Monday, October 18, 2010
Members of the relay team will each run a portion of the 26.2 mile marathon. For this race, the legs were divided based on difficulty. So the two legs that were mostly downhill (and therefore easier) were 7 miles each, and the two legs that had more hills were 5.7 and 6.3 miles each. Since this was the first time I ran a race this big, the other girls let me run the last leg, so that I could run through the finish line.
As the last leg, I got to my exchange point (mile-marker 19) early in the morning and was able to watch all of the elite marathoners pass by. Watching them run by, it was obvious how hard they each had trained to come to this point. Once the 3rd leg runner of our team reached me, I left my warm up clothes with her and started my 7-miles. Although I think there's a limit to how much fun you can have while running 7 miles, I really enjoyed it. The weather was gorgeous and the spectators were awesome. Almost the whole race route was lined with people and volunteers cheering and handing out gummy bears, beer, Gatorade and water.
The elite marathoners are certainly an inspiration to see, but for me it is much more incredible to watch an average person finish a marathon. It is such an enormous accomplishment and I know they will remember that race for the rest of their lives. The people running are just so normal. If you saw them in the grocery store the next day, you would have no idea that this person just ran a marathon. The end of the race is very emotional for some people. People are crying, limping, bleeding, and whatever else, but they still manage to get across that line.
I ran next to this Marine for the last few miles, and of course it made me think of Justin. He is in California right now, in the middle of the very last deployment training he and his battalion will complete before they leave for Afghanistan. Justin is one of the people that keeps me motivated to run. He runs and trains almost every day, even if he's in the middle of a war zone.
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
Crappy photo by me. Cake recipe from Smitten Kitchen, icing from the back of the Hershey's cocoa box.
Just ignore the lumpy sides above. SOMEHOW my cake [and picture] just didn't turn out as beautiful as Deb's little work of art did:
Hopefully our cakes will improve with practice, but for now I'm just happy we got to celebrate both of our birthdays together this year!
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Date: Saturday, October 15th, 2011!
picture from Holly Hudspeth Eventing
picture courtesy of Preservation in Pink
Justin grew up in the tiny town of Middleburg and his parents still live there. It's a special little place surrounded by farms, horses, wineries, and cute little antique
Choosing Middleburg instead of somewhere near my hometown was a hard decision for me, but I know it was the right one. It will be easier for me to plan it down here and the church really means a lot to Justin. And hopefully it will be somewhat of a "getaway" weekend for my NY family and friends.
The community center is going to be a great wedding venue. It has some really beautiful features and the inside will make a great "blank slate" for all the decorating ideas I have been collecting.
SO - what do you think? I'm so glad we ended up picking a day in October. It's not at all what I thought I would want, but now that the decision is made I couldn't be happier about it. October is so reliable. There is no hurricane threat and there is no spring rain to worry about. It could be hot, it could be cold, it could be windy, it could rain.... but none of these things have ever stopped a wedding before. If next October is anything like this October, it's going to be gorgeous!
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
It's supposed to be hot on Friday, cool on Saturday, and possibly raining on Sunday. This is certainly going to be a tough event to pack for... you know you can't work at a huge craft fair and not dress cute! Wish me luck... I'm sure to need it!
Friday, September 17, 2010
In honor of your 25th birthday and with our very special pre-marital counseling book* in mind, I'd like to list a few things that I respect and admire about you.
#1. You drive a sweet truck. And in the off-season, you take me for romantic sunset drives on the beach. Sometimes you let me drive... I always get your truck stuck in the sand, but you don't ever mind.
#2. You like really giant beers.
#3. You are very proud to be a United States Marine and you like to defend the many freedoms we enjoy in this fine country. (I'm proud, too.)
#4. You love to run.
and last, but not least...
#5. You make a great dance partner.
Happy 25th Birthday!!!
...and for everybody else, hope you have a great weekend!
*more on that later
Thursday, September 16, 2010
I live in a four-bedroom house with 3 other girls. Since two of the roommates from last year moved out to get married, we had two new girls move in. We got lucky with craigslist and were able to find one girl to move in for the year, and another girl to move in for the summer. Both girls ended up being a great fit for us!
Sadly, our new summertime friend moved out this past weekend to continue her Master's degree program. As a little parting gift, I made her this rosey fabric flower pin. Flower pins aren't for everyone, but hopefully she likes it enough to pin it onto a sweater or jacket one day this fall.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
(Now if only people would stop using my relaxation patio as a smoking room, all would be right in the world...)
The building also sits right on top of a network of local bike trails. There's a cute little half mile loop that walks you right through the woods and on the streets of a quiet neighborhood. It's a beautiful way to take a break and get some fresh air.
I hope everyone is enjoying their workday today!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
The morning was spent with my beautiful, sweet, adorable, incredible jewelry designer cousin - Maryellen Kim of Twist Style. She was doing a trunk show at a cute little shop in Freddy named Two Sister's Boutique. If you're ever down that way, stop in at the shop to say hello to the ladies - they are all so nice! While Maryellen was working away setting up her display and jotting down custom orders, I was the lucky girl kissing her cute baby's little cheeks off.
For our late lunch/early dinner, we met at J Brian's tap room. This is a funky little place that plays great music and has a great little patio. The whole reason I chose J. Brian's was for a quesadilla dinner that I remembered involving portabello mushrooms. Unfortunately, they don't seem to serve it anymore, so we had crab dip and nachos instead.
All in all, it was a great day. Sometimes it is just so nice to escape the chaos of Arlington. It must have tired me out just the same, though, because I managed to sleep through my alarm and miss out on my Sunday plans! Oh well, it ended up being a super relaxing day. I managed to read this entire book. Loved it, of course.
Monday, September 13, 2010
With my new crazy-girl eyes, I was acutely aware of the adorable wedding coming up at the end of this movie. The awesome, low-key Jamaican Jerk Hut wedding venue, the music, the simple decorations, the delicious-looking food. It's a good one. If only every wedding was that simple! Hollywood does a lovely job of skipping over all the oh-my-god-I'm-going-to-rip-my-hair-out moments and showcasing for us the perfect prettiness and ease of this lovely little event.
one pic from here
the rest from are from a google image search, buuuut the website they came from was questionable content, so I think I'll leave it off of the credits this time ;-)
Friday, September 10, 2010
Although we may not end up using all of these, here's what I'm thinking for now:
- Church & Pastor
- Caterer & waitstaff
- Tent/dance floor (etc) rentals
Anyway, in my eagerness to get things started, I am going to do some little things that I can get out of the way. That way I can bring things up to New York during visits to my family. (Oh by the way... we're getting married in New York!! I grew up on Long Island, and we're trying to have the whole shindig in my itty bitty home town.) If I start transporting things now, that will make things easier when the wedding gets closer... um, right?
The first thing I bought was a set of 200 bubble wands. I think it would be fun to use these a few times during the day: the church exit, the first dance, and whenever else. One thing you should know about me is that I am... ...cheap. Or frugal. Or is it practical? I don't know why, but I don't really like to spend money, and I especially don't like to spend it on c-r-a-p like this that I won't ever use again. So I hunted online for the cheapest place to buy them. I tried Oriental Trading and Dollar tree, but the least expensive option was the ever-dreaded WalMart. ::shudder:: In order to avoid shipping fees and actual shopping inside of the store, I completed the purchase online with a "Site to Store" pickup. Let me just tell you something. If you have to shop at WalMart, always, always use the Site to Store option. I walked into the madhouse that is WalMart on Labor Day, and zipped to the back of the store and checked out with a cashier that only had one other customer. It was a real life-saver.
So... I get home and open up the box of bubbles. They look adorable and not cheesy/cheap like I thought they would. I remove one of them from the storage packs and I realize that it's all sticky. Turns out just about every single one of the bottles had leaked somehow. The tops were still intact and securely fit, but they were all a sticky mess. Basically every single bottle in the pack of 200 is empty or close to empty.
Now the question is - would it make more sense to brave the WalMart returns line (ugh...) or to attempt some homemade bubble concoction and drive myself crazy trying to fill the damn things with a tiny funnel?
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Two of my best friends got MARRIED this past weekend! Erica and Tommy had a big, huge tent wedding in Michigan on Saturday. The weather was unusually chilly, but I loved the way everyone looked wearing sweaters over their dresses. It really got me in the mood for fall and apple cider. They did an awesome job designing the whole thing, using mason jar collections from both of their mothers and bouquets of yellow sunflowers on the tables. My camera was being moody, so these pics are all stolen from friends. :-)
Monkey & Gorilla cake topper
bow chicka bow waaaow....
There were a LOT of great dancers there, but Tommy's parents were my personal fave...
Tommy, Erica, and their families were sooo welcoming the whole weekend. Justin wasn't able to make it up to Michigan, so I was flying solo. Everyone really went out of their way to include me in the festivities. When I look back on their wedding, I know this is the impression I will carry with me. I hope someday people will say the same thing about our wedding!!
This wedding is the conclusion of my "wedding season" this year. How about you guys - are you still going to weddings this fall?
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Well, after my experience at the July 30th Running of the Brides event in DC, I can understand why the two events are compared. Now, I don't mean to imply that the brides are tortured before they are finally released from capture (like the poor bulls), but a lot of the bride[zillas] DO behave like out-of-control animals. They bring their enormous crowd - some brides-to-be brought 30 people with them!! - and they push and shove and yell at each other. They don't share, even if they KNOW they don't like the gown/s they are holding onto. Sometimes the reason is bargaining; they want to be able to trade for another dress. Other times, it's just for the sake of holding onto the most dresses in the store. Crazy b*tches.
These fine ladies are about to go insane.
Anyway, the Running of the Brides was not for me. Even if the girls were totally nutso, I could have handled that. I mean, that's all part of it, right? The craziness and excitement of buying a wedding dress.
The part I didn't like is that most of the dresses were disgusting. They were filthy from too much handling, a good portion had broken zippers or torn and tattered fabric, and one even had coffee spilled all over the train! Come on, now. I know they're on super-sale, but you can't tell me someone is paying $250 for a gown with coffee spilled all over it! Am I right?
Despite not finding a dress, we did all have a fun time going! The experience is totally unique and now I can say that I've done it. I can watch the news next year and giggle at all those crazy people.
Me, my aunt, my mom (can you tell?) and Mo$.
My mom and my aunt drove all the way from Long Island to get up at 6am and wait in an absurdly long line, just to watch me try on wedding dresses in my underwear in front of strangers. Aren't they the best?
Mama and me.
Two of my bridesmaids that live nearby also braved the crowds with us. Oh... um, we haven't actually asked any of our bridal party if they will please be our bridal party yet, so shhhh. Hopefully soon.
Some of these dresses were OKAAYY, but I didn't particularly like any.
Ignore the sports bra. I know, I'm classy.
This last picture is a dress that I actually did love. Lace wedding dresses are beeeaauutiful. The lady wearing it ended up buying it, so I never had a chance to put it on. Oh well, wasn't meant to be I guess.
Now, if you're thinking about going to this event, I would still totally recommend it! I know, I know, I just bashed it for a whole page. Still, though, it's an experience. Maybe you won't find your dream dress, but maybe you will. I've still heard more positive reviews than negative, so you just never know. Maybe it's just the one in DC that sucks. ;-)
See you hot mamas next time.
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
about a year ago