Friday, May 29, 2009

A Little Comedy...and some Teshy Tesh

Last night we went to a "Christian Comedy" show at our church called Thou Shalt Laugh. It was hosted by THE John Tesh...
and featured Michael Jr., Taylor Mason, Isaac Witty, Dana Daniels, Joe Wong and Rex Havens. It was actually very funny. One of the things I hate about going to Improv type comedy shows... is that 99% of the material is completely crass and totally over the line. What kind of people enjoy that humor?? I guess quite a few or they wouldn't keep doing it. This show was family friendly and it just goes to show that you don't have to throw your morals out the door to be funny. Here are a couple clips of my favorites:

Obviously, this isn't from last night... but were two of the comedians there. I love Michael Jr.'s oversaved... it is just so true... the whole skit was hilarious, but I can't find it on youtube. I will leave you with an oversized dose of randomness... John Tesh tickling the ivories as his mane blows in the wind... and the gymnast Nadia Comaneci performing along side him.

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Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Marathon Training: Day 2

Day 2: Fail.

I need to be featured on Fail Blog. Seriously though, it wasn't my fault. I had such good intentions! We had to drop my car off for an oil we were already going to be in Corpus Christi. What better place to do day 2 of training than on the trail by the water?? Surely it would be much cooler in Corpus... and guaranteed to have some wind off the water to cool us down while we ran. So I packed my running shoes, got my water bottle and headed out! We left our house, 90 something degrees, blue skies and get to Corpus...71 degrees, torrential down pour and lightning. Seriously? Is God sending me a message? "Don't run two days in a row my child, for you will surely die". I heeded His warning and went to Chick-Fil-A instead. This is now officially my "rest" day so get off my back. ;) Besides, I just HAD to do a tablescape when I got home for Tablescape Thursday...and then fix dinner...and by the time I was done with all of that, it was really too late to go run.

BUT!!! I will go tomorrow. I promise. Today = Rest day.

I promise I won't update the marathon thing everyday... I won't do that to the few of you that are kind enough to read my ramblings. haha

Anyway, enough about that. Do you want to see some lightning?? I swear Texas has the weirdest, craziest weather!! Driving home from Church on Sunday... I swore our car was going to be struck. There were bolts of lightning hitting the farm fields all around us! It was scary. Jon and I debated what would happen if our giant heap of metal, lightning bolt attracting car was struck... would we die? I mean, airplanes get struck all of the time and they are usually just fine. I have heard that the rubber on the tires prevents you from being fatally affected. Jon disagreed and his resolve was to drive near the telephone poles since they would be struck first. I was certain if this were to happen that the pole would fall onto our car and we would die anyway, so it didn't matter either way. Nevertheless, we made it home without incident.

Later that evening, we watched the most incredible lightning show I've ever seen on land. The only topper was being above a storm (in an airplane) over the Arizona desert and looking down on a lightning storm... (if the mere sight of that kind of power doesn't convince you that God exists... I don't know what will). The evening sky was lit up (literally) by continuous lightning bolts... but without thunder. Very strange. It is a phenomenon known as heat lightning... called that because it usually happens in summer storms, especially with humidity. Air molecules will scatter and bend the sound waves upward, leaving virtually no sound to anyone farther than 8 miles away (give or take) .

I took a few pictures... kind of hard to see in the dark and it certainly doesn't give any justice to what we saw in real life... but something tells me that you haven't had your daily dose of weather pictures today. I'm here to remedy that. You're welcome. Now enjoy.

There you are. 'til next time my friends...

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Marathon Training: Day 1

As promised... I am reporting in that I have OFFICIALLY started my half-marathon training.
Jon was gracious enough to run with me today... We ran the track on base... mind you it was like 150 degrees outside with 99% Texas humidity... already a recipe for death. And then I get the bright idea to run outside. At the 1 mile mark my brain started to scramble like an egg and I was certain I was going to induce a stroke. Or a heart attack. Or pop a lung. Or suffocate to death from lack of oxygen. haha I'm in terrific shape, can't you tell? I made it a mile, which was both joyously shocking and completely discouraging, all rolled into one.
Conclusion after Day 1: Confirmed. I still hate running. Still out of shape. But not ready to quit just yet. I have decided that high noon is not the optimal time to go running in Texas. I know, right? I'm a master of the obvious? Yes, as a matter of fact I DO have a PhD in Common Sense. Perhaps tomorrow I will put the common sense to good use and run at the break of dawn. ;)

I need a miracle. And motivation. And a piece of pie.

Goodnight all.

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California Trip

I am finally back to the Motherland (Texas)... still have yet to unpack. I hate unpacking more than I hate packing. Doesn't it always feel like it takes a month to catch up after you go on vacation? Yeah, that's where I'm at... getting back into the swing of things. ;) I thought I would share a few pictures from my trip... because I have such an exciting life that y'all are dying to see. (haha, right.)

Here we are at the Airport Cafe... it is a small little restaurant at a little airport by my parent's house. My first flying lesson was out of this airport... so it will always hold a special little place in my heart. :)

Might as well keep the ol' noodle sharp with a little arithmetic:
Me + Airplanes + Food + Good Company = A GREAT DAY.

My sisters and me. (above)

My niece Ella and me. (below)

My Nephew Luke and me (left).
Carlie's son Luka, me, Jessica and Luke (right).

Spent a lot of quality time with Toby and Charlie, my mom's Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.

Charlie loses his marbles when the bubbles come out!!

A little play time in the backyard...

Had lunch with my Grandpa... and went to "see the animals". There is a place near my grandpa's house that has the most random animals... I guess as pets. They have lots of goats and sheep as well as zebra, buffalo, horses... probably among other beasts of the land that were hiding in the hills behind their house. ;) My grandparents would always take my siblings and me to see the animals when we were little kids staying at their house. This was obviously years and years ago. Anyway, we decided to drive by this place on a whim and to our delight.... ANIMALS! :)

Grandpa, Ella and Me.

This goat really wanted to befriend me. I had no opposition to that.

Poor Mr. Buffalo was so lonely. I surely would have befriended him too if I wasn't certain that he would pummel me on approach.

And, finally, Mr. Charlie Dog again. He LOVES his horse... takes it all around the house. Just so happens I caught him sleeping with it like it was his Teddy Bear. It was too cute. Of course he had to open his eyes when I tried to get a picture of him sleeping.

Such a good visit... it is always nice to go "home" and visit with the family, especially when you don't have to option of seeing them very often. :( Of course, it is nice to come back home, too...two weeks is a long time to be away from hubby and the poochies... maybe I can convince my family to come visit me so I can have the best of both worlds. Yoohoo!!... I know you guys are reading this... start planning your visit now! :)

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Disneyland Half Marathon

I can't tell you how much I hate running. Scratch much I hate exercise in general, however, I hate running the most. With some deep introspection and my own version of psychoanalysis, I have concluded that my loathe for running stems from me completely sucking at it. Even in the days when I was in tip top shape... I still had a hard time finishing a mile without being completely winded. I had plenty of endurance to dance, stunt and do cheer routines for hours on end in high problem. I could hike up mountains all day long or play a good game of tennis without hesitation. And nevermind short distance running, I would challenge anyone to a foot race. But when it came to long-distance running (yeah...anything over a mile is long-distance in my book), forget about it.
Accordingly, it may come as a complete shock that I have signed myself up to run a half marathon. THAT IS 13.1 MILES PEOPLE!!! I have actually been considering starting a running routine for quite some time (the thought usually only lasts momentarily haha)... my logic... -hear me out- is if I actually keep running consistently then I will naturally get better at it... and if I become good at running, then I surely will start to enjoy it. Right? As much as I tried to justify this wonky logic... I hadn't quite convinced myself to the point that I would get outside and start running.
THEN!!! My sister told me about the Disneyland Half Marathon that she was considering participating in. It goes all throughout Disneyland, through the castle, California Adventure, Downtown Disney, out to the streets of Anaheim, around the Honda Center...down the Santa Ana River...through the Big A...and back to Disneyland. And you are cheered on by characters along the way! How fun does that sound?? (minus the running part, haha)

Being born in Anaheim and raised in Southern California (not to mention owning a season pass to Disneyland for several years)...I have always had a soft spot for all things Disney. Both of my sisters have decided to do the marathon as well as a couple of our friends. PERFECT! Not only will this actually be the motivation that I need to get myself to start running but I can't make excuses for myself NOT to run. How embarrassing would it be to be the only one out of the group that can't keep up? And, even worse, having to get picked up by the lag wagon?? haha Seriously, if you can't keep up they pick you up in a cart and drop you off at the "family reunion" area at the end of the race. I think I would rather sneak off course into a back alley and call a cab to come pick me up and take me straight back to the hotel, than to accept a ride of shame on the lag wagon. But, considering you have to maintain a 16 minute mile (which I can easily walk), the only way that would happen is if I snapped an ankle or something. Then I would gladly accept a ride on the lag wagon to display what a warrior I was! I ran so hard I snapped my ankles. haha

Seriously, I was sold with the pyrotechnics at the start line.

I mean, Disneyland has yet to disappoint... but fire to start the race?
Even Mr. Walt Disney would nod in approval.

Look at these cute running outfits! Probably not the most practical, but I give them an A+ for having the Disney spirit! Too cute!

Even with all of this excitement and as much as I am looking forward to accomplishing such a huge goal... I am still scared to death that I am not going to be able to do it... or, even worse, that I will give up trying when I inevitably get frustrated at how hard I have to work at it. Considering I will be training by myself when I get home to Texas and don't have the social support that everyone has back home in California... I need to hold myself accountable somehow. So I have decided to post my weekly progress on my blog. Nothing like a little social shaming to get my butt in gear! ;) I promise to be honest... and if I don't have a post about running each week, from now until September 6th... feel free to give my a kick in the pants. :)

Right now... I am looking up at what seems like Mt Everest. For me, this is my impossible that not even I can convince myself that I can achieve.

I love this guy at the Chicago marathon... how encouraging!

"I can do all things through HIM who gives me strength." Philippians 4:13

Can I get an Amen??

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Monday, May 18, 2009

New Hair!!

So I did it!!! I was tired of complaining that I didn't have any style to my hair... it was long and boring. I couldn't stand the Corpus Christi wind anymore with long hair. I would walk from the house to the car and would have such windblown hair that I would just put it in a pony tail. Some days I even resorted to a french braid. Yes, the 4th grade french braid. That's when I knew I had to take action. ;) So here it is!!

Before and After:

You can find the whole hair cutting journey on my Huckleberry Prairie blog here.

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Thursday, May 14, 2009

Girls Night / Fondue Party

My sister, Jessica, hosted a Girl's Night / Fondue Party at her house the other night... and, I am proud to say, she made her first tablescape!! More pics can be found here. It was a delightful black and white theme with a burst of cheery yellow!

Here I am making a Strawberry Salad with Candied Pecans.

Carlie and Debran getting the warmers started...

Maria posing while warming up the chocolate. ;)

My cute table setting...

Jessica and Me.

Carlie and Me.

Debran and Maria.

Another sister shot.

We had a visitor! A creepy claw hand!!

Ella couldn't resist coming downstairs to see all of the marshmallows and chocolatey goodness...

To good friends and good conversation.

Such a fun night. :)

Since I had a few requests for the recipe to the strawberry salad... and I don't really have a recipe (I kind of made it up as an excuse to eat candied pecans without feeling quite as guilty haha)... Here is how I make it:

First, make your candied pecans.

-Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
-Line a baking sheet with wax paper and spray cooking spray generously on the wax paper.
-Combine one egg white, 1/2 cup packed brown sugar and a dash of vanilla. Mix.
-Add 3 cups of whole pecans (or chopped if you prefer bit size pieces)
-Lay out across greased wax paper and bake for 10 minutes.
-In a separate bowl mix some cinnamon and white sugar together... after removing pecans from oven, slide pecans off wax paper and into cinnamon and sugar mixture. Coat. Place pecans back on wax paper on baking sheet and bake for an additional 5 minutes.
-Remove from oven and set aside.

Make the salad.
-Combine a spring mix with spinach leaves.
-Add sliced cucumbers.
-Add shredded carrots.
-Add sliced Strawberries.
-Add Pecans.
-Add shredded cheddar cheese to top.
-Raisins and sunflower seeds are optional.
-Individually add a vinaigrette dressing... I think a berry blend is the most Strawberry or Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing.

Serve extra chilly. I usually make the salad as I'm making dinner and put the bowls (with all the salad ingredients minus the pecans and dressing) into the freezer. When dinner is ready, I pull them out, add the pecans and dressing and serve. I don't know what it is... but an extra cold, crisp salad makes such a difference to me. I especially like to make this on hot days... something about the cold salad and strawberries is the perfect summer salad to me. :)

Hope y'all enjoy!

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