Friday, September 20, 2013

Five on Friday

Happy Friday, y'all.

1. Weekend Plans
After 4th grade, Mama & I are off on a mini road-trip. We're both headed to the D.C. area -- I am going to meet Steven at his place & Mama is visiting some old friends & doing some shopping/enjoying some time out of town.

2. iOS7
 So far I'm loving iOS7. I've heard mixed reviews, as well as some people who aren't upgrading at all.
Personally I love the new sounds & clean look.
Your thoughts?
I found this site that has some neat tips if you're still a little lost.
3. Essie
I'm need of a good neutral nail polish.
 This is "jazz" which I'm not sold on, but I like.
What's your favorite neutral shade for fall?
*I'm currently wearing "twin sweater set" from the fall collection, which I love.

4. Pom Poms
I'm loving this Lilly print. Still incorporating bright colors into fall :)

5. It's been 28 days
Ready to have a break from school & see this guy.

Have a great weekend :)
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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ten on Tuesday :: Fall

My weather app tells me it's 61 outside. THAT, my friends, is a sign of fall.
I'm a summer girl and I would have no problem with it being summer yearround, however I'd be lying if I said I wasn't happy to see some sub-80 temps.
In a few short days it will be officially FALL and I can already smell a Leaves candle burning in the living room...

 Candles. LEAVES in particular, from Bath & Body Works. You really cannot go wrong burning a Leaves candle.
Thick socks. I love wearing socks, 24/7. (Yes, I'm a sleep in socks person.) Especially when they have a fun print!

Going to Sinkland Farms. Our pumpkin patch is a very short drive from my house & they have festivals every weekend starting the 28th of September. You can bet I'll be making more than one trip out there for some pumpkins & kettle corn!

Not being hot & not being cold.  This may be one of my most favorite things about fall. You don't break a sweat just by walking to the car like you do all summer, but you also aren't risking frostbite by sitting on the porch.  I love it.

Fall decor. I love the warm tones of fall and decorating the house makes it feel so much cozier.  Plus, you start getting into real decorating holidays -- so much fun!
Pie. Pumpkin, apple, pecan. You name it. Enough said.
Family time. There are lots of fun birthdays (Both of my brothers, my Mom, myself and Steven) in these fall/early winter months and also lots of holidays - and even a wedding this year. This means lots of family time! Which means lots of happy time.  I'm okay with that.
Football is officially in full swing! Which means lazy days on the couch (when I'm not slaving away on homework) are a legit excuse for how to spend the weekend. Now, if I could finally get the channels that the Hokie games are on we'd be all good!

Marathon season! At least for me. This fall will be extra special as I take on 2 half marathons and 1 full marathon.  Definitely going to hibernate all winter when it's over and done with.

Breaking out the bean boots.  I've missed those babies since last season.  It will be a happy day when they make their fall 2013 debut!

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Race Recap :: Hokie Half Marathon

My 3rd half marathon is in the books!

Yesterday I woke up at 5:15 to get ready for the Inaugural Hokie Half Marathon right here in Blacksburg.  It was really weird to be sleeping in my own bed and be getting ready in my house for such a big race -- normally I have traveled and am staying in a hotel.

The race started around 7 am so Mom, Sadie and I left the house at 6:15. It was about 49 degrees, which sounds colllldddd but when you're about to run 13.1 miles it sounds awesome! I kept my sweatshirt on until about 5 minutes before the gun.
I met up with one of my really good friends Sara and her husband Dave who I've done a couple training runs with! She is awesome!!

Me, Sara & her husband Dave
This race is new and therefore the course is new. Part of the course is on the Huckleberry Trail which is the most popular trail in town...or rather the only one. #smalltownprobs
However the first 4 miles were on a main road which I never run on because it's so busy so it felt weird to be running there. There was only 1 hill in the first 4 miles and it was pretty minor. On the Huckleberry, which is 6 miles, there are about 4ish hills, most of which are pretty decent.  Again, though, I train on this trail so I knew when I needed to push and when I needed to save some energy.

About to get on the Huckleberry:
"Hi Sadie!"

I took Gu at miles 4 and 10. Kind of odd timing, but I had to go with the flow. All worked out well with water stops!

The course had high school bands and small musical groups throughout which was really fun! I'm all about crowd support so it was nice to hit the pockets of people cheering on the sideline.  Special shout out to the rescue crew at the halfway point on the Huckleberry - y'all were awesome!

The last 3.1 miles were on neighborhood roads, back on the Huckleberry for a teeny bit - which was a little tight since there were people running in both directions, but fun since we got some high-fives - and then into the Corporate Research Center for the finish.  The first half of the last mile was flat, but then you hit an uphill.  I knew this was coming so I made sure to keep some juice in my legs for it, and I was fine. The last .2 or so was completely downhill. An AWESOME finish through a huge crowd of cheering and another band. My high school coach, who is the ring leader for all of the races around here, was announcing people as they finished. He's great!
"Yay, downhill!"

My finishing time was 2:03:00. I'm super happy with this time on a hilly course & being in the middle of marathon training. Sidenote: it was ALL worth it for the 2 shirts we got AND the sweet Hokie Bird medal!

Overall, this was an awesome first Hokie Half and I can't wait to run this race again and again!!

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Balancing Life :: Working, Grad School, & Marathon Training

WHEW! This past week has been craaaazy. It's been a week of trial and error as I begin to figure out how to balance my life.

Work has been a little off balance because we are short staff members, so I've been working every day instead of my regularly scheduled days (Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday) to make sure everything ran smoothly. We have tons of little ones this year! The kindergarteners are still getting used to our routine so it's helpful to have enough staff members to make sure we don't lose anyone.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, I love my job! Even when I have a stressful day in other aspects, I know I can go to work and have 3 hours of fun :)

Grad School is officially in full swing. I was really happy with my summer session classes and therefore have high hopes for fall semester! I'm taking 3 classes: Instructional Strategies for Inquiry-Based Classrooms, Inquiry into the Human Growth, Development and Diversity, and Classroom and Behavioral Management. I'm also doing 2 of my 4 practicum experiences in 4th grade! I've gone into the classroom now four times and I LOVE IT! The kids are so sweet and fun, and I have a pretty awesome mentor teacher! It's going to be a great semester learning all about Virginia history :)
I definitely have a LOT of work to do.  No doubt about that.  I will really need to buckle down and use my time wisely -- and stop being tempted by hours of watching HGTV and TLC.

Marathon Training is also in full swing. This weekend I have the Hokie Half Marathon here in Blacksburg. It's on Sunday and I can't wait!! It works perfectly with my training schedule so nothing will be thrown off.  I will treat it as my training run -- just a bit glorified, with a medal and t-shirt.
My mileage is definitely starting to rack up, which is scary and exciting at the same time.  I've had to once again buckle down and really dedicate a portion of my day to running, whether it be at 6 am or 7 pm.  I hate running in the heat of the day, so typically I'm out really early or late when the sun is going down! My preference is definitely morning - it's so nice not to have to worry about my run after a full day of work/class.
I alsooo signed up for another half-marathon in October before Richmond - the Runner's World Half & Festival. This race is held RIGHT where Steven goes to school, so it works out perfectly with a trip to see him! Plus, again, it works perfectly with my schedule since I'm supposed to run 14 miles that weekend anyway...might as well glorify it a bit and run someplace new ;)

My life is busy! Unfortunately I can't blog as often as I would like, but I'll still be popping in and I appreciate y'all still coming to read!

This weekend I'll be cheering on my Hokies, who are on the road, and resting up for the race!

Have a great Thursday, y'all!
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Thursday, September 5, 2013

First Day(s) of School!

Wow, I have had one busy week!
Sunday-Tuesday I was in Richmond spending time with my Dad and checking out the marathon course. Definitely got me pumped up for November :)

On Tuesday evening we had Open House at the school where I work. We got tons of new kids. Lots of new kindergarteners and even a couple of new big kids! It was so exciting to hear who everyone's new teachers were and see all of the kids I hadn't seen since May.

Yesterday was our 1st day of school! I started in 4th grade at Harding, where my Mom is the Library Media Specialist, and had a blast. It was fun because I was new to 4th grade just like all of the kids so I was learning all of the new rules and expectations right along with them!
Me & Mama with our HAE Birthday shirts on! They're celebrating 40 years!

After the school day was over I headed over to GLE for my 1st day back to work, which also went really well! We got plenty of outside play since no one has homework yet ;)

Now today is MY 1st day of school! I'll be heading to Roanoke for my first fall semester class, Instructional Strategies for Inquiry-Based Classrooms! I'm excited to get started with my courses. I know I have a lot of work ahead of me, but it will all be really useful to me in the future.

Whew! Exciting week here in Blacksburg :)
Hope y'all have an awesome day!
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