Thursday, October 29, 2015

Tricks or Treats?

Emma's school is having a Halloween Party tomorrow.  I wanted to send in something that the parents would appreciate as much as the kids.  I think these just might work. 

Fruit cups + sharpie marker = Mini jack-o'lanterns.  I just hope the kids see them as treats and not tricks.  Otherwise I will have to make it up to them come Christmas. 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Finally! I Did It!

I mentioned in a few posts that I have been training for a half marathon.  7 weeks worth of training actually and I finally got to see it pay off.  The Petersburg Halloween Half Marathon was on this past Saturday in Petersburg VA.  Being only 10 minutes away from where I live, registering was a no brainer. 

Back in April of this year, the hubby and I, did our first half marathon down at the beach in Outer Banks NC.  We didn't train for it and walked most of it.  We've done countless 5ks, several 10ks but never had done a half marathon.  When we finished the race in OBX I set a goal for myself that if we did the race again next year I wouldn't walk it.  Then in July I signed up for a 17.76k (about 11 miles) race.  I trained for it and did well....and by did well I mean I didn't walk.  Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with walking a race, but I challenge myself to do something I don't usually do.  And I can walk ALL DAY.  And when I say I didn't walk I must clarify and say that me running is as slow as some people walking.  Either way I set a goal then and met it.  Then I found out about the Halloween Half in Petersburg....I couldn't resist and signed up. 

Now the running part didn't turn out to be my problem.  Time to run on the other hand WAS.  We are The Busy Bryant's after all.  I didn't sign up to train on a team because I felt comfortable with how well I had trained for the race in July.  I would just be adding a couple miles in order to do the half.  I did do some online research and read lots of articles on increasing distance safely and how/when to refuel.  I planned long runs on weekends, shorter runs during the week and cardio (non-running) also during the week at the gym.  I did say I planned to do long runs on weekends.  The problem was mother nature sent us monsoon season and I had to get creative.  Some long runs had to be done during the week.  Some had to be skipped all together and figure out how to make up the time and then there was a weird day that I went for a run and went a lot further than I planned and felt like I still could keep going.  So if you do ever want to run a race, of any size, keep training time in mind. 

  I must admit I was a little nervous about doing the race.  Whenever I run a new distance for the first time I feel those butterflies.  I had only trained up to 12.20 miles so the race would actually be the first time I attempted to run 13.1.  The week right before the race I did a short 8 mile run and it felt like I was cheating.  The night before the race I set out all of my things and went to bed early.  Before I knew it race day was HERE. 


The race started and finished in Old Town Petersburg.  The route was scenic for the most part.  I did find out the hard way that Petersburg is hilly!  The miles went by pretty fast and I kept a more consistent pace than I usually do with training.  Before I knew it I was at mile 13 and crossing the finish line.  My family wasn't there to see it, which made me a little sad, but I did this race for me and I met the goal I set out to meet. 

Goal met!

As I was training for the race I told Mark, on more than one occasion, to not let me ever sign up for another half marathon!  The time to train was hard to find.  But now after doing the race I think it was nerves talking.  I have already looked at a few to do next year.  I would like to keep up with doing the long runs once a month and see what happens...maybe a full marathon eventually???

Friday, October 23, 2015

The Halloween Tree

The Halloween Tree

A Halloween tablecloth cut to fit my tree
I've had the tree up a couple weeks but hadn't gotten around to posting pictures of here it IS!  The Halloween Tree.  I've seen a couple friends on Facebook post pictures of theirs too.  I love looking at everyone else's trees.  So glad it's catching on.
I've had a few people along the way ask about starting a seasonal tree.  If you are thinking about it now would be a great time to start shopping.  Walmart, Target, Michaels, Hobby Lobby all have ornaments out and at a discount.  Shop the sales and use store coupons. 
For me when I think about a certain holiday I also usually think of a certain for Christmas I think or green and red.  So if you start with just colors you can't go wrong.
And you can always buy plain ornamental balls and dress them up. 
My Halloween Tree at work.  Black marker on white balls

Here is an idea I found on Pinterest....cute right?

And something I found while checking out Pinterest....which would cost less than $

Idea found here.

You get the idea.  At least enough to get started.  If you do one send me some pictures!  Like I said I love to see them. 

In other news...this weekend is the Petersburg Half Marathon.  I've trained every week for a couple months so we will see if it pays off or not.  We are also hosting a Halloween party this weekend....after the race.  I've made no plans Sunday since I have no idea what condition my body will be in.  I'll fill you in next week on how it goes.  Happy weekend to you until then.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015


Our weekend went by in a flash and I'm just now catching up on the start of my week. 

We attended the Friday for the Arts in Old Town Petersburg, did the Rugged Maniac 5K, did a long run in prep for a half marathon and finished off with the Richmond Folk Festival.

 Friday for the Arts takes place in Old Town Petersburg the 2nd Friday evening of every month.  The shops in Old Town stay open late, art is out on display and many of the restaurants have live entertainment.

The Ward Center

The Ward Center

The Art Room

Saturday morning was overcast, sometimes rainy, chilly and overall gloomy.  Despite that we made it to The Rugged Maniac 5K in Dinwiddie VA.  25 obstacles, mud and beer...I think that is part of their slogan...and that is what we got.  Because of last weeks rain we had more than our fair share of MUD!  We sipped part of a beer and headed home to clean/warm up! 

Rugged Maniac

Emma at a birthday party...others enjoyed cake...she enjoyed the chicken

Sunday morning I headed out alone to get in a long run in preparation for The Petersburg Half Marathon.  I had a plan to get in 11.5 miles but somehow (I miss calculated) exceeded that.  12.2...guess I'm pretty ready.  The race is still a couple weeks out so I have no idea what to do until then.  Suggestions?

I even found a new trail in the park

Don't just my pace...yes I am that is not walking

Sunday afternoon we headed to Richmond for the 11th annual Richmond Folk Festival.  Amazing artists, food like crazy and all for free.  Free.  I still can't really get over that part.  Of course the band I wanted to hear was scheduled to be at the end of the day but The Alt was worth the wait.  The time allowed us to hear other bands.  Win-Win.

The Alt

Pretty packed weekend.  My house looks like a disaster area, no really it does.  We need to cut our grass.  The fridge is pretty barren.  But really it's all ok.  We had fun as a family, we saw some things we would never of seen had we stayed home and cleaned and I found a new group to add to my playlist.  I can clean tomorrow. 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

THAT jacket.

I mentioned yesterday that I recently checked out Pinterest for some Fall inspiration.  While on there I came across a jacket I pinned last year.  If you know me they you know EXACTLY (the color) why I pinned this. 


This jacket was screaming at me to buy it...but for $100 I knew it wasn't going to happen.  Then last week I was walking through JCPenney and had to do a double take....

Regularly $42, I got it on sale for $25....YES.  You can find it here.  I'm not sure how much longer it will be on sale but even at full price it's a good deal.  It is so soft and cozy...too bad it doesn't come in bathrobe size ;-)

Friday, October 9, 2015

Weekend Plans?

Exciting things have been going on in Virginia the last couple of weeks. 

First there was the UCI Road World Championships, then we had the grand opening of The Capital Trail and this weekend we are enjoying the sounds of The Richmond Folk Festival.

It seems the state has been doing all they can to bring the business, tourism and fun to us.  I'm thankful since we love to get right in the middle of all the action.  On the other hand I don't live in Richmond and I don't have to put up with the extra traffic. 

I have to admit we didn't visit Richmond to watch the biking championships but only because we had already made plans for camping...however a monsoon swept through and cancelled those plans. 

The Capital Trail has been a big project for the state that I've been keeping my eye on.  It's been finished in stages and we've been lucky enough to bike two sections.  I've blogged about it before here.  Now the entire trail is done.  We had a plan to bike the trail in two days with a short stay at a B&B for the night.  That plan was for last weekend.  Again monsoon season seemed to be upon us so we had to put that plan on the back burner for now...but SOON.

52 miles of beautiful trails

The Folk Festival is in town THIS weekend so I've made plans with the family to attend at least one of the three if only the weather holds out!  I can't take another rainy weekend. 

I did find out during our time stuck indoors that I find it very hard to relax.  I used to know how...but I've lost the ability.  I did finish a book and try a new recipe so something got accomplished. 

What other exciting things are going on?  What are your plans for the weekend?  Tonight we are visiting Old Towne Petersburg, Saturday is the Rugged Maniac 5K, and Sunday is the Richmond Folk Festival.  Busy Bryants indeed. 

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Ready for Fall?

I'm not gonna lie...I wasn't looking forward to Fall at all.  At least not until I went to Pinterst and found a little Fall inspiration.  So now I'm at least ok with letting summer go and letting Fall take over.  Chili, leaves, Halloween, layers upon layers of clothes...ok yeah I'm ready now.




Once I found my inspiration I was set.  Nice pot of copycat Panera Broccoli and Cheddar Soup made, visit to a couple local wineries and new set of Chucks to help ease me into Autumn.

Mattaponi Winery

Sassafras Shade Winery