A Squat-a-liscious Tabata Workout, Brick Betty, and the Lucky Streak

So somehow, even though I’m not working at my “real” job this summer, I am staying really busy. I’ve been able to run most mornings, though it’s been so hot and humid even really early that I’m not getting a whole lot of miles. I’m also working hard this summer to build up the blog, and, as other bloggers know, that can take hours a day. Add in some weekends away, projects around the house, and I don’t seem to have a spare minute. Good, that will make the time go fast, so before I know it, summer will be over. (Sorry I’m not sorry for those of you who love summer. Try it in 115 degrees.)

A Squat-a-liscious Tabata Workout

Squataliscious – def – 1. involving many squats. 2. exercises that make the butt look delicious.

Alan and I also just made a re-commitment to the gym (again). So aside from being really sore this week, it has me thinking about faster, quicker workouts, especially those that can be done at home. I plan to introduce him to the TRX (though the only decent place to anchor it is outside, so hot/humid again). I’m also thinking about this Tabata workout. There’s is nothing like a HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout to get your workout done quickly and leave you in a sweaty pile on the floor. I really like this one because it requires no equipment, so you can do it at home, in the gym, or, if you’re a bit of an exhibitionist, on the trails.

Squataliscious Tabata is a HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout that will get you fit fast. No equipment needed.(Gee, look who’s working out on the trails.)

Brick Betty Ambassador

I’m really excited that I was asked to be a Brick Betty Ambassador. I love representing this beautiful line of fitness wear, designed for people who appreciate the best fabrics, bright colors, and high quality products, all of which are made in America. They are truly the Rolls Royce of fitness clothing. I’ll tell you more soon.

Brick Betty beautiful and colorful fitness wear for people who appreciate high quality, comfortable fitness fashion, made in America.

The Lucky Streak Continues

You may remember a few months ago I wrote about my lucky streak. Over the course of a couple months I won several prizes on blog giveaways, including my Blendtec Designer 725 blender, a $100 Lululemon gift card (both from Fitfluential), socks and a pair of Croc shoes (the cute ones!) from Katie, a Sparkly Soul Headband, an Unplugged t-shirt, a package of NuNaturals from Jody, not to mention that I received a Magic Bullet blender from Influenster (we’re doing really well in the smoothie department around here!).

Well, I seemed to cool off for a while (missing out on winning a tablet computer that would have been very cool), but it looks like things are heating up again! Last week I found out that I won a $75 Synergy Organic Clothing gift card from Lora Hogan, and biggest of all, the entire Schoen by Yu denim collection from Popsugar Select’s first ever giveaway. And finally, I won a prize package from Fit Approach! It hasn’t arrived yet, but I’m sure it will be filled with all kinds of Sweat Pink goodies!

Catch me at Blogfest (at the IDEAWorld Urban Party) in this pretty dress from Synergy Organic ClothingThis is the dress I ordered from Synergy Organic Clothing. Just in time to pack for Blogfest!

I’m thinking I better get myself to Vegas as soon as possible before this lucky streak wears off!

Have a great Independence Weekend everybody! We’re hanging around home this year in spite of the heat. What about you? Any fun plans or adventures planned for the 4th?

 

I’m linking up with Debbie in Shape for Tip Tuesday, Nanna’s Wisdom for Wednesday Wisdom, xoxo Rebecca for That Friday Blog Hop, and with Kathleen for the Blog Booster Party. Oh! I can’t forget Jill for Fitness Friday! I hope you’ll check out off of these amazing blogs!

 

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

What’s Next? Running, Career, Personal Plans

As we approach summer my time opens up a lot. Our busy season will soon be over giving me a lot of time to plan, train, and generally think about what’s next in my life. And because it’s Thursday, I’m joining Amanda and thinking out loud about my plans for my running, career, and personal life.

Thinking-Out-Loud2

 

What’s Next: Running

It’s been three weeks since the marathon I did not run, so I think it’s time to give some thought to what event I’d like to do next.

At this point the only race I have on my schedule is the Honolulu Marathon in December. I’m really excited about going back to Hawaii for the first time in over 12 years. Honolulu was my very first marathon, and now, 19 years later, it will be my 37th.

Gump

December is a long way away (though I’m sure it will be here before I know it because time flies), so I want to do at least a few other races in the next six months. I know that having a plan and a goal will help inspire me to get out there and train. Here are a few thoughts about what’s next on my racing agenda.

America’s Finest City Half Marathon– August 16. The AFC Half was one of my first half marathons and I’ve probably done it seven or eight times. It’s been a while though, so it would be fun to go back. It’s a beautiful point to point course that’s mostly downhill. That is, until you get to downtown San Diego and mile 12 is a long uphill stretch to the finish.

Ragnar Trail Vail Lake – October 2-3. Several of my friends did this event last year and had a great time. I loved my Ragnar road relay and the trail version sounds pretty fun.

Malibu Half Marathon – November 15. Alan announces this race every year but I’ve never run it. They recently changed the course to an out and back, which will make it logistically easier. I used to have to try to hurry and pass the runners in the car to get Alan to the finish line ahead of them. Sounds easy until you realize that the race was held on the two lane Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, known for its beauty and its traffic (and lack of detours).

I haven’t signed up for any of these races yet, but they are definitely on my radar. I have hesitated to pull the trigger because lately I have had commitment issues with racing. From the SLO Marathon, to the Palm Springs Half Marathon, and even the Women Running Wild 5k, I’ve had excuses reasons not to run.

Excuses

 What’s Next: Career

I consider personal training and coaching to be my “real” career. It’s my first love and I intend to keep on helping people get healthier as long as I can. Even my second career, my blog and my writing, is based on my love of health and fitness. I have a few career expanding things planned over the next few months. The summer is our slow time here in the desert, so I’m going to use the time to earn some CEUs, get some motivation, and add a couple new tools to my toolbox.

Money

Bloggy Boot Camp – This is put on by the SITS Girls and I was happy when they announced it would be in Temecula on May 30, just about an hour and a half from home. It’s a one day event and will be covering a multitude of bloggy topics including:

  • Building your Audience by Finding Your Voice
  • Work/Life “Balance”- Working Smarter, Not Harder
  • SEO {AKA: How to Make Google Love You.}
  • Working with Brands, Sponsored Opportunities and the Business of Blogging
  • Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Facebok
  • And More…

So you can see while they call it “boot camp!” I’ll be carpooling with a few local bloggers, which will be fun, plus I’ll get to see Melissa again and FINALLY meet Lisa! Anybody else going?

20140814 IDEA AnaheimCopyright 2014 Len  Spoden Photography.

Blogfest – This will be my second Blogfest and I can’t wait! Check here for the details but I’m mostly excited about meeting so many of the bloggers that I read everyday. Not only that but my registration includes the last two days of…

IDEA World – It’s like my fitness world and my blogging world colliding! Two days of the best blogging information followed by two days at the mother of all fitness conventions.

 

Exercise

Zumba! – Also included in my Blogfest registration is a Zumba instructor’s course. I’m taking it because I want to have the knowledge and experience, but I kind of doubt I’ll ever teach it. My hips just don’t move the way they’re supposed to.

Zumba

Fascial Stretch Therapy Certification – Of all my summer planned learning activities, this may be the one I’m most excited about because I know that FST is something that will change my fitness career for the better. Fascial Stretch Therapy is a different kind of assisted stretching that goes way beyond just stretching muscles. Stay tuned for more about the benefits in Friday’s post but in a nutshell, FST uses breath, multiple planes of motion, and traction to stretch the fascia as well as the muscle. It targets the entire joint and facilitates the body’s reflexes for optimal results. As a consequence it actually enhances performance, improves recovery, and reduces the risk of injury.

The FST course is a week-long hand-on course in Tempe, AZ at the end of August. I’m already starting to study, and one of the best things is that my boss, who is level three certified is “helping” me study by stretching me, talking me through it and explaining things as she goes. So, in addition to learning a new skill, my body, especially my back, is already feeling so much better. Actually, excited is an understatement.

Excited

Real Estate License – You may remember last year that Alan and I planned to get our real estate licenses, mostly as kind of a back up plan. That kind of got put aside but now we’ve decided to go for it again. I don’t foresee it becoming a full-time job. I love fitness too much, and now that I’m adding the FST I’ll be pretty busy with all of that. But, we have a friend who’s a broker, so we’d have the opportunity to work a little part time. It’s all good.

What’s Next: Personal

The number one excitement in my personal life right now is my new granddaughter due in early September. We love boys, don’t get me wrong, but after two sons, two stepsons, three grandsons, we’re ready for a little pink in the family. Emma Marie, due September 1.

We’re also planning some fixups around the house. New flooring, a little paint, some general repairs that need to be done. We’ve avoided making changes in the carpet for a while, knowing that as long as we have dogs we’ll have doggie messes. But, the time has come. We’re planning on wood or laminate floors in the front, office, and hall, plus new carpet in the bedrooms.

So, that’s a little bit (well, about 1,200 words worth!) of what’s going on in my life. What’s going on in yours? And do you know the pros/cons of laminate vs. wood floors? Have you ever heard of FST? Come to California after September 4 (FST graduation day) and I’ll be happy to practice on you! And who will I see at Blogfest or Bloggy Boot Camp?

We are the Restaurant Killers and other random stuff

I’m linking with Amanda today for Thinking Out Loud!

Thinking-Out-Loud2

Birthday!

Birthday

Wednesday was Alan’s birthday. And my gift to him was…a pair of socks! Actually, two pairs, which isn’t as boring as it sounds. Alan has been wearing the thick Thorlo running socks for years, and he mentioned the other day that his old socks were getting pretty ragged. So when I was shopping for a birthday present the other day, it just so happened that Sports Authority had a special, BOGO half off. I thought that they no longer made the super thick ones that Alan always liked, so I had a couple of pairs of their new, still pretty cushy, socks in my hand when I decided to wander around the sock section just to make sure. What do you know:

ThorloActually, I planned to buy him a swim suit too (is that what they’re called for men?). I didn’t realize though that they come in waist sizes as opposed to small-large and I wasn’t sure what to buy. I settled on 32 (yes, he’s that slim), but when I was checking out the cashier told me that suits weren’t returnable, so I backed off. Turns out I had the right size, but instead I bought a suit that he picked out from the Speedo website (with a discount!), so all was good.

suit

Restaurant Killers

We went out to eat a couple times this week. On Mother’s Day Alan took me to Native Foods in Palm Springs. Since I always say we live in the Palm Springs area, you may not realize that it is actually a 40 minute drive, so we don’t get there as often as we’d like. We enjoyed it very much, as usual. It’s so nice to be at a 100% vegan restaurant, so we can have anything on the menu, including desserts, without worrying.

Native FoodsWe decided that for his birthday we’d go to lunch at a Thai restaurant in La Quinta that we liked a lot. In fact, we were just there about a month ago.

Thai

So we were really surprised when we pulled up and it was gone! Well not gone, but cleared out. Moved, closed, whatever, it was no longer there. Another good restaurant with vegan options gone.

Legacy ThaiThat got us to talking about how many restaurants we’ve “killed.” It seems like every time we find a place that we enjoy, poof, it goes out of business. This list won’t mean anything to you, because, well, they’re all gone, but here’s a short list of our victims: Mrs. Bones, Pita House, Kacoon, Frankies, Cucina Pasta, Thai Smile La Quinta, Kokapelli’s, and a few others whose names I can’t remember because this has been happening for close on 20 years.

So, if you ever open a restaurant and you see Alan and me walk through the door you had better either 86 us immediately, burn our meal so we never come back, or just say goodbye to your restaurant. Sorry.

Bob and Peg

I finally heard from my two favorite clients who moved back to Northern California last year. Or rather, they chose to stay there year round and not, at age 83, put themselves through the stresses of traveling back and forth. We’d lost touch, but I finally spotted a Facebook message from their daughter (don’t forget to occasionally check your “other” folder!), and we spoke the other night on the phone. I’m happy to report that they are still exercising, though they feel they could use a little instruction and aren’t really impressed with the trainer at the gym they use. When you’ve had the best…(just kidding)! I may have to put something together for them that they can follow on their own.

Bob and Peg

Car in the Water

Last weekend we were in San Dimas where Alan announced a triathlon, I took a run, and it was really cold. Well, for us. It was in the 50s though, and we’ve grown used to 90s, so yes, it was cold. Anyway, the most interesting thing that happened was this:

Car in the Water

Yes, that is a car in the water. It floated (drove?) by towards the end of the triathlon, beeping its horn to get everyone’s attention. Of course, I took a picture and posted it on Instagram (<–follow me!) with the hashtag #carinthewater. I noticed when I posted it that there were about 80 other pictures with that hashtag. When I checked them out there were the usual cars under water, but interestingly (I thought), there were two other pictures of cars that looked just like mine, same color and everything (and not from California). That’s all, I just thought it was interesting.

Naked Nails

I actually did this last week but forgot to write about it (shocking, I know). I decided to take off my fake nails for the summer (at least), so now I’m dealing with the aftermath of that: weak, broken, chipping, splitting, ugly nails.

nailsMy strategy for nail repair is to keep them as short as possible for now, treat them with tea tree oil (suggested by a couple people) and a nail strengthener, and I’m trying some Biotin, because that’s what it says it does. I’d appreciate any suggestions that you may have because I hate how they feel. You know, like they’re going to bend backward all the time. Though I’ve got to say that typing is a lot easier.

My most popular post

Several years ago I had a breast cancer scare and had to have an excisional biopsy, which fortunately came back negative. I wrote about the whole experience and since that time, that post has become the most popular one I’ve ever written. It still gets 10-15 hits a day, and I’ve had so many women comment about their experience both before and after the operation. It warms my heart to hear that my words have comforted them and helped them prepare for their procedure. I’m reminded why I write sometimes about very personal topics. It’s on my mind because I had another comment today.

The Fitfluential Blog

And finally, in case you missed it, my article was featured on the Fitfluential blog this week. It’s a post about vegan protein sources and Everlast VP, Everlast Nutrition’s new vegan protein powder. Plus I created an outdoor HIIT workout especially for the post. You can get a free sample of Everlast VP and enter a contest to win a two month supply! Check it out!

Everlast VP

What’s on your mind this week? And what should I do about my nails?

3 Smoothies and a Juice plus my Revised Marathon Plan

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I won a Blendtec Blender in a giveaway on the Fitfluential blog. Well, it arrived last week and I have been busy creating smoothies and juices since then. Here are a few of my favorite blends.

Three Smoothies and a Juice

Rader Farms Fresh Start Morning Vitality Fusion Smoothie (Fresh Start Vitality Smoothie for short).

I had a chance through Influenster to sample Rader Farms Morning Vitality Fusion frozen fruit and vegetable blend. This Fresh Start blend contained nectarine, mango, sweet potato and carrot,  and is picked and frozen at the height of freshness. I have so say that it is an easy way to get delicious and healthy ingredients into your smoothie (or juice, or whatever you choose). The Morning Vitality Fusion is and excellent source of Vitamin A and C and is loaded with fiber.

Fresh Start Vitality Smoothie

Silk-alicious Smoothie

I recently had a chance to try the new Silk non-dairy Yogurt Alternative. Of course I had to make a smoothie!

Silk alicious Smoothie

Berry Avocado Smoothie

Adding avocado to a smoothie is a great way to add healthy fat to your diet. While I love the taste of avocado, it isn’t my go-to flavor for a smoothie. No worries. You don’t taste the avocado, but you do get a creamy richness in your smoothie.

Berry Avocado Smoothie

And Finally! Ultimate Green Juice

One of the reasons I was excited to win the Blendtec was to make juice. Even though I’m a vegan, I’m not a huge veggie eater (yeah, I know, irony). Juice is a great way to get your vegetables, and when made in a blender you get all the goodness and fiber. This was my first juice, improvised following a couple recipes and adding my own flair (the cilantro and arugula). While I loved it, Alan wasn’t quite so enthusiastic. He thought it had too much celery. Working on it.

Ultimate Green Juice

My Revised Training Schedule

Training Plan 3

When I first put my schedule for the SLO Marathon together, it did it rather quickly (blog deadline, you know). On reflection, I’ve changed it up at bit. I said that I wanted to rock this marathon, so I added a second speed workout during the week. That is the main change. My Monday run will serve as a second longest run, plus a longer, slower speed training day (like half marathon pace, marathon pace, etc.), while Wednesday will be a little higher intensity, long intervals and hills.

Date Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Total Mileage
1/5-1/11/15 7.5 miles Rest 5 miles Half Marathon Pace (HMP) Rest Rest 10 miles 3 miles 25.5
1/12-1/18/15 6 miles 4 @ HMP Rest 5 miles ½ mile intervals 3 miles or Rest Rest 4 miles 12 miles 30
1/19-1/26/15 7 miles6 x ½ mile LT intervals with ¼ mile recovery Rest 6 miles Hills 3 miles or Rest Rest 13 miles 5 miles 34
1/27-2/1/15 6 miles Marathon Pace (MP) Rest 6 miles Hills 3 miles or Rest Rest 15 miles 5 miles 35
2/2-2/8/15 7 miles
5 @ HMP
Rest 5 miles
½ mile intervals
3 miles or Rest Rest 6 miles PS Half 34.1
2/9-2/15/15 4 miles Recovery Rest 6 miles Hills 3 miles or Rest Rest 16 miles 6 miles 35
2/16-2/22/15 7 miles
5 @ HMP
Rest 6 miles
1 mile intervals
3 miles or Rest Rest 16 miles 6 miles 38
2/23-3/1/15 8 miles
MP
Rest 6 miles Hills 3 miles or Rest Rest 18 miles 6 miles 41
3/2-3/8/15 8 miles
6 @ HMP
Rest 6 miles
1 mile intervals
3 miles or Rest Rest 6 miles Redlands Half 36.1
3/9-3/15/15 4 miles Recovery Rest 6 miles
4 @ LT Pace
3milesor Rest Rest 20 miles 5 miles 38
3/16-3/22/15 8 miles
MP
Rest 6 miles Hills 3 miles or Rest Rest 16 miles Neg Split Run 6 miles 41
3/23-3/29/15 8 miles
6 @ HMP
Rest 5 miles
1 mile intervals
3 miles or Rest Rest 20 miles 6 miles 42
3/30-4/5/15 8 miles
1 mile LT intervals w/2 minute rest
Rest 6 miles
4 @ HMP
3 miles or Rest Rest 22 miles 6 miles 45
4/6-4/12/15 8 miles MP Rest 6 miles Hills 3 miles or Rest Rest 15 miles Neg Split Run 5 miles 37
4/13-4/19/25 8 miles
6 @ HMP
Rest 5 miles
½ mile intervals
Rest Rest 10 miles 5 miles 28
4/20-4/26/15 6 miles Rest 5 miles MP 3 miles Rest 2 miles SLO Marathon 16 + 26.2

This week I ran 25.5 miles. I’m a little behind where I wanted to be on my total mileage, but I’m happy with that. It will be increasing soon! I did not make to yoga at all this week, but I’ve got a class on my schedule for today. I really don’t want to let that go now that I’ve started back. Here’s my recap:

Monday: I ran 7.5 miles on the road. I was making up for missing a longer run the previous Saturday. It was cold, but I didn’t have a client in the morning, so I could start a little later.
Tuesday: Rest
Wednesday: After a one mile warm up, I ran three miles at half marathon pace. My goal was about 9 minutes miles, but I actually ran 8:53, 8:49, and 8:45, so I was really happy with that. And surprised! I took one break, at the halfway point, just walked for about 30 seconds.
Thursday/Friday: Rest
Saturday: 10 miles on the road. The hardest part, because Alan is a little behind me on his schedule and was only running 8, was to add that extra 2 miles. It was important though, not so much for the extra mileage as for the mental aspect of pushing through.
Sunday: Doggy run (and recovery) day! Two miles with Penny and Johnny, one miles with Lily, Olivia, and Coco.

Not bad. Now that I have my schedule I am getting more excited for the marathon. You still have time to join me if you want! Remember you get a $10 discount with the code WOODAMB.

SLO Marathon

Do you make a lot of smoothies? Do you have a favorite recipe for a smoothie or juice that you’d like share? Link it up if you’d like!

Workouts, Vegan Eats, & Christmas (and Blendtec)!

Yes, I’m jamming it all into one post. To keep the wordiness down, the Christmas recap will be mostly pictures. But, first, a couple announcements and my training recap.

A Blendtec Kind of Holiday

So much exciting stuff going on. First off, if you remember my what I want for Christmas post, I mentioned at the top of my list needing/wanting a new blender. Well, Santa skipped that one, but Fitfluential did not! I actually won a Blendtec Designer 725! Yes, I did! I haven’t received it yet, but here’s the proof:

WinnerYep, that’s me!

Small town, BIG RACE

As you know, Alan and I are training for the SLO Marathon on April 26. Our training program officially starts with the new year, so it’s time to get race plans in place. We’d love to have you join us, so remember that the prices will be going up December 31. You can still save $10 with the code WOODAMB, so hurry up and sign up!

SLO Marathon

As for my own training, I think the term “holiday training” pretty much sums it up. Yes, I ran, a little. Yes, I did practice yoga, twice, once at home, once at the studio. But, all things considered, I’m okay with that. Here are my workouts from last week:

Monday: Since it was looking to be a busy day, I did an at-home yoga class with Yoga 30 (taught by my friend April of Yoga Central) early in the morning, followed by a three mile run (because that’s all I had left).

Yoga 30
Tuesday: Rest
Wednesday: Alan and I planned to run in Huntington Beach while visiting the family, but I ended up with a migraine, so that didn’t happen. Put a damper on the whole day.
Thursday: Christmas day Alan and I took a little three mile trail run. After being sick the day before it felt good just to be out and running.

Christmas Run
Friday: Rest
Saturday: In keeping with the holiday run thing, we ran about 5.5 miles on the trails.

Trail Run
Sunday: Run with the dogs day. Okay, that didn’t happen. Here’s why:

Weather

The poor dogs didn’t even get a walk. I did make it to a 90 minute yoga class though.

So, not a whole lot accomplished, but with holidays, shopping, family, travel, not to mention migraines, I’m okay with my training. Back on track in the coming week, though. I’m not quite where I wanted to be by the end of December since official training starts next week, but it is what it is. I’m also thinking about joining the January yoga challenge that Yoga Central is doing this month. That should help me stay on yoga-track (there are prizes!).

Vegan Eats

Of course all of my eats are vegan, but we did get a couple chances to get out to eat. For our second visit to the Tap In Room at Whole Foods, we tried the Artisanal Vegan Cheese plate, and, Oh My God! It was good. It was actually served by the “Cheese Man,” who explained each cheese. We also had the Jackfruit Crab Cakes again, and they were good too. We couldn’t finish it all, so we took home the leftover cheese and I had it for lunch the next day. It was even better, probably because I didn’t have the gustatory distraction of the spicy sauce on the jackfruit cakes. I was happy to find out that they sell it in the store (I’d never even visited the cheese section), and I can’t wait to pick some up.

Whole Foods

Whole Foods 2We also had a chance to introduce some friends to Native Food. I tried a new menu item, the Crispy Chicken and Avocado Club, forgoing my favorites, either the Bistro Steak Sandwich or the Greek Gyro Bowl. It was okay, but I’ll return to my faves on my next visit. Our friends enjoyed their meal too, which always makes me happy. I love when non-vegans learn how delicious cruelty-free can be!

Native FoodsAnd Finally…Christmas

Alan and I actually had three Christmas celebrations, one with each side of the family, then our own on Christmas morning. But, as promised, I won’t get too wordy. Just a lot of pictures (and maybe a little explanation here and there).

MinervaWe took the same friends for their first visit to Minerva Street, the desert’s version of Candy Cane Lane. Even though the youngest “child” was 18, they all loved it! So did I!

DebbieOur very nice neighbors brought us a huge gift basket. Obviously they don’t know us very well (yet), but it was a great bring-along to our family Christmas.

Gift BasketOur first Christmas, in Huntington Beach with Alan’s son and his family. The grandsons scored!

Watkins

Watkins 2

ElvisWe traveled home on Christmas Eve. My migraine finally cleared enough so that I could at least decorate the tree. We didn’t actually put any presents under it though, what with our little terror, er, terrier, Johnny B. Goode, being such a chewer. At least he didn’t eat the tree. Maybe because it was blessed by Elvis.

Alan_LilyJust because Santa didn’t bring a blender doesn’t mean I didn’t get exactly what I wanted. Now I’ll have to have some fancy adventures on the run that are GoPro-worthy.

Go Pro

NathanMy son Nathan and my beautiful daughter-in-law Sarah. I’d even say she was glowing…

ChristmasMy youngest son David and his girlfriend Melissa. Awake and smiling here but both were recovering a bit from a Christmas Eve celebration the night before.

DavidMy niece Brynne, who was there with her boyfriend Eric and his son Zach.

Brynne

SarahThere was some fancy underwear.

SamuelI guess Samuel doesn’t quite know what to do with his yet.

Samuel 2I distinctly heard Samuel, son of Paleo parents, say “yum” after he took a bite of the vegan turkey roast. He looks pretty handsome in his new robe, doesn’t he?

So that was my week. Got it done in less than 1,000 words. How was your holiday?

I Mustache You Some Questions

mustache-1024x1024I always love these little blogging surveys. It’s fun to learn a little more about your favorite bloggers. You may be tired of so much ME after yesterday’s post, but I was tagged by Jamie to join in the fun, so what could I do?

Four names that people call me, other than my real name:

  •  Shnuddy: My husband is a nickname type of guy. This one can vary, from Shnuddy to Shnud, to Shnudder pie.
  • Doobie: Hey, I grew up in the 60s and 70s, what can I say.
  • Blonde Bomber: Actually only once, but it has lived on in my head. Someone was mad at me at work because I wouldn’t let her do something. She made a crack about the Blonde Bomber and her attitude.
  • Mom: My favorite, which may be replaced soon by “Grandma” as soon as we can get Samuel to say it.

 

Four jobs I have had:

  • Typist: First job ever, at 14 years old.
  • Server: I waited tables for quite a while. It’s a great job when you’re going to school.
  • Activities Director: Yes, I was the one who set up the shuffleboard tournaments, did the crafts, and taught the water exercise.
  • Personal Trainer: More than a job, a lifestyle.

Mustache

Four movies I’ve watched more than once:

  • West Side Story: I still watch this movie every few years (I think I’m about due soon). I have even see the play.
  • The Wizard of Oz: It was a family tradition when I was growing up.
  • Best in Show: The. Best. Movie. Ever.

  • Dirty Dancing: No one puts Baby in a corner.

 

Four books I’d recommend:

  •  Outlander by Diana Gabaldon: I was just introduced to the Outlander series last summer, and I’m hooked. I’ve finished the second book (Dragonfly in Amber), and I’m taking a break, though I’ve already purchased number three Voyager.
  • The Department Q Series by Jussi Adler Olsen: I stumbled upon this series last year and quickly read the first four books in the series. Now number five, The Marco Effect is out and I’m devouring it. The series is about the cold case department of the Copenhagen police, called Department Q, and it is written with such wit and style that you forget you’re “just” reading a mystery novel. Be sure to start with the first one, The Keeper of Lost Causes.
  • Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn: I haven’t seen the movie yet, but I read the book when it first came out and loved it. Talk about twists and turns.
  • Since I’ve already given you 14 books I’m going to stop there. I will tell you that there are some affiliate links in the above recommendations (though I’ve purchased and read every book that I mentioned).

 

Four places I have lived:

  • San Diego, CA
  • Fallbrook, CA
  • Palm Springs, CA
  • La Quinta, CA

It sounds so boring, but hey, I’m in Southern California.

 

Four places I have been:

  • Paris, France: And I’ve run the Paris Marathon twice!
  • Florence, Italy: We purchased my wedding ring on the Ponte Vechio!
  • Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Yes, we visited a Coffee Shop (or two).
  • Hanalei, Kauai, Hawaii: One of my favorite places on earth.

 

Four places I’d rather be right now:

  • On a warm beach, listening to the waves as I get a massage.
  • Murrieta, CA: Not flashy, but it’s where Samuel is.
  • Paris, France: Duh.
  • San Francisco, CA: If I had to live in a city, and if it couldn’t be Paris, I would choose San Francisco. I love the vibe, the liberalism, even the hills.

 

Four things I don’t eat:

  • Meat
  • Dairy Products
  • Eggs
  • Eggplant: Bad vegan, I guess, but I just don’t care for the vegetarian staple.

 

Four of my favorite foods:

  • Burritos
  • Avocado
  • Pizza
  • Sugar Snap Peas: For some reason, this is my current snacking obsession. Of course I dip it in a little vegan ranch dressing.

 

Four TV shows that I watch:

  • Dancing with the Stars: I’ve admitted it before and I’ll admit it again. Sorry, I’m not sorry, but I love this show.
  • Big Bang Theory: Even though I can’t usually remember the name (I want to call it Third Rock from the Sun for some reason), I still get a kick out of Sheldon and the gang.
  • NCIS: Mark Harmon. Nuff said.
  • Property Brothers: I’ve really gotten into real estate shows in the last few months, and I enjoy the twin Scott brothers a lot.

 

Four things I am looking forward to this year:

  • Christmas
  • Samuel’s second birthday
  • My next half marathon
  • Yoga: Because, yes, I really will get back on my mat.

 

Four things I’m always saying:

  • Three more! I’m a trainer and group ex instructor. That’s my standard reply when someone says, “are you counting?”
  • Quiet! Seven dogs.
  • Keep your eyes up: That, along with Pass her! said to my cross country team.
  • Dinner! I love to cook, and we eat at home almost every night.

 

Four People I Tag:

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