2014 in the Rearview

Generally, the only time I like to look in the rearview is when I am driving in the car. BUT sometimes it is fun to look back and reflect on what went RIGHT through the year and how you can grow from what went wrong. I can’t believe all that happened the year. Here are my highlights for 2014 by month.

In January, Steve and I painted the town Red at the American Heart Association Gala.

paint the town redIn February, I ran my first ever half marathon in Miami!

half marathon……and 21 days later I turned 30!

party groupIn March, we went to New Orleans with our friends Todd and Mandy!

rooftopIn April I ran my 2nd Half Marathon right here at home in Bentonville….faster than my first!

after race selfieIn May we vacationed in the Dominican Republic!

the beachIn June Mom and I had a girls weekend shopping in Kansas City!

fountainIn July we celebrated the Fourth of July and enjoyed lots of pool time!

fireworksIn August we sold our home and I said goodbye to my patio and all the landscaping we put our own blood sweat and tears into!

patioIn September, we made our yearly trip to Nashville!

live musicIn October, Steve turned 38 and we went to see Foster the People in Concert which got rained out so all we got to enjoy was the opening band Fitz and the Tantrums!

concertIn November we had a lot to be Thankful for.  I ran my first MARATHON in Savannah Georgia, and all the training was worth every single mile!

Finish Line 2….and we broke ground on our new home….

ProgressIn December, things got hectic and I didn’t blog as much! I took the time to enjoy the holidays while attempting not to go crazy with all the parties and shopping on top of a busy season at work!

Christmas #1Just like that 2014 came and went! I can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store! Plus it will probably take me until March to remember to write 2015 instead of 2014.

Cheers, -SS

What was the highlight of your year?

What are you looking forward to in 2015?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas Eve & Christmas Day Through Pictures

I hope this post finds you with hearts full of joy after Christmas! Steve and I are both off today and ready to get out of the house so we are going on a little road trip today so I can spend one of my Christmas gifts!! I didn’t realize I had been so good this year, but Santa Steve sure thought so I guess.

Lots happened over the past 2 days so let’s try to go through it with pictures!

Christmas Eve morning Steve went to my HIIT class with me at Define Fitness, and the workout of the day was a 24 Days of Christmas circuit. I am not going to lie, I am still sore. Steve was a little lost the whole time but he did good!

After class I whipped up some Juice…

juicingI have desperately been craving juice, but as you can see here our counter space is lacking at best so Juicing has been a little more of an annoying chore. SO while I was at it, I made enough for two days so I didn’t have to do this again on Christmas!

juiceThen we headed to Flying Fish for our favorite fish tacos for Christmas Eve lunch!

fish tacosAfter tacos we headed over to Cabela’s where my Dad was patiently waiting for my Mom to get done shopping at the Mall.

happy dadI always get Dad a Cabela’s gift card for all holidays. His Birthday is December 21st.  Normally he just saves them all up but this year he went out to spend it right away!

Christmas Eve was spent cozy at home just Steve and I with a dinner of Sea Bass and Sweet Potato which I forgot to get a picture of.

Christmas morning came quick so I got up early to get in some miles before all the festivities….and not a creature was stirring not even a mousse!

runAfter I got home and showered Steve and I opened our gifts to each other, then he went for a run while I sat and played with my toys! I really wanted a  Louis Vuitton wallet, and Steve took note and got me just that!

zippy walletHe should have stopped there, I was so excited with this wonderful gift. BUT he also got me a gift card to Lululemon, and a David Yurman ring that he had also taken note of a LONG time ago! It was a total surprise….oh and I am trying to hide my bad manicure that I need to take off below!

yurmanIt was an UGG kind of Christmas this year. My brother got me Ugg House Slippers for Christmas because ,well my Mom told him too:) ha!But Steve had the same idea, and he got me these that are quite different and I love them because they keep my ankles warm! Runner feet need lots of love so I NEED 2 pairs anyway:)

UggI got Steve and really nice new bike helmet and a Bose surround sound system for our media room in the new house! So Steve spent the rest of the morning setting up the surround sound. I am sure our neighbors loved all the movies we watched yesterday:) JK! Anyway, I made a yummy lunch while he was “playing” with that. I had seen this easy recipe on my friend’s  instagram and I have really been dying to make it. It is so easy and so yummy. I just took raw cauliflower, an avocado, cilantro, coconut milk, miso and through it all in the Vitamix and viola! I called it my “Crazy Face Good” Soup because she promised it was Crazy Face Good and she was right!

crazy face soupAnd then we had some crackers, cheese, grilled artichokes, and poblano pepper to snack on with our soup!

cheese and crackersWe both needed to get out of the house, so we drove over to the new house to take a look. They poured our concrete on Christmas Eve. We were too late to sign our names in the concrete. It dries fast!

concreteMom said my babies were busy with their Christmas presents….but really this is a ploy to keep them busy while my parents enjoyed Christmas dinner without little beggars. I get my parents a Prime Rib every year for Christmas, and that smells really good to these little noses. This is Ollie…

Ollieand this is Lola…..She made the horrible mistake of leaving her bone unattended while she went to get a drink and Ollie swiped in and got the rest of hers. She then looked at my Mom like ” i need more” They have been together 8 years, and Lola should know better by now! Never leave a bone unattended around Ollie:)

LolaSteve made our yearly Prime Rib and it tasted as good as it looks! I don’t really care for red meat but I go for it once a year, and now I am set for 365 more days! This has always been his tradition so who am I to change that!

Prime RibThen we ended the night watching movies, and drinking a little vino! Mom sent me this final Christmas picture and it made my day! Ollie (the one with the hat) is such a good boy and he likely knew there was a treat at the end of this, but Lola as you can tell is not so happy about the ordeal! She has always hated having her picture taken!

santa babiesNow I am trying to decide if I have time squeeze in a run before we leave on our mini road trip! Hope you all have a wonderful Friday, and I can’t wait to hear about your Christmas!

Cheers, -SS

What is your favorite Christmas Tradition?

What do you do the day after Christmas? I am always antsy to get out of the house!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Cold is Too Cold….

Happy Monday! Happy COLD Monday! It is currently 23 degrees in Rogers!

weatherAnd this morning it was in the teens!! I opted for a trip to Define Fitness for Row Class this morning. I have missed my Monday morning cross training. It had been a few weeks since I had gone since I was in the last few weeks of Marathon training and trying to avoid any possible injury. We do lots of hopping and jumping around in this Row/HIIT class!

I am looking at the hourly report for tomorrow and just about the time I want to go for a run in the morning it will be 16 degrees! I am wondering where you draw the line?!? How cold is too cold to run outside? For me it is 20 degrees. If it is below 20 I have to take things inside! So tomorrow I think my run will have to take place on the dready tready! The good news is, Wednesday morning it should be in the 30’s!

And that is all the brainpower I have to share for a Monday!

selfieCheers, -SS

How cold is too cold?

Tricks for making Monday less MUNDAY?

 

 

Better Together

No running or food talk today! Okay I lied already, I had my last longish weekday run today of 8 miles. I can’t believe it is only 16 days 12 hours, and 29 minutes until race day!  Okay now back to no running talk today! I wanted to share some joy through the lens of my iPhone and my fur babies. As you may have read on my blog before, my fur babies now live with my parents. After my divorce and Ollie’s major back surgery it was just too hard for me to tote them back and forth in the car to my parents when I travel for work. They love my parents house and they were use to staying there anyway, because they have never been kenneled in their lives. When Ollie had his surgery he needed 24/7 care as he couldn’t walk for about 2 months. My Dad was able to be home with him and/or check on him every couple of  hours. AND where Ollie goes….so does LOLA. When Ollie had his surgery Lola didn’t eat for about a week. She was devastated. I sure have been missing them lately even though my Mom and Dad send me pics and videos daily. I like to reminisce through my camera roll, and I thought I would share some of my favorites! So be prepared for doggie heaven cuteness. I hope everyone experiences a love like these two, they truly are better together!

First of all, Birthday’s are always celebrated around here!

Lola BirthdayFirst dibs for the Birthday honoree!

Ollie BirthdayLike I said before, wherever Ollie goes so does Lola…. (Ollie is the brown one on there right and Lola is the dapple on the left) Ollie was 1 when I got Lola.

OL12

OL10

OL9Sunbathing is their favorite indoor hobby!

OL7Ollie even shares his food…. (Lola does not)

OL6

OL5

OL4

OL3Vicious Guard Dogs!

OL2

OL 1Whenever “humans” are available they are sure to cuddle. Notice Ollie hanging off the arm of the chair behind me! We must have been really tired this day! I have no idea why I decided a nap on this chair and ottoman was a comfortable idea:)

OL11My parents have spoiled these babies even more rotten than they already were which I didn’t think was possible.

Cheers, -SS

Do you have pets? If so what breed and what are their names?

Do you celebrate doggie birthdays?

 

 

Let the Music Move You…..

Sometimes a rainy day, good music, and COFFEE are all you need to make a Friday at home the best day ever! I took today off for no other reason except to relax after a semi late night at the Foster the People Concert last night!

Yesterday started early as usual to get in my 5 mile run before work. I am really glad Steve doesn’t mind all of my running electronics spread out in my little charing station!

running gearThe first thing I do when I get home from my morning run is start the coffee pot! I love to enjoy a cup of joe while I am getting ready in the morning while listening to the Today Show!

coffee cupMornings are much easier when I lay things out the night before. I get a lot of comments/questions in the elevator when I carry this Lululemon bag as my lunch bag to work!

lunchPulling out all my scarves from last season is like getting a brand new scarf!! In the house we are building I am requesting a special unit to hold all my scarves!

selfieFast forward through a super busy work day, and it was time to get ready for the concert!!! Steve and I had general admission tickets, but when my friend Carolyn called to tell me she had VIP box seat tickets we went with her instead! I could get use to VIP. You get VIP parking, VIP entrance, VIP bathroom, VIP lounge, VIP seating, and your own VIP Waitress! Before the concert we met up at Ruth’s Chris for a pre drink!

drinksWe are so excited that Fitz and the Tantrums was the opening band for Foster the People! I added several songs to my “download” list for my long run this weekend!

fitzHere is the part where things didn’t go quite as planned. Here we were enjoying the music, and the cool night air in the outdoor amphitheater…..when all of a sudden it started lightening and the skies opened up with a heavy rain! Luckily another good thing about VIP tickets is you are under the awning! However, I guess we were under a tornado warning so the the Tantrums cut their set short so we could hear Foster the People, but unfortunately they made us all leave and postponed the show for a half hour. We saw people running back in and screaming ….so, we did too! Okay we didn’t scream or run, but we walked back in hoping to see the band. No such luck! We waited around for a while, and decided to leave without ever getting to see Foster the People! I was so disappointed but we had a GREAT time and Fitz and the Tantrums were awesome!

concertSteve didn’t take off today so he is at work while I am enjoying the rainy day at home, but he text me earlier and said he heard the band ended up playing 2 songs about an hour after we left! #tears

Tomorrow I have a short run of only 14 miles, then Steve and I are off to the Razorback game for tailgating and watching Arkansas hopefully kick Alabama’s butt! More likely  chances of rain tomorrow so between a 14 miler and tailgating I need to just accept the fact that I will definitely be getting wet tomorrow!

Cheers, -SS

Have you ever been rained out of a concert?

What are your weekend plans?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9 Things Friday….

Happy Friday!!! I tried to make this a “Thinking out loud Thursday” post but our internet wasn’t working last night. I guess because of the storm, SO here is “9 RANDOM things Friday!” Also today is a rest day since I have an 18 miler tomorrow,  hence why I have extra time to blog before work. That NEVER happens!

#1 I had to fight the urge to visit Starbucks every single day this week around 2pm for a pick me up. I only went ONE time. I never really leave my office for lunch but I had to run an errand on Tuesday and Starbucks “happened” to be close by!

starbucks#2 Now that we are in the process of building our dream home, Steve and I like to stop and look at all unique construction going on. This house looks super modern!

construction#3 Steve thinks it is hilarious to do things like this to me, just to keep me on my toes!

mix upI think his shoes will go all the way to the top of the staircase by the time we move out of our apartment when the house is done….

steve stairs#4 I really enjoyed these Black Bean Tostados for dinner this week. I opted for Guac and salsa on mine but added Chicken to Steve’s. I simply pureed a can of black beans with a few spices and a little garlic. Viola! Cheap and Easy!

tostados#5 And in case you are wondering if I eat anything other than Mexican related dishes…the answer is primarily NO!  I used the leftover Black Bean Puree to make veggie tacos the next night!

tacos#6 Ladies take note! 2 guys told me they liked my outfit when I wore this, which I am sure you would agree is ODD!  It was totally a lazy outfit day but turns out boys like plaid I guess.

plaid#7 I prefer polka dots but consequently got no compliments from boys this day!

polka dots#8 I tried out my “third eye” on my 9 mile run Wednesday morning! I am not in love with the trouble it takes to attach it to my belt as well as the heavy battery pack that I have to put in an extra pocket of my water belt, but it totally did the job and provided a very steady light to a very dark early morning run! For shorter runs yesterday’s 5 miler I just carry my camping headlamp in my hand, because it annoys me too badly to actually wear it on my head!

third eye#9 Large Hail and Strong Winds came through at work yesterday. Good thing I sit right next to the window so that I can see the action. On the news they kept saying “stay away from the windows” yet our entire office was all hovering around the window! Steve the Jersey boy makes fun of how “excited” we get about the weather down here in Arkansas! We actually had a tornado spotted and they made our whole building go to the basement. I cheated and stayed in the lobby by the TV. The storm passed quickly and there was no major damage or injuries.

tornadoHappy Friday! I have an 18 miler this weekend and I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a little nervous! But FIRST I am going to celebrate my good friend Carolyn’s birthday tonight over pizza! Have a great weekend!

Cheers, -SS

Tell me something random about your day!

Treat Yourself Tuesday…..

Thanks for joining me again this Tuesday for my link up with Becky over at Olives n’ Wine for Treat Yourself Tuesday.

Treat-Yourself-Tuesday-Badge#1 Steve surprise treated me to COFFEE on Sunday morning. I heard the front door close which woke me from my sleep. I thought he was going to get the paper which he does a lot  on Sunday’s but he went to get us both a giant cup of joe! Remember last week when I told you coffee was the way to my heart! He must have read my blog that day!

IMG_4757#2 Our good friend that works for Pepperidge Farm treated us to some yummy snacks. Steve is like a 5 year old when it comes to Goldfish, and much to my surprise she included these two Gluten Free Options for me. I didn’t even know they made Gluten Free! I am glad the cookies are NOT Gluten Free or I would be eating ALL the cookies!

Gluten Free Fish#3 I treated myself to the gift of LIGHT while running in the early morning hours. I will have to report back after I have used it a few times, but with fall here the mornings are getting darker and darker. This light attaches to my water belt so I don’t have to wear a headlamp which I am not a fan of or carry a flash light which I am also not a fan of!

belt light#4 I have been treating myself to Veggie Tacos lately. I go through phases with eating meat. I prefer fish and veggies over meat any day but I don’t restrict myself from eating meat if I want it. These Veggie Tacos are my new favorite meal right now. All I did was cook some black beans and stir fry veggies and frozen corn in a big pan and viola! OH and I did make some homemade guacamole to go with!

tacos#5 I treated one of my dear coworkers to what I think are the cutest baby shoes ever! They are called Pedipeds, and they make some pretty cute shoes. She made my day when she sent me this picture this weekend and said ” I miss you” ! She works in our New York office and since I just moved to a new team I don’t get to talk to her every single day like I use to!

Ped PedsHappy Treating!

Cheers, -SS

Tell me how you treated yourself and others this week?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fall Fashion Favorites & My Fall Bucket List

The Season of Leggings and Yoga Pants  is Upon Us. I LOVE Fall, and everything it brings!

2f4064ad1d4509502a1079d7faa141I have to say,  I love fall fashion more than any other season. Sweaters, Yoga Pants, and Boots are quite possibly my favorite attire of all! I am doing everything I can to control myself not to by ALL the sweaters and ALL the boots. Here are a few of my favorites right now!

This Boyfriend Sweater from Jcrew:

JcrewThis Chunky Knit Sweater from Mango:

MangoAnd these Gaucho booties from Antropologie:

anthroI have a lot of things I want to accomplish during the Fall Season, so I thought I would share my fall bucket list and see what you have on your Fall agenda.

#1 Take Steve to hike Hawksbill Crag  in my hometown. We are waiting until the leaves start to turn. We tried to go once already last year but we waited to late in the day and it was getting dark. It is a 3 mile hike, but so worth it. We are going to pack a lunch and our cameras and take in this beautiful view!

Hawksbill#2 Attend a Fall Concert at the Amp (Arkansas Music Pavilion). A fall concert on the lawn is basically a fall requirement. Steve already bought us tickets to Foster the People in October!! I can’t wait!

foster the people#3 Run a Marathon. Okay this is nothing new, but I have to add it to my Fall/Life Bucket List. I am all signed up and ready to run 26.2 at the Savannah Rock n Roll Marathon. 39 days 11 Hours and 7 minutes to go!

medal#4 Make ALL the Pumpkin Recipes on Pinterest. Okay maybe not all, but I can start with this one!

pumpkin bars#5 Paint some Pumpkins! I say I am going to do this every single year but I never do! I am making it happen this year!

painting pumpkins#6 Watch every episode of Breaking Bad. I know I know. You are shocked I haven’t seen it. I don’t watch a lot of TV and I can say I have never seen 1 full episode of Breaking Bad. Steve and I are looking forward to this!

breaking-bad-castCheers, -SS

What Fall fashion items are you craving?

What is on your Fall Bucket List?

 

 

 

 

 

Thinking Out Loud Thursday #4

Happy Friday Eve! I am linking up with Amanda over at Running with Spoons today for a little Thinking Out Loud!

Thinking-Out-Loud#1 My morning runs are getting darker and darker as we transition to fall, plus running 8 miles before 6:30AM means I have to run in the wee hours.  In comes my camping head lamp! I actually ordered a light that will fit on my water belt, but either someone stole it off my doorstep or it was delivered to the wrong house! I am working with Amazon now to get a replacement! For now this will have to do…..

camping light#2 I am slowly transitioning my wardrobe to fall. I can’t quite commit to giving up skirts yet, but I have committed to wearing sleeves and closed toe shoes! Also let me just say the Chambray Shirt has been my favorite wardrobe staple for the last 2 years and I don’t see that changing!

chambrayScarf Season is my FAVORITE! Another Skirt, with sleeves, closed toe shoes, AND a scarf= Happy!

scarf#3 So far I am loving the iPhone 6. However, I am glad that I didn’t follow my original thoughts on getting the plus since there is so much negativity out there regarding the fact that it BENDS! Come on Apple! I like how it organizes my pictures for me and includes locations. Fun to look back over the years and see where I have visited. Yes I use 99.9% of the space on my phone for pictures. My name is Brooke and I am a picture hoarder!

Pic hoarder#4  What will happen if I eat shrimp every day for a week? My lunches have shrimp in them this week, and I have also been eating shrimp for dinner! Gluten Free Pasta and Shrimp!

shrimp#5 I know this entire blog is basically about running but I just have to say “ I LOVE Running” I don’t know what I would do without it!  Especially this time of year.  Fall is my very favorite time to run! I am enjoying the brisk air in the morning and by the time I get back to my apartment anything that was clogging up my brain is completely gone! Sometimes I just stand there to  “Breathe it all IN…..Love it all OUT”

morning#6 I only started drinking Coffee about 2 years ago. I know what you are thinking…… ”why start now”  Well I lived with my best friend for a few months when I was going through my divorce and she is an avid coffee drinker! My commute to work from her house was much longer so I decided to take up drinking coffee on the way in! I NEVER LOOKED BACK! Now I am all……

coffeeCheers, -SS

Coffee Drinker or Not?

Are you a picture hoarder?

How are you transitioning your wardrobe for fall?

After the Run…..Tailgating & Sunday Funday!

As you can tell, my weekends lately have all evolved around the LONG RUN, but that just means that Saturdays are that much more awesome. On Saturday Steve said I was walking like an 80 year old Grandma, but that was a small price to pay for the sense of accomplishment and ENDORPHINS I got from 16 miles!

Steve and I headed down to Fayetteville (where I went to college) to tailgate before the 6:30pm Razorback Football game. We didn’t have tickets but that doesn’t mean we can’t get in on all the fun surrounding it. I need to buy more red to wear to games but for the time being all I was able to come up with was this red necklace and red nails!!

wearing redI enjoyed walking hobbling through the campus on the way to the Stadium, and I can’t help but stop by my name on the sidewalk. My parents scarified a lot to get my name on that sidewalk so I like to pay my respects every time I pass! I graduated from the University of Arkansas in 2006 with a B.S.B.A in Marketing! I’m Brooke Lynette Walker below in case you are wondering!

uofaI miss college! It isn’t everyday you see things like Superman walking through campus with his backpack!

spidermanWe had a fun hopping around to a few different tailgates….some of my coworkers, then Steve’s coworkers, and we stopped by to say hi to the guy that is building our house at his tailgate.  We ended the night eating Mexican food and watching the game on TV. I forgot to take a picture of my tacos for you! But don’t worry I didn’t forget to take pics of Brunch on Sunday at Tusk and Trotter. Sunday Funday is complete with a good brunch!

Sunday Funday Steve got the Bacon Infused Vodka Bloody Mary!

TT DrinksI had a salad…which unfortunately did not taste as pretty as it looked!

my lunchAnd Steve got the Lamb Burger, so I nibbled on his fries! He is very good at sharing!

Steve's lunchThe rest of Sunday was spent watching football, prepping meals for the week (recipe coming soon), doing copious amounts of laundry, and napping!

Cheers,-SS

Do you like to tailgate before football games?

What college did you go to?