Monday, October 27, 2014

Tulsa Run

We signed up to participate in the 15K at Tulsa Run months ago. I can't believe it is already here. My training has been a lot of ups and down over the last month or so. Some weeks I was able to get in speed work and tempos and other weeks it just didn't happen. It is always a challenge to train in the heat, which never truly seems to let go until November.  I recently saw on the news that this October is one of the top 10 hottest on record for the state....we are still having temps near the 90's in October!  (Thankfully a cool front rolled in late today!!)

Saturday morning we left early 5:45 a.m., heading to Tulsa.  Several car loads full of friends traveled along with us.  A group of guys, including Roger, signed up to participate in the Masters Championship. They were speedy enough to take second place and win $50 each! Congrats guys!

Jason B., Roger, and Jason H. take second place at the 15K Championships at Tulsa Run.

The course is usually hilly, but this year it was extremely hilly! After we had signed up, they changed the course due to road construction. I'm pretty sure it was 85-90% hills. I felt like the entire run was uphill with a few downhills. It was definitely the toughest Tulsa Run that I've ever ran! Not only was the course tough, the weather was very warm. I was proud of finishing with a 1:15:27, which averages out to about 8:09 pace. Not a PR run for me, but a good confidence builder! (Secretly, I was feeling rather tough after running all those hills!)

After the run, the large group of us went to eat at Blue Moon Cafe. It was a great time to visit and enjoy some tasty food after a long run. If you are ever in the Tulsa area, I would recommend it!

Thinking about running Tulsa Run in the future? Find course details and more at the Tulsa Sports website.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Update and Return to Blog! took me a long time to get back into writing and posting on the blog.  The summer was enjoyable but very busy and the start to the school year, well, it's been a challenge as always. I've pretty much put everything creative on hold as other things were more important. I feel like it is time to get back into doing some of the things I love, so I'm putting my words into action with my first post in a very long time.

Much has happened since my last post...even prior to that post, so I've chosen a few of the highlights, some of my favorite things, amongst the last several months to share.

In June, we traveled to Sequim, WA (xoxoxo) and decided we were close enough to Seattle to run the Rock and Roll Half Marathon. Well, it actually wasn't that close, as we had to get up at 3:00 AM...(YES 3:00 AM!!) and drive to Seattle. Even with the long drive and challenging course, we had a blast! It was the first time that we signed up for the VIP tent and it was definitely worth it. We met fellow runners while there and enjoyed hanging out before and after the run. The day was absolutely beautiful!

                                                 Seattle Rock and Roll Half Marathon, June 2014

Rog and I hanging out after the run...

After the run, we enjoyed many things in Sequim. There's so much to do! We visited two different Lavender farms (Purple Haze and Victor's Lavender Farm), ran along a trail to Port Angeles one afternoon, hiked to waterfalls, spent time on the beach, visited Hurricane Ridge and Dungeness Spit...and so much more. I could probably write a blog post about each day and what we saw along the way. I always love visiting the Pacific Northwest and this was definitely another amazing trip. There's nothing better than the ocean, the mountains, and perfect weather....

Purple Haze Lavender Farm. Lavender ice cream, lotion, spray, just about anything you could
dream of...made of LAVENDER! I would love to work here. 

My favorite running trail....right beside the ocean. It was incredible listening to the waves
and the rustle of the leaves in the trees (along the side not in photo). I wish I could run on this trail every day! 

Running along the trail to Port Angeles....we stopped in town and shared a
Dairy Queen float before running back!

Sol Duc Falls in Olympic National Park
Located behind the rental we stayed was a beautiful rocky beach and amazing Protection Island. There's a really interesting story behind this island if you'd like to read it. I loved sitting on the porch and listening to the waves. I also loved watching the wildlife. During our visit we saw a killer whale the first day! We also saw bald eagles, seals, and a variety of other birds.

Ocean view of Protection Island one evening...I'm in love. xoxo

Leaving all that beauty behind was hard! I often wonder if people who live in such beautiful places take the nature for granted or if they truly enjoy it each day.

After arriving home, "Project Declutter" began. It's always a long process, but I did clean out and reorganize a closet and several drawers. We even did a little decluttering in the garage. I'm still not done with this project and hope to work on it more next summer as we have a lot of clutter!! 

Everything pulled out of the closet....

Two very cute beagles, but not such good helpers. ha!
We also had an extra job or two that we worked during the summer. Seems like there was something to keep us busy every day! 

It wasn't long before it was time to start back to school. I'm thankful for the time we had to journey to other places and get some much needed maintenance done around the house. I was also thankful for a little extra time with family.

The days since August have flown by quickly and I'm in denial that it is nearly November! A few things to look forward to in the coming months....Tulsa Run, Tulsa Half Marathon, a new book adventure with Keri Smith's The Imaginary World of ___________,(remember Messy Book?) and more of Life Book 2014. I'm looking forward to sharing each of these and more!

Take care and have a great weekend!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Blogging Break Coming to an End

I didn't intend on taking such a long break away from the just that life happened to get ultra busy and I had more to keep up with than possible. Things are slowing a bit and I have so much to share on the blog. A few things that are on the way.....race report from the Seattle Rock and Roll Half Marathon, a tutorial on creating your own painted coasters, and a DIY easy lotion. I'm excited to be sharing some of this very soon! In the meantime, I hope everyone is doing well and having a great summer.

A view from my sister's pool. We had a great time swimming
Sunday afternoon!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

OKC Memorial Marathon

Rain, thunder, lightning....and a TWO hour delay to the marathon! This Memorial run was definitely memorable.

The day started early....3:30 a.m. It's always strange waking up when it is still dark outside! The dogs were a little confused, but willing to have their breakfast early too. Leaving the house around 4:30 a.m., we headed for downtown OKC, found our usual parking spot, and walked to where we were meeting friends. After hanging out for awhile, we left for the corrals. It had been raining lightly, but that didn't bother any of us, we were eager to get moving! It was already crowded and a challenge to make our way down the sidewalks and into the corral. If I could change something about this event, it would definitely be to make more side entrances for participants. We had barely made it into the corral and completed a few warm-ups when they announced the first delay. The original start time was 6:30 a.m., now delayed to 7:00 a.m. Sounds of discontent could be heard throughout the streets, but everyone stayed where they were and patiently waited. As 7:00 a.m. came closer, another announcement was made...the race would be delayed until 8:00 a.m.! Runners were advised to leave the corral area and seek shelter in a nearby parking garage. At this time, rain had started to fall more heavily, and there was significant lightning in the area. We tried moving to the garage, but it was packed! Luckily, a friend's car was nearby and we spent our time hanging out with one another. We hadn't heard if the run had been delayed further, so we decided to walk back towards the start line. On our way over, It started pouring again and we had to take shelter until a narrow ledge at the post office.

Seeking shelter just before the can barely see me in the yellow rain poncho under the US Post Office sign. (Original video clip from Channel 5 News.)
We were wondering if the run would happen at all, as we had heard that if the delay lasted past 8:00 a.m. the roads would not be closed and the race would have to be canceled.

Nearly two hours after the original start was scheduled, it was announced that we would begin at 8:15! Everyone was excited and more than ready to run! 

And....we're off!! In this video still you can see Roger as we get started....he's right in the middle wearing the blue singlet! Run, Roger, Run!
(News Channel 5/OKC Memorial Marathon Promotional video)
After sitting and waiting for so long, it felt great to finally be moving. The first two miles went by quickly and I even saw a friend, Julie, along the course. We ran together for a short while.

I loved seeing the crowd support along the way! I saw several students and friends, gave many high fives to some awesome kids, and even shared and received encouragement from fellow runners. I felt decent the first 6-7 miles, even though I was running low on nutrition (Remember...I ate at 3:30!! with only a small snack at 5:30, but that was over 3 hours ago). I had half of my GU around mile 4 and the other half around 7. I ran the pace I had hoped for the first half (about 8:00 minute pace), the next couple miles I slowed a little more and even more after that. I took several walk breaks and was starting to feel very tired. As I was going along Classen, I saw Julie again and we ran/walked together some more. 

The sun was coming out and it was heating up. Heat + humidity + low calories = Get to the finish line fast! It was a welcome sight to finally make it towards the green FINISH banner. The crowd was cheering for all of us and the announcer was calling out names of finishers as we ran across the line.

Roger was waiting for me just past the finish. We grabbed some water, chocolate cookies, and orange slices (those cancel out the cookie calories, right?) We stayed awhile and visited with friends, then headed home for a shower and some real food! 

It was a memorable experience, and I'm always thankful for the opportunity to be able to run. :) 

**As we didn't take our iPhones (due to the rain), I didn't get any pics! There are quite a few at Race Photo Network... bib 12226. 

Saturday, April 26, 2014

OKC Memorial Marathon Eve

It seems unreal that in just a few hours I'll be waking up to leave for downtown OKC.  Time went by quickly since that first training day several months ago. There have been ups and downs throughout training, but I still intend on doing my best and having a great time! In the last few days there have been forecasts of tornadoes, large hail and rain. Not unusual for this time of year here. Hopefully, things will change between now and in the morning, and everyone will enjoy the event!

Half Marathon gear ready to go...

Good luck to everyone running in the morning!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

A Little Quiet Time...

Where have the last several weeks gone? I can't believe my last post was over a month ago! The last month has been filled with half marathon training, overcoming some health issues, keeping up with the never-ending "to do" list, and squeezing in moments of art here and there. This afternoon, I'm thankful to have a few minutes of quiet time to get back on track. Well, mostly quiet, except for Abbey's cute snoring.

It's the perfect afternoon for napping....I think I should join her!

I was able to spend some time last night creating some cute Easter cards for my mom, dad, and sister. I used the ideas I learned from one of the Life Book 2014 lessons to create two "Quirky Animals" cards....a bunny and an elephant.

My sister chose to keep the pink bunny, while my mom and dad wanted
the purple elephant.

The Quirky Animals turned out very cute!

Well, my quiet time is coming to an end. I need to get some house work done, make some body lotion bars as gifts, finish some laundry, get lunches ready for tomorrow, and sneak in an hour run at some point. Too bad the weekends can't be 3 days long! 

I hope each of you had a blessed time with family over the holiday weekend! Have a great week!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

New Art Supplies


I love getting new art supplies. After hearing so many wonderful things about Posca Paint Pens, I decided to give them try. They aren't easy to find, so I was happy to see them on Amazon. I ordered a set of 8 fine tip pens and received them within a few days.

The pens are amazing. They easily glide over a variety of surfaces such as wood, canvas, paper, and glass. So far I have only used them on watercolor paper and canvas. The colors are vibrant and the ink flow is smooth. Even though they are "fine" tipped, I think I would also like to have the extra fine tip for writing words....adding them to my wish list now!

Here are a few of the mixed media journal pages I've completed using the pens....

Posca Pens used for outlining flowers and drawing symbols. I
used a Sharpie pen to do the writing at the lower left corner.

On this page I primarily used the white posca pen for highlighting
and details. 

Both pages were created based on lessons from the Life Book 2014 class (lessons by Alena Hennessy and Tamara Laporte). Since I am still working on the 29 Faces Challenge (even though it is finished!), I am counting the girl on the swing as face #10.

Work in progress on canvas...posca pens used for outlining and adding
shapes...I'll post the final pic when it is completed. 

I can definitely say that if you are thinking about purchasing Posca Pens, they are well worth the investment. I love mine!