Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Morning

Thanksgiving in the Christ house always began with the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Mom started the turkey while we played, and inevitably Dad responded to at least one "oven fire" with the fire department. Five years ago, I brought Steven home to meet my family and we started our Thanksgiving traditions. 2007 was spent in California with Aunt Mary, Uncle Eddie, Grandma and PopPop. 2008 was spent apart, as Declan and I were home in Virginia while the army served Steven turkey in Afghanistan. 2009 we found out that our second child was a girl. And 2010 we spent with friends having a potluck feast in Germany.
     This year, we start our own tradition as a family. I ran this morning with Maggie, John, and Jennifer. The kids are now watching the parade. Declan is waving to the TV and Abigail is dancing around in her pajamas. I'm hosting a potluck in our house this afternoon for a total of 15 people. We have so much to be thankful for this year, most of all that we are all together. 

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Race Report: Give Thanks to Lebanon 5k

The most important thing I learned this weekend was that its pronounced Lebnin not Lebanon. Saturday morning was quite chilly, barely hitting freezing before we started. Chastity and I were all ready for our run! It was pretty flat course that started at the top of a hill and had spent some time on the trail. I started out strong, but way too fast. When I stopped for my first walk interval (planned at the 4 minute mark) I was ahead of Chas and she checked her GPS watch. I was on pace for an 8 min mile. That's only about 3 minutes faster than normal. It fell apart from there. Tight calves, cold chest, tired legs. I finished in 45 minutes. I am super bummed, BUT I did it. I finished the race running, I chalked it up to experience, consulted with the Running Moms and will do it again on December 10th.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

This Running Mom, Next Step: 10k

As many of you know, I've been dabbling in the running world for the last 18 months or so (mostly since Abigail was born) and I've accomplished a lot in that time frame. I've ran several 5k and I keep improving my time. My end goal is a half marathon, 13.1 miles in May 2012. 

Friday morning, DH was off (for Veteran's Day, his own very special holiday!) and so we decided to take the kids to the park. He drove them there, I left about 15 minutes earlier and ran there. It was my best run, EVER. No, I'm not exaggerating, not even a little bit. I ran 2.5 miles in 27 minutes. The route was hilly, as is most of this area, but it was a good run. I run 4 minutes, walk 2 and it really worked for me. I was on cloud nine all day. This carried over into the weekend and I have charted my next course.... a 10k. 

6.1 miles in 8 weeks. I can do this! I found a training plan online, consisting of 3 runs a week, 2 cross-training sessions, 2 strength sessions and one glorious Rest day. I'm switching the long runs from Sunday to Saturday, but you've got the idea. The bigger challenge is to find a 10k race in mid-January, but never fear. Worst case scenario, I plot a course, give DH a stop watch and go for it. 

I'll be sure to report in after my next 5k, which coincidentally coincides with my first 3 mile long run in my training program, this Saturday.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Bacon makes everything better

Last night I tried (yet another) new crockpot recipe. It required a little bit more prep work (maybe 10 min total) but it was excellent!

Bacon Wrapped Apple BBQ Chicken
In a small bowl, mix 1/2 cup BBQ sauce, the juice of one lemon, and 1-2 apples, peeled and grated.
Place 3 to 4 chicken breasts (skinless, boneless as always) in the crock and cover with the apple mixture.
Then wrap (or cover) chicken and apple mix with 6 to 8 pieces of bacon.
Cook 8 hours on low.

I served it with steamed broccoli. The kids loved it!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Veteran's Day, in a new light

Usually I spend Veteran's Day with my favorite veteran. This year, I added something new to my routine. I volunteered for the Annual Veteran's Appreciation Luncheon on Ft Meade. This event is led by the Retired Officer's Wives Club and sponsored by most of the organizations in the Ft. Meade community. I was in charge of coat check, which was nice because I was able to see everyone as they came in.

Among those in attendance were some retired veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, several from Korea and Vietnam, and a few from World War II. The ones that really stood out to me were, one original Buffalo Soldier, who brought with him some ladies dressed in period garb, a POW from Vietnam who was in captivity for 3 years and his wife, and another Vietnam POW who was in captivity for over 7 years.

I can't believe that I am part of the same community that went through such hardships over the last century. I intend to make this a regular event, and hope to find more ways to serve our local community of Veterans.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Yes, I'm a Crockpot Girl

Today I made my first recipe from the ever popular, CrockPot Girls website. Super easy, super quick (only 3-4 hours on high, so you can forget about it in the morning and still have it ready for dinner), and super tasty. Declan had seconds and Abigail wanted thirds. Here it is:

Bacon Ranch Chicken

Mix together:
1 packet of ranch
1 cup of sour cream
1 can of cream of chicken soup
2 Tbsp (real) bacon bits
1 tsp minced garlic (I used garlic powder in a pinch)

Spread over 3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts and cook on high for 3-4 hours. Shred chicken, and add some cooked egg noodles.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Amazing Arbonne Opportunity

Today starts my next step in the Arbonne journey. I am going to qualify for the Conference in Las Vegas in April. I will boost my business and my sales and enjoy the pampering that Arbonne has to offer!

I'm offering a special deal to any and all who are interested in making Arbonne part of their lives! When you sign up as a Preferred Client ($29), you save 20% off of all purchases for 12 months. You also qualify for a wonderful RSVP gift. That is $700 worth of Arbonne products for only $350 (+tax and shipping). For each person who chooses to join the Arbonne Family and use their RSVP in November, I will waive the $29 start up fee.