Saturday, April 30, 2011

The End of NIAW 2011...

...Thanks for putting up with all my NIAW facts this week. I know all of us have different views on this subject and many others. My opinions on TTC, IVF, adoption, etc...from 2 years ago to now have DRASTICALLY changed. Two years ago, I had no idea about IVF, adoption or how hard it was to get pregnant nor did I know the brutal emotions of all of this. I hope that my random facts maybe gave you something to think about or wanted you to learn a bit more about infertility whether you have dealt with it or not. Remember that it affects 1 in 8 so next time you're in a restaurant or at church or even at work, look around, there may be a woman or man suffering the quiet battle of infertility. I leave you with one more fact:

According to the adoption agency, Love Basket, a US domestic adoption cost over $18,000. So the next time, someone tells you that they're dealing with infertility, please don't immediately say, "Why don't you just adopt?" Infertility is heartbreaking and expensive no matter which route you go...IUI, IVF, adoption or the choice to live childless. It wears on your soul, your marriage and your faith. It knocks you down and you have to take everything you have to stand up to it and get it its face.

The most important thing you can do for a friend or family member dealing with infertility is love them, listen to them and support them. Don't tell them to relax, don't assure them it'll happen...just love and support them and let them know you're there for them. You bloggy friends do a great job of that for me and I can't thank you all enough!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Half Marathon Training Week 7...

...week 7 already? Where has the time gone!

Friday, April 22-Rest and travel day!

Saturday, April 23-Woke up early and headed to the local gym in Cape. Ran 2.76 miles on the t-mill with Laura while my mom did water aerobics. All this rain is really putting a damper on my outside training.

Sunday, April 24-Easter-ate too much and didn't work out enough (or at all!)

Monday, April 25-The planned called for 2. I decided to go for 5 in honor of NIAW, I ran 5 miles for our 5 little embryos in hopes that one day we'll hold one of them in our arms.

Tuesday, April 26-Swam with Jen! Instead of just straight laps, we swam a couple then did a couple laps with kickboards. Then swam our choice then kickboards. Jen introduced me to the "figure 8" thingie that you put between your legs to work on your arms. It was fun! I definitely liked this workout.

Wednesday, April 27-Was supposed to do four mile-repeats but only did two. I was a little cocky and started out too fast and got a side stitch. Ended up walk/running 2.7 in 30 minutes. This night was also the info meeting for the Biggest Winner Contest.

Thursday, April 28-Swam with Jen, total of one mile. Mileage Club total: 11 miles! Only 4 away until the first prize!!!

Wish me luck and good weather for my races this weekend!

NIAW Fact:
Fifteen states have passed laws requiring that insurance policies cover some level of infertility treatment: Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, Texas and West Virginia. (For more on this visit the insurance coverage section of

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Did I Tell You I Was Bananas???

...yeah, I am. I'm sure you all already knew that but here's more confirmation of what we all already knew. ;) My next ten days...
Friday (tomorrow)-working the night shift but before work I must pick up my packet for the 10k and drive to my fertility clinic downtown and make dinner (I'm such a good wife-lol!)
Saturday-10k at 7am, work at 9:30am, then a small get-together at my house with my momma
Sunday-5k plus need to get in an extra 5 miles after the 5k and CUPCAKE CRAWL!
Friday-drive to Indianapolis, attend race expo and carb load with fellow runners
Saturday-run a half marathon, celebrate with friends then drive back to MO

So let me recap that for you, that's THREE races of different lengths in ONE week!!! I am TOTALLY bananas! Would I normally do this to myself? No, but the 10k and 5k are races I did last year and my goal for racing this year was to beat all my race times from 2010. Ey, ey, ey...I'm going to be ONE tired puppy!

I'm super stoked about the Jimmy Buffett concert! I've been a huge fan since the summer between my junior and senior year of high school. He's been in concert around me before but I always talked myself out of buying tickets. Finally I broke down and bought the tickets! A co-worker was trying to get Taylor Swift tickets for her daughter and I got caught up in the excitement and went for it. I considered it a birthday gift to myself. I'll be sure to post all about it!

I'm excited/bummed about our trip to Indy. I take vacation days almost every month so I don't lose them and since Matt doesn't get near as many and we don't have the $$$ to go anywhere, I spend most of my "vacation" days at home, doing laundry, grocery shopping...anything but vacaying! So I was really excited when the Indy trip kind of fell into place because I finally had somewhere to use my vacation days!!! Then out came the work schedule and I was, luckily, able to trade the Saturday but since Mother's Day is that Sunday and I'm the only non-mom at work, no one would trade me. So now Indy will be a huge whirlwind trip where I run, shower, eat and get back on the road to get back to work. BLAH! BUT I'm trying to look on the bright side that Mother's Day shouldn't be TOO busy and all the moms get in free so that makes things easier.

Am I intimidated by the 3 races in one week? Not least not yet! I feel like I'm at a better running place this year than I was last year. As long as I fuel and hydrate properly and the weather doesn't suck (i.e. extremely hot or extremely freezing or pouring rain), I am fairly confident that I can beat my time from the 10k last year and since Indy's half is much flatter than Hospital Hill Run, I sure hope I can beat my HHR time in Indy. The race I'm MOST concerned about is the 5k! How cray cray is that since it's the shortest distance? My goal last year was under 35 minutes, I finished last year in 34:23 so I'm not sure how much time I can shave off that especially with a 10k the day before.

So yeah, I admit it, I'm bananas, cray cray, off my rocker-yep, that's me! But I'm REALLY excited about the upcoming, busy, BUSY week!!! I'll be sure to post all about EVERYTHING! Aren't you all excited now too?

NIAW Fact:
A couple ages 29-33 with a normal functioning reproductive system has only a 20-25% chance of conceiving in any given month (National Women’s Health Resource Center). After six months of trying, 60% of couples will conceive without medical assistance. (Infertility As A Covered Benefit, William M. Mercer, 1997)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Baked Goods: Before & After...

...I got my items back from Baked Goods!!! I painted a plate for a wedding we're going to in June.

 I also painted a coffee mug for my Daily Mile friend Marybeth, or MB as I call her. She's going to be running the Indy Mini-Marathon with me so this is my thank you gift. She also loves coffee.
Before (Daily Mile Logo)


OH! And happy birthday to the best big sister eva! Love ya Sha!

NIAW Fact:
Approximately 85-90% of infertility cases are treated with drug therapy or surgical procedures. Fewer than 3% need advanced reproductive technologies like in vitro fertilization (IVF). (

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Chicken A La King...

...wanted to share another, BRIGHT recipe with you. From Kraft, here's Chicken A La King, isn't it pretty?

This is one of their low-cal recipes and it was pretty tasty.
1/3 cup MIRACLE WHIP Light Dressing
2 Tbsp. flour
1 cup fat-free milk
2 pkg. (6 oz. each) OSCAR MAYER Deli Fresh Oven Roasted Chicken Breast Cuts
1 cup each: sliced mushrooms and frozen peas
1/2 of a medium red bell pepper, chopped
Dash black pepper
2 cups uncooked instant white rice, prepared as directed on package
MIX dressing, flour and milk in medium microwaveable bowl. Microwave on HIGH 3 to 4 min. or until sauce is thickened, stirring after 2 min.

STIR in all remaining ingredients except rice. Microwave on MEDIUM (50%) 10 min. (or cook in saucepan on medium heat on stove top) until heated through, stirring every 4 min.

SERVE over hot cooked rice. Final product:

Couple things I did differently:
*I didn't use the suggested chicken. I just took 2 chicken breasts and baked it, then cut it up.
*I didn't do anything in the microwave instead just all in a pan on the stove.
*I thought we had mushrooms but we didn't, so I used a can of corn instead.
*I put in WAY too peas!!!

NIAW Fact:
Approximately one-third of infertility is attributed to the female partner, one-third attributed to the male partner and one-third is caused by a combination of problems in both partners or, is unexplained.  (Fact from here)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Family Fun=Egg Dying Party!!!

...Whew! What a crazy, whirlwind trip (as always) to Cape this weekend! We got down there about 6ish on Friday night, just in time to miss traveling down I-55 before any storms hit. We had a quick dinner at my mom's then the storms hit and they hit hard! My SIL, who lives a street away from us, called to check in with us and let us know that she didn't see our house flying by.

It sounds like our area only got rain and strong winds but a lot of people were affected by the tornadoes in the STL area. My hearts and prayers go out to them and I'm sure they'd appreciate any prayers you can spare. For those bloggie friends across the US that checked in on me, I really appreciate your kind thoughts. Now back to Easter weekend...

Saturday Mattie cut up trees at my mom's house and I got an awesome video on her camera only to find out she's lost the cords to upload the pics. :( While Matt worked in the yard, she and I got ready for my upcoming Singer Sewing Party (another post on that later!). After a busy, busy day and a delicious dinner, we headed over to my dad's for the Annual Egg Dying Party. Please let me share with you some of our handiwork:
We were all sorts of fancy this year breaking out the GLITTER!

The annual watermelon egg

H & I with our favorite eggs

As you can tell, our family takes egg dying VERY serious. Here's Matt and my dad is DEEP concentration

Then on Easter morning, Grandma and I turned the dyed eggs into deviled eggs-yum!

We started with 3 dozen and only lost 4-two to tummies, one to the floor and the other I have no idea.

So there you have it, the Hfield Annual Egg Dying Party! My dad informed me on Easter morning that the Easter Bunny left him a note saying the egg hunt was cancelled due to inclement weather. :( Oh well-fun was still had by all!

NIAW Fact:
Infertility affects 7.3 million people in the U.S. This figure represents 12% of women of childbearing age, or 1 in 8 couples. (2002 National Survey of Family Growth) (Fact from here.)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

An Egg Kind of Day...

...Happy Easter everyone ! Despite the nasty weather, I hope everyone was able to celebrate today with your loved ones and really enjoy the real, true meaning for the holiday. Matt and I were able to attend Maundy Thursday service at his church last week and I wanted to share a funny story about the service.

During the Living Last Supper, each disciple got up and said what he was thinking during the supper. Jesus told them that one of them would betray Him so at the end of each of their monologues, the disciple would look at Jesus and ask, "Is it I?" Now my husband is a real stickler at church as in no talking what so ever, not even to ask a question. So after about the 4th disciple, I looked over at him and whispered, "Who do you think it is?" Even my straight and narrow, by the books husband couldn't help but break a smile.

Anyways, we had a great holiday weekend and I would say a pretty awesome Lent season. I was very happy to indulge in some hashbrown casserole today though. Today marks the end of Lent but it also starts National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW). How appropriate both Easter and NIAW are somewhat revolved around eggs!

 I know I've vowed to not bring infertility to this blog other than how it affects my daily life but I wanted to bring awareness to it. This week, I will share a fact about infertility in hopes that someone out there will learn more about it.

As always, I'm pretty open about our journey so if you have any questions, feel free to ask away. I strongly believe that part of the reason that God has put me on this path of infertility is to bring awareness about it and to help others in similiar positions. Romans 8:28

So today's NIAW Fact:

Infertility is defined as the inability to conceive after one year of unprotected intercourse (six months if the woman is over age 35) or the inability to carry a pregnancy to live birth. (Fact from here.)

While this is the definition don't let it define you. Be in touch with your body, know what's "normal" for you and what's not and look at your medical history! Matt and I, both under 30, knew something was wrong after 3 months of TTC. Luckily, I was in touch with our medical history enough to know something was up. At "only" 6 months of trying, we found out that IVF was our only way to have a child of our own. Today marks 1 year, 6 months, 1 week and 6 days since we started TTC.

Know the facts but also KNOW YOU!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Half Marathon Training Week 6...

...this post is dedicated to my fellow DAC member Beth. Can't wait to see you in exactly two weeks!!!
Friday, April 15-REST DAY! I was going to try to sneak in a small little run to deliver our utility bill but as I was heading home, all hail (get it hail? HA HA!) broke loose and I decided it was probably NOT the best running conditions.

Saturday, April 16-Brr! Mother Nature had another mood swing and it was FREEZING! I was super lazy and after work that morning, I came home and crawled back in bed. Bad Running Alyssa!

Sunday, April 17-Wanted to run a fast 2 miles to City Hall and back to drop off the utility bill. However, after brunch and cookie dough (and maybe a couple cookies), I wanted to toss my cookies after the first mile. So I ran a mile there, dropped off the bill and walked a mile home. Matt saw me walking home and just honked and kept going. He was mad at me because I ran without him!

Monday, April 18-Ran 5.21 miles on the 'mill! It felt good to run and I'm always feel proud of myself after I have so I don't know why I fight running so much on the weekends.

Tuesday, April 19-The planned called for cross-train but I wanted to run. I hopped on the t-mill and did a quick seriously, quick! As in 31:57!!! I hope I run that fast during my 5k race on May 1!

Wednesday, April 20-Today was a hills workout. I ran for 15 minutes then did 8 minutes of hills. I was supposed to run another 15 minutes but I didn't. I really think what I eat affects my performance. I had Olive Garden on Tuesday night for dinner. I went home and belly ached, no really I had a belly ache, for like 3 hours and told Matt how gross I felt. Hopefully I learned my lesson...

Thursday, April 21-I did 6 miles in 64:48-that's a 10:47/mile pace!!! I even walked a quarter of a mile. Now I just have to push, push, push myself to go this fast when I run outside and not on the t-mill. I celebrated this speedy run with a Reese's egg; hey-I deserved it!

SIDE NOTE: I'd been doing so well with my eating and then the past two weekends (and I know the weekend coming up), I've eaten HORRIBLE so I've asked Mattie and I'm asking you all to PLEASE keep me on track! Hopefully when the Biggest Winner starts, I'll be more motivated to stay on task. Biggest Winner, is a county-wide weight loss program that runs for 8 weeks. I'll be doing a post on it as it gets closer. Happy Easter everyone!!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Maundy Thursday...

...well, today is Maundy Thursday, which is the day that commerates the Last Supper with Jesus. Really, if I could attend any event in history, I think this would be a very interesting one to attend. I figured I would give an update on how my Lent List was going.

*No potatoes-I'm doing really well on this and it was a LOT harder than I thought! I mean potatoes are EVERYWHERE! Chips, hashbrowns, French fries, mashed potatoes, baked pototoes...I never realized how much pototoes were a part of my life! All I have to say is that my Easter meal will consist of LOTS of potatoes.

*Compliment my husband every day for 40 days-umm....well, I did okay on this for the first 3-4 weeks even if some nights he may have already been asleep and I may have whispered something generic like, "I think you're pretty." Then Mattie's birthday came around and well, you all heard that story, so needless to say, I didn't do fantastic on this one.

*Attend church once a week during Lent-um, yeah, we did well for the first 3 weeks then something came up one weekend, then something the next and the next and the next. So yeah, FAIL! I did attend Palm Sunday with my in-laws without Matt which is HUGE for me.

*Prayer journal-Okay, so this is a really funny story. I decided to start this prayer journal so I dug through my G Card basket and found a G notebook. The first week of Lent, I was at state conference so I threw the notebook in my bag figuring if I had some down time I could start working on it. During a break, I pulled the notebook out and flipped it open. I turn to the first page and see that my Mattie has written me, umm...a love note-the dirty kind. I immediately start cracking up laughing! Umm...maybe this wasn't the best notebook to use for my prayer journal. Anyways, I got it started; however, I'm not the best at updating it. It's a work in process and I'm trying!

Tonight at Matt's church is the Living Last Supper. Members of the church have prepared months for this (seriously, all the guys have grown out their hair!) and it looks VERY interesting. I'm really hoping we can make it to church tonight to see it.
So long story short, I did well in the beginning then I fell off the wagon and didn't do so hot towards the end. I'm much better at NOT doing things than actually doing things-lol! How'd you all do with the things you gave up/added for Lent? Here's hoping you have a hoppy Easter and get to enjoy this celebration with your loved ones.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Grill Time!!!'s SPRING TIME which means its TIME TO GRILL!!! I switched up some of meals to accomodate the grill i.e no more taco soup or chili. A couple weeks ago, we broke out the grill for the year to make pork kabobs!
Matt fliping the kabobs over. Shad was the supervisor and taste tester for anything that fell on the ground.
I love how bright and colorful kabobs always are!

Finished product! 
They were super yummy! I used the glaze that Amy gave me and is super delicious. I can't wait to grill out more. What's your favorite thing to make on the grill?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Creamy Chicken & Broccoli Casserole...

...on my birthday weekend, Jen hosted a Philadelphia Cooking Creme Party. I couldn't go but she still shared a recipe book with me. The creme comes in Italian Cheese & Herb, Savory Garlic, Original and Santa Fe Blend. I've been wanting to try a couple of the recipes out for awhile so I was super stoked to make this Creamy Chicken & Broccoli Casserole: OMG! It was sooo yummy! This is definitely my kind of dinner. Matt thought the crackers on top really "made the dish." So without further ado, the recipe (so help me if Blogger formatting doesn't work...):
INGREDIENTS 1 1/2 lb boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces

1 pkg (14 oz) frozen broccoli florets, thawed, drained

1 1/2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar Cheese

1 tub (10 oz) Philadelphia Savory Garlic Cooking Creme

1/2 cup milk

24 Ritz Crackers, crushed (about 1 cup)

1 Tbsp. butter, melted


Heat over to 400F.

Combine first 5 ingredients in 13x9-inch baking dish; cover.

Bake 25 minutes. Meanwhile, mix cracker crumbs and butter.

Stir chicken mixture, top with crumbs. Bake, uncovered, 10 minutes or until topping is golden brown.

After the initial 25 minutes, I pulled it out to stir and some of the chicken was still pink. I put it back in for 10 minutes and then pulled it out to put the crumbs on. The chicken was definitely done so see I should have just followed directions and not worried about giving us salmonella.

We were discussing this on the Twit and how many calories/Weight Watchers points. Well as it turns out, it's only 400 calories for 1 cup (which was totally filling for me) but it is 20 grams of fat. However, because I'd planned out my food earlier in the day, I didn't go over on fat OR calories. So see, sometimes you can splurge and it's okay to eat things that are tasty!

Monday, April 18, 2011

That's What She Said!!!

...Friday night, Matt and I headed to a special event being held by my work. Our co-worker's hub is in a band and they were playing at the Flashlight Egg Hunt. We'd never heard him play before so we decided to go check them out. The band is called, That's What She Said.

They play a lot of '90s, you know, all those songs you forget about and then you hear them and you scream to your friend, "OMG! I LOVE THIS SONG!!!"

They've got a few more gigs coming up and they plan on booking more. You can always check out their website to see where they're playing. Don't worry, they aren't just a St. Chuck band! They play Imperial, Maryland Heights and South City. You should definitely check them out if they're in your area.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Half Training Week 5...

...week 5's training:

Friday, April 8-Plan called for 11. I ran a little over 3 miles and turned around to head home, walking the ENTIRE WAY BACK! Surprised my pace was just a little over 13 minutes/mile considering I walked the whole way home. My head and heart just really wasn't in it on this day.

Saturday, April 9-Decided it was in my best interest to not stress myself over missed miles and to ignore the training plan for this weekend. I did a GREAT job of this! :)

Saturday, April 10-GO! Half Mary-went and cheered on my friends at mile 8. Great job ladies and Trent!

Monday, April 11-Ran a speedy 5k on the treadmill. Was happy to be back running and Jen joined me so that made the time go by quickly.

Tuesday, April 12-Swam half a mile. Felt like crap, headache and heartburn-not a good combo for swimming.

Wednesday, April 13-Mile repeats for speed workout! Did 5 total miles, 4 as fast as I could and my fastest mile: 9 minutes and 49 seconds!!! WHOOP! WHOOP! HOLLA!!!

Thursday, April 14-Swam a little over a half mile. Up to 9 miles-only 6 more to hit the mileage club!!! Today's swim was MUCH better than Tuesday-thank goodness!

This week was an easy week compared to others. The next couple are going to be tough. Getting excited/nervous about my upcoming races! Only a couple more weeks until my 10k, 5k and half all in the same week!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Trip to Baked Goods...

...last Friday night, my sister, Haley, her friend Jamie and I headed to Baked Goods to use our Groupons ($10 for $25-woohoo!!!).
Here's my sister thrilled to get started!
We met Daniella from Toledo (she's probably Googling my blog!) who was making her momma a Mother's Day Gift using the shaving cream method. Mix paint with shaving cream and cover your piece.
Finished product! Pretty awesome, huh?
Here's Jamie (L) and H (R) with their finished products. I found out that Jamie is a ketchup monster and loves to paint (she told me both facts MULTIPLE times!). H has a recent obession with PEACE SIGNS. Her mother WAS born in the 70s.

It was a fun night! I made a plate and a mug and spent less than $3.50 (and the initial $10 for the Groupon) so that's a pretty cheap, fun Friday night! I'll post before and after pics of the items I painted when I get them back. If anyone in the STL area wants to go, I still have one more Groupon to use there before September so just let me know!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Wordless Wednesday with Words...

...this past Saturday, Julie tweeted that the Chick-Fil-A that is scheduled to be opening just a few miles from my house was handing out free sandwiches. Emma and I were BORED at home with a sick Matt so we decided to head up that way. I forgot her leash or I would have taken a pic of her with the cow. That poor cow, he had to be burning up. We were VERY excited about our free sandwich!
This was from a couple weeks ago if you can't tell by the snow on the ground. A pretty bluejay feeding at the neighbor's birdfeeder. I couldn't get over how blue he was so I had to share. Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake...

...April is my month to bring in a dessert for birthdays at the office. I always have such high hopes and they always fall short. The first year, I tried to make a chocolate carrot cake. We all had chocolate cake with carrots in it, I still get teased to this day. Last year, I took in a Chips Ahoy Pie and everyone loved it-almost didn't have enough! This year I was adventurous again and decided to try to make a Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake. Again, I failed! Here's how mine turned out (sorry I took the pic after the meeting): Here's what it was supposed to look like:
It still tasted pretty fab but the cake ate the crumble. Everyone thought it tasted great but I could tell by the look on their faces they weren't so sure when they saw it for the first time.

Here's the recipe and I hope that Blogger formatting is working or else this is going to be a jumbled mess and I apologize!

Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake


1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

1 cup vegetable shortening

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup semisweet choclate chips

1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)


1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

3/4 cup rolled oats

3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

5 tablesppons butter, melted


1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 13x9-inch baking pan.

2. For the topping, combine the brown sugar, oats, chocolate chips and flour in a medium bowl. Stir in the melted butter. Set aside.

3. For the cake, combine flour, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Mix well. Place the sugar and shortening in another medium bowl. Beat with an electric mixer set on medium speed until well blended, about 5 minutes. Beat in 1 cup water, the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour mixture, blending well. Stir in the chocolate chips and walnuts, if desired.

4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the batter. Bake until golden brown 35-45 minutes.

I followed all the directions to a T and when I saw that the cake ate the crumble, I went into the bedroom and crawled into bed next to Mattie. I pouted and said, "I can't ever bake ANYTHING and I followed ALL the directions!!!" He just laughed at me and told me it was okay and it all turned out to be okay. Let me know if you make this and if your cake eats the crumble. Enjoy! It was VERY tasty.

Monday, April 11, 2011

GO! STL Half/Full Mary!!!

...yesterday was the STL GO! Half and Full Marathon. Jen and I met up bright and EARLY at 6:30 to head downtown. Our mission: mile 8, kick a$$ sign and wet towels. Mission: accomplished! We got there right in time as they closed down the street behind us. Whew! Here we are the mile marker and the awesome sign (Matt told me he didn't know what BC meant or why I put dollar signs. I informed him of BC and told him, I was trying to be as G-rated as possible since it is a family-friendly event).

First runners reached us at mile 8 right about 40 minutes. Sorry I was looking into the sun but you can see the lead car and the first two runners.

Now THAT is a lot of people that passed us!

The Smoothie Store across the street was trying to be nice and hand out water. I think people thought this was a real water station, the poor guy and his wife had a TON of runners, look at that wait!.

So the first runner to pass me was Fleet Feet Brian, he was TIRED, I could tell but I called him Ironman (he's done like 8 or 9 of them!) and he kept on trucking. Next to pass was my DM friend Chris. I totally didn't see him but as he was *quickly* passing me, he shouted, "ALYSSA!" I saw him and cheered.

Then we waited and saw another girl with the same sign as mine. Sorry, but mine was better-HELLO IT HAD GLITTER! Then Jenn yelled at me as she just getting warmed up for her part of the relay. As I looking at her, Cecelia popped up out of nowhere! They grabbed some wet towels and kept on trucking. DM Sarah stopped for a wet towel and then Della and her aunt stopped to chat and take full advantage of the wet towels.

Then my second grade teacher huffed my name. She's recovering from an injury and I could tell she was hurting so I put my sign down and ran with her for a bit trying to encourage her, opening GU and telling her to finish strong. I almost lost my shorts as I ran back to Jen. That's what happens when they're a little big to begin with and then you throw in a camera, phone and keys! Oops!

Suddenly there was massive screams and a bunch of runners on the opposite side of the road gathered around a downed runner. I'm not one to throw myself into scenes like this but I knew the runners needed to get going so I grabbed a couple wet towels and as I did, I saw Angie and Cammie. They took some towels and I wished them well. Then I froggered across the course to Linda, who was about to become my best friend.

Linda had some MASSIVE charley horses going on. She was screaming and rolling around on the pavement. One lady was holding her head so that she didn't hit it on the ground and Linda was grasping her arm. The lady with the race was holding her legs. I put a wet towel on her forehead, picked up her belongings and tried to wipe as much grossiness off her arm as possible. Eventually the lady watching her head and I switched places. The three of us had to remind her to breath and relax, we helped her sip some water and all the while the medic was "on their way." Yeah...not so much! Linda's husband Marvin showed up, she calmed down some.

By this time, it was just Marvin, Linda, the event person and myself.  I stood up and smiled and said, "Linda, I think you're doing good. You're in good hands and I think Marvin'll probably serve you breakfast in bed tomorrow." Linda looked at me and for the first time spoke, not in screams, "So I'm not going to finish the race?" I smiled and said, "Maybe if you talk Marvin into carrying you across the finish line." We all laughed and headed back to Jen. After 20 minutes of shrieks, squatting and kneeling on pavement, my hand and calf being in a death grip (by Linda) and dodging her flailing legs, I was exhausted. Jen and I decided to pack up and call it a day. By this point, it was mainly walkers on the course and we cheered them on as we walked back to the car.

As we got to the corner of Compton and Olive, they started diverting people on the course, I'm assuming for time. They were PISSED and there was a TON of them. We got to the car and realized we were boxed in, roads were closed on both ends. Well, crap! After waiting, we were finally able to get out and head back home.

When I got home, Twitter was blowing up because course officials diverted full marathoners if they weren't at the 9 mile mark by 9:15am(so 2 hours and 15 minutes into the course, something like a 10 minute/mile pace) due to the heat. It was really nice as a spector but I wasn't running so I don't know how hot it was to the runners out there. From the feedback I got from the runners, I think more water stations, especially with the heat, and more of a heads up about cut-offs when have been helpfully. I can't comment much because I wasn't running so I don't know what communication was like or what information the runners had.

Anyways, it was so much fun going to a race to cheer! I'm so proud of EVERYONE esp Cece and Della for finishing their first half with many more to come. I think this is what I needed to get me out of my slump and get excited about my upcoming races! Happy Monday all!

OH! And just for Jen, "Good job Char-les!" (I'm seriously LOLing as I type that!)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Half Training Week 4...

Saturday, April 2-Planned called for 9 miles. I ran 8.72 from my house to work. Glad I burnt the extra calories since we had Matt's birthday celebration!
Sunday, April 3-Nada, impromptu rest day.
Monday, April 4-Run a speedy, FAST 4 miles.
Tuesday, April 5-Swam a mile, getting closer to the 15 mile swim club!
Wednesday, April 6 -Ran 3.28 miles in 38 minutes. Today was a Holy Hills workout! I really pushed myself running inclines from 2-5. Hoping I'll see the benefits of this training at Hospital Hill Run in June!
Thursday, April 7-Plan called for 5 miles. I left work at 11am in tears, I knew I wouldn't be getting 5 miles in. Sure enough, I got to about a half a mile and decided to turn around and head home. Doc finally called to say what was up with Mattie so I ran another 1.6 miles to Wags and back to get his meds. I hope he's on the mend now!!!

So there you have it, half training is half over until the Indy Mini Marathon. I was really rockin' it until yesterday. I really hope next week isn't as bad as this week. Good luck to all those racin' the GO! this weekend.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Test, test...

...if you can't tell, my formatting is all sorts of messed up and I can't seem to fix it for the life of me! If you have any tips, please let me know.
While searching to fix it, I found out that I could email a post to my blog so this is just the test post. Hopefully it works!!!
Also, my Mattie has been sick, sick, sick ALL week! As in no work, fever off and on and in major pain. He went to the doctor on Monday and then did test cultures. The doctor FINALLY called us back tonight and he's got a double bacteria kidney infection. I ran from our house to Wags and home in about 15 minutes to get his medicine, it was about a mile and half. I was running SUPER fast to get my Mattie well. I kind of felt like Katniss in "The Hungry Games" getting meds for Peeta. Now we just wait and see if the meds work, please cross your fingers that it does. Thanks for all the prayers and positive thoughts this week.
Tomorrow's Friday-woohoo! What are you doing this weekend?

He's So Smart!!! husband that is. Last week, he was required to cook dinner two nights. No, it's not like we divy it up or anything like that. The menu called for burgers one night and fish the other. Here's an Alyssa Fun Fact. I cannot cook a hamburger for the LIFE of me. Not in a skillet or on a grill, not with a mouse or in a house. Seriously, if it was up to me to cook a burger or the world would end, well, I'm sorry friends but the world would be ending shortly there after. What happens? I get the outside nice and crispy then I cut into it and...raw beef. whenever the menu says burgers, that's Matt's responsibility. The other is fish. I probably can't cook fish because I don't really like it. If I buy the Schnuckers' tilapia then I can handle that but that's about the end of my fish cooking. So back to last week, with Matt's cooking responsibilities. Wednesday we dropped his car off to get an oil change and on the way home we had this convo: Matt: "They're (they being some of our friends) having a fish fry down at the shop on Friday." Me: Nods, "Okay, are we eating there or just going to visit?" Matt: With huge grin on his face, "We'll eat there, you told me I had to cook fish one night." Ha ha! He's just SOOO smart! Fish frys are my favorite though so I wasn't complaining.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Mattie's B-Day Cake...

...I ordered Mattie's birthday cake from Baby Cakes in O'Fallon. That might sound familiar because I went to their grand opening back in January, you can read here about it. I decided that since they were a new business and I loved their cupcakes, I'd give them a try for his birthday cake. I walked in the store and the owner was there. I asked how much a quarter sheet cake was and she said, we don't do sheet cakes, we either do rounds or squares. Okay, so we went through this whole drill of what I wanted, what size, etc, etc...I knew it would be expensive so I was trying to keep it really simple. Here's what I told her I wanted: a 9-inch square, chocolate cake, chocolate frosting with greenish icing because he likes camo and Happy Birthday Matt written on it. Okay, easy enough. She rings up my total and it's $45!?! Holy hell, I almost had a heart attack! I know I could have just walked out and said no thanks but I felt like we'd already gone through the details so I might as well just do it. I thought more and more about the price of this cake and decided, you know what? If I'm paying $45 I'm going to have it decorated nicer than a plain color. I call to tell her that he likes camo and she says she's never done a camo cake but she'll see what she can do. Okay, I was really excited/worried to pick it up. I had good reason to, this is what it looked like: Now, I know camo isn't pretty but would you have paid $45 for this VERY plain looking cake? Also, I changed it up and had it say, "Happy Birthday Pretty" because, if you haven't caught on, that's what I call my husband. I did it in hot pink to be funny. Everyone asked me, what hot pink? I didn't know hot pink was so controversial! All his friends asked, why Pretty? I told them to ask Matt to see the inside of his wedding band. They all think we're weird now-whateva! It's our thing. The actual cake part tasted pretty yummy. The icing was a little sweet and like no one ate the camo fondant. OH! And when I picked up the cake, she was like let me get a box. Okay, so I'm waiting and waiting and she comes out with a plain cardboard box that had held cookies or something inside. She sets my cake in it, it's not a tight fit and there's no top. She looks at me, "Sorry! We're out of cake boxes." Really? A bakery is out of cake boxes? I paid $45, I think I should get a cake box! Anyways, as it turned out, the cake was really the least of my worries that night. I doubt I'll be purchasing another cake from Baby Cakes but I might stop in for a cupcake or two.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Saturday's 9 Miler...

...sorry if you're my friend on DM, this is a repeat. Well, the planned called for 9 miles today. I wasn’t sure where I was going to run this but then I ended up having to come in to work today so I figured I’d run from home to work which is 8.72 miles. I headed out and as soon as I got on the main road, I realized I’d forgotten my Ipod-crapola!!! I was going to call Mattie to meet me and bring it, but it’s his birthday so I didn’t want to bother him. Oh well, Indy doesn’t allow you to wear earphones so I might as well get used to it. I was cruisin’ right along and then the sidewalk ended so I just hugged the side of the road, no problem. I looked up and some guy was SCREAMING at me in his car pointing to the other side of the road where the sidewalk was. Umm…the sidewalk just ended, not at a stoplight or crossing section, I’m not in the middle of the road or slowing you down so what did you want me to do? Jaywalk and play Frogger with my life, umm…no thanks! I got to mile 3 and stopped my watch. I was meeting up with Holly for part of my run. She was sharing part of her birthday with me. Yes, Mattie and her have the same birthday. I was a little under 33 minutes at the 3 mile marker. I stretched while I waited then I looked up and saw a fellow runner that I knew in her car. Her kid pointed to me and she rolled down her window so I waved and the first thing she said, “Are you okay?” LOL-I was actually feeling pretty great! After the light turned, I saw Holly crossing over to me and we were dressed alike in our Truffle Shuffle shirts! I bet we just looked super cute running down the road. I think I slowed a bit with her because I was chatting, her hub and kids drove by and yelled at us-glad we were running when they saw us!!! She ran 2 miles with me then turned around to head back. Thanks for sharing your birthday run with me Holl-hope you have fun tonight! Around mile 5, when Holly and I split off, I felt my first running injury of the year: a giant blister on my left big toe. Yucko!!! Time to break out the BodyGlide. Also when I passed the Walgreen's, some guy had "Eye of the Tiger" blaring so that motivated my big butt to get up the hill! I then started the last half of my run on the busiest road in town: Highway K. This isn’t the first time I’ve run on this road; however, the last time was mid-July and I was sucking hard-core. Today’s run went MUCH better! I was cruising along trying to decide when I would be brave enough to cross Highway K then I got to the library a little after mile 6. The lady was looking the opposite way to see if anyone was coming and pulled out ALMOST HITTING ME! WTH!?! I, may or may not, have flipped her off. I KNOW, I KNOW!!! I’m ashamed to admit it and I know it’s not ladylike but it was just my reaction. Glad I was paying attention since she OBVIOUSLY wasn’t. Up ahead, I saw an accident on my side of the road and knew I’d have to brave it over. I crossed and I survived-whew! However, the last mile was really starting to get to me. I was out of water and SUPER THIRSTY! But I made it! I decided to listen to my DM friend Patrick, ugh…I hate when you men are right, and just push myself. I mean if I can run that fast on the t-mill, why not outside, right? And I beat my goal time (1:42)!!! Hopefully, I keep this up for the rest of my training and my races. I got to work and drank a huge glass of ice cold water. I felt kind of bad for the kids I was interviewing because I was so yucky. OH! Holly did call to let me know she survived her run home and that she had some smell-good stuff at her desk if I needed to borrow it. See-that’s what friends are for, to make sure you don’t stink!!! I worked WAY longer than I meant to and the whole time I was thinking, “Crap! I have to get going!!!” So I ended up having to rush around to get balloons and cake for my hubby’s birthday. So happy to have this done and even happier it went so well! Final stats: Mileage: 8.72 miles Total time: 1:41:33 Pace: 11:38/mile!!! Garmin for the Poor: Map out route. Write key mile markers and pace on your hand. Start stopwatch and run like the wind. Happy running ya'll!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Happy birthday to my Mattie!!!

...Saturday was Matt's 29th birthday. I tried to plan a surprise get-together at a local establishment but his brother told him about it. It actually made it easier because then I didn't have to figure out a way to get him there. Matt said he just wanted to hang out with his friends for his birthday so that's what I tried to do. We had a pretty good turnout so I was pleased with that. Here's Matt and his friends: Matt and my co-worker, Holly, it was her birthday too!
Matt with his birthday cake (don't get me started on the cake, that's a post for Wednesday)
Our friend, Chuck and I: he hates to have his picture taken so every year we have our "annual photo" which is AKA my birthday gift from Chuck
All was good until Matt drank too much and got super emotional. His brother showed up and Matt was crying and, of course, everything was my fault. Seriously? I was on the other side of the room avoiding the drama as much as possible! Then he was wanting to fight one of his friends-oye! Boys are so cray cray esp when they drink! Then I had to stop on the way home because he got sick. At 1:30am, I was cleaning out my car and washing clothes while my husband showered. This was REALLY not the way I was expecting to end this post but I'm just telling you what happened.

And this my friends, is why I no longer drink. Drinking=drama and me? I'm WAY too old to deal with drama, we're not in college any more! So anyways, happy birthday dear. Hope it was everything you wanted?

Friday, April 1, 2011

Half Training Week 3...

Friday, March 25-Rest Day! Saturday, March 26-Ran a 5k on the treadmill. Sunday, March 27-Ran/walked the 5k with Jen. Ran/walked .6 with Angie and Maggie. Then ran 3.3 on the treadmill. Kind of choppy but I got my 7 miles in that the plan called for. Monday, March 28-Ran 5 miles on the treadmill. Kept is under a 12 minute pace, just wish I could run that fast OFF the t-mill. Tuesday, March 29-Swam 1 mile. Wednesday, March 30-Speed workout. I jogged 10 minutes then did 3 repeats (1 repeat=1 mile as fast as you can)increasing my speed .1 with each repeat. Funny, two weeks ago I had 2 repeats and I couldn't do it. This week I knocked out the 3 repeats no problem! Thursdsay, March 31-Swam another mile. Not only do I want it to warm up so I can run outside but also so my hair doesn't freeze when I walk to my car after swimming. Friday, April 1-Rest day!!! Tomorrow is Mattie's birthday and I got an awesome birthday cake and we're going out to dinner. I'm really excited about it but first I have to get through a 9 mile run tomorrow morning! Wish me luck. Rabbit, rabbit!