Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Santa Hustle Half Marathon - Indy 2014

On December 21, 2014, I ran my 5th half marathon. It was the Santa Hustle in Indianapolis.

A friend had been wanting to do a Santa Run for ages, and this one worked in time, and was only a 3ish hour drive away – totally do-able. So we signed up for a race that gave us santa beards and santa hats and we ran like santa flies his sleigh.

I didn’t do much in particular to train for this. I ran a few long-ish runs on the weekends (6-8 miles or so), and ran a 15K on Thanksgiving at the turkey trot, but there was no 10 miler before the half marathon. Which worked out just fine, but wasn’t really what I had initially planned. 10 miles would have been nice a weekend or two before. My calves might no have been screaming at me for 3 days after if I had done the ten miler. But you know, whatever.

I was planning on doing packet pick-up the morning of, but my friends who stayed at a hotel right across from the start picked up my goodies for me. The packet included: bib, dry-fit sweatshirt, santa hat, santa beard.

The sweatshirts ran INCREDIBLY SMALL. I ended up swapping out my women's medium for a women's large. Luckily, it wasn't an issue at all to get the bigger size.

I warmed up inside the hotel until about 10 minutes before the race, and then headed across the street for the start. 

I didn't bring my camera, so sadly no pictures, but the course was pretty nice. It started out in a state park in downtown Indy, and then traveled through the "downtown" area. The course was fairly flat, and the only uphills were very do-able short stretches that I ran up -- definitely nothing that necessitated walking.

Water stations were appropriately placed along the course, and there were a good number of port-a-potties available. Lucky for me, I didn't need them at all this race. 

Right around mile 13, I caught up with my fellow runners -- it was one of their first half's and he was suffering major cramps, so I decided to wait it out -- this was always a "just for fun" kind of race for me, so It was fine with me to stop and rest and leisurely take that last bit of the race in. 

The finish was almost at the start, and finished up going over the river again.

Final Time: 2:06.04. Not a PR, but not too far off from my previous halfs. (and only 13 minutes slower than my PR -- aka 1min/mile slower). Not too shabby at all. 

The medals were pretty big and substantial. Always a nice surprise.

Post-race refreshments included bottled water, bananas, granola bars, and a few other things I didn't bother with.

 I was just interested in seeing miss Maizey at the finish. And everyone had the sweetest things to say about the adorable pup. So all was right in the world. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Weekend Highlights

1) Date Night at Meat.

source: Lansing City Pulse

Joe and I went to Meat for dinner on Friday night. Meat is a barbeque restaurant in Old Town, Lansing. We had both heard great things, but also heard that it's small and can get crowded fast, so when I got off work early, it was a natural choice to get there at 5, hopefully before the dinner rush. When we go there, there was already a line, but we were quickly seated -- the perks of a party of 2!

We started with bacon chili fries, and then Joe ordered the 3 meat plate, and I went for the mac and cheese.

It was all fantastic. And their homemade bbq sauces were also great. overall, loved it, and would totally go back again.

2) Maizey's Half Birthday

Saturday was Maizey's half birthday. She had a vet visit in the morning that involved two pokes, but she took it like a champ, and we were home early enough in the day for me to prepare a pupcake. which she promptly devoured. nice work Maizey.

Also it snowed, big fat flakes Sunday morning. So of course Maizey and I went outside and played in it. And I captured this wonderful photo.

I wish I hadn't centered here, because it would be a much better "Where's Maizey?" photo if she wasn't in the middle. I think I will make an instagram series once the snow starts accumulating, and put Maizey in locations in the frame, other than right in the middle. Also, Maizey has her own instagram, in case you didn't know. @thedailymaizey. check it out.

3) Nike Training Club's Legs and Abs

Nike Fitness Club is an app for your phone that provides both strength training and cardio work outs. It goes step by step through each move, with videos to show you how to do it, and with cues for proper form. The only annoying thing is that if you want to wuss out (which I do, ALL THE TIME), you can't just skip a move -- you have to wait until the timer runs out.

Anyway, I did legs and abs on Saturday.

And now I want to do nothing. So sore, moving is so difficult. agh.

But at least it was a good work out?

Sunday, November 16, 2014

How to Use up a Whole Stalk of Brussels Sprouts

aka how to cook using only Jessica Merchant's recipes.

One of my favorite produce items to buy in the fall are brussels sprout stalks. It wasn't until a few years ago that I even knew brussels sprouts grew on stalks. But my favorite trader joe's informed me by carrying the stalks in store.

I now see brussels sprouts on the stalk at the farmer's market as well, which makes sense, since it saves the time they would have spent taking the sprouts off the stalk.

So, when I bought a stalk of brussels sprouts from the farmer's market, I went in search of recipes to use them up.

And of course, I first turned to how sweet eats.

And of course, Jessica had a bunch of really fantastic recipes for me.

I started with a brussels sprout hash, which included sweet potatoes, brussels sprouts, bacon (duh), and onions. Like Jessica, I made this initially for dinner, and then for breakfast once I realized just how easy it was. 

I ate it with beer bread -- another one of jessica's recipes that was super easy to make.

That used up a good amount of the brussels stalk, but not all of it. The last of it would get used for macaroni and cheese. with bacon. in a skillet.

Yes, Jessica's skillet brussels sprout and bacon macaroni and cheese. This was to die for. So delicious and creamy and wonderful. I ate it for days and pnever got sick of it. so. freaking. good.

So that was what used up a whole stalk of brussels sprouts. but then I bought another. So we'll see what happens with that. 

Monday, October 6, 2014

Weekend Highlights



Meet Maizey an adorable adorable mutt that I now get to call my own. Right now she is just the sweetest softest thing who spends a lot of time just hanging out and snuggling. which I LOVE. She is newly spayed, so she can't do a lot right now, but once she's fully healed, there will be some exploring and walks in our future! If you love her as much as I do, you can follow her on instagram: @MaizeytheMutt


10K Sunday Runday

A set of speedy, 6 and change miles that left me feeling good the whole time. Despite being a little dehydrated, they were consistent miles that felt good the whole way through. It was especially great coming off of my Tuesday miles -- a super fast, super great feeling chilly 5K around the hometown. love.


Getting so close to 100 skimm'vities. If somehow you read this blog, but don't read the skimm. that has got to change. Please sign up at They also just put out a super informative midterm election guide. Oh and they re-instagrammed my photo and thus gave me my first touch of 100+ likes. oh to be famous.


Candy Corn Nails. Thanks to my october julep maven box, I had the perfect polishes to create and rock the candy corn striped nails. awesome and awesome.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Flock and a Weekend Long Run

Lately I've been really valuing things that make me feel good. This sounds very obvious -- who doesn't like things that give you warm fuzzy feelings over things that make you angry or sad or stressed. Pretty logical and straightforward right?

I've also started thinking a lot about acting with intention, thanks a lot to Ms. Jess Lively, fellow wolverine, and her podcast, the lively show, which i've been listening to since it's inception. It's been great to listen to while walking around Ann Arbor, to and from school, and also on longer car rides by myself. 

So when the flock, oiselle's newest level of their team, opened up applications for the second (and final time) this year, I realized that I wanted to be a part of it.

During the 10-miler I ran two weekends ago, the last mile was a little rough. I was tired, and was desperate for that finish. So I mantra'ed. And one of those mantra's was "fly." I've always been a huge fan of oiselle and their apparel, and their sponsoring of Kara Goucher has only amplified that love. So fly made sense. And it worked. I pushed that last mile, and passed a guy in the process (yup, he got chick'ed).

So joining would mean I was being intentional about running. It was about seeking out others who have the same passions as me and building a network of supportive, wonderful lady runners. 

So joining the flock just made sense. Even less than a week in, the sense of community is phenomenal. I'm loving it so far. There's a good number of Michigan birdies and I can't wait to see them at various races. 

So in honor of joining the flock, and in honor of a solid 10-mile run base from the previous week, I went out for a long run on Sunday. It was my first long run in Lansing, my new home (oh yeah, don't think I've mentioned that yet. I'm living in Lansing, doing a legal fellowship) My intention was originally a 12 miler - let's just up the mileage, but I was out for about 10 minutes when the rain started. and didn't let up.

It was a wet-wet run, and I essentially forgot how to use my garmin, and ended up with the most inaccurate stats ever. But I think I ran about 8. 

I ran along the Lansing River Trail, which is a pretty perfect running path. 

As you can see. there was no sun this day. but the overcast skys gave me the perfect cool running weather. I'd always rather run when its cool than when its hot.

Some miles were fast. some miles were slower. They were all wet. The iphone survived without water damage, which is also an accomplishment. Thanks oiselle burke jacket. While you are no flyte waterproof jacket, your pockets do keep my iphone dry.

totally didnt need those sunglasses

post-soaked run selfie. way to look so serious L.

And I foam-rolled afterwards.
Look at me go.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Trivium Racing Growler Gallop 10-miler Recap

Yesterday I ran the Growler Gallop 10 Miler sponsored by Atwater Brewery in Detroit.


I was excited about the race going into it – 10 Miles is a new distance for me (aka automatic PR), I love any race that gives you beer afterwards, and the course went through Belle Isle, which was where the Cocoa Classic half in the spring’s course went too.


I did packet pick up on Race Day. The race didn’t start until 4PM, so I arrived around 3, picked up my packet which was easy and quick, and then returned the hoodie we received to my car. Parking was very convenient – there was a secured lot right next to the start of the race where parking was available for $5.My hoodie was a little large (I got a medium and they were unisex sizing), but I was able to exchange it for the last small after the race.


Port-a-potties were adequate until many of the 5K runners showed up and then the line became incredibly long. I used the bathroom about 40 minutes before the race, but happened to chug water on the way in and ultimately had to pee again by the start of the race but didn’t think I’d have time before the race started. I just assumed I’d use a bathroom on the course. (spoiler alert: BAD CHOICE). The race started on time and the start was not overly congested. If anything, we were moving backwards to avoid being at the start.


The race course went down the riverwalk along the Detroit River. It had a lot of curves, right from the go, but it wasn’t too bad. There was a water stop a little after mile 1, which seemed a little silly, but I guess there weren’t a ton of convenient spots for them. I didn’t get water due to that bladder issues I already talked about. There weren’t any port-a-potties at that water stop, so I kept going.


 I considered stopping at both a gas station and a wendys that we passed while going down Jefferson, but assumed once on belle isle there'd be port-a-potties along the course.

I was wrong again. Finally, around mile 3 there was a public "comfort station" with bathrooms. There was some sort of event going on though, and the woman's bathroom had a long long line. I ended up using a family restroom that didn't lock and luckily no one walked in on me.

The rest of the course traveled all the way around the island. It felt long - I think it must have been much longer than the last race I did on belle isle, because a lot of it didn't look familiar as well. There was another water stop around mile 5? (had to look this up to confirm).

As the course went along, I saw a few clusters of port-a-potties, but I'm pretty sure they weren't placed by the race organizers, and instead were placed by the state, who now owns belle isle. 

I stopped again for a bathroom break at mile 7, where there was a comfort station right next to the course. but I was still running off the course to get to the bathroom, which is really just frustrating. 

There was a water stop at mile 9, which was the same water stop as mile 1. I'm still not sure how I feel about that stop. I did stop and get water, and walk for a bit while I chugged it down. That probably gave me enough power to push through the last mile, finish hard, and chick a guy :) but I also may have powered through without the water stop and finished faster.

Overall, the ten miles were hard but good, and the race was generally fun. 

At the finish we got medals, and then walked over to the starting area for post-race food and beer. They provided pizza, which I am always a fan of, snack sized bags of chips, doritos, cheetos, etc., bananas, oranges (my other favorite post race food), water and of course beer. 

My final time was 1:33.08 (9:19/mile). I can only imagine what it would have been without the various bathroom stops though. 

Also they said there would be gu/gels on the course and there definitely was not. this doesnt really bother me because I always bring salted caramel gu myself, but I'm sure people relied on that. 

My final gripe with the race is that when I signed up, the swag package included: a long sleeve shirt
a finisher's glass
a medal (for 10 miler's only)
2 free beers.

And in actuality, the swag package included:
a hoodie
a medal
2 free beers.

I understand they're a new race, and they probably didn't anticipate all the costs, but even as of a few days before the race, the website still stated they were giving out a finisher's glass, and a long-sleeve. The hoodie is great, but I like getting what I sign up for. Also its clear that they originally intended medals only for the longer race participants and then made it for everyone which is fine, but the price differential shouldnt be just for the increased length of the course. 

So here's my overall analysis

Pros: course, free beer, medal, distance (10 miles is unique -- not too far not too short)
Cons: TOTAL LACK OF PORT-A-POTTIES ON THE COURSE (and too few at the start). did not receive swag promised. also said there would be gels/gu and there wasn't. 

Monday, August 25, 2014

Bachlorette Favors

Last weekend I threw a bachlorette party for my best friend.

It was awesome.

After a lot of pinterest stalking, I decided on two favors.

The first favor was glittered champagne flutes. 

This process was pretty easy, but a little time-consuming.

Supplies needed:

  •  Champagne flutes (purchased mine at the dollar store)
  • Martha Stewart All-Surface Glitter Paint (the tutorial I looked at mentioned Martha Stewart's glass glitter paint. I only later discovered that the glass paint isn't produced any more, and the all surface paint works on glass as well. You can find this at Jo-Ann's or Michaels) 
  • Sponge Brush
  • Aluminum Foil
I did my glittering freehand, although you could use painter's tape to make a more delineated line. 

I poured some paint onto aluminum foil, dipped the sponge brush in the paint, and just dabbed onto the glasses. I tried to do a gradient effect - more paint on the bottom and less as you moved up the glass.

I also let the paint dry for at least an hour between each layer.

The sich on washing/glitter staying-power: The paint bottle says the paint will cure in 21 days. I made these only a few days before the party, so I told the ladies to rinse with warm soapy water, but to wait to dishwash until the 21 days were up. 

The second favor was emergency kits that included the following items:
  • bottle of water
  • gum
  • advil
  • a hair tie
  • a mint
  • a nail file
  • mouthwash
  • chocolate
  • band-aid 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Summer 2014

Whoa, whoa, where did summer go?

Where did 3 years of law school go?

Life is insane.

Summer 2014 was pretty much destroyed by the bar exam that I took two weeks ago. I was able to head to northern Michigan three times over the course of the summer though, and spend lots of time with lots of law school loves who are headed off to various prestigious lawyerly jobs across the country.

There was a bit of running, a bit of baking, a bit of boozing, and a bit of spinning.

I did a pretty good job of documenting it all through the iphone though.

And so this is an iphone photo dump, with occasional captions and links to recipes. Hoping to get back into the swing of this blogging thing. Hoping to make the most amazing funfetti donuts. Hoping to get a half marathon on the schedule for the fall.

But in the meantime, just enjoy these summertime photos.

lake michigan

improvised cooling rack

wild asparagus


sleeping bear sand dunes

PEONIES (!!!!!)

birthday cake macaron

shakespeare in the arb

grilled pizza with so many toppings

lelanau peninsula 

taquemenon phenomenon 

mackinac bridge

isalita, ann arbor, mi

inspiration: dula notes

recipe: dula notes

blank slate creamery, ann arbor, mi

comerica park

social, birmingham, mi