Running is hard, you know? But when it’s over 60 degrees in December you have to go outside. Today I did intervals of run 3 minutes/walk 1 minute, and I am beat. I feel very accomplished and whatnot though.
This week is flying by. It’s that whole: hey, I’m just back from vacation AND it’s almost vacation again, that the whole “work” thing just seems really easy. I suppose January and February will be long…one day at a time though!
Since I got back I’ve played a few weddings. And yes, people get married in November too. Not everybody has to get married in April or October!
This was at Westwood Country Club. My car never feels quite fancy enough to be at a country club.
This was a tent set up on a private residence. I loved the plastic chairs and the flowers.
And then I had a rehearsal in the Cathedral Basilica for this weekend’s concert. I find the history of the Basilica fascinating. For instance, they started the mosaics in 1912 and finished in 1988, and the mosaics cover 83,000 feet and contain 41.5 million pieces of glass. It’s absolutely breathtaking.
I’m also prepping for this year’s cookie exchange party. I’m doing it on a smaller scale than in the past, but I’m really looking forward to it. I think I’ve figured out what I’m making for it! I’ll tell you after the fact so as to allow for mistakes/mind changing (who, me?) AND as to not give anything away to any guests who might be reading. Suffice it to say the cookies will contain BUTTER.
Oh hey there.
So, I’m back to work and all, after being gone for a lovely part of a week in Phoenix visiting my sister Leslie and her husband Peter.
If there’s a suitcase, it must be filled with cats.
I went for a run and took a picture. I look like a sparkly vampire, don’t I. Note the palm tree in the background. I couldn’t find the beach though.
The first morning I woke up and this stuffed monkey was outside my door. I’m not sure whether it was a gift or a threat.
I need this print for my house too.
Leslie made the crusts. I think she was possessed.
We did some serious baking. Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie.
We did some serious wine drinking. That giant bottle was a housewarming gift that they saved to serve at Thanksgiving. I can’t tell if the picture is blurry or if the effects of the wine have yet to wear off.
Lots of food was made, brought, and eaten. It was a wonderful day.
A few days before Thanksgiving we had lunch with the Boring Runner. It was delightful, and I’m glad I finally got to meet him after reading his blog for years.
Naturally we had to take photos. We all wore blue so we’d look good in the photos.
This is my laugh or my “I’m poopin” face.
After our blogger lunch Leslie and I decided we had to get fro yo to really feel like bloggers. Then again she’s absolutely NOT a blogger, but I like to pretend I am. It’s weird that we sat outside to eat eggnog fro-yo in November, but that’s Phoenix for ya.
I don’t think I got enough toppings to count as a real blogger.
Did you know Trader Joe’s sells cats?
Thursday morning (yes, that’s Thanksgiving) Leslie and I ran the Lifetime Turkey Day 5k in Downtown Phoenix.(there was also a 10k option, which one of our friends ran.)
As regular readers know, this year has not been great for my running and general fitness. I’ve had a lot of personal issues, and I’ve gained weight and haven’t been running as much. That being said, over the past few weeks I’ve been pretty consistent at getting in about three runs (run/walks—not back to running all the time yet) per week, so I felt pretty good going into this race—one foot in front of the other and just keep moving.
Except…and not to make excuses but this has to be said because it’s just so Hannah…I got to Phoenix on Sunday and Monday night Leslie and I decided to go to a Bodypump class at her gym. I’d figured that would give enough time to get sore and get over it by Thursday, but I was incorrect. Tuesday was bad, Wednesday I could barely move, and Thursday my hamstrings were still killing me. But I decided, whatever, sticking with my plan of 2:30 run/1:15 walk intervals and would just soldier through. And that I did, though I suspect my run intervals were slower than my walking intervals. Oh well. One can do almost anything for 5k, right, and besides, I didn’t regret doing the Bodypump class because it reminded me how much I used to love feeling strong and lifting heavy stuff. (And how much I didn’t really like Bodypump, but I digress.) I was active every single day of vacation, either the class, running, or walking, and I liked how I felt doing it.
Leslie, posing for the pre-race photo.
The race: Race morning we all needed to get our packets (Leslie, me, and two of her friends), since for some unknown reason all the packet pick up locations were at least 30 minutes away…so we had to get up extra early to get the stuff the morning of. Packet pickup was being run by people who had trouble reading names in alphabetical order, so it was VERY slow. I hate to complain about volunteers, but I think the system was poor, and some of the lines were incredibly long and slow moving. We finally got our shirts and bibs, and headed back to the car to drop them off, but we all decided to just wear our shirts, since they were soft, it was a short race, and (most importantly) everybody else seemed to be doing it.
Anyway. The race was good. I finished in a very slow 41:20 but I was happy about it. I stayed with my intervals, and hadn’t run that far in quite some time, so I felt pretty great about it. I also hadn’t run that far with seriously sore hamstrings, so I felt even better about that! Basically I accomplished my goal of finishing a 5k race on Thanksgiving morning.
(Did you want more information about the race? I don’t have much else to say. Running is hard, but the more I do it the easier it gets.)
Leslie’s is a bit better—both her feet are in the air! She’s recovering from an elbow fracture from a fall a few weeks ago, so not falling was her goal, and she accomplished that! I’m jealous of her purple shoes…
I met Leslie and our friend Aaron at the finish line, and we waited for our friend Chris who was doing the 10k. Post race food included rolls and bagels (my favorite), bananas, and a variety of SoyJoy bars (the one I tried was disgusting) and some other things too. After Chris finished we waited in a shorter line than packet pickup to take this awesome picture with a turkey, which was a free download from the race organizers!
Aaron, Leslie, the Turkey, me, and our friend Chris.
We all headed to Leslie’s for celebratory mimosas. Her husband Peter had just put the turkey in the oven and the house smelled amazing.
I think the bibs were cute. I’m a fan of turkeys. I would run this race another year if I were in Phoenix for Thanksgiving again.
It’s been a great week. Food, friends, family, cats, baking, and eating. I thought I’d pop in to wish you a Happy Black Friday and to ask if you are getting a really good deal on a television to please buy me one too!
The world’s largest bottle of wine.
And hanging on the couch with Catalunya while my sister and brother-in-law are at rehearsal (they are musicians too.) Catalunya tried to bite me several times.
More to come but for now, I’m back to my relaxing! Putting up a few pictures on my blog is HARD WORK.
I have a whole week off from teaching!
My last two posts were pretty cat centric, so I thought I’d try to balance it out with a less cat post. I’m finishing up all the stuff I need to do to go out of town (laundry, packing, calling my grandma to wish her a happy 88th birthday!) and I’m pretty excited about that.
The weekend was fun. Last night I went to a “pajama party” at my friend April’s house. I didn’t know that I was actually pretty good at the game of “flip cup” because I’d never played before. I was a natural at flipping my cup. I didn’t play too many rounds though, because I didn’t want to make the other folks feel bad. Also I got bored and really prefer to just chat with people.
(I should have taken pictures, but my pajama pants didn’t have a pocket for my phone.)
I did take some pictures of a couple sandwiches I ate over the weekend (which includes Friday.)
I do love sandwiches. If pressed I’d say my favorite food is pizza, but sandwiches are definitely a close second.
I did play a wedding yesterday. The season has slowed down a bit, but I had one yesterday and two next weekend.
The Crystal Ballroom at the Crowne Plaza.
I believe that’s my finger at the bottom. It’s possible I should consider trying to take better pictures.
We played for the ceremony and a bit of the cocktail hour (not the whole thing which always seems a little odd to me, but whatever.) People were dressed to the nines, as usual. I had fun looking at the hairdos and dresses!
And I did some running. This was after a particularly cold run in the park on Friday evening. It was dark by the time I got back, which I wouldn’t do on my own but I went with a friend who had a big dog so I wasn’t worried. The dog enjoyed running but not so much running in a straight line and not inspecting various trees and things along the way. I’ll be okay for the Turkey Trot on Thursday but don’t count on seeing any PR’s or even respectable 5k times from this girl. But I’m back at it, and that’s what’s important.
I’m back on the “take a lot of selfies” train too. I figure since it’s the Word of the Year there’s no shame. Plus my hair looks good in that picture and I like my black turtleneck. (Eyebrows are suspect but we can’t have everything now, can we?) Truth: my student was stuck in traffic so I had some time to kill. BOOM.
Traveling to a very different climate is always a challenge. I hate wearing a coat to the airport and then just carrying it around, so I’m going to try just wearing a hoodie instead…I’ll be warm enough for the brief time I have to be outside I hope, and then I will also be cozy on the plane. I have a couple books queued up on my Kindle AND I’m excited that we will no longer have to power down our electronics during takeoff and landing. Before there would be these awkward amounts of time where I’d have to sit and think or read the SkyMall magazine (or bring, *gasp* a regular book or magazine to fill the gap) but no longer!
Oh and to make you jealous, here’s our Thanksgiving menu:
Turkey, stuffing, gravy, carrot-ginger soup
Mac & Cheese, Brussels sprouts salad, pumpkin gooey butter cake
pumpkin orange cornbread, butternut squash pudding
Corn casserole, AmishCorn, Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Mashed potatoes, creamed leeks, cranberry
“legit” cajun red beans & rice, chocolate cake
The list is in order of what person is bringing what (names removed—we have an amazing email conversation happening)—I’m the one making Mac & Cheese, Brussels sprouts salad, and pumpkin gooey butter cake. I’m excited to do some cooking and relaxing this week.