My Other Half

As you know (but probably couldn’t give a crap), I scooted through a half marathon over Memorial Day weekend and turns out, I survived to tell you about it.

Two noteworthy events: I recruited my own personal cheering section (Hubs and MamaP) to help distract me from the task at hand and I pilfered so many Trader Joe’s yummy-rific granola bars at the finish line that I feel simultaneously smug and ashamed.

Race Morning unfolded in complete chaos because I did everything I warned my running class NOT to do:  The night before, I ate very running tummy unfriendly foods (handfuls of Doritos, lime cheesecake, and a brat).  Then, we stayed up way too late because Hubs was trying to figure out the race logistics while I somberly debated on whether I should wear my black tank top OR my black t-shirt.   (Caught in a fit of indecision, I ending up wearing both and had to ditch the t-shirt at mile 4).  Race morning came much too early and during the frantic car ride to the starting line (Hubs was driving), I inhaled a sloppy peanut butter bagel, washed it down with Grape Gatorade, put on my makeup (diva alert), called MamaP, did my hair, slathered on sunscreen (which proved to be unnecessary) AND pinned my race number to my shorts, all while buckled in.  I called myself a very talented multitasker (which is not a word); Hubs called me ill-prepared.

Anyway.  Hubs dropped me off at the start (just in time for a pee break) and snapped the only pic with our beloved Nikon because the threat of rain (and probably my early morning antics) had his eyes twitching.

Ta Da.

(This look brought to you by using self tanner on my legs but not on my arms.  I’m awesome.)

“Hey, good luck, wife for life!”

“Thanks!  Tell Mom to look for me, I’ll be the one wearing a white hat!”

And then I was off in search of a port-a-potty and Hubs drove off in search of MamaP (she was later recovered in a Walmart parking lot, eating garlic bagel chips and drinking gas station cappuccino).

By some miracle, I ended up at the starting line with a fully charged iPod and running watch, an empty bladder and peanut buttery-Gatorade breath.  I was ready.

The gun went off.  I started running.  This part is boring so let’s skip over it.

MamaP’s undying enthusiasm and Hubs calm disposition made them quite the cheering team.  They trucked all over town, lending their support, taking pictures…even hollering at me from a busy intersection.  They were cheering lunatics, I tell you.

“SIL, I think I see her white hat – my God, here she comes!!!  Let me get my camera!”

“Um.  Carol.  That person is a man.”

“Oh.  My bad.  Are the bagel chips still in the car?”

Here, proof of MamaP’s many false starts.

As the white hat sighting tally continued to climb, the candace sighting remained a concerning constant:

But, thankfully MamaP was able to *finally* capture a picture of me, which thrilled us both to no end.

Conversely, it was not hard for ME to spot MamaP.  I can recognize her voice anywhere.  I’ve been loving that voice since my days of backstroking around in her gut.  And it doesn’t hurt that her fiery red hair is a beacon of something (not sure what) that I could never mistake as anything but my one and only, MamaP.  Her and Hubs cheered like crazy for me and I gobbled up the attention like it was one of my MIL’s desserts.

Oh and the fact that our wedding song popped onto my iPod during the last mile and the finish line was at the very place I got married almost *exactly* two years ago and knowing the two of them were together, my new family and my old family, waiting to root me on at the finish was a total warm fuzzies overload.  I cried.

I finished and have a medal, a bushel of granola bars and a very thankful heart to prove it.

Then we went to Perkins to stuff our faces, the end.

Flashback Friday

Happy Memorial Day weekend, y’all!

Two years ago this weekend, I boogied through our local half marathon sporting a huge smile, a veil (it was a week prior to my wedding after all) and a small army of pink lady runners.

This weekend I’ll be doing the half marathon again but instead of a veil, I’ll be sporting hair that needs highlighting and 32 year old saggy knee caps.  Please pray for me.

Shoot me now

You’ve probably forgotten (because you never intended to remember anyway) but way back when, in 2010, we decided to pass up on Christmas gifts to each and opt for a few nerdy dates instead.  As you (don’t) recall, Hubs chose these dates and I chose these ones.  Luckily for the Hubs, he had a very swell time with the love of his life and luckily for me, I got to buy a big present for myself with the money we saved and claim it was for both of us.  A very clever soul I am.  You wanna know what present I surprised myself with?

A new camera.

Isn’t she sparkly?

She’s a Nikon D3100 which is a just complicated way of saying that she is much smarter than the average penguin.

And yes, I do recognize the fairly ironic fact that I took a picture of my new camera with my old one.  I haven’t figured out how to turn the bugger on yet but I’m still trying to stay positive.  Any encouraging words would be helpful.

Get In My Belly: You Say Tomato,

I say just eat it.  This is officially the easiest appetizer in the entire universe.  The entire universe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tomato
  • splash of balsamic vinegar
  • sprinkle of kosher salt

Instructions:

1.  Cut the tomato into bite sized cubes.  Add a sprinkle of salt and a splash of balsamic vinegar and you, my friends, have an extremely spiffy appetizer in 25 seconds.

You can thank me now (or thank Tai for serving this to me one night which I promptly stole for my own selfish doings).  Oh and also?  Think this counts as a salad?  Please discuss.

Flashback Friday

A blow up slide.  Come on, admit it.  Secretly you wanted to push those little twerp kids out of the way and take a few rides down too.  But you were afraid of what people might think.  Not me.

Greek fest, summer 2009.  No baklava was hurt during the making of this photo.

Can I get a Do Over?

Ok.  So, every day you learn things.  Well, generally speaking so don’t worry if last Monday was a total wash.  But don’t you kind of wish you could sneak back in time with some of those learned thingys stashed safely in your sock for easy referencing (only because jeggings have faux pockets, obviously) so you can save yourself the impending mistake or snafu or embarrassment?  Don’t you wish you got a couple complimentary Do Overs?

That’s why I decided to write this post.  I wanted to think back to different stages of my life and explore what I would Do Over if I had the chance.  There are LOTS of things I would Do Over.  Big, little, cringe worthy, eye roll worthy, blush worthy, why-did-I-say that worthy and everything in between.  So I drafted up this post as a placeholder, to revisit when I had put more thought into digging up a really juicy story to tell you.  Then, I checked Facebook (the perfect procrastination tool) and I saw this video my friend had posted.  Take a gander.

Dear 16 year old me

It rocked me.  More than anything I really wish I could Do Over my mismanagement of the sun.  I’m terrified thinking back on all of my carelessness, and let’s be honest, mostly purposeful disregard when it came to protecting my skin.  But, all I can do is change what I do from TODAY on and warn everyone I know to do the same.

WEAR SUNSCREEN, my friends, please!

Spring Must-Haves

So, we were kinda robbed of spring.  The pendulum keeps swinging from windy and miserable to a muggy almost-90-degrees back to crap weather again.  Totally not fair.   But, still, I’m going to post about what I need for Spring, even though it gave up waiting for us to enjoy it.

1. Sunscreen.  It’s only taken me 32 years but I think I might have this kinda figured out.  In the Spring, I am so excited to welcome the sun on my pale ruddy skin that I usually endure some sort of burn (not cool) before I snap back to reality.  And since I rock a perpetual Norwegian tan (you know what that means), I always seem to get burned when I least expect it.  Like when you grab coffee with a girlfriend and it happens to be kinda decent outside – so you just plop yourself down at the bistro out front underneath the shadow casting Caribou Coffee sign and start rehashing the latest Idol drama and before you know it – the tops of your feet are basically on fire (but not your toes because you’re wearing flats) and you have a pale (but jovial) caribou prancing along the very uncomfortably pink side of your forearm.

Now, I pack sunscreen in my purse.  That way, if a spontaneous coffee date happens – I am ready.  Any takers?  Hello?

2.  A few light weight cardigans (especially love those 3/4 sleeves).  They are perfect for layering and shielding those squishy arms from the horror of tank tops for just a little while longer.  A must-have!  I think I need a red clay-ish/coral-ly one but not your senior citizen coral, mind you.  I picked up a few blue ones after Christmas ($12 bucks each) and I’m excited to finally get more use out of them now that hypothermia isn’t a concern as much anymore.

3.  I know I already own it but dusting off the old bike and (accepting the consequential helmet hair) is another Spring must-have.  I hope I still remember how to ride it because it’s been an awfully long winter.

4.   I’ve been wanting to add some nautical to my life  – being that it’s ever so popular right now.  Bring on the navy striped boyfriend tanks – especially paired with some kelly green which is already a fav color of mine.  Ooor paired with that red clay-ish cardi from above??

Tank from ae.com

5. Big filigree earrings.  They are a goes-with-everything accessory for fancying up a sundress to blinging out your favorite t-shirt.  I’ve spotted the perfect (read: cheap) pair at Charlotte Ruesse.  They will be mine…!

Earrings link here.

6.  PLANTS.  For Easter, my MIL got us each a potted herb to take home (a great idea!) so those are happily sitting on our patio.  The greenery fills me with glee and really is the signature Spring must-have!


*Updated with a photo, just because

Tell me, what puts a Spring in your step?

Sometimes,

when chaos is leaking out faster than you can plug the hole, all you can do is push the emergency red button and hope against all odds that it ends well.

Happy Monday, ya’ll!

Flashback Friday the 13th

I have the very sweet honor of being a bridesmaid in my cousin’s wedding this summer.  I picked up the dress yesterday afternoon and just the whiff of Davids Bridal taffeta-laced air prompted a quick trip down Bridesmaid Memory Lane.

Photo credit:  La Vie Photography

How cool to have the Minneapolis skyline as a backdrop?  This was taken at my friend Mary’s beautiful winter wedding in 2008. You can’t fight it, there just is something about a wrap and a long heavy dress that brings out a little bit of Princess in all of us, you know?

But, I kid you not, shortly after Mary’s big day,  I went to see the movie 27 Dresses.  And what dress did I spy (squint past the wonky collar)???

27 Dresses link here.

I know!  It still cracks me up.

Will you take a detour down your Bridesmaid Memory Lane before we hem up this week and expose the weekend?

Candace’s Crafty Corner: Whimsy Kitchen Towels

This is my corner of the world to make things and post them on the Internet.  Whether they are ugly or not.  You’re welcome.

I made these.  I started this project last summer actually (me?  procrastinate?) and finished them up just in time for Mother’s Day (my deadline).

One is for Mom (hence, deadline) and one is for a friend, just because.  Do you like?

More pictures, also just because.

I’m crossing my wounded and pricked fingers that they don’t come flying apart in the first wash.  And if they do, I’m crossing my wounded and pricked fingers that the giftees never mention they came flying apart in the first wash.   Anyone tried a new foreign hobby that requires scary injury-inflicting needles like me?

Maybe don’t answer that?