My family knows me so well and wrapped all of my presents in wrapping paper that had cupcakes on it!! It was seriously awesome! 

'Mr. Sprinkles-and-Glitter' totally spoiled me and hooked me up with a TON of great stuff I'm going to need for this upcoming year/ Ironman! He gave me tires, pedals and shoes (that are all blue and match!) for my bike- so I could stop using the mountain biking pedals and his old mountain biking shoes! 
He also got me another iPod since mine has worked in forever and I may or may not have lost it. So I am totally pumped to try everything out on my bike and go out for a long run and test out the iPod. (Just need to have him install everything and then figure out to work the iPod for me;) I don't know what I would do without him!!) 

After we finished with the presents, the boys started building a swing set for my niece and nephew in the backyard and we may-or-may-not have had a dance party to a beat similar to 'hot-cross-buns' with my niece, where she instructed us to do the can-can and ring-around-the-rosey. I'm pretty sure there is video of this somewhere, I'll have to try to find it. 

After the dance party
Once we left my sisters house, we came home and did nothing but play with all our new stuff, eat way to much candy, and watched a movie. It was great. 

What did you guys do for Christmas? Hope you all had a great Christmas too!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Party at my house!

I had to work a half day today and when I got off I finished some shopping (horrible idea to wait to the last minute! I tell myself every year I'm not going to wait till the last minute... but there I was, Christmas Eve- waiting in a line a mile long to check out. Maybe next year...)

Once I finally made it home and got all my gifts wrapped (Yes, I am the world's biggest procrastinator), me and 'Mr-Sprinkles-and-Glitter' started cooking. This picture pretty much sums up how all the cooking goes in our house. I am really excited and pretend like I know what I'm doing- but in reality, he does all the hard work. ;) I did however manage to break our garbage disposal! After 7 years of Jasen telling me not to put potato skin down the disposal... I now know why. (A full bottle of Drain-O and 36 hours later- it was back up and running!:))

A few days ago, me and 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' were picking up a couple things at Basha's and I saw these really super cute Santa paper plates- I thought they would be so great for our Christmas Eve dinner. I ended up not buying them because I got distracted by witnessing a lady 'texting-while-pushing-her-shopping-cart' knock over an entire display of 2 liter soda's and she flooded the aisle!! 

Well, I really didn't want to do dishes couldn't get over how cute those plates were, and I looked at other stores- but they didn't have anything other than red or green paper plates- BOOOORING!! So, 3pm on Christmas Eve I went back to Basha's and bought the super cute Santa plates WITH the matching napkins! :)

Super cute plates right?!

After we ate dinner, the real excitement started: cookie decorating! I don't know what happened with the cookies- I used the store brand sugar cookie dough, and when I baked them- they blew up! You couldn't even tell what shape they were supposed to be. :/

The 9 different kinds of sprinkles were definitely a hit with the kids! Apparently the proper ratio of sprinkles to cookie is 5:1. ;)
I promise there is a cookie somewhere under those sprinkles! 
Also caught my niece red-handed eating the frosting out of the bowl! LOL!

I may or may not have put the frosting's in the little bags and forgot to close them all the way so when they went to ice their cookies frosting came out both ends all over their hands. Just a little large, colorful, sticky mess- no biggie! Several paper towels later.....  ;)

All the cookies are decorated, we've left some out for Santa- with the world's largest cup of milk- full to the tip-top, and are off to bed. I hope everyone has an amazing holiday! 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Desert Classic 30K Race Recap

I knew I wanted to do a race in December- there are so many fun ones right before the holidays and I wanted to get in a least 1 more race before my next full marathon in January. I started going through all the upcoming races: Santa Shuffle 5K, 12 K's of Christmas, Reindeer Run, etc. They all seemed EXTREMELY fun, but were really short and a bit pricey. Then I stumbled upon the Arizona Road Racers Desert Classic 30K for $35 dollars- SOLD! 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' and I immediately signed up for it!

Us after the race in our race shirts
The race started at 8:00am and we got there about 7:30. We got our shirts, chips, and race numbers and still had plenty of time to spare. Everything was VERY organized, and the shirts were pretty cool. All the girls got pink and the boys got blue. I was SO cold when we first got there that I put the shirt on over my tank top to try and keep warm and ended up keeping it on for the entire race. 

Since it was a smaller race, the 5K, 10K, Relay, and 30K all started at the same time. It was an out and back course along a canal- which meant it was a very flat and easy course. Surprisingly, it wasn't crowded at all! And the small group of people I did see around me, got smaller and smaller as we passed the 5K turn-around point and then the 10K turn-around point. 

I absolutely LOVED this race! (I seriously think I did so well because of the massive amounts of cupcakes I consumed the night before while celebrating National Cupcake Day. I may need to start including a cupcake or three in my pre-race meals! ;)

The weather was beyond perfect once the race started- it was cool with a slight breeze. The course was great- since it was along a canal you didn't have to worry about cars or anything and could really just zone out and run.

Something that I really think made this run so great (besides the cupcakes) was my pre-race dinner the night before. The last few races I've done I've eaten a steak with a baked potato- since it's what 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' eats before a race and he LOVES it- it really works for him. Well, the night before this race we went out on a date to the Italian restaurant we both used to work at and I ended up getting what I used to get before all my races: rigatoni pasta with broccoli and chicken- no sauce. I will be sticking with this from now on. It really works for me. I never felt tired or like I wanted to quit and didn't have any issues like I did in Las Vegas.

I was shocked at how great I felt during the entire race. Usually, as I'm running and I pass the mile markers I think 'Oh my gosh.... I'm ONLY at mile 5?!?!'  but during this race, every time I looked down at my watch (there were no mile markers) I was shocked at how far I was and thought 'I'm already at mile 7?! What?!' The miles seriously were flying by and I was on cloud 9. Since it was an out and back course, I was able to pass our friend, Brady and Jasen and give them both high 5's! Once I hit 13 miles, I knew I only had a little over 5 miles to go and decided to pick up the pace. (I have no idea how fast I was going because my watch went crazy for this race with the pace and just kept increasing my pace 5 seconds every mile I ran... and it had me starting out with an 8:06 minute mile-which doesn't happen except for in my dreams.) 

What sucked is that when I was coming up on mile 16, I was running head first for the finish line. I thought there was no way I already ran 18.6 miles and was already done. But as I got closer and closer, I began to think maybe my watch was wrong on the mileage and time too and I really was done..? Boy that was that a real funny joke! Right when I was about 10 yards from the finish line about to start waving my hands in the air like I just don't care I see 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' and he tells me we make a sharp turn and we still have 2 miles to go. (Yes, that's right, 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' finishes the race himself and then waited for me and ran the last 2 miles with me- he is amazing!!) I still was feeling great and told 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' that so he began to push the pace. We talked about how his race went and he continued to pick up the race. Once we were less than a mile away from the finish line 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' told me to finish with nothing left in me and to try and push a sub-8 minute pace. I felt like I was sprinting the entire time but just tried to stay beside him, it felt AMAZING! 

Once it was over, I seriously wished it was a marathon because I wanted to keep running and felt SO great. 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' and I made our way to some chips and water and left. We stopped and got some food at a Four Peaks and headed home. 

I wish I would have picked up the pace before mile 13. I have a tendency to go out really slow and conservative until I am almost done because I'm scared I will run out of energy and not be able to finish. I have no idea why- I've never not finished a race?

I will be doing this run again! It was great- cheap, flat, easy, amazing weather, and not too crowded... what else could you ask for in a race?! 

Do you prefer smaller or bigger races? 

Have you ever done a fun run? Like the 'Santa Shuffle'?

Saturday, December 15, 2012

One of my FAVORITE days of the year!!!

Happy National Cupcake day everyone!! I hope everyone is out celebrating and enjoying TONS of delicious cupcakes- I know I am! :)

Do you see my penguin on a cupcake ornament?! It's my favorite! :)
Craziest thing, when me and Jasen went to our cupcake store- they had NO CLUE it was National Cupcake day!?!? Shouldn't that be discussed in the employee training or something? Hopefully next year, they get their stuff together and have a huge party or free cupcakes or something. 

Two years ago, (before there was the most amazing/delicious/cutest cupcake store 1 mile from our house- that apparently I refer to as "our cupcake store") I went a little crazy and made a TON of cupcakes to celebrate: funfetti and chocolate!

I didn't get a picture of the finished product, probably because my hands were covered in frosting and I was too busy eating them all!! :) Definitely one of the best days of the year! :)

Happy Celebrating!!! :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Last of Las Vegas

Monday was our last day in Vegas. We packed up, checked out, and headed to meet Brianne for lunch at her work.

Brianne works at a make-up store, and when we stopped in before lunch I felt like I was in make up heaven! I wanted everything. She definitely hooked us up with some major discounts too! Thanks Brianne! :)

Once we got our awesome make-up, we headed over to ' The Meatball Spot' for lunch. It's exactly what you think it is: your choice of meatballs and sauce. I got a meatball sandwich and it was AMAZING! Everyone LOVED it. We will definitely be going back there the next time we are in Vegas.

We chatted it up for a bit, walked Brianne back to work, and then said good-bye. 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' and I hopped in my car, Herbie, and took off on the 5 hour road trip home. Luckily, we survived going over the new, terrifying bridge over the Hoover Dam... always a plus! ;)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Vegas Race Recap

Sunday was the day of the half marathon, it didn't start until 4:30pm and I've never done a night race before, so I wasn't really sure what to do all day. I decided to make 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' match me, and just followed his lead. :)

My tutu didn't have all the cookies on it yet. And that was the 'run happy' beanie he won.
We slept in, and then got up and set out to eat breakfast and get stuff to make sandwiches for lunch. We got the sandwich stuff and settled on Ihop for breakfast. It took FOR-EV-ER!! It took so long that we ended up not even making the sandwiches later on.

After the worlds-longest-breakfast, we went back to the hotel and watched football. (Let me rephrase, the boys watched football and I worked on my costume some more. Yes, I am a procrastinator ok?) I also gave in and took some really-awesome pictures with 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' that he had been BEGGING me to take with him. ;)

This is our 'ganster' face. Obviously, I nailed it
 Before I knew it, it was time to get ready and head down to the start. It was pretty windy, so I was nervous about how my cookies and tutu would hold up... 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' REFUSED to dress up as a giant cookie but did end up wear a cookie on his race belt. It was adorable! 

Jay and Anna dropped us off at the start and we immediately got into the super long lines for the bathroom and headed to our corrals. (Since Jasen is super-duper fast he was in #5 and I was in #12.) He dropped me off in #12 and kept on going to #5.

The last time we were in Vegas we took a picture in the Hooters car, so we had to keep with tradition!
The timing really worked perfectly. I think I waited in my corral for maybe 10 minutes before the start. As we slowly made our way towards the start line, I jumped out and used the port-a-potties one more time. (Only in Vegas would they have hot-pink port-a-potties!)

I quickly got back in the front of my corral and some-guy-dressed-as-elvis counted us down, and off we went.

The wind was insane. 5 minutes in, I was already looking ahead for the turn-around point because I wasn't sure how much longer I could make it. The turn-around was no where in sight.... so I did the next best thing. I found the tallest, biggest guy I could and ran behind him. It worked like a charm too! Added bonus, he was totally going my pace!

It was so cool to run down the Las Vegas strip at night. We ran past the iconic "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign and runners were actually stopping and waiting in line to get their picture taken in from of it! We also ran by the Pawn Stars shop and runners were stopping and going in there too. (When people said they just run this race for fun- they literally were not kidding!!)

I saw SOO many Elvis costumes and someone dressed up as 'that-guy-from-the-Hangover'. I eventually lost my wind-breaker-dude and was on my own. :( However, it was beyond great to have so many people scream out "GO COOKIE MONSTER!" or "Coooookies!!" at me and definitely made me smile.

This was not my best race by far- my stomach started hurting about half way through and never stopped. I had brought a water bottle with me (after hearing the horror stories about the water last year), but still needed to used the water stations to refill it. (I don't know if that's what caused my stomach issues but they didn't start until after I started drinking the Vegas water. It could all be coincidence though...) All the volunteers were awesome at the aid stations and were non-stop cheering for everyone- it really helps, especially when you want to quit. I also grabbed a Gu at an aid station (I have NEVER used GU's in my life, but I figured it couldn't make matters worse.)

One thing I thought was weird, were the mile markers. I didn't see one mile marker until we reached mile 9 and even then there wasn't an actual 'marker', it was a lady at a corner screaming "THIS IS MILE 9! YOU HAVE REACHED 9 MILES!" I had my GPS watch so I guess I wasn't really 'looking' for them, and it was dark- but usually they are pretty obvious.  Then at  mile 11, I think the marker fell over or something because it was some spectator trying his hardest to hold up the sign in the crazy wind.

The last 2 miles were amazing. We merged with the full-marathon runners and were headed back on the strip. People were on both sides of the road and on all the bridges cheering and screaming for all the runners. We were SO close, and yet I was still barely moving.

Once we reached the last mile, I forced myself to pick up the pace. I just kept telling myself 'Run as fast as you can for 10 minutes and it will be over'. I could see the finish line and was getting closer to it. I heard a familiar voice scream out "HEY COOKIE MONSTER! GO COOKIE MOSTER!" I turned and saw Jay and Anna screaming and waving to me!!

Pretend the sweat isn't there
 SO awesome to see them, and definitely kept me going. I was so close to the finish line and I knew 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' would be there waiting so once again, I tried to pick up the pace.

I finally finished. 2:28. It wasn't the PR I was hoping for but with the crowds, crazy wind, and stomach-ache I did the best I could. All I wanted to do was sit down once I finished, but I couldn't. They fence in all the runners and you're forced to keep walking. They give you your medal, some water, chocolate milk, gatorade, food, and everything else you could want (but didn't want to carry) except cupcakes- no one ever has cupcakes!

 I finally made my way out and found 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter'. I was able to sit down on a curb for about 2 minutes while Jay and Anna made their way over to us.

Guess what they brought us?! CUPCAKES!! I was SO excited to see cupcakes them!! I again, just wished I could sit down so I could eat them!

They had Sprinkles ANNNND glitter on them! My favorite!
 We then had to walk 2.68 miles back to the car parked at Hooters. (Yes, I know exactly how far it was because I forgot to turn off my watch. Opps!) We grabbed our wallets, left the tutu, and headed inside for dinner.

We ordered our food and I was seriously not feeling well. (I think 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' could tell right away, because he kept asking me it I was OK.)

Right after our food came out, I knew I was going to be sick. I went to the restroom and THANK GOSH it was empty. (I could already hear the jokes about the Cookie Monster loosing her cookies). I felt a MILLION times better!

When I got back to the table 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter' asked if I wanted to leave and go back to the room. I told him I felt SO much better and was ready to win all my money back!! Yeah.... $40 dollars lost at roulette later... I was broke and ready to leave.

'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter's' friend Brianne lives in Vegas, and met up with us for some late night gambling. Once we headed back to the room, we were all hungry again and decided to go get food. Our first choice of Weinerschnitzel was closed. We went to a small bar and realized I forgot my ID at the room and Jay only had a paper ID (long story) that they wouldn't accept. So, we got kicked out.

Moving right along, we found a Buffalo Wild Wings and again got rejected with my lack of ID and Jay's paper ID. However, they said we could get to-go. SOLD! 1 hour and 20 minutes later..... (I really wish I were kidding here) we had our food and headed back to the room.

We ate our food so fast and immediately went to bed, it was only 3-something in the morning. This is what everyone does in Vegas right? ;)

We leave tomorrow and I'm super bummed. I've had such a blast here! 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Viva Las Vegas!

This weekend 'Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter's' friends, Jay and Anna, went up to Las Vegas to celebrate their wedding anniversary and we got to tag along! Not only did we tag along for the fun, but we both ran the Rock n' Roll half marathon!!

View from our room
We left for Vegas after work on Friday and got up there around 10. They were already there and checked in, so we dropped off our bags and headed to Hooters for dinner. (Keepin' it classy here! :))
The highlights of Hooters would probably be that Jasen (aka Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter) ate wings that the waitress told him were "80% butter" and he said that was under estimating!! GROSS! And then the small fact that I lost $100 dollars playing roulette in less than 10 minutes- no joke! I bet on black every time and it never once hit- the second I lose all my money and stop playing.... BLACK! 

The next day, we had to go to the expo to pick up our race packets. On our way there, we decided to stop and get lunch. Someone threw out the word buffet, and next thing you know I'm three plates in ending with this beauty. 
Best pre-race fuel ever! ;)
I was so surprised at how organized the packet pick up and race expo was! I had read a lot of not so great reviews of the Vegas race, so I was pleasantly surprised. 

*Added bonus, I got an email saying that the coupon code I used was for "NYC marathoners" only and would be required to show our NYC registration when we picked up our packets....??! Neither me nor Mr. Sprinkles and Glitter were signed up to run the NYC marathon. I freaked, and when I called they informed me I would have to pay the 20% I saved. Bummer.... big $70 dollar bummer! 

Well when we got there and picked up our bibs, they gave them to us- with a big red piece of paper saying to verify our NYC registrations- and never got asked for any sort of verification or payment. It all happened so quickly I didn't even realize we were done with everything (and got out of paying) until we were walking into the 'expo' area. Not having to pay the $70 dollars was awesome! (Let's not forget about the $100 I lost at Hooters, ok?)

I tried to get Jasen to pose like the guitar guy, but he wouldn't go for it
So, we made our way into the expo and wandered around. There was an extremely large, weird looking bus in the middle expo and the company Brooke's had sponsored a whole carnival set up- complete with games and prizes! We of course, signed up and headed over to the prize area. (I saw they were giving out blue sunglasses (that would TOTALLY match my Cookie Monster costume), and immediately crossed all my fingers and toes that I would win those. Again, remembering what happened last night at Hooters, I knew luck was not on my side and I made both Anna and Jasen promise that if either won them, they would trade with me.)

Jasen won a t-shirt, but all they had was small so he got a super cool, bright blue beanie that says 'run happy' on it. And me? What did I win? ....The Cookie Monster blue SUNGLASSES! You would have thought I just won a million dollars I was so excited! Anna won the sunglasses too and we immediately opened them and tried them out. 

This was us, in front of the weird bus with our totally-awesome, Cookie-Monster-blue sunglasses and some random glass we found? (Seriously though, what's up with the bus?! Look at the dudes super-buff arm and then his face. And what is that long thing on the right? A sword?!)
As if winning the coolest sunglasses ever wasn't enough, I saw one of my blog/running idols, SkinnyRunner!! (She is a crazy-fast marathoner- who has actually WON marathons!) I knew she was going to be at the expo that day, but I for sure thought we were too late and missed her. I literally freaked when I saw her and Anna was the one who convinced me into going over to her and asking for a picture. Thank gosh she did! 

Not only did I meet her and take a few pictures with her, but I freaking made it onto her blog!! I know, I still can't believe it either!

Pulling an "LC"
Best expo ever! I saved money, won free stuff, and met one of my idols. What more could you ask for?!

After the expo, we headed to OutBack for some real race fuel. We ended up getting free appetizers because they set us at a table and had to ask us to move one table over. We hadn't even ordered our drinks and literally had to walk MAYBE 6-feet but if they wanted to give us free apps, we definitely were not going to argue.

After OutBack, we went back to our hotel and watched a movie while I finished up my costume. Can't wait to show you my home-made Cookie Monster costume in the next post!! :)