Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Cranberry + Cinnamon Brie en Croute

This has been the holiday season of baked brie! I made this for Thanksgiving, two Christmas parties and on Christmas day. It has become a cocktail hour favorite for our family holidays because it is just so unbelievably GOOD. A simple wheel or wedge of brie gets dressed up with sweet, sugary cranberries and wrapped up in puff pastry. I have made this with both a wheel and a wedge and I have to say, I prefer the end result of the wedge- it's much meltier. 

Cranberries, brown sugar and cinnamon are my fillers of choice, but you can branch out in any direction you like! Fig preserves would be delicious and I have also had this with an apricot and walnut topper, too. I served my baked brie with french bread crostini and honeycrisp apple slices. The apple slices were the best!

If you are looking for something to add to your New Year's celebrations tonight or tomorrow, I promise this will be a favorite. 

Happy New Year's Eve to all!

Cranberry + Cinnamon Brie en Croute

1 wedge of brie
1 sheet puff pastry
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 Tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1 egg, lightly beaten

Defrost puff pastry for 15-20 minutes and unfold. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

On a baking sheet, lay puff pastry flat. Place brie on top of puff pastry. 

In a small bowl, mix cranberries, butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Spoon cranberry mixture on top of brie. Fold puff pastry over the wedge, making sure there are no holes or air pockets. Brush with egg wash.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until pastry is browned, puffed and brie is nicely melted.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merriest Christmas!

From our family to yours, wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! 

Card by Tiny Prints
Photo by Jim Trice

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Banana Spice Greek Yogurt Muffins

I'm having a moment with these muffins and this recipe is too good and easy not to share. I know I have said this a million times over, but I love having healthy muffins on hand. These make the perfect addition to breakfast or a great snack to take on the go. They are also good for pre or post workout! 

The batter is mixed in a food processor, making it super smooth, which is a nice deviation from our usual muffins. Adding in pumpkin pie spice give them a nice festive flavor and mini chocolate chips make for a sweet add in! I also love to use dried blueberries, and have skipped the pumpkin pie spice for lemon zest instead. So tasty! 

Banana Spice Greek Yogurt Muffins
makes 12 muffins

1 cup plain 2% Greek yogurt
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 ripe bananas
2 eggs
2 cups organic oats
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1.5 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare muffin tins with liners and spray with coconut oil or other cooking spray of your choice. 

Combine all ingredients in a food processor, except for the chocolate chips. Pulse until smooth. Fold in chocolate chips and pour batter evenly, about 3/4 full, in muffin cups. Bake for 15-20 minutes. 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Salt Dough Ornaments

We spent Tuesday morning with some of our mini friends this week on a mission to do some Christmas crafting. We had an ambitious list, but the little ones were having so much fun playing with the salt dough, that we just stuck to that. 

These toddlers crack me up! They were all so excited to pour in the flour and stir the dough. Poor Will...he kept yelling "pizza!" as helped make the dough. If only I could have gotten a picture of his face when he tasted the salty ornament dough!

We were able to get everyone's tiny handprint and a few cookie cut outs. Once mine finish air drying a bit more, I'm going to spray paint them gold and write the year on the back. This is such a fun activity to do with your littles and would even make cute stocking stuffer gifts for grandparents!

Salt Dough

4 cups all purpose flour
1 cup iodized salt

In a large bowl, pour flour and salt. Add water slowly, until you get your desired dough consistency.

With a paper towel, rub cookie sheets with a little vegetable oil and sprinkle with flour. Roll out dough onto the sheets and cut using cookie cutters. To make the handprint ornaments, we used a mug to cut out a circle in the dough. Place the tiny one's hand in the center and press down.

Use a drinking straw to punch a hole in the ornaments before baking. 

Bake for one hour on the lowest temperature setting that your oven will allow. (most likely 150-170 degrees) Continue to air dry for at least 24 hours.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Clam Pie

Clam pie exists in a realm of pizza that I never knew existed and considering my love of creatures of the sea, I can't believe I've never travelled there before. While out of town a few weeks ago, Mark and I were enlightened by this delightfully different pizza topping combo and we promptly recreated it. In the spirit of Pizza Friday, and in the spirit of giving, I'm sharing this recipe with you today!

If seafood isn't your thing, this pizza probably isn't for you, but dare I say seafood haters might be surprised at their first bite. Broccoli may seem like the odd man out in this toppings bunch but I assure you, it works with the clams in all of the right ways. This may have a permanent position on our Friday night pizza line up. 

Don't knock it until you try it. 

Clam Pie

1 can minced clams 
4-5 cloves fresh garlic, minced
Broccoli crown, finely chopped
Olive oil
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Grated pecorino romano cheese

Preheat oven and pizza stone to 500 degrees.

In a small saute pan, add 2-3 Tablespoons of olive oil. Add garlic and saute until soft and fragrant on medium heat, about 3-5 minutes. 

Pour garlic and olive oil mixture into a medium bowl with the clams and broccoli. Season with salt and pepper. 

Sprinkle a thin layer of mozzarella cheese on the pizza dough. Spread clam mixture evenly on top. Sprinkle another thin layer of mozzarella on top, followed by a thin layer of grated pecorino romano cheese. Bake for 8 minutes. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Chatbooks, I Love You

Instagram is my favorite social media platform and it's really the only place that I post pictures these days. But what is the point of posting daily snapshots and memories if you don't ever get them printed!? Don't let your pictures sit in the clouds forever. There is something so special about tangible memory books to look through for years to come. 

I recently came across Chatbooks via an Instagram post from someone I follow, and I am hooked! I simply downloaded the free app on my phone, synced my Instagram account Chatbooks automatically compiled several books full of my entire Instagram history- including captions. I went through and deleted the ones I didn't want and ended up with seven 60-page books filled with moments that make me smile. Each book was $6, which is an excellent value! My books arrived in less than a week and they are all so cute. The quality is great and I can't wait to keep adding to my collection. I'm trying my hardest not to overgram, but with this easy method of printing and binding, it's so hard not to Instagram ALL THE THINGS. 

Chatbooks also offers features to create custom books and hashtag books. Additionally, you can invite others to a book and collaborate together. I'm loving everything about this app. 

Use this code below to get your first Instagram Chatbook free! 

NOTE: This post is NOT sponsored. I just love Chatbooks so much and wanted to share! 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

{What Will Ate} Apricot Oat Cakes

Healthy snacking is just as important for our little people as it is for us! I like to keep a variety of things on hand for Will to snack on. These little oat cakes are made with wholesome ingredients and are perfect for tiny hands. Will has been snacking on these this week and loves them. They also make a great pre or post run snack for me which is even better. I omitted the butter and used organic butter infused olive oil from Pour Olive which was a genius and much healthier swap. 

This recipe is another gem from my favorite baby cookbook, Cooking For Baby. The apricots are so delicious, but you could really mix in any of your favorite dried fruits. The coconut adds to the substance and texture of the cakes, so I wouldn't leave that out. If you do, just add two extra tablespoons of oats. 

Apricot Oak Cakes
recipe from Cooking for Baby

Coconut oil cooking spray
Organic old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. honey
3 Tbsp. finely chopped dried apricots
2 Tbsp. shredded unsweetened coconut
1 cup water, heated

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil and spray with oil.

In a mixing bowl, combine oats, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Make a small well in the center and add the olive oil and honey. Using a rubber spatula, combine until all oats are coated. Mix in apricots and coconut.

Heat 1 cup of water on the stove until just before it begins to boil. Add hot water to the oat mixture 2 Tablespoons at a time, stirring after each addition with a rubber spatula. Oats will become wet and sticky. With wet hands, mix oat dough one final time. The dough will be sticky, but not firm. 

Using two large spoons, scoop and drop dough onto baking sheets. Shape into 2-inch round flat cakes. Bake oatcakes until edges turn golden brown and centers are firm and not sticky, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Store oatcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Beer Tasting with Noda Brewing Company

Last night, we had the pleasure of attending a beer tasting hosted by our best family friends and one of my favorite local breweries, Noda Brewing Company. These beers are some of the best to order when we go out to our favorite local spots. Most recently, Noda's pumpkin beer, Gordgeous, stole my heart. I had it served with a cinnamon and brown sugared rim and can't get enough.

Last night's tasting featured six of Noda's beers, all paired with different cheeses and chocolates. I've done plenty of wine tastings but never a beer tasting. This was so much fun and I learned so much about the different beers that we tried as well as beer in general. My favorite? A chocolate coconut porter called Coco Loco. Over the past couple of years, I have grown to love darker beers so I am not surprised that this was my favorite! The actual Coco Loco that we tasted had just been canned two days prior!

If you're local, check out Noda Brewing at local restaurants, retail spots like Whole Foods or Fresh Market and take a trip to the brewery! Skip the shopping on Black Friday and drink beer instead! Noda's Christmas brew, Santa Baby, debuts at noon.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Friendsgiving, Volume 3

If you are not celebrating Friendsgiving, you are missing out. In a big way. 

It is one of my favorite traditions and although this was the third year that our close group of friends celebrated together, this is the first year that Mark and I were able to join- with little Will in tow! He was our official mascot. 

I love, love, love this tradition and it is a true blessing to have such wonderful people in our lives. 

Our meal this year was stellar and everyone contributed something delicious. Our meal was complete with perfectly smoked turkey breast, sausage stuffing, butternut squash mac and cheese and plenty of other deliciously different sides. We even had a signature cocktail and plenty of Pumpking!

I made a batch of my favorite cranberry sauce, and this incredible Brussels Sprouts Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing from the Thanksgiving issue of Southern Living. If you like brussels sprouts, MAKE THIS SALAD. And if you don't like them...well...make it anyways. I'm convinced that if you don't like brussels sprouts, you just haven't had them prepared in a tasty way. This salad is sure to shake up your Thanksgiving table.

It was a wonderful afternoon spent with so many of our favorite people. Cheers to the holidays, cheers to 2014 and cheers to friends who feel like family. 

Similar Recipe Links:

Autumn Cocktail (try this Bourbon Apple Cider Cocktail)
Butternut Squash + Apple Soup (this Apple- Butternut Squash soup from Martha looks yummy and with the addition of a jalapeno, has a little spice!)
Sausage Stuffing (this Spinach, Fennel + Sausage Stuffing with Toasted Brioche looks divine!)
Roasted Potatoes (this Crispy Potato Roast is gorgeous and delicious. Again, thanks Martha)
Kale Salad (try this Kale + Pomegranate Salad)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Cranberry Sauce with Lemon + Orange

Cranberry sauce has always been one of my favorite parts of our Thanksgiving meal. I always reserve a little spot right next to my turkey and although those two are supposed to be eaten together, I prefer to eat my cranberry sauce by itself, straight from a spoon. In fact, when I was in college, my dad would send me back to school with a couple of containers to hold me over until Christmas break! I can't get enough of this stuff. Just this morning, I mixed a tablespoon into Will's plain Greek yogurt and he was in love, too! 

This recipe comes from my family's kitchen (thanks, Dad) and is simple and delicious. This is my very favorite kind of cranberry sauce! The best part is the ever so thin slices of orange and lemon rind that are sweet and citrusy after being cooked in the sauce. I could eat a whole bowl of the sweet, cranberry flavored orange and lemon rind all by themselves. Double the recipe to keep this brightly flavored cranberry sauce on hand throughout the entire holiday season! 

Cranberry Sauce with Lemon + Orange

4 cups fresh cranberries
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 sliced lemon
1 sliced orange
1.5 cups water

In a large, heavy bottom pot on medium heat, combine water, white sugar and brown sugar. When mixture is warm and sugars begin to dissolve, add cranberries, lemons and oranges. The cranberries will begin to pop and the sauce will start to bubble. Let the sauce simmer for 20-30 minutes (the longer it cooks, the thicker it will become once it's chilled), stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and cover. Store in airtight glass containers in the refrigerator. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Trick or Treat 2014!

Say hello to our little mini marathoner! It was the perfect costume for our little guy to sport on Halloween as we kicked off our marathon/half marathon weekend. We practiced wearing the sweat band all around the house during Halloween week to prep for the big day! 

Our neighborhood has the best little Halloween parade every year and Will cruised in his wagon as we walked along the streets. 

Hope everyone had a happy, happy Halloween! 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

{What Will Ate} Vanilla Cinnamon Oatmeal

When the weather starts to get cool, I love to add oatmeal to my breakfast rotation. It's warm and nutritious and the flavor possibilities are endless. Old Fashioned Oats are my favorite and are worth the extra cooking time. 

This is the best and easiest oatmeal recipe for your littles! The oats cook in a bath of vanilla and cinnamon, giving it a sweet bite! Will loves this in the morning. It's quite a messy breakfast now that he particularly enjoys feeding himself from a spoon, but the kid has to learn some way, right!? I love to mix in fresh or frozen berries, applesauce or any other homemade fruit purees that I have on hand. 

One bowl for baby and one for mommy. Perfect to share with your pint sized breakfast date!

Vanilla Cinnamon Oatmeal
recipe from Cooking for Baby

2 cups water
1 cup organic old fashioned oats
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

In a small saucepan on high heat, add water, cinnamon and vanilla. Bring to a boil.  Add the oats and turn the heat down to medium low. Once the oatmeal warms back up to a boil and starts to simmer, place a cover on top and remove from the burner. Let sit for 15 minutes. Serve with fresh fruit or any other flavor add ins that your baby loves. 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Thirteen Point Fun

Race weekend in Raleigh is officially in the books and I can now say that I've run 13.1 miles. Running my first half marathon was an incredible experience! I cannot fully put into words the excitement and energy that we all felt on race day as we made our way to the starting line.

When we stepped out of our hotel at 6am on race day it was cold. Really cold. I started to rethink my decision to wear shorts but there was no turning back now! As we arrived on NC State's campus, the sky was clear and the sun was rising. It was so beautiful! We were so lucky to have a big group there with us to cheer us on. My parents, my grandma, Mark's parents, Danica's husband Bryan and even my little sister's boyfriend made a surprise appearance all the way from Florida State! The surprise of the day for us, though, was seeing our amazing neighbors cheering us on! We had no clue that they hopped in their car at 3am to be there to see us start and finish. They are the best! Will was in good hands while we ran. 

As the starting time approached and we all lined up, it was terrifying and exciting. Mark went ahead of us and the girls stayed together. Before we knew it, we were off! The sun higher in the sky at this point and the view was beautiful. The trees were all shades of Fall loveliness and leaves were crunching beneath our feet. Despite the winter chill in the air, it was the perfect fall day!

We started off slow and steady, which was key. I always say that longer runs require finding your happy pace and settling in for the long haul. The miles seemed to go by so quickly. Running with friends is always better and it helped that we could encourage each other along the way. We pointed out the mile markers as we passed each one. The course was very hilly, but not much more than what I'm used to running around Charlotte. I purposefully chose hilly routes when I was training and I really think this helped to my advantage. 

By the time we hit mile five, we started to split up. Andi and Danica were cruising ahead and Natalie close behind them. Bryce and I stopped for a bathroom break and then kept going. Around mile six or seven, we passed the 2:30 pacer, which we were trying to do. The race volunteers and spectators were wonderful! Everyone was cheering so loud and the signs were hilarious. I wish I would have taken pictures of some of my favorites because I'm still laughing thinking about them. "If you haven't pooped your pants yet, you're winning". Need I say more. 

Bryce and I remained running buddies throughout the rest of the race. We kept a steady pace and cheered louder at each mile marker. We saw our families around miles eight and nine and this was a huge source of encouragement! Will was snoozing away in his stroller and I waved my hands in the air like a crazy person. As we approached mile ten, the end was truly in sight. This was my favorite mile marker and a lady standing there said "you've been waiting for this one all morning!" We knew at that point that there was only a 5k to go!

We looped around at mile eleven and passed Andi and Danica and then Natalie. We high fived and we were all smiling so big. Though I was starting to get tired, I never felt like I was struggling and I started to amp up the pace. Once we passed mile twelve, we could seriously hear the finish line. By the time we hit 12.5 we could see it and it was the best feeling ever. We ran straight downhill the last half mile and at the bottom of the hill, my family and everyone was there cheering and my eyes got watery. Bryce and I sped through to the finish and threw our hands up in the air when we crossed that line. Our official chip time was 2:18 and after factoring in a five minute bathroom break, we are technically claiming 2:13 which I'm super proud of! My goal was to finish under 2:30 so coming in well under that felt great.

We found the rest of the lovies and huddled up as we anxiously awaited Mark the marathoner to finish his 26.2! It was freezing but we were huddled up together and still had the finish line glow. 

As marathoners crossed the finish line, more and more excitement built up. Danica predicted that Mark would come in around 3:48. We kept checking his status and pace online and looking up at the hill towards the finish line for his orange zip up! When we finally saw him, we were screaming. We ran to the median and all high fived him as he finished his final .2 miles. It was more emotional than I thought it would be! He crossed the finish line at approximately 3:48...just like my marathon veteran sister knew that he would. 

This was, without a doubt, one of the most thrilling experiences of my life. It feels so good to work towards a goal and dive in 100%. I may still be riding the race day high, but there will definitely be more half marathons in my future.

Cheers to Team Lovie!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

#TeamLovie26: Weeks Nine + Ten

Before I post a full race recap from Raleigh this past weekend, it wouldn't be right to leave out the last two weeks of my training. Weeks nine and ten were honestly great. As I tapered my miles and focused on race day, so much excitement built up and I couldn't wait to get to Raleigh for the big day. I continued to focus on miles, not minutes, and kept a good pace with each run. 

My final long weekend run was six miles and it was easily one of the best runs during my training. My legs felt stronger than ever and I felt ready to conquer the race the following weekend. After so many miles and ten weeks of training, I felt such a sense of accomplishment! During the full ten weeks, I only missed one run due to running my ten miler on Sunday and using Monday to rest. Not too bad! 

13 miles (3.22 miles, 9:54)Rest3 miles (3.28 miles, 9:38Rest3 miles (4.00 miles, 9:38)Rest4 miles (3.26 miles, 9:36)13.76
23 miles (3.23 miles, 9:57)Rest4 miles (4.17 miles, 9:49)Rest3 miles (3.11 miles, 9:08)5 miles (5.02 miles, 9:04)Rest15.53
33 miles (rest-sick day)3. 12 miles (9:34)4 miles (5.27 miles, 9:35)Rest3 miles (3.26 miles, 9:28)6 miles (6.26 miles, 9:48)Rest17.91
43 miles (3.29 miles, 9:32)Rest5 miles (5.15 miles, 9:41)3 miles (3.07 miles, 9:46)Rest7 miles (7.15 miles, 10:00)Rest18.66
53 miles (3.25 miles, 9:20)Rest5 miles (5.24 miles, 9:35)Rest3 miles (3.10 miles, 9:24)8 miles (8.18 miles, 9:53)19.77
64 miles (4.01 miles, 10:00)Rest5 miles (5.03 miles, 10:08)4 miles (4.07 miles, 10:29)Rest9 miles (9.24 miles, 10:53)Rest22.35
74 miles (4.14 miles, 9:59)Rest6 miles (6.08 miles, 9:47)4 miles (4.09 miles, 9:49)RestRest10 miles (10.91 miles, 10:18)25.22
8RestRest5 miles (5 miles, 9:13)4 miles (4.16 miles, 9:31)Rest8 miles (8.39 miles, 10:14)Rest17.55
93 miles (3.12 miles, 9:54)Rest4 miles (4.26 miles, 9:27)Rest3 miles (3.11 miles, 9:37)Rest6 Miles (6.60 miles, 9:32)17.09
10Rest3 miles (3.01 miles, 9:49)Rest3 miles (3.20 miles, 9:38)RestRest13.1 miles19.31

The very last run of my training plan was extra special because Danica was here and we got to run together! We pumped each other up and couldn't stop talking about how great it was going to be to run the half marathon with our team of lovies! And...just like that...half marathon training is complete! Next up, a full race recap!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Basil Jalapeno Chicken Salad

Chicken salad restaurants seem to be all the rage right now and this is definitely a food trend I can get behind. I love that there is no right way to mix up a chicken salad and really, anything goes. I like my chicken salad light on mayo, heavy on veggies and full of savory flavor.

I had some leftover shredded chicken to use up and a batch of chicken salad seemed like a great way to repurpose my crock pot leftovers. A fresh bunch of basil was sitting alongside a giant jalapeno in my vegetable drawer and I had a little bit of pesto hanging out in there as well. This dinner came together quickly and was a perfect end to a busy Monday! It's a great dish to make on Sunday and enjoy for lunch all week!

Basil Jalapeno Chicken Salad

4-6 cups shredded chicken breast
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1/4 red onion, chopped
2 Tbsp. basil pesto 
Handful fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup mayonnaise (I use Hellman's brand made with olive oil)
Salt + pepper, to taste
Olive oil for drizzling

In a large bowl, mix chicken, jalapeno, onion, pesto, basil and mayo. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil on top of kale, in lettuce cups, on cucumber slices- the options are endless!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Trader Joe's Pumpkin Picks!

It's a pumpkin spice world out there and whether you like the seasonal flavor or not, it takes over this time of year. I made a trip to Trader Joe's last week specifically to pick up some of the pumpkin goodies that I have seen popping up in my blog reading and Instagram feed.

Canned Organic Pumpkin- Trader Joe's canned organic pumpkin is a great price ($1.99/can) and I always stock up at this time of year. There are no added ingredients either. Just pure pumpkin! 

Pumpkin Spice Salted Caramels- Oh my! One of these after dinner cures my sweet craving and is the perfect mix of salty sweet. The pumpkin spice is on the stronger side and somewhat of a strange combination when you taste it, but I love it.

Pumpkin Spice Chai- Easily my favorite of the pumpkin spice finds from TJ's! This tea mix is a nice, warm afternoon treat.

Pumpkin Spice Cranberry Crisps- The perfect little crackers to have on hand for Fall! These pair well with many cheeses, dips and the apple cinnamon goat cheese that I also picked up from my friend Joe. 

Pick a peck of pumpkins treats at TJ's before they run out! 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

#TeamLovie26: Weeks Six, Seven + Eight

Race day is officially TWO WEEKS away- I can't believe it! Every time I head out for a run, I am literally in awe of what our bodies can do. Thinking back to where I was just a few months ago to where I am now blows my mind. Each week, I am running more miles than ever before and breaking my own personal records, which is definitely something to be proud of. Mark said it perfect when he said that with each Saturday run, we are pushing ourselves more than we ever have. I will be happy when I can mix in some more variety into my workouts instead of only running, but for now, it's about getting my miles in and preparing for 13.1 on race day. 

Week six was AWESOME. My weekday runs felt solid and I ended the week with a nine mile run that felt wonderful. I was dreading the nine miles but once I was three miles in, I hit a true running high. My sister and I ran together, which always helps with longer distances. The weather was perfect and kept a steady pace. I'm finding that some of my cramping was due to starting out too fast. By keeping a slower pace at the beginning, it's easier to maintain for the remaining miles and just feels better. We finished in 1:43:33 and kept a 10:53 pace. This was the first run where I felt like I could keep going another 3-4 miles, which would have made it 13.1!

3 miles (3.22 miles, 9:54)Rest3 miles (3.28 miles, 9:38Rest3 miles (4.00 miles, 9:38)Rest4 miles (3.26 miles, 9:36)13.76
3 miles (3.23 miles, 9:57)Rest4 miles (4.17 miles, 9:49)Rest3 miles (3.11 miles, 9:08)5 miles (5.02 miles, 9:04)Rest15.53
3 miles (rest-sick day)3. 12 miles (9:34)4 miles (5.27 miles, 9:35)Rest3 miles (3.26 miles, 9:28)6 miles (6.26 miles, 9:48)Rest17.91
3 miles (3.29 miles, 9:32)Rest5 miles (5.15 miles, 9:41)3 miles (3.07 miles, 9:46)Rest7 miles (7.15 miles, 10:00)Rest18.66
3 miles (3.25 miles, 9:20)Rest5 miles (5.24 miles, 9:35)Rest3 miles (3.10 miles, 9:24)8 miles (8.18 miles, 9:53)19.77
4 miles (4.01 miles, 10:00)Rest5 miles (5.03 miles, 10:08)4 miles (4.07 miles, 10:29)Rest9 miles (9.24 miles, 10:53)Rest22.35
4 miles (4.14 miles, 9:59)Rest6 miles (6.08 miles, 9:47)4 miles (4.09 miles, 9:49)RestRest10 miles (10.91 miles, 10:18)25.22
RestRest5 miles (5 miles, 9:13)4 miles (4.16 miles, 9:31)Rest8 miles (8.39 miles, 10:14)Rest17.55

Week seven was good overall. I kept under a ten minute pace on all of my weekday runs, which I was happy with. During this week, I also completed my longest weekday run (six miles). I was SUPER nervous for my ten mile run that weekend- something about the double digits really had my stomach in knots. When I walked out the door on Sunday to run, I hit the pavement with the mindset of "five miles out and five miles back". Breaking it up into two smaller runs makes it less daunting. It started to sprinkle about three miles in and by the time I reached six miles, it was POURING. I got soaked, and the rain slowed me down a tad, but my run was so good. I ended up running 10.91 because I miscalculated my route but during the last .91 miles, I was flying! It was a definite reassurance for me and a great feeling once I finished. And I loved running in the rain!

Week eight, this past week, didn't feel as good, but my runs were solid. I ended up resting on Monday since I ran ten on Sunday, making it the only run I have missed in my entire training schedule up to this point. The long runs started to taper off this week, which is a nice change of pace. My eight mile run yesterday was rough, but I made it. I was happy with my 10:14 pace and was happy to have that run behind me. 

This week is my last full week of running before the race! Next week is only a few short runs, a two mile walk and an airport pickup somewhere in between to scoop up our California family!!! 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

{What Will Ate} Little Green Pouch

If you have a little one/little ones, you know that food pouches overtake much of the "baby needs" aisles. The handy little snack pouches are really a brilliant little method for snacking both at home and on the go. I'm not a fan of all of the additives in many of the store bought pouches- even some of the applesauce pouches contain added sugar or citric acid and other preservatives. 

My friend Julie introduced me to these refillable pouches and Will and I are in LOVE! This takes a little bit of extra prep time, but its worth it to me. I've filled these little guys with everything from homemade strawberry applesauce to sweet potato, carrot, mango and parsnip puree. Lately, Will has been loving green smoothies after his afternoon nap and the little green pouches are perfect. I also blend up Greek yogurt and fresh fruit in the Beaba Babycook for fruit and yogurt pouches. For an easy filler, Trader Joe's organic applesauce (no added sugar or other ingredients- just apples!) is another favorite filler. To fill, I just use a spoon!

The zip top makes these easy to clean out. I run hot water through the pouch to rinse them and soak them in soapy water for a few minutes before scrubbing out. Bonus- they are also dishwasher safe! I purchased my pouches on Amazon