Hi friends! Just popping in for a quick hello before heading to work! It’s another working weekend for me, but hopefully if the weather is nice on Sunday, us Coopers will be doing something super fun and exciting!
For the past few weeks, I have become increasingly frusturated with my hair. I loved the shorter haircut I got a few months ago, but everything had just grown out and I was constantly pinning back my “bangs”. Yesterday, I did a horrible job of trying to trim my bangs. Needless to say, my hack-job needed fixing, and Great Clips gave me a functional new ‘do. I want to let my hair get longer, so we just kept most of the length, fixed the bangs and added a bit of layer.
It works for now, it’s not the most spectacular haircut I’ve ever had, but it is just what I needed! (And the cut was only $13 before tip, SCORE!)
I’ve been seriously slacking in the blogging department lately. To be honest, Daniel and I are starting to get a little run down over doing THE. SAME. EXACT. THING. week in and week out. I’m struggling with a general lack of drive and motivation for anything outside of what’s already on my schedule. Hoping these “blahs” will go away after this weekend. I made a great to-do list with things I need to do (projects for school), and things I want to do (2 runs this weekend, find some new recipes for the week, etc).
So, before signing off, I thought I’d leave you with a collection of pictures from my cell phone! We still live in the “dark ages”- we have no internet on our phones, and we have pretty crappy cameras on our phones. Sorry to make you suffer with these low-quality photos!
This is the little boy I nanny for. He likes putting trash cans on his head. He is awesome.
This is our new kitchen faucet. Not fancy, but now we have hot water for the winter!
Daniel got rear-ended by a car a few weeks ago. The girl who hit him reluctantly gave him cash for the repair, and Daniel was OK. WATCH OUT FOR BIKERS AND RUNNERS!
This was me showing of my recently-dipped bling. Don’t’ worry, I was still in our driveway when I took this picture.
This was Silas at his recent Vet appointment. He looks a little bugged out…
This is our “new” kitchen table that we found on the side of the road. I love free stuff.
Here are the animals cuddling.
Silas with his now-demolished stuff-less squeaky toy.
Silas with a muddy face after a visit to the Dog park
Silas in the car, probably headed to the Dog park
Squash from the summer. I still have some in my freezer, but it’s nothing compared to FRESH zucchini!
Baby Silas This is when he was about 9 weeks old, his first day with us!
Daniel feeding Baby Mowgli the first day that we found him!
These fall weekends have been flying by! I am thankful that we don’t have any plans for this upcoming weekend, we need a chance to just relax in this beautiful autumn weather!This past weekend, we got to celebrate the upcoming arrival of Baby Harrison! You can check out Ashley and David’s blog for some of Ashley’s ADORABLE pregnancy updates! The girls in our life group got together with Ashley’s sister Jen and Ashley’s friend (and super awesome mom) Melissa to throw Ashley a shower. Little Baby H is going to be a girl, so I thought I’d go all “pink” on you for this post!Easter made this absolutely adorable banner- the inner circles are made from pages of a Harry Potter book! Since the shower was during the peak of fall, Melissa suggested that we use pumpkins as decorations! Look how adorable these are!
We also had a “make your own hairbow” station. Each guest decorated a little alligator clip with fabric, buttons and ribbon, and when little Baby H arrives, Ashley can choose a hairbow that matches the days outfit! Such a neat idea for a baby shower activity!
And of course, there was food. And who would I be to not mention food on our blog? My lovely friend Haley made these scrumdiddlyumptious German Chocolate Cupcakes:
Are you drooling yet?
(Almost Doctor) Easter made this super yummy pumpkin dip (I need to get the recipe!) Haley also made her should-be-famous Spinach and Artichoke dip!
I was super boring and brought the veggies (including MORE tomatoes from the garden), and I made a pretty tasty dip that didn’t really get eaten (more for us!) I used the Thrive Foods recipe for Live Avocado Goddess Sauce that Mama Pea posted over at Peas and Thank You. Since I messed with the pictures, you can’t really see the ‘greenness’ of the dip (which may have scared people), but I thought it was pretty tasty!
After a few great games, it was gift time, and then our life group FINALLY got a picture together! Thank you Melissa!
A quick intro to The Bourbon Chase: an overnight 200 mile relay race on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. We had a team of 11 courageous runners- The bodyFIT Bootleggers: Adam, Scott, Brock, Grant, Cindi, Jon, Kristen, Ryan, Scott and Emily. Below are the fantastic members of Van 1:
And here are the superstars of Van 2:
Each team is split into two vans, Adam, Scott, Brock, Grant, Cindi and myself were in Van 1, and the rest of the team was in Van 2. The race is a relay-race, so Van 1 members run each of their “legs” of the race, and after the last runner runs his leg of the race, the baton is passed on to Van 2. After the handoff, Van 1 gets to rest while Van 2 completes their legs of the course. Each runner ran a total of 3 legs (except Jon, Grant and Ryan all ran extra legs of the race because we were short one person). Confusing? Not really! There are 36 legs of the course, and each leg varies in distance and in difficulty. You can look back at my “Preparation” post to see the legs of the run that I did! Here’s a map of the entire course:
Cindi passed the baton (a snazzy reflective snap-bracelet) to Adam who charged ahead:
Our next stop was Heaven Hill where Scott had the “Stairway to Heaven Hill” aka: “Run up this huge hill and then get a free Bourbon Sample”
At Heaven Hill, Scott passed the Baton to Grant aka “The Workhorse” who absolutely killed all of his runs!
Grant then passed the baton onto yours truly:
Check out that horrible heel strike in the last picture! By the time I was finishing my first run, the sun was beginning to set, and I passed the baton on to Brock, our 6th runner who finished his leg of the race at Maker’s Mark.
At Maker’s Mark, we got our free bourbon samples and said “hi” to Van 2 who were just about to start their runs!
Since it was already getting dark, Van 2 started their runs in our “nighttime” gear: headlamp, reflective vest and a tail-light.
During our “breaks” from running, we did a lot of this:
Fortunately our team decided to get a hotel room, and we all went back to shower/rest for a little while. Van 2 finished with their legs of the run around 11:30pm, so we met them at the next transition and began our second legs of running. I don’t have any pictures of the night runs, but it was dark, and it got MUCH cooler (it had been 85+ degrees during our first runs, so the cold night air was VERY welcome!) Running at 3:30am is a very bizarre thing, but that was honestly one of my favorite parts of the whole race! And to think that I had been nervous about that run! Van 1 did an AMAZING job on our night runs-the heat from earlier in the day had made our first run pretty difficult, but we definitely redeemed ourselves with the night run! We passed our baton back to Van 2 around 5am on Saturday morning in Davnille and then we headed to our hotel for THE BEST 2 hours of sleep I’ve ever had.
During our quick “nap”, Van 2 did a fantastic job running their second round. We met up again at Four Roses Distillery around 11am on Saturday. Unfortunately, the leg that Cindy ran from Four Roses to the next checkpoint was pretty short, so we didn’t actually get to any bourbon sampling at Four Roses
However, when we left Four Roses, we got to drive through a creek (it was the only way out)! I bet out-of-towners started questioning the sanity of us Kentuckians at that point…
Our third (and Grant’s third and fourth) runs went very well, we were all thoroughly tired by the time we had the next big exchange at Woodford Reserve.
Sadly, this is where I left my teammates because I had to attend a wedding (a WONDERFUL wedding!) Van 2 finished their last runs, and the entire team crossed the finish line back in Lexington.
Everyone got medals, bourbon and more bourbon at the awards ceremony!
The bodyFIT Bootleggers finished the entire 200 mile race in 29 hours 24 minutes and 40 seconds. I cannot wait to participate in the Bourbon Chase again next year, and hopefully, I’ll be able to run it with some of my same teammates Thank you all for making this such a wonderful experience! Here are a few more pictures (like this post didn’t have enough pictures already):
Road kill was to mark how many people we had passed, I think our van ended up passing 26 people!
This whole Bourbon Chase shindig is just a few hours away. In a couple of hours, I’ll pile into a van with some other crazy runners that I’ve only met once. Since I don’t know any of my teammates, I e-mailed them with a short “getting to know you” survey (and yes, I told them it would be posted on the blog) and here are 4 out of our 12 runners:
Goal for “The Chase”: Make it through the first leg! I have a double leg that has some major hills!
If you were an ice cream flavor, which one would you be, and why? I would be anything at Orange Leaf because I like Orange Leaf.
Scott Bender, 35
Profession: Golf Course Superintendent
Goals for “The Chase: Have Fun!
If you were an ice cream flavor, which one would you be, and why? Perhaps Scott doesn’t like ice cream, or perhaps this was a stupid question!
Holly Cooper, 23
Profession: Wife, part-time Student at UK, front desk associate at Body Structure, and nanny to a precious little boy!
Goal for “The Chase”: To not cry on my long run in the middle of the night. But really, to run and to have a blast with my awesome teammates!
If you were an ice cream flavor, which one would you be, and why? I would be my own flavor: Pumpkin Ice Cream with a fudge swirl (like in Moosetracks) with miniature Reese’s cups (like in Moosetracks). So basically, pumpkin flavored Moosetracks. Or I would be vanilla.
Last night, The Bourbon Chase kickoff was held at Victorian Square. Bourbon was served and we got a chance to meet one another. Our wonderful Van 1 team consists of: Myself, Cindy, Brock, Adam, Scott and Grant. I’m excited to spend 24 stinky hours with these great people. I’m definitely the baby of the group, but that doesn’t bother me one bit! Scott and Adam have also started blogs, and hopefully you’ll be able to follow along with us as we Chase some Bourbon!I’m all packed and ready to go, want to see what I’m bringing? I made a list and packed what was on the list (I’m notorious for forgetting things or for over packing):
The weather this weekend is supposed to be SUPERB! Check it out!I also made sure to pack enough Gluten-Free snacks! I whipped up these Pumpkin Muffins that the fabulous @MissHebbe sent me! Here’s a link to the original recipe- I just subbed in Bob’s Red Mill GF Baking Mix and added a pinch of xanthan gum! Delish!
And that powdery stuff on the left? Homemade “Gatorade” mix from this website!Silas really doesn’t want me to leave, so he decided to lay on top of all of my gear
Notice anything particularly “fluffy” in this gear picture?See you soon Silas! After 18.3 miles and a wedding celebration, I think I’m the one who will need a belly rub!
I may be a little bit insane. Just a little bit. But I think all runners are just a little bit insane.
(Picture from 2005, 6 years ago!)
Last week, I started running at 5:30am with a running group called John’s Striders. The weirdest thing? I liked it! Despite 5am wake up and running in complete darkness, I think I’m hooked (we’ll see how it goes when it’s below zero outside). I’m pretty sure I’m the youngest runner in the group, but I haven’t met everyone yet. Anyways, it is GREAT to have a running community again! And I should mention, I have made some of the BEST friends in the world in my 8 years of running!
I miss the team aspect of running, and that shouldn’t surprise me too much because I started out running with a team in high school, and I had my college team. Only after transferring to UK did I have to run alone. Not having a team may have been one of the reasons why I took almost a year off from running.Anyways, this summer was a great time for me to get back into running shape. Was it fun? No. Was it hard? Yes. Do 80+ degree temps suck? Yes. But, I’m thankful for those slow, sticky miles that I put in during the summer months. Fall weather reminds me of cross country season, of long runs on the weekends. The cooler weather makes me feel faster and it definitely allows me to breathe better. The crispness of the air is refreshing when my body finally starts to warm up after the first few minutes of striding along the asphalt.Yeah, I’m in love with running again. So, this weekend, I’m doing what any other normal 17-20mile per week runner would do: I joined a Bourbon Chase team.The Bourbon Chase is a 200 mile overnight relay race that takes runners along the scenic pathways of Kentucky. The run starts at the Jim Beam distillery and hits Heaven Hill, Makers Mark, Four Roses, Woodford Reserve, Makers Mark and ends in Lexington. Each team is comprised of 12 runners who run 3 legs of the race. Average mileage per runner: 16.5 miles. As I mentioned before, this is an overnight relay race, so members of each of the 250 teams will be completing their legs of the run in the dark. Pretty exciting, huh?
Well, since joining John’s Striders, I’ve heard about The Bourbon Chase and I offered to help any teams that were down a person. Jon from the BodyFit Bootleggers contacted me and I found myself on a team! I have no idea who any of my team mates are, and I’m kind of excited to spend 24+ hours with other crazy runners! We’ll be leaving Lexington on Friday morning, and I’ll be finished sometime on Saturday afternoon. I wish I could go to the huge after party they’re hosting in Lexington for all of the Bourbon Chasers, but I have a very special wedding to attend that evening! Let’s just say, after running 18 miles in under 24 hours, this girl probably won’t be out on the dance floor (I never like dancing).
Here are some maps and elevation charts for my 3 legs of the race
Leg 2 (which will be in the dark):
The Final Stretch Leg 3: This downhill section is going to feel FANTASTIC!
I’m hoping to be able to snag an iPhone so that I can do a bit of on the road blogging, but we’ll see! Definitely be looking for a race recap sometime next week, and prayers are appreciated for all of the participants in the event!
The Diamond Dash is a Scavenger (SCVNGR) hunt that runs all around downtown Lexington. The prize? A $19,000 diamond ring. Cha-ching! Daniel and I had a blast last year, so we decided to run again this year!
Throwback Picture from 2010!
This year was QUITE a bit colder than last year. I believe the high on Saturday was in the 40’s. Brr. I had to sport my Denison University XC gloves (DUXC!)
Pre-race! We huddled inside the Courthouse for some needed warmth!
Daniel, studying the map (I am extremely directionally challenged…)
Creeper picture of a guy with the same jacket as Daniel
We raced all around downtown for about two hours! The SCVNGR system sent us a text message with a location, for example (this is an example, not a real question) “Visit the Lexington Public Library, your next clue will arrive shortly!” And then a second text came with the clue “Find the historic plaque out front, what was the profession of Mr. John Smith?” And then you would text back “Historian” or whatever the answer was. Then your next clue came! We were dying for a cup of hot coffee at the end of the race, and fortunately, the lovely ladies at Shelia Bayes Fine Jewelers had some for us!
We didn’t win, but a couple did, and they got engaged! How cute! I’ll try to remember to post any pictures that show up from the professional photographer that was there!