Friday, April 23, 2010

A Big Thank You and Happy Anniversary!

I can't believe it's FINALLY here... it's race weekend here in Nashville and I've already got butterflies {and knots} in my stomach from all the anticipation and excited nervousness! Last night after work, I headed over to the race expo to pick up my gear and necessities--wow! A tad bit overwhelming for a 1st-timer like me, but there were so many vendors there to help you and to swipe your Visa card for "essentials" =)
Picking up my race packet--corral #11!!
Stores with LOADS of race-day gear and plenty of snacks
{chomps, GU gels, sport beans}
It was like a Wal-Mart for runners
Some of my loot! Skinnyrunner would be proud =)
I got my friends and family signed up for the Competitor Wireless tracking that will send them texts with my stats, time, progress, etc... so excited for all of them to come out and see just what an exciting event this is!
And more importantly, I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU to all of you who have been so tremendously supportive of me while I trained for a whopping 17 weeks! Your words of encouragement and tips & tricks have meant more to me than you could ever imagine and I dont think I could have done all of this without your love and support--big shout outs to my fellow runner Jenn and ATL running guru Ms. Lindsay Zink for all your sweetness! A few of my best friends are coming out tomorrow and of course my family will be attending the festivities, too! And of course, thanks to my fiance Jeff for putting up with me through all of this mental and physical stress to my body--he has been wonderful because he knows just how important accomplishing this run is for me... I love you baby!
P.S. for all who are aware, yes, the rain is an issue for the race tomorrow, but I think we're all prepared to take on the storms and "weather" through it--hehe! I've got my waterproof running belt to take care of my beloved iPod {complete with my 1/2 marathon customized mix}, chaffing rub for the body {wow, runners' gear is soooo weird} and all the Jelly Belly Sport Beans I could ever need!
I hope everyone has a great weekend and fabulous next week... I'll be recuperating on the beach with my parents and Jeff taking in the relaxing sun, reading a few books, eating loads of seafood, and visiting my favorite beach outlets for some retail therapy! OXOX

And in other {very much important news}, I've got 2 sets of wonderful friends celebrating wedding anniversaries this weekend... best friend Bev and Christian will be celebrating 1 year of wedded bliss on Sunday and Leslie and Dusty will be celebrating their 2 year anniversary on Monday... congratulations you guys!! Love you all and am so grateful to have friends' with such wonderful and blessed marraiges =)
Mr and Mrs Miller
Mr and Mrs Walker

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Wedding Wednesday... The Band!

Another one Bites the Dust...
Yes, I am still on a roll--tackling my never-ending wedding to do list one item at a time! This week is a B-I-G one as we just booked our band!! I swear, I have been looking at bands online for a LONG time in addition to asking friends, collegues, and anyone that would listen (thank you Chris and Adrienne!!) for recommendations on fun wedding bands trying to find the perfect sound for our celebration.
This is an area I knew Jeff would be perfect at...granted, he loves helping with the wedding plans, but he gets really enthused when he can get involved and play "Let's Make a Deal!" since he works in sales. He did a fantastic job--after complaining moaning and groaning about the intricately detailed list I gave him of bands--and we booked our band this afternoon...Yay!!

They are one of Nashville's most popular bands and play anything and everything under the sun... Motown/R&B/Pop/Rock and even a little Country, too! I think they are going to be great and I know we'll have a nonstop dance party all night long!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Training Day... Week 17

This is it!! The week I have been waiting for... all the blood, sweat, and tears--well, no blood really, but lots of sweat and tears   {just wanting to sound hard core I guess!}. After last weekend's running success, I know in my heart I am ready to tackle this thing head on--don't I sound like the cheerleaders in Bring It On?? hahaha--small joke, small joke.
For this week, I am obviously taking it a bit easier on my body so I can stay relaxed and ready for what's in store on Saturday morning so this is my training one LAST TIME:
Monday: Rest Day--however, I'm stretching everyday to keep myself from getting sore
Tuesday: Ran 3 miles at a 9:30 pace this morning; did stretches and abs
Wednesday: Rest Day with stretches
Thursday: Last Run: 4 miles at a 9:45 pace; stretches; abs
Friday: Rest and eat lots o' carbs! {pasta is calling my name!!}
Saturday: The Big 13.1!!!
Sunday: The big payoff day... heading to the BEACH for a whole week!
TOTAL: 20.1. miles

Please say a big prayer for me {and all my other friends runing the race} if you can and keep your fingers crossed for no rain... The Weather Channel isn't being so friendly with our weekend forecast right now, as it is calling for scattered storms on Saturday, but I'm doing a dance and asking the rain gods to hold out until afternoon just so we can get this thing over with already!

And just because I know you're dying to know, here is my race day outfit...
even if I am covered in rain, I'll know I looked cute =)
C2 Cami via Target
Nike Running Skort via Dick's Sporting Goods
 Not to mention a little inspiration does a body good... =)


The Language of LOVE

Last night I finally finished reading "The Five Love Languages" by renouned author Gary Chapman. If you haven't read this book, immediately run over to your local bookstore {or order it online via Amazon } and pick this baby up!
Luckily for me, my wonderful Mom and Dad bought it for Jeff and I as soon as we got engaged--can you tell they are fans, too??
If you're in a relationship, getting married, or you already are married, you need to read this. So many of us--myself included--don't know how to "love" our partners because we may or may not speak their individual love language. This is actually a book a lot of ministers recommend their engaged to-be brides and grooms read because it is based on Christian morals and incorporates a lot of exerpts from the Bible.
It's an easy read and I promise it will make a difference in your relationship, not only with your partner, but with the way you look at yourself, too. As soon I started reading, I thought I spoke one particular language, but after reading and taking the profile test, I realized my primary love language is "Quality Time" and my secondary love language is "Personal Touch".
It is so enlightening because during my reading I could slowly start to tell what language {I think} Jeff is and I was trying out the ways Dr. Chapman suggests to keep Jeff's "love tank" full. Believe it or not--it works! Anyways, the moral of the story is to show your partner love you need to be able to speak his language and understand what makes him the happiest...then you can act out those "Words of Affirmation", "Acts of Service", "Physical Touches", "Giving of Gifts", or ""Quality Time" to show that you really care. Enjoy!
Find out more at the Five Love Language's website here
FYI: I also found out Dr. Chapman wrote a specific book for singles, too so everyone can learn from this philosophy =)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Dinner is Served!

I am always on the lookout for tasty {and quick and easy} dinner recipes for us to make at home throughout the week... this way, I am not constantly walking down to The Local Taco and indulging in gourmet tacos every night {Candice, I am talking about you here-haha}.
Here are some of my favorites, as well as others I am adding to our list so we can add some variety to our nightly menu: Enjoy!
Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole via Eat at Home
Paula Deen's Shrimp and Wild Rice Casserole via Cookbook Jungle
Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Chimchurri via Our Best Bites
Mexican Chicken (AKA King Ranch Chicken) via Kelly's Recipes
Chicken Tortellini Bake via My Kitchen Cafe
Saucy Foil-Pack Barbecue Ribs via Kraft Foods
Apple-Mustard Stuffed Pork Chops via Kraft Foods

Busy Hands and Happy Hearts

Seriously--I think my legs may not work at all today... not only did I take the elevator to the 3rd floor {which I NEVER do}, but I'm achy breaky right now and I need a massage ASAP!! However, that could be because I did my 10.10 miles yesterday--yes, bragging a bit because: 1) I lived to tell about it and 2) I'm ready for next weekend =)
OK, I'll shutup and move on to more important things now...
Another weekend gone--it seems like I snapped my fingers and it went by again in the blink of an eye. Friday afternoon, friends Amber and Luke stopped by to pick up their envelopes for their wedding invitations... pictures to come soon! They finally got to see the house and we got to play catch-up over wine and beer--secretly, I think that is how I lured them over--hehe.
Then, we got ready for dinner date night because Jeff had made reservations for us at Park Cafe, which is right down the street! If you're a foodie and like to eat at fun locales in Nashville, you have to go here--they have the best outdoor dining patio and the place is perfect for romantic summertime date nights--way to go baby, you did GREAT! We indulged in Chicken Meatballs, Flat Iron Steak, and their FAMOUS Green Chili Mac and Cheese which is the best I have ever had--seriously, try it!
Saturday morning, Jeff played in a golf tournament so I headed out to do a bit of shopping for the beach... then my grandparents came over and helped us cut down the tree in our backyard--just too big for the space not to mention half of the thing was D-E-A-D! Such a big help =)
Jeff and my Papa--aren't they cute??
And as promised, I finally finished my side porch decor... chairs and all!
That night, we stayed at home and got a nice surprise by Mom and Dad--they stopped by and joined us for dinner and relaxed downstairs so I could cry like a baby watching Meet Joe Black... seriously Brad Pitt, why can't you look like that again instead of grunge man??
After my run on Sunday, we went to Brentwood and had lunch with some of Jeff's friends who were in town and then spent the rest of the afternoon working on the yard and napping. Last night, I met my friend Jocelyn at Mafiaoza's for much-needed pizza and beers, which really means lots of girl talk and laughs...so much fun with her {as usual}!
Hope you all had a WONDERFUL weekend--countdown to my beach vacation--6 days!!! WAHOO for fun in the sun =)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Grandparents are the BEST

Last night, I ventured over the river and through the woods to the other side of Nashville to have dinner with my Gran and Papa... unfortunately, Jeff couldn't come because he was traveling for work, but that didn't stop me from partaking in the home cooked goodness my Grandmother ALWAYS makes for me when I come over... and of course, she didn't disappoint this time.
She made her famous chicken and noodles, which is my absolute favorite thing to eat. She has made this for me since I was a little girl and even now, no one can top hers. My poor Mom has attempted this recipe repeatedly, but Gran's is unbeatable. She also treated me to a homemade cherry cake--and yes, boy did I indulge! Can you tell I am a granny's girl?
We sat outside and enjoyed the GORGEOUS evening and we just talked and talked... life really is all about the simple things isn't it? No two people on this Earth could ever measure up to my grandparents--the older I get, the more humbled I am at just how much they have experienced and I am in awe of their constant good-heartedness and genuine ability to always see the best in each and every situation. They have a tendency of putting things in perspective that I would fail to notice otherwise and I have so much respect for them... they practically raised me when my Mom traveled when I was younger and no time can match when I get them all to myself... family makes my heart happy.  
{side note--I didn't plan on getting philosophical today, but when it happens, it just does}

And--because my Gran and Papa are so wonderful--they wanted to buy us a splendid housewarming present, so this weekend I get to finish our side porch and bring home these beauties...yippee!!! I can't wait to show off the finished product!
Adirondack Chairs from World Market

No big weekend plans for us... I have a few friends coming over tonight to see the house and pick up something VERY special {more to come} and then Jeff and I are having a date night just the two of us! Tomorrow, I'll be running errands and cleaning the house while Jeff plays in a golf tournament, and then running the Big 10 on Sunday before relaxing on Mafiaoza's patio for dinner with another girlfriend! What a fabulous, and hopefully relaxing, weekend!
Happy Friday friends...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

To Market, To Market

I'm carrying over my Wedding Wednesday tribute this week to Thursday--why you ask, because I can! =)
With all the bridal and wedding gurus getting back into the swing of things after returning from NY's Bridal Week, tons of blogs are posting their favorites straight from the runways... seeing as how I am beginning my wedding dress shopping 1 month from today {with both my beloved Mom and MOH}, I think there is no time like the present than to swoon over some of these beauties:
Ines Di Santo via Martha Stewart Weddings via Ritzy Bee
Amsale via Martha Stewart Weddings
Jewel by Priscilla of Boston via Martha Stewart Weddings
Kenneth Pool via Martha Stewart Weddings
Kenneth Pool via Martha Stewart Weddings
Monique Lhuillier via Martha Stewart Weddings
Reem Acra via Martha Stewart Weddings
Rivini via martha Stewart Weddings
So is it obvious to see I am uber:obsessed with the details? drama? flare? Now I just need to remember to control my appetite so I can look good in some of my "hopefuls" and of course, bring my handy-dandy Spanx {Southern girls will understand this} with me, too!  

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wedding Wednesday... Oh Letterpress!

Why do you have to be so pricey??? Little Ms. Natasha over here would love to include you in her wedding, though your cost may outweigh the benefit of having you as a beautiful detail--she's working her magic and is researching everywhere to see the many options out there in weddingland, but her love just may have to take a backseat for more important things... like food, flowers, and a kick-ass band!! 
String Calligraphy Invitation via Bella Figura
Lexington Invitation via Bella Figura
Homestead Invitation via Elum Designs
Trellis Invitation via Elum Designs
Cindrel Invitation via Smock Paper
Rhon Invitation via Smock Paper {**my absolute favorite-swoon!}
Rixi Wedding Invitation via Delphine Press
We can all dream, right??? Happy Wednesday Friends--have a great one!! OXOX 
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