The Most Perfect Day: 09-27-2008

Good morning! How’s everyone today so far?

Not too shabby here. Because two years ago today (9-27-2008) is the day I married the love of my life.




It was the most perfect day.

From getting ready in the afternoon…


to setting up the ceremony details…


From walking down the aisle…



and saying our “I do’s”


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to our first sunset walk as a married couple…


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from our first dance…



to partying it up with our very closest friends



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…yes, it was the perfect day 😀


I treated yesterday as a work day because today I have lots of fun stuff to do! Starting out with a run – and then a trip to the salon. I haven’t gotten my hair cut or highlighted since MAY! That’s waaayyyy too long for this girl.

I’ll be back this afternoon with a more typical post- and a sweet (and salty!) giveaway in honor or our anniversary 😀

Hope you guys all have a great Monday!


Weekend Wedding Wecap

Hey hey everyone! I’m finally home and FINALLY relaxing.

The husband and I had a VERY long day of travel today, starting at 8:00 a.m. when our ride to the airport came to pick us up. But let me rewind to last night – the wedding recap!!

As soon as I got done posting yesterday, I got ready and glammed up for the big event. I’m still so glad you all gave me great suggestions on what to wear.

I went with these two looks for wedding and then for reception:


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It was perfect! And I didn’t have to spend a dime 😀

Luckily, I found a ride to the wedding with some of the other spouses of the groomsmen, and when we arrived there, all the guys were standing outside with a beer. I don’t blame em – those tuxes looked like they’d be SO warm. Plus a beer is always great to calm pre-wedding nerves, whether it’s your own or you’re just in the bridal party 😉

Finally, the music started playing and the procession began…

My hunky groomsmen of a husband:




He cleans up well, don’tcha think? 😉

Her colors were black and red, and there were roses every where. The decor was so very pretty:



Candy Bar!



After the wedding, everyone was instructed to go downstairs for cocktails and hour devourers:



Yummy, yummy shiraz



Pecan/cranberry sauce cracker of some sort. Delish!

Had a couple glasses of wine and some delicious fruit and cheese, and when we all went back upstairs, they had transferred the wedding area into a reception area. It was an added bonus that we didn’t have to drive to get from the wedding to the reception.

Right after the wedding party was announced, it was time to cut the cake!




Fortunately, there were so many more veggie options than at the rehearsal dinner. I ended up getting a HUGE salad with balsamic vinaigrette dressing and an abundance of grilled veggies, a big hunk of bread, and some risotto:



Yum yum 😀 Oh, and the wine continued to flow.

After Steve and Amanda’s first dance, and several other dances, it was time to boogy down! The husband and I spent the whole night on the dance floor! He really impressed me because he wasn’t drinking much at all – usually it takes him quite  a few beers to cut a rug 😉



Around midnight the party wore down, and we took a cab back to the hotel and called it a night. It was such a fun wedding, and I am so so so happy for Amanda and Steve!                                          

This morning, albeit having countless  numerous glasses of wine, I didn’t feel too shabby! The shiraz I was drinking must have been pretty good quality 😉 Nevertheless, the early a.m. wakeup call was enough to make me grouchy, but a little before 8:00 another couple and we piled into yet another limo with our lattes and hightailed it to the airport.

Why a limo for four people you ask? Well…that’s just how we roll! I kid I kid 😉 My friend meant to ask for a car and accidentally got a limo! Doh! haha

When we got to the airport, my hunger really kicked in. I had hankering for a whole wheat bagel with cream cheese, but couldn’t find any, so I settled on this:



Minus the chemical-laden ranch, thankya! 🙂 Did the job perfectly.

Gotta love the fact that our flight was only an hour long. Gave us plenty of time to drive into the city!



We drove into the city, because the husband wanted to take me to Lululemon for Valentine’s Day! Score!


Got the groove crops and a cute stocking cap. Love ❤ Unfortunately, though, the trip to Lulu caused us to get stuck in the middle of a HUGE traffic jam. We were in stand still traffic for a good hour because of a wreck:



Yuck! We originally planned to stop off in a suburb for a nice Valentine’s Day lunch, but we didn’t get a move on from the jam until about 2:30. Thus our lunch plans were foiled, and instead, lunch was eaten in-lap:


Not so balanced, but oh-so delicious 😉

After we got out of the traffic jam, it was smooth sailing until we got home. Got home, unpacked, and met my friend Heidi at the gym for a run. I had a 3 mile easy run on my training plan, and she was starting day one of the couch to 5 K plan (YAY!!! A new running buddy!! :D) I wanted to get in some strength training, but I was WAY too excited to go and pick Niko up. I missed her so much for only being gone three days, haha. You all understand, right??

Obviously after this, I was starving, considering I hadn’t really eaten a real meal all day. I think my stomach was about to eat my back bone when I scarffed down this plate of Monical’s Pizza and a breadstick:



Wow…this turned out to be a supah long post! If you’re still with me, I commend you! I’m gonna go settle in with the hubski and watch a movie to round out V-day. I hope you all had a great Sunday 😀

Happy Valentine’s Day, all!! How did your day shape up? Regardless of when I had a Valentine or not, I’ve always liked to eat chocolate and watch a sappy romantic movie 😀

1st Anniversary Post # 1- Walk for the Mind

Hey hey everyone! Anniversary weekend is going fabulously so far! I have to make this blog fast, because we’re just making a quick stop at where we’re staying between festivities and dinner. So I will hereby name this post anniversary weekend part 1.

This morning Shane and I woke up bright and early to drive to Peoria to join my family for the Walk for the Mind. The Walk for the Mind is for brain cancer research, and the hubski and I went in support of my awesome cousin, Beth.

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Beth was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2004, and has handled it astonishingly. She’s pretty much the best. She was also my bridesmaid at this exact weekend last year! She’s beautiful, inspiring, and just astounding.


The walk started off with some celebratory speeches commemorating those who have lost their battle with brain cancer:

And those who are SURVIVORS!!! Yea!!! 😀

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And ended with a balloon launch


Then, was the 1 mile walk, in which all of the survivors and their family, friends, and supporters (and Niko!) walked.



It was so touching to be there. Last year, we were all in Florida for Shane and my beach wedding at this time, so we missed it, but I’m so glad we made it this year.

Plus, there were super cool goodies! We got a really neat canvas bag, along with a slew of food goodies:



Shane had planned an anniversary trip to: Starved Rock and August Hill Winery for the rest of the day, so we had to leave asap!

I’ll bet you can guess what part two of the anniversary re-cap will be! Hint: expect breath taking pictures followed by shenanigans 😉

Also…I wanted to make sure to say thank you, thank you, thank you for all of the happy anniversary wishes. It’s so great to be a part of this blogging community, and each and every well-wishes touches the heart!

Have a great Saturday! See you all tomorrow morning for a re-cap of my weekend of nature sights at Starved Rock, wineries, and a quaint, romantic Italian restaurant!


Some Days You’re the Bug…

…but today I was literally the windshield.

Mmmore on that later. I promise. (Can you see the fear in my eyes?)

Next weekend is my husband and my first anniversary. Well, we have a few things planned for it, but we were both so excited to give each other our gifts, that we’ve both already done so. Haha, we’re lame like that 😀

My husband made it into “best husband in the world” status (yet again wine hangover, and my chipper, wide awake, feeling stellar (who was also the DD the night before) husband comes bounding into the kitchen asking if I was going for a run today.

Me: *Gives him the death look* “What do you think? I feel like crap, and I ran my first 10K yesterday!”

Him: “Oh, ok, well then I guess you won’t be getting any presents!”

Me: *Hangover completely dissipating because I know what this means* “Wait…what?!!? I’ll run, I’ll run!!!”
Him: *Hands me a Garmin Forerunner 305 as I run and jump into his arms*

However, that did end up being the only running I did yesterday. But I was still the most excited, ecstatic and appreciative wifey ever!

I immediately charged it.

It said I had to wait three hours to play with it. But that’s OK because I had lots to read while it was charging 😀

So it began charging oh, around this time:

And I unplugged it and immediately began tinkering with it you know, somewhere around this time:

Sqee!! Yes, yesterday I spent about 2 and a half hours playing with my Garmin baby, although unfortunately I wasn’t well enough to run with it then…

But today I sure was!! I had planned on taking G money on a powerful, smooth, 5 mile first run with me. It would be great! It would tell me how I’m doing, and I’d smile down on it with pride.

Yeah..didn’t really go like that. My warm up was great, because G-money forced me to pace myself and not start to fast. I had finished my first mile, and looked down to see my progress, and saw this, but much, much worse:

No, those are not freckles, my friends. Those are…ready? You sure? PLANT LICE. They are taking over Bloomington/Normal and they are gross, gross, gross. I was seriously covered in these things, but I was slapping them off me the entire time I was running. I mean, you saw the picture of my neck in the beginning of the post. I’d figured I was in the clear, since I stayed away from the trail and was running on busy streets and neighborhoods, but boy was I wrong.

As soon as I looked down and saw my arm covered with these disgusting creatures I A. freaked the frack out, and B. immediately turned down the next street to high tail it home and into the shower. My run not only went from being 5 miles long to 3.6, but it also went to a smooth run to an all out speed work session.

The street I turned down just so happened to have even thicker flocks of these nasty bugs, and I was somewhere between having a panic attack, crying, and hoping that my legs wouldn’t give out on me. I was also keeping my mouth zipped closed in fear of swallowing hundreds of bugs. Ew. Even just typing about it to you guys again is making my chest tight. I need some wine.

As I was booking it up the streets, I saw a couple other runners, though far and few between, with the same disgusted look on their face.

Anyway, regardless if the Garmin felt cheated or not, it still successfully gave me all the stats I’ve been wondering about on previous runs:

  • I ran 3.62 miles in 33:55
  • My average pace was 9:22
  • Best Pace: 7:50 – woo hoo!
  • Avg HR: 167, Max HR: 187 – I’m betting this was when I looked down and saw my arm!
  • Mile 1 – 9:49
  • Mile 2- 8:58 LOL
  • Mile 3-9:23
  • .62 mile-5:43

Holy lots of stats! Loooove it!

I really hope these Aphids/Plant lice bugs go away soon. I feel like I cheated my Garmin. We really didn’t get off to a good start. heh. Tomorrow you can bet your ass I’ll be at the gym, though. The paper said they’ll go away when it gets cooler, so I can’t believe I’m saying that, but hopefully that’s SOON.

What’s the craziest run/workout outdoors you’ve ever had? Have YOU ever been attacked by aphids?

I’m sure I’ll look back and laugh sometime…

Anyway – be sure and check out my Giveaway I’m having! It ends Thursday, so get your entries in 😀

Managing Stress…

When your schedule is jam-packed?? How do you stay calm when your schedule looks more like your 8th grade history notes than a calendar?

I’ve just been babbling about my day-today life lately, and thought I should bring you all to speed on the exciting things that I’m experiencing lately! Let me tell you…my calendar is packed to the max this month. And I’m going to need to practice my tactics for keeping myself stress free.

I’m in a 5k race this Saturday! It’s in my hometown like the last 5k I ran.

I had forgotten all about it, too. My mom used to send me mail all the time, with comics, recipes, jokes, money, etc. She hasn’t sent anything in quite a while, so I was surprised to see mail from her yesterday. Inside was a post-it that said, “5K race this Saturday – me and you!” Doh! Totally forgot about it. (sorry mom) Hey, I’ll take a race and a free T-shirt any day! Plus, I’ll be running it solo (mom is run/walking it) so I can go for a PTR!!! 😀

On the 19th of this month,
I’ll be running in my first 10K!!!!It’s for the Pumpkin Festival in a nearby town. See what you’re missing here in Central Illinois? 😉 I’m so excited. I was kind of going to use this Saturday as my last long run day, but it looks like that’s really not going to happen now, since I’m in a 5k. Oh well…impromptu taper week! I’m so excited for this 10k 🙂

Then…yesterday I came home to this box:

And opened it and was stoked to see Amazing Grass products! Not that this makes me busy or anything, but it’s still something exciting happening this month! Amazing Grass sent me these samples to try:

Including some of their new bars:

I’ll let you know what I think as I consume 🙂

The LAST weekend of September, I’ll be participating in an event called, “Walk for the Mind.” I go with ALL of my family to support my beautiful, cousin, Beth. She has brain cancer, but it SUCH a strong and BEAUTIFUL person. If you didn’t know she had, you honestly wouldn’t be able to tell. I love her so much and am so happy to support her.

Lastly, also the last weekend of September is Shane and my 1 year anniversary!!! 😀

Aww…first dance. *tear* This year has gone by the fastest of any I’ve experienced yet, and I’m so blessed to be spending it with the love of my life.

This is all among 5 different friends’ birthday’s to celebrate, and a bunco night thrown in the mix.

Phew! September is a busy, busy month.

So how do I stay calm when my schedule is not? I have a few different tactics…

  • First and foremost, I keep up with my workouts. Yes, I know, this seems like just another thing to keep up with, but it keeps me sane. As I’m sure you all agree, working out is a HUGE stress reliever, and I’m a firm believer that exercise is what makes me happy on some days. This isn’t to say hat I might skip a day – if I do, I just don’t stress about it

  • I keep up with my day to day tasks. This is a hard one, and it’s easy to let this one slip. However, if I start to fall back on something like laundry (I do 1-2 loads a day, because as I said when I first started this blog, laundry doesn’t deserve its own day) it mounts up, and just weighs on me. So I take the extra 15 minutes to do a couple loads. I’d rather give up the 15 minutes than have the stress and pressure of knowing there’s a mountain of laundry in the laundry room rather than just a steep hill 😉

  • I also carve in time for laziness. If I don’t have anything going on on a Wednesday night, and I’ve caught up with all of my “must-do’s” (vs. my “to-do’s”) I fully enjoy some horizontal time on the couch guilt free.

What are some ways you stay sane and stress-free when you just seem to be on the go-go-go?