Merry Christmas!

Christmas has come and gone and was the best!!  I have yet to start the exhaustion recovery process so I am so grateful for a few more days.  :D  I hope you had a fabulous Christmas!!

This was B3's third time seeing Santa and as predicted, he hated it.  haha  I am adamant that he must see Santa because memories!


Nailed it! 
#AndyBernard


Have a Happy New Year!
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Run Run Rudolph 1/2 Marathon

Last race of the year, the Run Run Rudolph 1/2 in Peoria!!  Wednesday I Primed these reindeer antlers to arrive just in time for Saturday, and they ended up being perfect for the race.  They were a little heavy and it was windy so they'd jerk back and forth sometimes, but they never fell off -- hoorah!


This race had a 1/2 marathon, a 4 miler that started an hour later (which my brother ran), and a kid's dash.  We have had a really nice December, but winter showed up again over that night so we dipped into the 30s, which is really cold by Phoenix standards!  We got back in the car to warm up until I had to get going on my actual warm up.  :)


Being cold at the beginning is perfect for me because with the sun coming up I knew I would warm up really fast, so I just wore gloves.  They even came off a mile or so in.  It was the perfect temps!


The race was at a big park complex so Ben and B3 had plenty of fun playing a few feet from the start/finish lines.  B3 had SO MUCH FUN.  I love big races, but small ones do have perks too.  This one was really well put on, Startline Racing does an awesome job!


B3 has to have his hoodie up at all times.  He wore one to church this weekend and kept the hood up.  lol


I didn't have a goal for this race and just planned to stick around 9:00 miles.  Usually I am more competitive with myself, but my motivation for PRs has been lacking over the past few weeks for some reason.  Maybe because I am enjoying my leisure runs ......and sleep.  :)

Anyways, the course was on the path by the canal which goes on for MILES AND MILES, so we passed a bunch of other runners/walkers out enjoying the morning, and they were always excited to see festive attire which made it all the more fun.  Oh, I wore jingle bells.  hahaha I felt bad for anybody running without music because the bells were very noticeable.


Somewhere around the 9th mile my fun race changed when randomly I got nauseated and threw up!!  :P  It was miserable!!!  My brother gets nauseated almost every race but this was my first time with stomach issues and now I feel extra horrible for him because that really sucked.  My stomach was not thrilled afterwards so I'm not sure what the story was there, although all I could think about was thank goodness I wasn't running a full.


It was fun that Santa was at the finish, and he seemed genuinely excited for each finisher, yelling for you as you crossed.


Official time:  2:00:45 for 9:13 average pace
58/205 overall
25/140 female
7/22 age group

Splits:  9:02, 8:55, 9:01, 8:59, 9:05, 9:11, 9:08, 9:03, 9:09, 9:14, 9:28, 9:52, 9:22, 1:08 (8:57)


Meanwhile while I ran he somehow tracked down an appo...


And some friends...


The finishers!!  I love having my family nearby.


We hit up Ihop afterwards which is always perfect for a post race breakfast.  I got soup though.  :P


Holiday anythings are the best, including races.  Love running and love my fam.
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Best Time of Year

Christmas is coming way too fast despite mentally decking the halls in October (August, who are we kidding, once we dipped below 110 w/a fall chill in the air).


Must dos before Christmas arrives:

-Drink more hot chocolate

-Watch more Christmas movies:  Home Alones, Christmas Vacation, Elf, Grinch, Christma w/the Kranks lol

-Listen to more Christmas music (it's already on all day everyday but I just feel like I'm working and can't enjoy it as much as I could)

-Wrap presents

-Wear a Santa hat

-See Christmas lights (Temple Square?)

-Wear my snowflake earrings

-Play more Christmas on the piano

-Run a holiday race

-Enjoy Phoenix December

-Put a vintage (and slightly embarrassing) Christmas outfit on B3

-Get a timer for our lights so I don't have to unplug them at my early bedtime  :)

-Visit Santa.  Again.

-Bake desserts, Jan 1 is rapidly arriving.

-Switch out the Scentsy pretty much daily to get all my holiday scents smelled

-Take pictures of the cacti in lights and giant nutcrackers at the mall

-Eat the treats our Realtor dropped off (Ben you didn't see this, no treats here)

-SEE FAMILY!!

-ENJOY THE TIME OF YEAR


I hope you are having a MERRY CHRISTMAS!  9 days, soak it up.  :)
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999 Miles & What's Next?


999 miles for the year so far (998.7 to be exact).  I will hit 1000 today!  My brother wondered how I would run my 1000th mile for the year and my sister said I should run it backwards!  :D  I will run it with my cute mini-man and the stroller!



I am 2+ weeks out from Seattle and I have been having some post marathon blues and really miss the training and long runs.  Last weekend I had six miles for my long run but bumped it to eight.  I had been planning to run a 5k this weekend (Jingle Bell Run) but today I'm changing my mind and running the Run Run Rudolph 1/2 this weekend instead.  I have three days to get excited!  And I already am stoked.  :)  No goal, just ruuuuun to Christmas music.


Afterwards I am signed up for the Arizona Rock 'n' Roll 5k in January and Ben will run the 1/2.  They are a day apart so we will each cheer each other on!

My family is coming into town for the Phoenix 1/2 in February but I haven't set up a spring schedule yet, still TBD.

I will recap 2016 racing and running at a later time, but I can't even begin to tell you how amazing it has been.  One for the BOOKS, for sure.  Life will only get busier, training will only get harder to fit in around family life, but I will top the year 2016, and hopefully with one of the next few!
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A Festive Downtown (SEATTLE II)

Black Friday in downtown Seattle kicks off with their big Macy's Christmas parade and lighting of the star on the Macy's building!  I was so happy to hear that we had arrived in time to see the parade.  Seriously, MADE MY WHOLE CHRISTMAS.

We headed downtown early to find us a spot but ended up walking around until it started because it was cold and baby boy wanted to party whenever we'd stop.  It was close to 40 degrees (freezing for us) but it was a beautiful, rainy-free day.  We even had sun!!


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Traveling on Thanksgiving (SEATTLE I)

^^There were green apples in the lobby and we could never pass by without him snatching one.  lol

The only time I had ever been to Seattle was for a layover to get to China last year, so I was excited because it would be a total change of pace from sunny Arizona.


I am usually so uptight when we travel and I get stressed about everything with a baby/toddler (there is soooo much stuff), so this time around we planned it so that we could shuttle to our hotel (shuttle w/a carseat) and be within walking distance to everything except Ben's race, so we wouldn't need to lug the huge carseat.  HUGE win.  We had two checked suitcases and two carry-on backpacks = easiest traveling ever!  Plus the little umbrella stroller.

First time flying in his very own seat like a big boy!  He liked taking off, thought it was fun!  Then he zonked right out for a couple hours, and woke up just in time to have his ears hurt him as we descended.  :( 


Anyways, I focused on enjoying the trip instead of stressing and I think I did pretty well.  It was freezing when we arrived, and a major downpour!!  Get this though, we forgot the umbrella.  lol  But we were ready to adventure!!

Checking in to The Hyatt Place, downtown.  We were close to The Space Needle, essentially the start of the marathon a couple days later!


Seattle is pretty fantastic!  Any big city next to the ocean is, though, I swear.  It was hilly and the streets weren't the easiest to navigate so I was glad we weren't driving ourselves around.  Our hotel was the perfect location to get around on foot (Hyatt Place Downtown), and it also shuttled us anywhere within a mile, which was nice when we didn't want to walk back in a downpour.

Our very first adventure out from the hotel was horribly memorable.  lol  It was Thanksgiving so we wanted to find something super nearby that was open because it was kind of a creepy ghost town downtown, plus rainy and dreary which contributes to that mood.  The hotel had a list of open restaurants they'd take us too, but we wanted something simple and fast with a toddler so we bundled up in clothes we hardly ever wear, and ventured out on foot, first stopping across the street at Walgreens for an umbrella and Monster, of course.

^^You know you bought the boots well too big when they fit a year later.  :P

Not even a block from the hotel, I got a whiff of this HORRIBLE SMELL, turned my head, and walah, there was a guy taking a dump on the sidewalk, an image FOREVER IN MY HEAD.  I don't think Ben and I got over that first impression for over a day.  It lingered (in more ways than one)!  It was seriously the worst ever and I felt like a bad parent like we shouldn't be taking our kid around the area!

The rest of the trip was totally different though.  Seattle redeemed its-poopy-self.

Anyways, we grabbed Subway sandwiches and beelined it back to the hotel where we hung out and enjoyed doing nothing for the rest of the day because we had holiday plans in store starting very early the next day, with much hope of a festive Seattle experience.  Apparently this was one of the best times of year to visit SEATTLE.  Who knew??  I mean, I totally knew that when we booked the trip.  :P

Content as.

A hotel room.  So much entertainment for a toddler.


We went to bed watching a Chrisley Knows Best marathon.  Never heard of them before but extra entertaining and I admit I want to track down more episodes.  A nice way to forget the new found skepticism about Seattle.  :P
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