Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Mostly Wordless Wednesday

Happy Wednesday!  It is supposed to get nasty out, by that I mean blowing snow, cold and below zero wind chill temps tonight.  Here is to hoping there are tolerable running conditions tomorrow on my day off!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

BTB Sunglasses Winner and other stuff

Oops I meant to post this yesterday.  The winner of the BTB sunglasses is Jen from Running with the Girls.  Congrats Jen!  Hope you love your BTBs as much as I love mine!  Send me your info and I will get you in touch with the right people. :) I LOVE my BTB sunglasses so if you are in the market for new ones these are some that I would recommend and they are pretty affordable too!

Yesterday was awesomely nice out.  Sun was shining, wind was hardly a factor.  Love it!  I can't believe it is nearly December and overall the weather hasn't been that bad so far.  I am dreading when the below zero weather hits.  Not my favorite for running.  I ran 7.5 miles yesterday and then decided it was way to nice out and went for another three mile run.  I made the kids play outside and I ran around the driveway and the field while they played.  They thought they were being abused I am sure, but I wanted to run run run! I think I could have kept going but the kids kept fighting and running quarter mile loops gets really boring after awhile and frustrating when the kids don't want to get along.

I just feel like I can't run enough right now and I love that.  I used to think 5 miles was a longish run and now it feels like 5 miles is a short run.  I want to run 8 or 9 miles and more.  Maybe my body is getting ready for a marathon in 2012?  Last week on the DailyMile I logged 40 miles.  That is the most I have ever done.  It feels good.  I feel good.  I am not excited for the coming winter months when those nasty below zero weather patterns come in and the roads turn to ice.  I am so determined to keep running outside and keep logging as many miles as I can!

I have another fun giveaway coming up so be watching for that, hopefully it will be up on Wednesday, which is tomorrow!

I have not got the Christmas decorations out yet.  I think we will be getting a tree this weekend and will wait to do it then.  I don't want to get it all out if we don't have a tree up yet.   I haven't played the music yet, because I don't have the tree and the decorations up.  The longer I wait to play the music the more I will still like the music by the time Christmas gets here.

Are you listening to Christmas music yet?
Are you done decorating, if you decorate at all?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Looking to the Future (its right around the corner).

Thanks for all the birthday wishes yesterday!  I loved it! You guys are all awesome.

I found this on Pinterest.  If you want to follow me on Pinterest you can find me HERE

December is always a hard month.  It is light later in the morning and dark earlier at night.  It has the shortest day of the year.  It is usually cold, snowy and seems to have at least one long spell of below zero weather.  It isn't as enjoyable to be outside.  As if this weren't enough it is the Christmas season.  Everywhere you go there are plates full of Christmas cookies and goodies of all kinds begging you to eat them.  Neighbors give them to you, family members give them to you, co-workers bring them in to the lounge where everytime you go in to get a glass of water they are crying out to you "eat me eat me"!

It would be a lot easier if all those goodies didn't taste so good. I have a hard time just taking one bite or one small piece, especially if I am hungry.  Once I get started I tend to eat way more than I meant to.  As a result weight tends to creep on and my pants start getting tighter than I care to admit by New Years.   SO discouraging.

So far this year I have managed to keep my weight pretty steady.  I am happy right where I am at and am hoping to keep it that way.  All the mileage I have been running lately has been helping I think.  Last year at this time my jeans were starting to get tight.  I try to never worry about my weight.  I step on my scale a couple times a week, but i don't stress over the number as long as my jeans fit.

Being as yesterday was my birthday, I did eat cake.  My husband and kids got me an ice cream cake and my Mom made me a German chocolate cake with raspberries and whip cream on top instead of frosting.  Soo yummy.  HBBC gives you one point for 7 servings of fruits and veggies a day.  This has pointed out to me how bad I have been lately about getting my servings of fruits and veggies in.  It seems so much easier in the summer when there is an abundance of fresh stuff around.

'So my December goals (i know I am a little ahead of the game here)

1. Eat more veggies
2. Eat more fruit
3. Keep running mileage up between 20 and 30 miles a week
4. Keep healthy snacks in my lunch bag so I am not so tempted by the holiday treats!
5. Keep lots of fruits and veggies on hand.

What are your tricks to avoid the holiday bulge?
Sometimes I eat one and throw the rest in the garbage or put it in the freezer.

Have you started on your December goals?

Sunday, November 27, 2011

It's My Birthday!

 Today is my birthday!  :)  Yay!  I love birthdays.  Yes I will be having my cake and eating it too.

 Cake is one of  my favorite foods!  Yummy!

My parents gave me this running log for my birthday.  I only have to wait 33 more days to get to use it as it doesn't start until January.
 Here is what is looks like on the inside.  It is full of quotes and advice.  I use the Dailymile but I really like writing things down too and having it in my hands when I want to review something.

I also got some birthday money, I haven't decided how to use it yet, but I bet it will be running related!  Just a guess!
We went out to eat last night for my birthday.  We went to Famous Dave's and I had Texas Beef Brisket , so good. Now I am headed out for a longish run to start off being 34 on the right foot and then the left.  :) 

Last day to enter my BTB Sunglasses giveaway, i will announce a winner tomorrow! Good luck! I am loving my BTB sunglasses!

Do you use a running log to write down your miles or do you do it all on the computer?
What is your favorite kind of cake?  I love German chocolate, and lemon cake, and carrot cake with cream cheese frosting.  Mmm ..cake. 

Saturday, November 26, 2011

I ran naked and it felt great!

Cola is a busy dog and sometimes that means he feels like he has to go play with the horses before I go for a run. Not a big deal if I am running from home, but if I am taking the kids somewhere while I go for a run it can mean a stinky dirty ride in the car.  The kids don't like to take him because, well sometimes the dog has gas.  Dog farts are just nasty. But how can I leave this sweet little face at home?  
He just seems to know when I am going running and is the first to jump in the car when I open the door.  He is determined not to be left behind. Can't say that I blame him, I am pretty determined not to miss out on my run either. So we all just hope that Cola can hold it in a little longer.

Yesterday, I took the kids down to my parent's house while I ran.  Cola thankfully spared our noses.  I had just go the kids in the house and was talking to my Mom when a horrible gust of wind came up and blew over their grill outside and generally was making a mess of things outside.  We righted the grill and then ran back in the house to stare at the craziness going on outside.  My Mom looked at me and asked "You want to go running in that? "   

"No" I laughed, but lucky for me the winds slowed down to a more tolerable level and  headed out the door only to discover..I WAS NAKED.  I had left my Garmin AND my Ipod at home.  Aack!  I briefly considered driving home just to get them but decided to just go for it.  I know the distances roughly and knew I wanted to run 6 miles, so off I went.

I was pretty good about not trying to check my watch to see my pace.  I think I only tried 10 or 20 times in the first mile or so after that I was good until I tried to pause it while I took a picture.  I couldn't believe how naked my wrist felt.  Funny.  I missed the Garmin way more than I missed the ipod, but it did feel good to not worry about pace and time and just enjoy the run, especially the last three miles when I turned around and got to run with the wind instead of against it!

Here is what I stopped to take a picture of.  There are lots of these rocks on my family's ranch and we had so much fun playing on them while growing up.  I always thought this one was really cool because it looks kind of like an Egyptian pharaoh.  Like it could be in front of a pyramid or something.

My run felt so good yesterday and when I got home I wanted to run again!  I did a workout instead to work my arms and core. 

I found out yesterday also that I get to be a Fitfluential Ambassador!  I am so excited about it. It looks like it is going to be a really great opportunity and I am the first one in Montana.

Yep, I am in the club!

You can still enter to win a pair of BTB sunglasses HERE  Last day to enter is tomorrow.
Where was your favorite place to play when you were a kid?

Friday, November 25, 2011

Turkey Trot 5k and Street Mile Recap, Yay for chip timing!

I was pretty excited for the 5k, there were nearly 2000 runners entered, which is awesome considering it was the first year for this race.  Great turnout!  My goal for the race was to keep my pace in the low 7s , I wasn't really sure what to expect considering I have not done any speed work to speak of since mid September.  The first mile felt good.  Great really and I kept having to remind myself to slow down.

Post race picture with my sister and my first ever post race beer!
Mile 1   6:52

The second mile started to hurt a little but I was still passing people and doing all right my breathing wasn't as under control as I wanted it to be, but I was doing all right

Mile 2   6:55

The third mile I was struggling.  It just hurt, I was starting to feel the lack of speed training and I was doing all i could to really hang in there.  My legs were tired, my breathing was struggling and I wanted to be done!

Mile 3   7:12

I pushed it the last little bit and finished stronger

.13  6:32 pace

They only did awards for the top three in each age group and the age groups were 30-39.  I finished 4th.  I am happy with my time considering the lack of speed work.  What it has done is rekindled my interest in doing some speed training!  YAY!  I just haven't felt like doing it lately, but doing this race reminds me how much I love it and I want to be FASTER!

The Street Mile Recap

I refueled after the 5k with an Island Necter Roctane and two cups of water, used the porta potty twice and visited with some friends until it was time to line up for the race

I was really nervous.  The girl who had finished right behind me in the 5k was doing the street mile too so it was fun to have someone to visit with while we waited.  I debated taking off my long sleeve shirt and running in my tank.  I didn't, I later regretted that when i got hot.

The first half mile I felt like I was floating, it felt great, I was loving it.  I passed a lot of girls and kids that started out too fast.  I didn't really have a goal time in mind but wanted to run it faster than 6:30.    From about the half mile to .8 miles I was hurting and struggling to stay under a 7 min/mile pace.  Right at the end a girl went sprinting past me and I struggled to keep up, friends on the sideline started yelling at me to run faster, she was going to catch me.  I didn't know who she was, but that was enough for me to kick it into a higher gear and finish strong.

My garmin said 6:35.  Just under my B goal.  Bummer.  Then I was kind of mad that if I had all that energy to kick it in at the end why hadn't I pushed harder sooner.  (Never mind that I was dry heaving as soon as I did get across the finish line.) 

I just know I can do a mile faster because I have before during other races, but I'll take it!

My sister told me I was the second girl in, only the girl who had sprinted past me at the end beat me.  Cool!
So we waited for awards and when they got to top overall females for the mile the third place girl was the sprinter, the second place girl was Niki, who was right behind me and I thought what the heck?  Then it clicked and I looked at my also confused sister and said "CHIP TIMING" it was right there I realized I won!
I was 11th out of 281 total finishers.  I think their chip timing was a little off since they had my time at 7:01 and I started my Garmin right after the gun went off and stopped it right across the finish line.  Other people were thinking it was off too.

Woohoo!  I was so excited!  I won a gift basket of some yummy foods.  A pair of Redstar sunglasses.

Gift basket of goodies, lined with a t-shirt
The race bags had a great t-shirt, a $500 Redstar giftcard, and a lot of local and downtown Billings coupons and things in them.  Pretty good overall!  Check out the sunglasses.  I would not have picked out white frames, but I do like them and think they will be great to run in.  They are even polarized.
 I seriously love the shirt, it is nice and long in the arms and the body, I love the colors.  Oh yeah and did you notice my "medal" for winning the girls mile race?  It is made out of a scrap of leather.  Very original!

 and we got finisher pint glasses, since I did both races I got two.  I had a glass of porter house ale when I got done.  It was pretty good!
 My only complaint about the race was for the 5k we ran a mile loop then started over so that we started running into walkers during the second mile who were doing their first mile and they were spread all over the street so that we had to weave through them.  Very aggravating especially when one stopped right in front of me and I nearly ran into her.  I may have cussed as I performed evasive maneuvers to avoid a collision. oops

 Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving, I know I did!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Thankful Edition

I am thankful for so many things and consider my life to be blessed in many ways. So here on Thanksgiving is a small list of things I am forever grateful for. Not all inclusive but a few of my favs off the top of my head.

My kids.  Love them so much.  They make me so happy and I love the way just thinking about them makes my hear swell up and want to burst out of my chest.

My husband.  My best friend.  I still remember walking into the bar 7 years ago and telling my friend I wanted that one. I just knew I was going to marry him.  3 months later we were dating and 9 months after that married. 

My parents.  Now that I am a parent I am just beginning to understand how much they did for me growing up.  They were and still are so supportive and always there when I need them.  Thanks Mom and Dad :)

My siblings.  Three of my best friends.  We fought a lot growing up but had a lot of great times too and I have the best memories playing with them when we were kids.  I can't imagine life without them  SO lucky to live so close to two of them.

My family.  Love my big awesome supportive family and that my kids love going to visit different relatives while I get my runs in and I have awesome people to watch them.

My in-laws.  I love that my kids are just as excited to see them even though they don't live as close as my family and we don't see them as often.  They are always loving and welcoming.

My job.  I have worked there for 11 years in January.  Amazing!  I love my job still after all these years.

My car.  I have had my car for 11 years.  Paid off for 8 years.  I am hoping it lasts another two when I have both kids in school and don't have a daycare bill and can afford a new one.

I live in the United States.  Home of the brave, land of the free.  Nuff said

My legs.  I love how many miles they allow my to run.  They are strong, lean and mean. 

Running.  I have found such stress relief and enjoyment in running.  It is my time.  Also a time to socialize and enjoy my competitive streak.  i love pushing myself and seeing how much more and faster I can run.

Happy Thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Looking for advice on a street mile race!

 If you haven't entered the BTB sunglasses giveaway, you can still do so HERE

 I was bummed to read Balancing Act clothing had this on their FB page yesterday.
Hello friends of Balancing Act Clothing,

I just wanted to thank you ALL for your support and interest in Balancing Act Clothing. I want to let you all know that after doing some soul searching, I've decided to stop making t-shirts for awhile. Someday when I can afford to quit my full time job, I would love to bring it back, but for now I have to focus on my real job and keeping my sanity :). I feel like I can't give this thing the attention it really needs to deliver a quality product on an efficient time frame.

If you are interested in Pixie Wings shirts I have 48 pre-printed performance shirts: tanks, t-shirts and long sleeves (sz S, M, L & XL) that I will start selling on my website Saturday, 11/26 and continue to sell until they are sold out. I will also continue to make and sell the "Enough" shirts to benefit the National Eating Disorder Association in order to fulfill my commitment with them. I will make an FB announcement when the website is back up.

Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and thank you again for your support!

Alissa Costello

Bummer.  I had got a tank recently on her shirts that had errors sale.  I love it.  Sorry about the toothpaste on the mirror, kids are messy.  I love the wings on the back of the tank and was wanting more from them.  :(  but I understand.  Sometimes we have to take care of ourselves.

 My little sister told me about these pictures of Katie Holmes sometime ago.  I think they are so much better than her no bra marathon pictures.  I think it is great she is confident enough with her mommy belly stretched skin to wear a bikini top to the beach.  Why?
 Because this is a lot like my belly looks like when I bend over.  My belly never was the same after my son.  Sometimes I wish I were that brave.  But then again maybe I just know better and keep it covered up!

 Wym over at A Taller Order had this on her blog the other day.  Cracked my up.  I loved She-Ra when I was little, and remember play He-Man and She-Ra with my little brother.  What is cooler than the Princess of Power?  My daughter has never seen She-Ra but LOVES all things princess of course.  Sigh

I bet She-Ra was a runner.  Just saying. Not sure what her top is but I am pretty sure she is wearing a running skirt, those shoes need to go though.

Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow!  I am doing a Turkey Trot 5k and then a street mile in the morning followed by dinner at my parents house!  I have not been doing any speed training so this will be interesting to see where I am at with that.  I have been putting in about 30 miles a week with lots of hills, so we'll see.  I do not expect a personal best, but I do want to good.  There are almost 1500 people signed up for the 5k and last I heard over 100 for the street mile.

I have to admit I am really nervous for the street mile.  I haven't run a mile race since..well I guess since we did timed miles in physical education in high school.  I am getting nervous about doing it after already having run a 5k.  

Trying to decide if I go all out for both.  I will have about 35 to 40 minutes to recover from the 5k before the street mile.  I really want to see how fast I can do a mile.  I think that should be enough recovery time.  What do you think? My priority is the street mile, but not sure if I will be able to not race my little competitive heart out on the 5k too. 

Have you done a mile race before?  Any thoughts, advice?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Ramblings and a FitDeck Winner

The weather has been beautiful the past couple of days.  A little cold but sunny, no wind and pretty great really for running.  I would say perfect but perfect for me is more like 50 degrees and getting to run in my running skirts!

I am loving these new Saucony tight I bought earlier this year and the blue pullover I got at Costco.  Yesterday I was trying out a Gelbot, so be watching for a review and giveaway on that. :)

 My legs have felt a little tired the last two days on runs so I am thinking maybe I should cut back a little on mileage this week and let them recover a little.  I only work one day this week so I will be tempted to run more than normal. 

So far I like the Gelbot and it fits into my handheld water bottle carrier so that makes it even handier! I forgot to mention the mp3 armband I got from Team Refuel also.  I love it.  It is more waterproof than the one I was using.  Now I need to get some new earphones as both of mine are not working very good anymore.  One pair only works in the left ear and the other only works in the right..if I could just combine them somehow!
 I am paticipating in the HBBC over at Run To the Finish so points for yesterday were
Run 9 miles = 9 points
20 minute BodyRock workout = 1 point
for a total of 1 points.

 And the winner of the FitDeck giveaway is...
 Who turns out to be..
Sarah send me your info via email and I will get that to Phil.  Also pick out the FitDeck you want HERE and let me know.  Thanks and CONGRATS!  :)  Sarah does not have a blog, I think she should though, hint hint Sarah  :)

have a great Tuesday everyone!

What kind of earbuds do you wear when running?  Do you recommend them?

Monday, November 21, 2011


You might remember when I was in the running for a grant from Team Refuel and I was begging for votes, and thanks to all of you I won.  :)  But we already knew that, the new news is that I got a package in the  mail Saturday with all of my Team Refuel winnings inside.  I got a really great hat with reflective markings on it.  A tech shirt that will be great for running in when it warms up.  A bag that is like a lot of other bags I have except this one has a zippered pocket on the front.  There was also a reusable ice pack and of course the $250 check.  :)  I started shoe shopping immediately online. 

The cool bag

The back of the shirt
I knew that one of the shoes I would order would be Asics Kayanos.  I have been running in that shoe for at least 10 years.  I love it.  It works for me.  The 18's are out.  Road Runner Sports was having a great sale and I got them for a super deal. I ran in the 16s and the 17s this last year.  Still am.  Thinking I will probably also get a pair of the 16s or 17s again for next year too.  I hope I like the 18s as much as I have all the others.

These are the ones I got...PRETTY!
I keep thinking of trying some other shoes, but I know these work for me and I hate to mess with it.  I haven't had any serious injuries.  I had a little plantar fasciitis last year, but really that is all.  :)  Some other minor things but I think those weren't related to the shoes I was wearing.

Anyone else see anything about this picture that looks funny?  I noticed it right off and wasn't going to post it, but gave in. 
Don't forget about the FitDeck Giveaway ending tomorrow and the BTB Sunglasses Giveaway.  

Do you stick with a shoe for years and years like I do or do you switch around a lot?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

BTB Sunglasses Review and Giveaway

I was given the opportunity to try out a pair of BTB sunglasses for a review recently. I had a hard time picking out a pair.  It is so hard to decide from pictures on the internet sometimes, but I was very happy with my choice. I picked the BTB 200, which are available on their website for $39.95.  I think price wise they are a great deal.  I have never spent more than $40 on sunglasses and probably never will.

First impressions of the sunglasses were good.  They have cushiony nose pads and are pretty light weight.  They are comfortable to wear and sit comfortably on my head.  I chose the crystal brown frames since my other sunglasses have a black frame.

Okay not the best picture ever, but you get the idea.  They have better ones on the website.
Some cool things about BTB

Starting December 9th they are going to be teaming up with he Testicular Cancer Society to break a Guinness World Record  for donating the most sports balls to charity in 24 hours. The balls go to the 'Marines Toys For Tots' charity.   I love the Marines Toys for Tots charity!  I hope they break the record!  Here is some more about the goal from their website:

The goal is to collect 8290 "sports" balls - thats one ball for each guy diagnosed with testicular cancer in the U.S. this year and then donate those balls to the Marine Toys For Tots Foundation for distribution to underprivileged children during the holiday season. 

Donating sports balls for underprivileged children falls right in line with BTB Sunglasses mission "to actively promote youth participation in all ball sports for a healthier and active lifestyle."

For every pair of sunglasses purchased from November 1st up to the event on December 10 there will be two balls donated to the Testicular Cancer Society.  From there the balls are donated to Marines Toys For Tots Foundation.
Want to learn more?  Check it out  HERE 

So now we know they are cool about donating to kids, but are their sunglasses worth the money?  They say they are basically $100 sunglasses being sold for under $50.  So I snooped around on their website and checked out the features page.  I am impressed.  I already liked the sunglasses for how they looked and how comfortable they are on my head, but now after reading all this I am really sold on them.    

So I compared them to my other sunglasses that I think I bought for about $40 earlier this year.  The BTB frames are thicker and seem more durable.  My old sunglasses also did not have the padded nose pieces, which are anti-microbial by the way.

Can you see how much thicker the BTB frames are?  PLUS the BTB frames have the "frame flex" technology, meaning they are more comfortable.  I am totally sold on these.

Want to win your own pair? (of course you do)

 Here's how you can enter:

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Brawl of the Wild

This weekend is a big one in Montana for college football fans.  It is the 111th Cat-Griz Brawl of the Wild.  One of college footballs oldest and biggest rivalries. Everyone in Montana has a side.

So you start seeing lots of fun things on Facebook like this


really dumb ones like this

The Montana State University Bobcats are ranked #1 in the nation and the University of Montana is ranked #7. I am not an avid football fan so I can't remember the division or whatever that they play in, but this is one game that I do watch :

Should be a good game!  My husband and I are both Cats fans. Our lounge at work is plastered with these and more. 

Finally may i just say, what is a girl to do.   I LOVE lululemon's running skirts so bad.  Yesterday this one showed up on the website.  Do I do it or not? My birthday is coming up next weekend, great little present for myself.
 I can't decide which I would get, but I do know I better figure it out, as they will be GONE soon.  Skirts never last long on the website. It is the run:your heart out skirt.  I love it.

happy Friday and have a great weekend!

What is your favorite team sports rivalry?
Did you enter my FitDeck giveaway?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

FitDeck Review and Giveaway

I was recently given the chance to review FitDeck.  I chose the body weight one since I work out at home and love body weight exercises.  It comes in a handy little case that you can store the cards in when not using them.  I like that a lot.  There are lots of different decks to choose from including prenatal, pilates, soccer, cross train, and boso-ball.

FitDeck, Inc. was founded in 2004 by fitness entrepreneur and inventor Phil Black. Black came up with the idea to create FitDeck after combining the fun of a card game he used to play in college with the rigors of his Navy SEAL training.

My deck is color coordinated into four categories
  • upper body
  • middle body
  • lower body 
  • full body
Some of the moves were very common ones that I had heard of before like pushups, lunges, jumping jacks, and crunches. Others were new to me like belly angels and lizards.

There are lots of ways to use the cards.  Here are a few they suggest:
  • Choose a set number of cards and do a different card every 60 seconds (including rest)
  • Perform 10 repitions of each exercise without resting in between
  • Perform 1st card at beginner level, 2nd at intermediate and 3rd at advanced, then repeat the cycle
  • Draw one card every hour and perform the selected exercise
  • Do all the cards of one set, meaning just the upper body or lower body, etc.
You can create your own ways to use them too.  I have used them a couple times in interval workouts.  I pick 4 to 6 cards and perform the exercise for 30 seconds rest 10, then go on to the next.  Each exercise gets performed 4 to 6 times.  Or until exhaustion.

Here are some other FitDecks that I think I need to try now.

Want to try one for yourself? These decks cost about 14.95 each, though some are a little more.  They would make great stocking stuffers!

Here is what you have to do.  Mandatory, be a follower of this blog.
Here is my first attempt at a Rafflecoptor Giveaway so I hope I did all this right! Never mind I couldn't get it to work. Hmm, I'm going to have to get some help for that, bummer.

So here is how you can enter. Leave a comment for all that you do.

1. Be a follower of this blog
2. Check out FitDeck's website and let me know which one you think you would pick.
3. Blog, tweet, and or share this on Facebook
4. Follow FitDeck on Facebook or Twitter
5. Follow me on Facebook or Twitter

okay so that is a lot of ways to enter.  Good luck.  a winner will be chosen using on 11-22

Disclaimer.  I was given this deck to review free of charge and was not compensated in any other way.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My Running Buddy Cola and Something I don't usually do

Several people have asked questions about Cola including asking if there were any runs that I did not take him on.  The answer is I take Cola on every run I go on and I have since he was 6 months old.  Occasionally if he is muddy or covered in manure i make him stay home while I drive the kids to someone's house and run from there.  He has gone on runs of up to 16 miles which is the furthest I have run. 
 You've seen pictures of him all grown up.  Here he is as a puppy.  So cute!
 The cat was bigger than he was when we brought him home!
 We have officially had him for a year now!  We almost lost him once when he got kicked in the head by a horse (hazards of country living) but he recovered and you can still feel a ridge in his head where the horse kicked him.  We thought he was a goner.  :(

Cola is a 5H stockdog. What is a 5H stock dog you ask? They are a working dog. Bred for working with sheepp or cattle.   

The 5 H's stand for herding, heeling, heeding, hardiness, and heading. Most of you are probably thinking WHAT?  If you want an explanation you can check it out HERE 5H stock dogs are roughly 50% Border Collie for the heeding, herding, and heeling traits; 25% Blue Heeler for heeling and hardiness traits; and 6% Bull Terrier for the hard-to-find heading trait as well as to add genes for a short, slick coat. The rest depends on the strengths of the particular strains of dogs used.    They are hard workers and can pretty much run all day.  They originated in Austrailia and my Aunt Linda and her husband started breeding them sometime in the early 1990's. 

They usually do not make good pets for people living in the city as they are so high energy and active.  If they get bored they start developing bad habits .  An 8 mile run is a walk in the park for my dog

Border Collies have a very high need for exercise and can be expected to have high indoor activity. They are vigorous dogs that require good hard exercise on a regular basis. They make good watch dogs and poor guard dogs. They have a high learning rate and a very high obedience level.
—Country Journal, December 1987.

They are generally great with kids, although when the kids start running around the house like crazy I usually have to put Cola out as he gets to excited and wants to jump on them.  

Okay here is something I don't usually do.  I don't really enjoy cooking or baking even though I adore eating, but we had a Thanksgiving potluck at work yesterday and I made my requested Sweet Potato Casserole.  I made it last year and everyone loved it.  I get so many recipe requests for it.  My mom started making this for Thanksgiving years ago and it really is the best way to eat sweet potatoes for Thanksgiving. 
I stole this picture from because I never got a picture of mine. 

ingredients list
  • 4 1/2 cups cooked and mashed sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, beaten
 Mix together and put into the bottom of a 9x13 pan.  I like to mix in a little cinnamon too.

Ingredients for the topping
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
mix together the flour and brown sugar, cut in butter with a fork until crumbly, and pecans and sprinkle over sweet potato mixture.

 Put in the oven at 350 for about 25 minutes and ENJOY!

Have you tried this kind of sweet potato recipe before?  What is your favorite way to eat them?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

He-Man Woman Hater Gates

I love that someone found my blog yesterday by searching "cheer leader camel toe spread".  What?  What does that even mean and I guess I really don't care to know. Sounds a little gross. I think I like the "redheaded female athlete" search a little better.

I had a pretty good if not slow run yesterday.  8.4 miles with some mud.  I had about 1.5 miles of running on a field road that was a little muddy, but not horribly so. It did get heavy on my shoes though. I did slip slide around pretty good  a couple times.

 I had to stop several times to empty little rocks out of my shoes and socks.  These pretty black momma cows are always quite curious about what I am doing but never get too close, thankfully although once calving season starts I won't run in a pasture where they are.  Some momma cows can be very protective and not so nice to you if they think you may be a threat and my poor dog Cola would most certainly not be welcome.
 Out of the field the roads weren't too bad.  Here is Cola again wondering what in the world I have stopped for again.  Seems like I stopped a hundred times to shed clothes, get rid of rocks, take pictures, open gates, drink some water, stretch, eat some chomps and on and on.
 Just another pretty view, if you love sage brush and wide open spaces and I do!  The sky was really pretty today.  A storm was working on rolling in and sure enough it started snowing later in the day so I was glad I got my run done in the morning.
 Of course one of the laws of the range is if you open a gate you close the gate.  I am always pleased to see these kinds of "cheaters" on gates.
Can you spot it?  It's the chain.  Makes closing the gate much easier.  I don't remember there being too many of them when I was growing up and my Dad likes to make He-Man Woman Hater Gates meaning they can be really hard to open and nearly impossible to close.  Thanks Dad for this one  :)   I can remember a couple gates where my sister and I had to work together with all of our strength just to close it and a few that we never could quite close so we would have to Jerry-rig it shut with some rope or loose wire we found.

Tell me one great thing about your day yesterday or today.
We are having our Thanksgiving potluck at work today...YUM!