Friday Five: Weekend Plans

I’m linking up again this week with Mar, Courtney, and Cynthia for the Friday Five. This week we get to pick our topic, so I’m going to do weekend plans. Is it just me or has this been a long week? I’m definitely ready for a couple days off!

 

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1. I love starting my weekends with my Weight Watchers meeting. Even though it’s very early in the morning, it’s always nice to catch up with everyone. The meeting is like a reset for me, it’s the start of a new week.

 

 

2. Tomorrow afternoon, I get to take my niece to an advance screening of Dolphin Tale 2. I am so excited about this opportunity, thanks to being part of the Dolphin Tale 2 Blogger Crew. We also get to go on a tour of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium.

 

 

3. Sunday morning run with hubby friends. I am very lucky that hubby runs with me when I am out super early. The past several Sundays. I’ve also been lucky to have a couple friends join us. And this Sunday, we’re going to change up the location for some new scenery and run my 6 planned miles over the new Courtney Campbell Trail which runs along part of the causeway. Hubby, Corinna, Caitlyn and I will be running our little hearts out!

 

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4. Starbucks after our run is the best thing ever. Ironically, there will still be a Starbucks close by to go to afterwards. I earn that treat and always enjoy it.

 

 

5. Nap time. I am looking forward to going home after our run, showering, and napping. I’ll probably curl up with a book for a bit and that will surely put me to sleep even quicker. Napping after a long run on Sunday is so nice.

 

What do you have planned for this weekend?

Weekend Fun!

What a great weekend! I really hated to see it end. My Saturday morning WW meeting was great and although I used my no weigh-in pass due to the pizza we had for dinner Friday night, I enjoyed seeing everyone and sharing great tips for the week ahead. On Saturday after some necessary running around, hubby and I spent some quality time together in the afternoon and went out for ice cream in the evening before hitting the hay early. We had an early wake-up call of 4:40am to run 7 miles!

This time, my InstaGram / Facebook friend Angelina met us out at Memorial Causeway to run with us. Angelina and I have been virtual friends forever, after sharing a common love of WW and running. We’ve run several of the same races – Women’s Half, Gasparilla, Iron Girl – and she is training for her first marathon  also. We decided it would be fun to run together and I am so glad we did. She is so sweet and that 7 mile run just flew by with all the talking we did throughout. We already have plans to run together again in two weeks, this time in her neck of the woods, downtown St. Pete.

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Hubby was also a super sport and ran the 7 miles with us, which is his longest run to date. I am so proud of him. He does not love to run like I do, he struggles with it, but he enjoys the time it allows us together. I love having him out there with me, watching out for me in the dark, and he makes sure I drink water. he is the best and I am a lucky girl. He has also been working hard, going to the gym very early in the mornings and I have to give him major credit for that. It’s certainly not easy to do.

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After that fabulous start to the morning, I had a breakfast date with my fabulous friend Caitlyn. I met up with her in Tampa and we went to Oxford Exchange for breakfast and coffee. So much goodness there! It’s a beautiful building across from the University of Tampa. They have a delicious restaurant, a cute little coffee bar, a tea bar with loose leaf tea, a gift shop, and a book store. I was in heaven and I’m quite sure Caitlyn and I could have sat there for hours chit chatting.

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After breakfast, we went to lululemon in Hyde Park. I’ve been past this store many times and I have dreamed of their adorable workout clothes for quite awhile now, BUT this was my first time ever to go in the store. I told Caitlyn she was corrupting me. I ended scoring a great yoga towel mat on clearance and I will definitely go back again. I still want a running skirt….

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We also made a quick stop at Trader Joe’s for a couple of necessities and we ran into Steph while we were there. Small world!

Such a fun weekend and I am so sad to see it end. But, it’s time to tackle Monday and work. I am focusing on the positive this week and feeling determined to make things happen!

Favorite posts of 2013

 

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Another year is coming to an end… As I look through posts from this past year, it’s amazing how much has happened, how much was accomplished. Running, weight loss, personal growth, and more…. My blog has turned out to be the best form of a scrapbook I have ever done. And now it’s time for me to share my favorite posts of 2013. Since I just shared all my race recaps for 2013 yesterday, I did not include those in this list…

 

 

I have so much to look forward to in 2014 and continuing my blog is one of them. I hope you’ll stay with me and follow along!

 

Have a safe and Happy New Year! I hope you have a wonderful 2014!

An Orlando getaway with Autumn!

We have had the pleasure of having our niece Autumn stay over at our house several times in the last couple of years. She is so comfortable at our house, calls the second bedroom “her room”, and loves going to the park across the street, and more. Recently, we decided that she could stay over once a month. Autumn loves it, we love it, and her mom and dad could have a night out once a month. It works for everyone.

This Saturday was going to be our weekend to have her over. Last week, hubby found out he was going to work a live broadcast at SeaWorld on Sunday and we were going to go up after we took Autumn home on Sunday morning. Then we found out that we would have the chance to stay over Saturday night and we decided to make a weekend of it, and had the grand idea to take Autumn with us.

I have to say that we are so blessed to be able to take Autumn out of town with us. Having her stay over at our house is one thing, but to be able to take her on a little road trip was great. I very much value the fact that my brother and sister-in-law trust us with the care of their amazing little girl.

 

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After hitting the road around 1 on Saturday, we headed straight for Downtown Disney for our first stop, the Christmas store. It is an annual tradition for hubby and I to buy a new Christmas ornament each year and it was fun to include Autumn in this. I was also very excited to see that Downtown Disney had their fall decorations out and Autumn and I fond the perfect spot for a photo just minutes after arriving. Who else thinks the sign should say “Autumn at Downtown Disney”?

 

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We went in many shops, played with Legos, and watched a quick show at Downtown Disney before heading to dinner. Not surprising that we ended up at a Hooters near our hotel. Like us, Autumn loves wings. There was more silliness during dinner…

 

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After dinner, we checked into our hotel. Since Autumn had just been on a Disney vacation (complete with a pirate bed!!) with her mom and dad, she was curious as to what kind of bed she would have. There was a little bit of disappointment when it was just a plain bed, but the view from the 6th floor window made up for it. Autumn is very much related to me in that she loves a colorful sky and we were lucky to see this beautiful sunset.

 

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Autumn and I did some exploring around the hotel and she was fascinated by the different color lights in the fountain by the pool. It really was a beautiful property. We stayed at the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld.

 

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Probably the funniest moment of the weekend was when Autumn’s mom and dad called to say goodnight. Autumn was all curled up in her very own queen size bed watching TV and when I handed her the phone, she rolled her eyes like a teenager. After saying hi to her dad, she said “Daddy, we’re on a vacation and I’m trying to watch TV.” If only I had it on video…

On the ironic side, I brought my current read with me to enjoy all curled up in the big comfy hotel bed while I was falling asleep. My current read is The Shining and you can bet that I ended up dreaming about it that night. A dream about a horror story that takes place in a hotel while staying in a hotel? Now it’s amusing…. When you wake up from dreaming about it at 3:30 in the morning, not so much…. I probably should have stuck to the Weight Watchers Magazine…

 

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Sunday morning, we slept until about 7:15 which is so late for me. It was heavenly. We took our time getting ready and went downstairs for a fantastic breakfast buffet. I didn’t take a single picture of this but I had a delicious omelet with tomato, peppers, and onion (no cheese), grits, bacon, and sweet plantains. I really wanted pancakes, but I skipped those in favor of the plantains. So so good.

 

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After breakfast, we loaded up the car and then walked to SeaWorld. The hotel is literally right next door. Ten minutes later we were there and the real fun began. Autumn was a little afraid of SeaWorld because of the commercials where the audience gets splashed during the Shamu show. We explained to her that we would not get wet if she didn’t want to. I don’t think she mentioned it once after we got in the park… We had so much fun watching the dolphins (my absolute favorite!), she got to feed a bird, touch a snake, and touch a stingray. It was a great day!

 

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Remember how I said hubby was there for work? SeaWorld was having their Halloween Spooktacular for the kids. This was such a neat idea! They had a whole are for the kids to trick or treat and even gave out bags. They could wear costumes too! There were games and coloring stations and more. Autumn really enjoyed it. She told me it was okay that she didn’t have a costume on because she was dressed as a school girl. Such a smart girl.

 

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Since hubby was engineering a live broadcast, we also got to sit in the broadcast area. Jayde with Hot 101.5 was there and she had her adorable daughter Stella there who was dressed like a little ladybug. Stella really liked Autumn. And, Jayde let Autumn wear the headphones for a bit and listen in. Perhaps we have a future broadcaster in the family? Thank you Jayde for being so sweet to Autumn!

 

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My favorite part of the day? When Autumn told me that “SeaWorld wasn’t as watery as she thought it would be”. Which of course means that she had a great time and loved it. And the smile – and silliness – on her face are proof… She had fun and that makes me so happy!

 

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Cutie-pie Autumn fell asleep on the drive home… Even more proof of a great time. I look forward to more fun weekends with her. I adore this kiddo so much!

 

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Have you been to SeaWorld lately? What is your favorite part of the park?

Currently | October Edition

Time for another edition of Currently… Who wants to join in?

 

Current book:

The Shining by Stephen King. We recently watched a show on TV about The Stanley which is the hotel the book is based on. Apparently Stephen King stayed there in the early 70’s, it was all dilapidated, the staff was preparing to close it for the season, and he got lost in the halls. How creepy does a hotel have to be for Stephen King to write a book about it?? For those wondering, this will be probably the fifth time I’ve read the book AND it’s very high on my list of all-time favorite movies. The book is scarier than the movie but I love Jack Nicholson. Most amusing about all of this? I’m a big chicken!

 

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Current music:

I am always all over the place with music. If anyone ever got ahold of my iPod they would be highly confused. For the last few weeks, I have been all about Joe Nichols new song “Sunny and 75”. I go around singing it. I love his voice and it’s just a fun song.

 

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Current guilty pleasure:

Pumpkin spice coffee and pumpkin spice creamer every morning, sometimes 2 cups. My love of pumpkin is in full swing this time of year. Yes, I admit I have a pumpkin problem.

 

 

Current drink:

The answer to this may always be water, but this month I’ll throw in my love of ice cold beer. Hubby and I went to Pete & Shorty’s for dinner last night after our weekend in Orlando and we had what may have been the coldest pitcher of beer ever. It was so darn good!

 

 

Current food:

A couple months ago, we tried teriyaki chicken meatballs for the first time when they were giving out samples at the store. They are so good, super easy to heat up for dinner, and are best with a side of yellow rice. It is sure to be on our dinner menu this week.

 

 

Current show:

I am SO happy that American Horror Story is back. This season, it’s The Coven. I love how they have some of the same actors from previous seasons, especially Jessica Lange, but mostly, I am all about Kathy Bates and Angela Bassett. So far, I’ve only watched the season premier but I cannot wait for this week’s episode. It’s going to be a great season.

 

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Current wish list:

Race entries. I want to sign up for an endless number of races. Anyone want to chip in? lol

 

 

Current triumphs:

Without a doubt,  my weekend long runs. My longest to date is 8 miles. I do them Sunday mornings, at the beach, and I feel so incredibly strong when I finish. I can’t wait to do 9 miles this Sunday!

 

 

Current links:

Jenna Does Books – shameless plug here for my sister-in-law’s fabulous YA book review blog. She recently started a new series on her blog called Truth or Dare, and she read an excerpt from the book she is currently writing!

Metamorfit – Jenny is such a rock star. I’ve mentioned her on my blog before, but you must check her blog out again. She just took part in her first CrossFit competition – so amazing!

Skinnytaste – I love food and I love healthy versions of foods I love. This site is AWESOME and includes WW Points Plus Values. I am forever pinning recipes on Pinterest. And if you love pumpkin everything like I do, this site is for you!

 

 

Current needs:

I don’t currently “need” anything except maybe a break. There has been too much going on, too much stress, and work issues, and I just need something to go right. I need for this week to be better than last week.

 

 

Current indulgence:

Pumpkin munchkins from Dunkin Donuts. Oh. My. Goodness. They are so yummy. I certainly don’t need them, but they are wonderful. I’m just glad they are seasonal and will go away sooner than later.

 

 

Current outfit:

Over the weekend, when we were in Orlando, I was very excited to comfortably wear a pair of size 10 shorts that I have had for a few years. I’m ready for it to cool off, but it was nice to wear shorts, a tank top, and a pair of flip flops at Sea World yesterday.

 

 

Current excitement:

I love this time of year. We went to Downtown Disney on Saturday and bought our annual Christmas ornament and it put me in the mood for the holidays that will be here before we know it. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, and I am very much looking forward to my mom’s delicious turkey dinner.

 

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Current mood:

Mentally exhausted and worn down. I just need to catch a break on several things. I am not sure how much more I can take.

 

 

What are you currently loving? Share!