Friday Favorites, Crowd Pleaser & Building Back UP!

Remember a few years ago when my sister’s doctors told her she wouldn’t ever be able to run again (she injured her back really bad from moving a dining room table)?  Well, on Wednesday she ran 5 miles at an 8:55 average with plenty of hills thrown in there too.  Boom.   In between her doctor saying she would never run again and now there has been a back surgery and a lot of little miracles (and now the doctor’s approval to run again).  It’s pretty amazing to see her get to love the run again.  She said everything but her back hurt in that last mile… the joy of building back up your running endurance;)

Another sunshine run was good for the soul.  The world looks a lot different while running when it is light out!

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Stretching buddy

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Our Wednesday was full of all things Halloween.  Brooke had her Halloween parade at the school.  I thought it would be fun to run from place to place along her parade route to see her multiple times.  Afterwards she asked me how I kept reappearing… this might be a new parade tradition to see how many times I can see them.

Trunk or treats are now my favorite way to trick-or-treat.  It was so efficient and Brooke loved it!

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We also went over to my parents’ house with my sister and her family to trick-or-treat over there.  I loved my niece’s and nephew’s costumes.

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My Thursday morning run was done in the rain.   I dressed in shorts and a sweatshirt and about 2 miles into the run it started raining so I was drenched and frozen by the time I got home and showered as quickly as possible.  6 miles @ 8:18 pace.

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Knox finished up his day of Kindergarten and we got caught up on life and heard all about his Halloween adventuring.

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Skye got a new toy but I’m pretty sure the big kids were more excited about it than she was.

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A reader told me to try out these TJ’s pizza crusts so I grabbed them and we will be buying them often.

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The pizzas were a crowd pleaser over here.

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I’ve got a few Friday Favorites to share!

*Skye’s Friday Favorite:  The Dishwasher.  That little girl does a fartlek crawl on over to the dishwasher anytime she hears it open in order to try to crawl on the door and take out all of the silverware.

*I bought my favorite green jacket in pink now too ($33)!

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*If delicious treats are happiness to you… please go buy the apple cider donuts and salted caramel hot cocoa from TJ’s.  The donuts taste more like a muffin than a donut to me but they are ridiculously good.  The hot cocoa is just a fun change up from the the normal hot chocolate.  Skye and I love to walk up and down the aisles of TJ’s and see what is new… flashback to doing that with Brooke when she was a baby all of the time.

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*Greenlight Tight Nightlife.  I’ve always been a huge fan of the Greenlight Tight for running and I love the neon detail and the reflectivity on these.

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*Making A Murderer part 2.  I can’t stop watching.

*Just another shoutout to Koala Clip.  There are only two exact things that I take with me on EVERY SINGLE RUN NOW—>  My Garmin and this blue goodness.  I thought with the cooler temps I would just go back to putting my phone in my jacket pocket while I run like I used to during the winters but I tried it one day and it drove me crazy ha… the Koala Clip makes me forget I have my phone with me.  PS you can get 10% off of them here with the code HRG10

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*The Hoodie Dress!  SO so soft and cute (love the little runner girl on it) and I’m obsessed with it’s length!  It’s meant to be a dress and I just wear mine with a pair of leggings and never ever want to change again.

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*Megan D’s Halloween costume this year.

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I love love love the amazing things that you guys are doing.  Keep sharing—>  [email protected]


Catie!!!  “I ran my third 5k this year today and I accomplished my goal of running it in 33 minutes or less!!  I finished in 32:48!!!  And I didn’t walk once!!  I have been keeping my running super consistent, running longer without having to walk, and getting faster each week!!”



Jeannine!!!  “I finally did it- accomplished a decade long goal of completing my first marathon!  My father also ran and completed his 10th marathon! The Marine Corps Marathon in DC is known as ‘the people’s marathon,’ and I can see why.  The scenery, the history and monuments surrounding us was simply beautiful.  The support of the marines and the crowd exceeded my expectations.  Thousands of runners ran to honor the memory of loved ones who served and the blue mile (mile 12) was extremely touching.  I saw it all: someone ran with one leg, someone with one arm, many carried American Flags, dozens of marines ran in full gear, runners pushed disabled children and adults in trikes, a guy ran singing into a microphone while playing the ukulele, I even saw a runner run with her service dog- which was just amazing- I later learned it was their 14th marathon together!  I smiled, I laughed, I cried, I hobbled and stopped to stretch, I didn’t give up no matter how painful.  The marathon.. is a phenomenon.  The distance is humbling.  Looking back I can say that I breezed through my training injury free and with confidence.  I completed all long runs, learned how to fuel properly and felt prepared.  I am humbled to say that race day had other plans for me, and my training did not at all reflect my performance.  I made the rookie mistake of wearing socks I had only trained 5 miles in- the bottoms of my feet burned and I developed blisters in between my toes.  My knees ached after mile 8 (which never happened during training) and my calves burned.  I was surprised to be as uncomfortable as I was.  I ended up finishing about 45 minutes after my anticipated finish time.  However, it was all worth it for the moment the marine placed the medal around my neck.  Earned, never given.  I learned a ton and am planning my redemption!  Here is a picture of my dad and I after he finished.  (Please excuse my 3 jackets + hubs vest… I was shivering!)”

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Annemarie!!!  “I ran the Chicago marathon on 10/7:)  It was my 7th marathon and 3rd major!  Such an amazing city, and the race was SO much fun.  I felt so lucky to be there… especially since there were SO many setbacks leading up to this race.  Back in July, an injury prevented me from being able to really put in some serious training and put a big dent in my goals.  I wanted to PR this race so badly, and at that point I knew it wasn’t going to happen, but I pushed on anyway.  Then the weekend before the race I got sick with a stomach virus and could barely eat anything.  I felt awful for several days, and just when my appetite started to return (the day before we flew out) I developed an excruciatingly painful infection in my tooth.  I ended up flying out on Friday with some meds and lots of prayers.  Thankfully, I felt so much better by Sat and perfectly normal by race day! It was a rainy 60 degree day and it felt amazing.  I thanked God every single mile of this race for allowing me to be there and I enjoyed every single second.  I finished with a time of 3:40:06 and honestly could not have asked for a better race considering everything leading up to it!  My hubby and I spent the next 2 days touring the city, eating ALL the food, and having some QT:)  It was absolutely one of my most memorable races!”

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Loren!!!  “I did my first half marathon 2 weeks ago.  I gave birth to my 5th baby a few months ago, and she did not live.  When I was giving birth to her, knowing I wouldn’t get to take her home, I knew I had to find something to help me stay busy and deal with this.  I promised myself I would finally do a half marathon and focus on doing something else I’ve always wanted to do. I’ve wanted to do a half marathon for as long as I’ve been reading your blog (8 years!).  It was a trail run with a 1200ft elevation gain and I knew I wasn’t quite prepared for it, and almost didn’t do it!  I did all my training on a treadmill and only ran outside a handful of times.  But I called my dad and he encouraged me to just go for it and just finish.  It was a little miserable;) but I’m just so glad I did it!  Next time, I’ll definitely pick something flat!”

Loren, I can’t even imagine what you’ve gone through but your strength is helping all of us so thank you so much for sharing.



Brooke!!!  “Hi!  My name is Brooke!  I ran my first ever race October 27th.  It was a spartan race sprint in Atlanta, Georgia!  MY group and I finished in 3:27!  It was 4.2 miles and 22 obstacles.  I was really unprepared because I found out 2 months before that I was going to run it so I needed help with the obstacles but the guys in my group helped a lot!  I almost fell of a cliff so that was fun.  We also had to walk .25 in a river.  During the race I was like “I am NEVER doing this again!”  And I am already looking at others to go to!  I’m planning on doing 2/3 more sprints and then a super!  I’m giving my body about a week and a half of rest (I dropped a bucket of rocks on my knee and fell) but then I’ll start training for another one in April!  I was super nervous going into the race and during, but it was fun and I made some friends and all in all it was a great experience!”



Hillary wrote this about Virginia:  “My BEST friend Virginia just finished her second marathon – Marine Corps marathon with a new PR!  She’s so smart, beautiful and diligent.  I’m beyond proud of her and can’t wait to chase her across the country as she conquers tough things.  We even took your slogan as inspiration for a sign.  Please show her some love because she deserves the most love!”

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Katherine!!! “I had my first child last December (7th).  I used to love starting my day with a run but after having my little one I did not get out very often and struggled with postpartum anxiety.  My husband encouraged me to start running again.  I started really slow and wasn’t able to get out often, but even running twice a week was a game changer for my mental health.  A few months ago I signed up for a 28k trail race in my town (the Sage Burner)… and I completed it last Saturday!  I was so inspired by your training and dedication to achieving your sub 3 hour marathon less than 10 months postpartum.  You reminded me how important it is to stay positive and not let fear of failure step on your dreams.”


What are your weekend plans?!?

Ever run a race with obstacles in it? 

Parents reading… what was the last crowd pleaser meal that you made for your kids?

Andrew is wondering—>  When is it too early to decorate for Christmas?

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Loren’s story is so inspiring, and I can’t even imagine all that she’s gone through. Sending her big hugs and gratitude for sharing such a remarkable story.

I need to try those donuts from TJ’s. ASAP. And I don’t think it’s ever too early to decorate for Christmas. One year, I left my decorations (since it’s just me, I honestly don’t have many at all) up all year long, and they made me happy. :)

Hope that y’all have a great weekend, Janae!


She is absolutely amazing.

Gets some this weekend Natalie! I LOVE that you left them up all year… why not?! Have a wonderful weekend!


We are taking our kids (12,7,6, and 3 months) to a Christian concert tonight, it’s the bottom 3 first one so they are excited! The rest of the weekend is full with soccer tournament, date night, and family time…should be a great weekend!

No races with obstacles, I don’t need any self imposed injuries!

Crowd pleaser…chicken broccoli cheddar rice or quinoa dish…a million recipes on Pinterest and it’s so o good and no one complains!

I personally think the weekend after thanksgiving is
acceptable to start decorating, but I try not to judge :)

Hope you guys have a great weekend, I bet the mountains are beautiful in Utah, i’ m in MD.


Brenda, that sounds amazing… have the best time tonight making awesome memories. Enjoy the whole weekend. Hahah yeah, I fall running on the sidewalk so I probably shouldn’t either.
Well, I need to make that for sure for the kids. Thanks Brenda! I bet it is gorgeous where you are too!


I’m listening to Christmas music already (have been since September!) I always had a rule that I would only listen after thanksgiving but then I didn’t get enough time with it cause my other rule was don’t listen after Christmas Day – I’m finding some rules are meant to be broken :) & I LOVE IT!


I love that… enjoy all of the Christmas music listening and that is definitely a rule that should be broken. Have a wonderful weekend!


That is so great that your sister can run again! What a freak accident with just moving a table – crazy – but good for her for doing the work to get back to running. And I love seeing the pictures of all the kiddos on Halloween! So fun!
This weekend we will be hanging out at my parents both days – we are trying to sell our house, so have showings & open houses.
I have not run a race with obstacles in it – I’m not sure I am coordinated enough to do that?
Last night I made some mashed potato “puffs” (baked in mini muffin pan) that went over pretty well with my little guy. I added chopped broccoli to them & seems like a recipe where I could throw all sorts of random veggies into them. I think you’re supposed to use leftover mashed potatoes, but I used instant this time… I will have to try those TJs pizza crusts!
My Christmas decorations will be pulled out the second Thanksgiving is over (aka, the kick off to Christmas). And then I like to leave mine up at LEAST through January. Partially out of laziness & partially because I just love Christmas lights.


KATIE… good luck this weekend!! That is so stressful getting everything ready. Do you already have the house that you are moving to? That sounds like something Skye would love… I’ll try it. Thanks Katie! Hahah I’m the same way about leaving them out;) Have a wonderful weekend.


Love that jacket. How is the sizing? The reviews on amazon are a mixed bag for if it runs small or true to size. Thanks!


Hey Trisha! I have a small in the green and the pink and it fits perfect for me (I wear a small in most things and so I would say it is true to size BUT the jacket is also pretty snug (but still very comfortable) on me but I think that is how it is supposed to fit). Let me know if you get it. Have a wonderful day!


Amazing stories from readers today! Loren ❤️❤️❤️
I have heard that the Marine Corp marathon is absolutely the best! I may need to add that to my list ?
High school football is done ? but we’re right in the middle of marching band tournament time! So Saturday we’ll be in San Clemente for a tournament for our youngest!!
And, a few early morning longish runs will be back in the picture, yay ?
Great job HRG sissy!! You’re going to do awesome in your half!!
Happy Friday!!


We should all meet up at the Marine Corp marathon one year:) Oh San Clemente is GORGEOUS (my great grandpa lived there and we visited often growing up). Enjoy the tournament and yay for early morning longish runs again. Thanks Wendy!


Our son’s basketball league starts Saturday! Two fall fests – one Friday and one on the weekend. Maybe both?!?!

The Big South Fork 17.5 mile trail run had yellow jackets, roots, logs, you name it! Natural obstacles, but still obstacles :) It was my favorite race of all time – but at 15 years ago maybe I should go for a repeat…

My son loves rice noodles, broccoli, and chicken, and my husband eats anything I fix, so that is our crowd pleaser :)

He needs to decorate for Thanksgiving!!!!! But a Christmas decorated house makes for a delightful Thanksgiving dinner ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)


Two fall fests… I want to come. Yeah, that trail race sounds like one huge obstacle race. I think you should go back for round 2:) That meal sounds amazing, I would love it too. I agree! Have a wonderful day Tonya!


Andrew— it’s too early to decorate for Christmas! Give thanksgiving a chance!! Hahaha

I still haven’t made it to TJs I have kind of been avoiding it so I don’t spend money on things I don’t really need haha. But all your posts make me want to go.


Hahaha I decorated for Thanksgiving today so he is going to have to wait. YOU NEED TO GO!!!! Have a great day Jenny!


Three day weekend over here. I still can’t figure out why I took today off. Am I supposed to be doing something? Biggest weekend is our NYC Marathon viewing party Sunday morning! We are making brunch from Run Fast Eat Slow.
Janae: who is your predicted female winner??

And Loren, I hope your soul finds peace after losing your sweet baby.


I want to come watch with you guys and have brunch. I would love to see Des win again but I also really want ALL of them to win so it hurts for me to choose just one!


Will you share information about your tights that you are wearing with your sister in the top two pics? I love them!!


Yes yes yes… here they are:

Have a great day Amanda!


Before Thanksgiving is too early.
Kid pleaser was spaghetti and meatballs and garlic bread.


That’s a Janae pleaser meal too… now I need that. Have a wonderful day Erica!


Hello! Do you mind if I ask what size you wear in that pink jacket? if not, its totally ok. I am about the same size as you so would love to order accordingly;)

Weekend plans-> my dad is coming to visit so I’m super excited. he lives a 7 hour drive away and I just cherish all the weekends we get together. so we’ll spend a lot of time outdoors; spectate a 5k and go to the arts festival in town!

When is it too early to decorate for Christmas? -> I’m really a Dec 1 decorate kind of gal, but Starbucks did start today….


Hey Eleanor! Not at all! I have a small in both the pink and the green and they fit perfect! Have the best time with your dad this weekend, I am so happy that you get to spend this time with him outdoors. Enjoy:) Oh they did… I didn’t know that haha! Have a wonderful weekend and I hope you like the jacket!


Where did you get the pull-over you’re wearing in the top two sister run pics?? I love it!

My sis and I are throwing a surprise birthday party for my dad this weekend! (ALSO we are breaking out the Christmas Decor! In my opinion it is never to early.) And I don’t have kids, but I’m basically a child myself and a few nights ago I made myself mac and cheese with this delicious cashew cream sauce – I was intimidated by the nut soaking involved but it was actually really easy and so so good!

Hope you have an amazing weekend :)


HEY!! Here is the pull-over… I love it!

Oh my goodness, have the best time throwing the surprise party… best daughters! Okay, that looks amazing… I’m intimidated by that too but I think I’ll have to try it. Thank you Rachel and have the best time:)


You and your sister are just too cute! I have got to try those Apple Cider donuts but don’t have TJ near me, will have to make a special trip. I just bought a Koala clip based on your recommendation. Will try it tomorrow for my 15 mile early morning run. I am trying to figure out how difficult it is going to be to get on……hmmmm. Hugs!


I need to send you the donuts… they are so so good. Let me know what you think of the Koala clip! Maybe I just have really long arms but it is super easy for me to get on and off (but I was nervous too before I tried it)! Good luck tomorrow, you are going to rock those 15 miles.


thank you for sharing everyone’s stories! they are so touching to read.

yay for your sister getting back out there. it sounds like knox has had a great time.

weekend plans consist of eating, sleep, going to the expo to pick up the bib for the marathon – then we go to get our car serviced / inspected tires changed to snow tires. and eat a big lunch. more eating for dinner, getting sleep. getting a decent breakfast in, going to staten island and running :) then maybe bathe/eat/nap. then more eating and sleeping :)

nope have not run a race with obstacles but a colleague is really getting into the tough mudders and she says i have to join her. perhaps post-marathon!

crowd pleasing meal i made? probably zucchini and feta fritters. the kiddo loved it.

decorating for Christmas, i think you can start the day after Halloween, but some call blasphemy and say Thanksgiving decorations are in order the day after Halloween and Christmas decorations can go up day after Thanksgiving. to each his/her own!


GOOD LUCK THIS WEEKEND. I am cheering big time for you. You are going to have a fabulous day and I want to hear all about it afterwards! So so so excited for you!!!

Those fritters look AMAZING. I need those.


thank you! i will come back and report how it went. we are all abuzz here, there’s definitely excitement in the air.

yes you definitely need them – the fritters are amazing. esp with the cucumber yogurt sauce. so much yum.


Wow those stories are so inspiring!

For the phone clip what size for an iPhone 10? (I don’t have one yet but hoping for Christmas)

So Curly looks like her Mama now and your older neice looks like you! (Both gorgeous of course!)


I totally agree with you and I think Brooke is a combination of both nieces! If you don’t have a case (or a very thin case) they said a medium but if you have an otterbox type case then to get a large. Have a wonderful day and I hope you love yours as much as I love mine.


Les is riding the Mike Nosco Memorial Ride tomorrow ( Time change weekend means a long run on Sunday morning for me (love that extra hour.) Planning on hitting my favorite 8 mile route, up and over Santa Susana Pass Road.

I can’t imagine doing an obstacle race! I trip enough on my own.

I’ve never decorated for Christmas before Thanksgiving (but that’s just me, I have Thanksgiving decorations) I’ll confess that I have listened to Christmas music as early as August when I was the assistant music director at my church.


GO LES GO!! I’m so excited for him. I am really looking forward to this extra hour too. Enjoy that long run on Sunday, sounds perfect. Hahah yeah that is probably why I shouldn’t do one too! August.. that would make my one of my best friends very happy! Have a wonderful day Kathy:)


I bought that Koala clip the first day you featured changer!

Kid crowd pleasing meal? – Taco bar


That makes me so so happy! It really is:) Oh that is a great idea, that is one of my favorite meals too! Have a wonderful weekend Valene!


I wanted to click like or a heart on every running accomplishment today! Something many non-runners don’t understand and a question I get asked often, “Did you win?” I’ve learned after lots of years to say, “YES, I won!!”
To every runner that’s out running-You are a winner! Accomplished in hard things! An overcomer!


Rachelle, I got goosebumps reading this. I agree, we are all winning by getting out there and doing hard things. Thank you for your comment and have a wonderful weekend!


Ok, I’m going to totally steal that line, “YES, I won” when people ask. Best response ever!



I’ve never done a race with obstacles. I was signed up for a Tough Mudder once and then got an infection in my foot two days before so I couldn’t do it. After watching my team run up a mountain, fall into freezing dirty water, and get shocked…I felt okay that I wasn’t able to participate ;)

I don’t have kiddos, but I made this pizza for my fiance this week and we both LOVED it

October 31st is too early to decorate for Christmas. Full steam ahead now!


Loren’s story, so inspiring.

This weekend is housesitting, work, and a HUGE rowing competition is taking place out on the Tennessee River and I can watch it from our stairwell at work, just across the street! It’s called Head of the Hooch, and college folks (and maybe even high schoolers) from all over the country are here!)

I did an obstacle course race once, but it was their first year, and they never did it again, ha! It had lots of issues………….mostly that once you got to an obstacle you had to wait in line to do it, so it was only a “race” for the first few people who had no one in front of them. Eventually they started giving you the option of 100 jumping jacks or wait in line. I did a lot of jumping jacks, ha! I did however climb up and over a train caboose and the famous Chattanooga Choo Choo, climb over a giant birdhouse painted “See Rock City” (a local attraction), and run about a billion stairs at the football arena. It was a free race, so I didn’t mind. :)
I think I will be ready to decorate in 2 weeks, but my husband prefers to wait until Thanksgiving, so we will do it the day after Turkey day.


I’m taking my daughter and friend to the movies after school/work today (yay for a girl’s afternoon!!)

I recently made bbq chicken tostadas for the kids and they went nuts! I use Tortillaland corn tortillas, cook them, and then I just mix bbq sauce, canned chicken, and a can of pinto beans. Spray the tortillas with non-stick spray, a little salt, bake for 5 min @ 400, flip them over, then put the chicken stuff on it topped with a little cheese, and bake them for another 5 min.

We always decorate for Christmas the day after Thanksgiving :)


Congrats to all the runners on your amazing accomplishments , and big hugs to Loren!!!


The reader’s accomplishments were so good today! (((hugs))) to Loren!

My son is playing his first high school football game tonight (he was a mid-season recruit). They’ve had a ton of injuries this season, so I’ll basically be sitting in the stands praying for the safety of the players for two hours ;)

My husband and I have ran 3 Tough Mudders together. It’s a 12 mile obstacle race. Honestly, they are hard, but some of the best memories of anything we’ve done together in our marriage (um, besides having kids, lol)

So, typically I won’t listen to Christmas music, watch Christmas movies, or decorate till the day after Thanksgiving. For some reason, I woke up yesterday morning wanting to do all three! I’m resisting for now, but I’m not sure how long I’ll hold out. My daughter moved earlier this year and is coming home for Christmas, so I think I’m just anxious for it to get her so I can hug her for like a week :)



I also just ordered a Koala clip and CANNOT wait to run with it! holding my phone has been the biggest pain. I’ve tried belts and phone holders (hand held holders) and didn’t like either. CANNOT wait to be hands free!

We also just finished Making a Murderer 2 and were completely intrigued. I heard a lot of people say they didn’t like it because it was slower than the first but my hubs and I definitely enjoyed it!

My husband and I are training for our first Half Marathon together (i’ve run one a few years back). We are 9 weeks into training and have our first 5k race this next weekend, so excited! I enjoy running the distance but I have thoroughly LOVED watching my husband excel with his training. We don’t run together (different paces) but are on a similar schedule. Do you ever run races or train with your husband?


All I want to say is 1-800-GO-HRGSISTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And I want you to tell Andrew that Thanksgiving weekend is the perfect time to start decorating for Christmas. Before then–just stick with watching the made-for-TV Christmas movies on hulu and netflix. One thing at a time, one holiday at a time!!! ;)


Loved all of the Friday stories. What inspirations you all are! Thanks for sharing. ?


No decorating for Christmas until after Thanksgiving! (And we wait a week, not the weeKend of). I find the shorter period of time makes it more special). Our mall was decorated last weekend and I am Disney right now and Magic Kingdom was decorated on November 1st! But I do start listening to music around mid-November.

Me and my husband ran a 5K here yesterday, while on our first kid-free vacation in 13 years! I was supposed to run the 10k this morning but after 2 mornings of getting up at 3.00 am and getting 13 miles of steps each day, sleep won out :)


Can you link to the koala? Thanks!


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