Monday, June 30, 2014

Busy Weekend + ZOOMA Training Week 5

Good morning, everyone!  Today is a very special day in my and Joe's life.  Two years ago today, we got married!

Last year, I posted more pictures, so check them out if you are interested!  Today, we are planning to hang out on the beach and enjoy a nice dinner together.  Happy anniversary, Joe!  I love you so much and am so happy you are my husband :)  Here's to many, many more!

Ok, now on to a little weekend recap! It was a fun one between spending time in Gainesville with Joe's family, then coming back home and doing some fun things!

We started out Friday with a little hike around San Felasco park.
This is one of my favorite things to do in Gainesville!  Joe ran the 2.3 mile path while my mother-in-law, Tequila, and I walked the 1 mile path.  I had a great time catching up with her!  After we hiked, we enjoyed some subs at the picnic table.  Great way to start the day!

After that, we ran some errands around town before heading out to the horse farm to see Joe's grandmother.  She had arranged for use to have dinner with my father-in-law and step-mother-in-law, so we spent the afternoon and evening visiting with them and eating some good chili!

We got a lazy start to Saturday, which is just the way I like it!  About mid-day, I met up with my sister-in-law in to go to Painting with a Twist that just opened up in Ocala!  It's a 2 or 3 hour painting class where you can BYOB--pretty cool!  Plus, Katherine knows the owners of the studio, so we got the royal treatment when we arrived.
The studio is absolutely beautiful!  The owners told us that the franchise owner was there for their grand opening on Thursday and told them the other studios needed to step it up after seeing their place.
They led us step-by-step through the painting, and it was a lot of fun!  They make it so easy to follow that this non-artsy person can do it.  If I can do it, you can too!
Katherine's boyfriend's mom joined us, as well, and we all had a great time.  It was so cool to watch everyone's paintings come together and all of the unique touches each painting had!  I highly recommend checking out Painting with a Twist Ocala, or any other Painting with a Twist locations near you!
After we finished our paintings, Katherine and I hung around and talked for a while before I started the trip back home.  Joe had already made it home by the time I got there, and we decided to have a little dinner-and-a-movie date night!  We went to see 22 Jump Street (really funny--I recommend it!) and then had dinner at Red Robin to redeem my free birthday burger.  It was a really nice night spending time with Joe, laughing, and eating some good food.

The final act of the play was on Sunday morning, so I spent my morning at church.  I'm really sad that it's over, but I'm so thankful I had the opportunity to be a part of that!  Here's a still shot from Act 4.  I decided I will post the videos in a separate post later this week, in case anyone wants to watch them.
Talking about my sore cheeks from smiling in bridesmaid's pictures :)
After church, Joe and I watched the first World Cup game of the day (and I decided to nap at the end).  We then got some yard work done before the fun began in the evening!

We went to another Daytona Cubs baseball game and had a good time.  As I mentioned, Joe likes to heckle (all light-hearted and relatively funny heckling, mind you) the right fielder.
Yesterday, the right fielder wound up hitting a foul ball RIGHT where we were!  It was almost like he aimed it!  Of course, Joe had fun the next half inning asking the guy if he wanted the ball back :)  Oh, silly husband!  As always, we had a good time watching the baseball game.
Beautiful view as we left the stadium
Afterward, we headed over to a friend's house to watch the WWE pay-per-view.  It was a fun time of socializing, and Joe wound up predicting the winner of every single match.  He was so excited to win the $1-a-person bet we make on the matches :)

Well, that was just about our whole weekend!  We were really busy with lots of fun stuff, so it made the time go by quickly.

ZOOMA Training
Another week of training that didn't quite go as planned.   Let's look at what all I did this week.
Monday-rest day
Tuesday-3-mile run with negative splits
Wednesday-BodyPump class
Thursday-hour-long walk with my sister-in-law
Friday-1-mile walk with my mother-in-law
Saturday-rest/travel day
Sunday-rest/lazy day
Not exactly what I wanted, but I did get in my one strength session this week.  I also had a GREAT run on Tuesday and still got in some activity on Thursday and Friday.  

This week, my goal is going to be getting in my workouts in the morning.  We're going to be traveling the second half of the week, and if I can get the workouts in before our daily plans, I will be a happy gal.  As far as what those workouts are, I'm going to aim for 3 runs (including a long run), 1 strength session, and 1 yoga session.  I can do this, y'all!

Question for you: Have you every done a class like Painting with a Twist?  What was something fun you did this weekend?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Friday Favorites 6/27

Good morning from Gainesville!  Joe and I are here for the weekend visiting his family and just enjoying the summer time since I'm finally done with work!

This week, I had purchased a lot  of new things, most of them in the technology department!  Let's take a look at some of my favorites of the week.

Favorite Cuddle Buddies
Joe was out of town this week checking out a chiropractor he'll be working for after graduation (yay!!), so I got lots of quality cuddle time with my furry friends.  They did a great job of keeping me company while Joe was away!

Favorite New Way to Eat a Sandwich
Image Source-I don't agree with the opinions on this forum, though
Since starting the Advocare 24 Day Challenge, I've been ordering Unwiches at Jimmy John's!  What's an unwich?  You can  get any Jimmy John's sub as a lettuce wrap!  All the same deliciousness, but without all of the bread.  Tip for eating them: keep the paper around the unwich as you eat it.  Everything stays in place a lot better!  I really, really love ordering the sandwiches this way and think I'll continue it after the challenge is over!

Favorite New Technology
I'm sure this is no surprise--I'm LOVING my FitBit!  As I mentioned Wednesday, it is still motivating me to move around a lot more.  The stats are really eye-opening, and I love it.  I also love the sleep tracking.  Not sure how 100% accurate it  is, but it's certainly right  about me being awake at certain times, thanks to Miss Tequila waking me up!

Favorite New Work Tool
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Yesterday, I went to a workshop about a new computer program we'll use next year in our school district, eduphoria!  This program is going to make data analysis SO MUCH EASIER for the teachers (and me, too!) AND it's got a really handy built-in lesson planning tool.  I think this program is going to be FANTASTIC and I look forward to helping the teachers use it throughout the year!

Favorite New Running Accessory

I bought some new headphones for running this week, and they are working out really nicely!  They are Koss, and I remembered reading Erica and Annette's positive reviews of them.  When I saw them at Best Buy this week, I picked them up and have been loving them!  They actually stay put, have a comfy fit, and give off great sound.  I'm really happy with this pick!

Favorite Gainesville Activity
Whenever I come to Gainesville, I always love going to this one trail and hiking/running.  Joe, my mother-in-law, Ttequila, and I are heading there now!

Hope y'all have a great Friday!

Question for you: What's your favorite technology this week?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Motivation to Move

How's it going, y'all?  Today is my LAST DAY of work for the 2013-2014 school year!  I've officially finished my first year as a math coach--woo hoo!  I do have a training tomorrow, 2 trainings next week, then I teach summer school for 3 weeks in July.  Not much of a summer break, but at least we have Fridays off in the summer!

So, in my Currently survey from Friday, I mentioned that I had a FitBit on my wish list.  For those of you who don't know, a FitBit is an activity tracker that measures your steps, active minutes, and sleep patterns.  My sister-in-law got one right before our trip to DC, and I loved hearing how many steps we'd taken, miles we'd walked, and flights of stairs we climbed while sight-seeing in the city.  Every since then, I'd wanted a FitBit of my own.

Well, yesterday, I went ahead and bought a FitBit Flex!
Isn't it pretty?

I completed the initial set-up and downloaded the FitBit app around 1:30 yesterday was so ready to get in a bunch of steps for the rest of the day!  The FitBit syncs automatically when you open up the app on your smartphone, and there is a lot of fun information that you can see on the dashboard.
Not a great night's sleep...
Even though I got a late start on my daily step count yesterday, the FitBit made me SO MOTIVATED to get up and moving.  I love numbers (hello, math nerd here!), so checking the stats and seeing how many more I needed to reach the 10,000 steps/day goal was so exciting for me.  For me, seeing my progress toward a daily goal was just what I needed to get off the couch and move.  I wound up doing 2 things yesterday I probably wouldn't have done without seeing how little movement I had yesterday afternoon:

-Normally, when I get home from work, I just let Tequila out in our back yard so that she can run around.  Sometimes I'll sit out there with her and play with her, but usually it's just her playing by herself.  Yesterday, in order to get more steps, I took her on a 20-minute walk in the afternoon.  I enjoyed the time outside, and I know Tequila had a blast walking around the neighborhood, too!
Yesterday's data
-Even though I have a training schedule for a race, I haven't been super motivated to run lately.  But, in an effort to get more steps, I went for a run before dinner!  I was shocked at how many steps this run added to my total (I should have known--I did run 3 miles!!), and I foresee many more runs on days when I'm a little short on my step count.
As you can see, so far I'm loving my FitBit Flex!  It really is giving me motivation to move, and I hope the excitement and motivation will continue far past the first days, weeks, and months that I have this thing.  Don't worry, I'll be sure to keep y'all updated :)

Question for you: Do you have a FitBit? If so, let's be FitBit friends!  If not, what motivates you to get up and move?

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Summer Bible Study

Good morning, y'all!  Hope your Tuesday is off to a great start.  Despite having a dentist appointment after work (they used this really weird drill-sounding thing to clean my teeth...anyone else know what tool I'm talking about??), I had a really enjoyable evening last night of watching The Bachelorette and cuddling with my pets.
Good times!

Today, I wanted to share with you how I'm going to make deepening my faith a priority this summer.

The summer months are always a lot less structured when it comes to things going on in the church.  Bible study groups finish up in May, the youth group takes mission trips and the normal meeting schedule takes a break, and attendance tends to drop on Sunday mornings.  I'm so excited, though, to be participating in a virtual Bible study this summer, just like I did last year!
Living Proof Ministries, a women's ministry run by Beth Moore through Lifeway, invited women all over the country to complete Beth's new Bible study Children of the Day this summer.  Every two weeks, Beth will post a video and some discussion questions on their blog to keep everyone accountable and bring everyone together while completing the study virtually.  Kind of a cool concept!

The study itself goes through the books of 1 and 2 Thessalonians, two of Paul's letters written to the church in Thessalonica.  One cool thing that Beth has you do throughout the study is to transcribe the two books into the back of the workbook.  You write in the verses that each day's homework covers as you read them, then continue on into studying them.  It's something I've never done in a Bible study before, and I'm enjoying it so far!  1 Thessalonians Chapter 1 is already written in the back of my book!

I am already a little behind with completing the homework (I got the book late and I've been a little sporadic about getting the workbook done), BUT I am committing to completing this study before school starts back  in August!

It's funny how God makes things happen at the right time--the women's group I did Bible studies with last year is going to be doing this study this upcoming fall, so I considered just waiting until then.  However, after completing the first week's lessons, I know that I am supposed to be doing this study right now in my life.  It wouldn't hurt to do it again in the fall, either :)

I'll be sharing some of the lessons I learn in this study throughout the summer, so stay tuned!  If you are interested in participating, it's still not too late to start--just let me know that you're interested and I'll tell you what to do!  It'd be really cool to have some readers doing the study with me so that we can talk about it in the comments.  Let me know if you decide to join me :)

Question for you: Do you participate in any Bible studies over the summer (in groups or on your own)?  What do you do over the summer to maintain some structure/normalcy to your regular schedule?

Monday, June 23, 2014

Pet-Sitting Weekend

Oh wow, it's Monday again!?!  And, it's summer break, but I still have to work!?!  This is all so weird for me!  I've had a lot of time to rest this weekend thanks to a stomach bug, but I'm all better and ready to knock out these three work days!

Before I head off to work, though, let's take a look at this past weekend!

I was feeling much better from my sick day on Thursday, but I didn't want to push myself too fast.  I spent Friday on the couch watching TV, and I finally got to watch Frozen!  Oh man, those Disney movies get me every time.  Tequila watched with me, and she was really fascinated with Olaf the snowman!
Enthralled with Frozen
Joe made sure to take care of me throughout the day with ginger ale, soup, and toast when I was hungry.  What a guy :)

Joe and I were dog sitting for one of his friends, so my morning was spent chasing Tequila and Fin around.
These dogs were EXHAUSTING!  They were non-stop playing for the whole day, so much so that we had to put them in separate rooms so that they wouldn't wear themselves out!
Finally taking a break!
I also had play practice at church in the afternoon, and on the way over, I stopped by another friend's house to check on her bunny!  I have to stop in every few days while our friend is out of town for break, and this time the bunny Marshmellow let me pet him!

Play practice went well, and afterward, I continued to rest on the couch while the dogs played around.  I made some progress on my book, too, which is getting really interesting!

In the evening, I got to meet up with one of my sorority sisters Meredyth!  She was in town with her boyfriend, so we met at Ocean Deck, a bar on the beach, for some music, fireworks, and catch-up time.
I had a blast, and I'm so, so glad I got to see Meredyth!

I spent most of the day on Sunday at church.  I performed Act 4 (I must say, it was my favorite so far) of the play at both services, and afterward we had practice for the 5th act.  At around 2, we finished up, and I was SO READY to head home and eat!

I wound up taking a nap (I guess I was more exhausted than I thought!), but I woke up just in time for the USA vs. Portugal World Cup soccer match.  I don't know if y'all watched, but MAN what an exciting game!  I really thought we were going to win, but hey, a tie will do.  I was really surprised how in to the game I got.  I'm definitely a bandwagon soccer fan, but that's ok!

The rest of the evening, I continued to relax and get mentally ready for getting back to work.  Overall, a great weekend!  Lots of pets to watch, but still a lot of fun AND rest was had :)  I'm glad I'm back on my feet and feeling better!

Workouts This Week
Well, I was really on my way to a good week of workouts.  I went to hot yoga on Tuesday, and when I got home from work on Wednesday, I was really ready to go for a run.  BUT, then I got a stomach bug.  I hate that I missed ANOTHER week of training for the ZOOMA Chicago race, but I needed to take care of my body.

This week is a new week, so I'm going to set the same goals: get in all 3 training runs this week, at least 1 strength workout, and at least 1 yoga session.

Question for you: Do you pet-sit for people often?  Did you watch the USA vs. Portugal soccer game?

Friday, June 20, 2014

Currently Survey (from my sick bed)

Good Friday morning!  I came down with a nasty stomach bug on Wednesday night, and I'm just now feeling well enough to get on the computer.  You know I'm not feeling well when I don't get on the computer for a day!  I guess that Joe really had this stomach bug last weekend rather than food poisoning like we originally thought.  I just hope no one else gets it--it's no fun at all!

Since I'm still not 100% but didn't want to leave you lovely readers hanging, I thought I'd fill out this survey I saw on Chelsea's blog this week.   I actually did the same survey just over a year ago, so it was kind of fun to read back over that and see what I said last year!  So here we go :)

Current Book: I'm reading The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult.  I've heard so many good things about this book that I had to get it from the library.  It was a little slow for me to get in to, but I'm about 70 pages in now and I think I'm hooked!
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Current Music: I'm not listening to anything right now, but lately I've been really in to streaming the local pop music station 103.3 The Vibe while I'm working.
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I really like the morning show people, and the radio station does a good job of playing the popular songs a lot while still mixing in some other songs so they don't overplay stuff.

Current Guilty Pleasure:  The Bachelorette.  Every season, I get hooked even though I tell myself I won't.  I just find the Bachelorette more relatable than the Bachelor (duh), and I really like Andi because she's from Atlanta.
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And yes, I read the spoilers.  I hope they're correct this season!

Current Nail Color: My finger nails are rarely painted, but I have a shiny dark purple polish on my toenails from my brother's wedding.  They still look pretty good,  but I think it's about time to change that--it's almost been a month!

Current Drink: Switching between water and ginger ale.  I know ginger ale isn't really part of the Advocare 24DC nutrition plan, but recovering from this stomach bug is priority #1 right now!  I'll pick back up with the 24DC when my stomach is back to normal.

Current Food: Not really eating anything right now :-X but I did have some crackers earlier.

Current Favorite Show: Other than the Bachelorette, Joe and I just started watching Season 4 of Dexter on Netflix.
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Some of my other favorites are on their summer break (Modern Family, Grey's Anatomy, Glee), so it's time to binge watch some other shows :)  I'm also finishing up Weeds--I used to watch that show in college but lost interest right after Season 5 or 6.  I decided to finish up the series recently.  Definitely not as good as the first few seasons, but it's a little better than seasons 4-5 in my opinion.

Current Wish List: I really want a Fitbit.  I think I'm going to use my birthday money plus a Best Buy gift card (if they have them there...) I have to buy one soon.
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Current Needs: to feel better.  Like, now.  I hate being sick!

Current Indulgence: Since doing the 24DC, I really haven't been indulging in food/drink, and I haven't wanted to which is great!  BUT, I have been indulging in some online shopping recently and I need to stop.  Not so good for my wallet, but oh-so-fun for me to try everything on once it arrives!

Current Blessing: Lately, I've just been feeling really blessed with all of the people in my life.  I've been thankful for my family, my friends, and my coworkers lately.  I've also tried to be more intentional about letting people know that I care lately, as well as spending time and/or contacting the people that I love frequently.
I'm blessed to have so many great people around me!

Current Outfit: pajamas.  Best outfit for being sick on the couch all day!

Current Excitement:  I'm hoping I'll feel well enough to go to the Cubs baseball game tonight and take Tequila for Dog Days!  But, the other big excitement is going up to Maine in a few weeks for vacation!  Joe's classmate lives up there and invited us up for his birthday/4th of July.  Should be a good time!

Question for you: pick one of the "questions" above and answer it!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

WIAW #35: Advocare 24DC Cleanse Phase

Well hey there!  How is your Wednesday going?  I'm down to 4 more days of work (including today), I'm in a good mood!  Plus, I'm spending Tuesday through Thursday learning all about how to use the TI-Nspire calculator to teach Geometry!
This calculator can do so many cool things.  I'm looking forward to sharing what I learned with my teachers!

Well, it's Wednesday, so it's time for another installment of....
Today, I thought I'd share what I've been eating during the Advocare 24 Day Challenge Cleanse Phase.  It finish up with that phase of the challenge today, but I've really had a lot of fun trying new things to fit with the nutritional guidelines of the program!

As always, shout out to Jenn, the creator of WIAW!  Head over to her blog to check out what WIAW is all about, and look at what other bloggers are eating!  Thanks for the link-up Jenn!

I've had to get really creative and out of my comfort zone for breakfast.  My usual cereal is not part of the nutritional plan (if you eat grain/wheat, it has to be whole wheat and not processed--bye bye cereal!).  So, I've been trying some different things.  I've had some overnight oats with berries mixed in, I've made the Meal Replacement Shakes from Advocare, blended with a handful of frozen fruit for an on-the-go breakfast,
I've made scrambled eggs with onions and peppers stirred in (that version isn't pictured, but here are some scrambled eggs I made),
I've made green smoothies,
and this morning I made a protein pancake using Julie's recipe.
I spread a light layer of peanut butter and topped it with defrosted frozen berries.  Delicious!!

Morning Snack
My morning snacks have consisted of fruit.  Advocare highly suggests lots of fruits during the Cleanse Phase.  I've used a pre-made fruit salad, but I've also just eaten an orange or an apple depending on what's in the fridge in the morning.

Each day, I've eaten a salad topped with tuna and black beans.

This is not out of the norm for me, so no big deal!  I'll also eat some baby carrots or other vegetable on the side.

Afternoon Snack
I've been either eating an apple, a handful of walnuts, or some sliced bell peppers for an afternoon snack.
I ate most of the pepper before taking this picture.  Oops!

I've been able to get creative with dinner throughout the Cleanse Phase.  Advocare recommends just lean protein and lightly cooked veggies.  Instead of using ground beef for some meals we usually make, I've been using ground turkey.  Here, I made turkey chili using this recipe.
That same blog has a long list of Advocare-friendly recipes, and I've also made the Herb Roasted Chicken and Sides and the Ground Turkey with Veggies from that list.  All good recipes!

There are lots of supplements to take during the Cleanse Phase!
They're designed to help the body move food through the body quickly, absorb nutrients better, and improve digestion.  I've certainly noticed that throughout the last 10 days!  The Cleanse Phase is also supposed to help you feel more mentally alter and a sense of well-being.  As weird as it sounds, I really have felt that way!  I am enjoying the way my body feels, and I hope to take things I've learned during this phase of the challenge and use them long after the 24DC is through.

Next up: The Max Phase, designed to help the body absorb maximum nutrition now that toxins and waste are out.

Question for you: Have you ever tried a cleanse/Advocare 24DC?  Do you try to "eat clean"?  If so, what's your favorite dish?

Monday, June 16, 2014

World Cup Weekend + ZOOMA Training Week 3

Good morning, everyone!  Hope your Monday is off to a great start.  I have to lead a professional development session today, so I'm a little nervous.  At least I'm presenting WITH someone.

Looking back on this weekend, I spent A LOT of time watching soccer!  I'm getting a little ahead of myself, though.  Let's go day-by-day.

All day on Friday, I was at a teacher leader conference, which was sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation!  While Bill wasn't there, they did send a great representative to speak to us: Irvin Scott.
He had so many good things to say about the state of education and the stances that the Foundation has on how to fix things.  I pretty much agreed with everything they said, and I really hope the higher-ups in my school district were listening!

The rest of the conference was ok, but the morning sessions were definitely the best.  Afterward, there was a little social gathering.  I stayed around for a little bit to talk to some of my teacher friends, and I wound up finding out that my boss was an Alpha Chi Omega, too!  We had a great little moment when we made that connection, and we even did the secret handshake.  So cool :)

After I got home, Joe and I went to our favorite Mexican restaurant to watch one of the World Cup soccer games.  I had a good time watching the game and successfully went without a margarita (can't drink them thanks to the Advocare 24DC)!  Trust me, it's tough going to a Mexican restaurant without getting one of those tasty drinks!

I started Saturday off with a run!  I went for 2 miles, but at least it was something!

I'm really proud of myself for making exercise a priority early in the day on a Saturday!  I'm glad I did, too, because we spent the rest of the day at Joe's friend Mario's condo by the beach.  We grilled some food and watched three of the World Cup games.  Joe is really in to soccer, and I kind of even watching some of the games.

I also spent some of that time finishing up my Algebra Nation lessons.  I'd procrastinated finishing those, but luckily I got them all done by 8:00pm!

My whole Sunday morning was spent at church.  Sunday was Act 3 of the play, and despite a slightly rocky first performance, everything went well!  Poor Joe was sick in bed (I think he had a little food poisoning :(), but I found out the performances are posted to YouTube each week!  I'm glad he'll still get to see it (and hear the sermon, too!).  I'm still deciding whether or not to post them on here...let me know if you would like to see them!

Sunday afternoon was spent being lazy (and watching Weeds on Netflix) and getting a few chores around the house done.  I also went on a run on Sunday evening.  While I was running, I decided to listen to the podcast from North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, GA (the ones I used to listen to all the time).
I'm so glad I did, because Joseph, who works at their church, shared his story as the sermon.  It centered around him being bullied in school, and it broke my heart and made me praise God for this man's witness all at the same time.  It made the run go by so fast!
I had to run/walk because of the humidity, but I was pleased with how it went!  After the run, Joe and I just hung around preparing for the week ahead.

ZOOMA Half Marathon Training: Week 3
Surprisingly, you've already heard about my only two workouts from the week: my runs on Saturday and Sunday.  I transitioned to 10-hour work days for the next few weeks, and I wasn't quite used to the timeline of everything.  I've been considering waiting up early to get workouts in before work so I have no excuses.  I'll let you know how it goes.

Goal for this week: get in all three runs and at least one strength workout.  I think it's doable!

Question for you: Have you been watching any World Cup soccer games?