It has been such a fun weekend! Summer might not officially be here until June 20th but it really feels like it arrived on Friday. Each day has been progressively warmer and more humid and I could not be more excited about it!
Back to where I left off, Friday morning started with OTF. I felt pretty drained afterwards and decided right then that I would take off Saturday morning so I could let my body recover. After OTF I took my sweaty self straight to Chu Chu Donuts, a local donut shop in Ankeny. Yep. You read that right. I worked off 500 calories in an hour workout and then immediately went to buy donuts… Life is all about balance, right?? But there was a reason, it was National Donut Day and I had been talking up this holiday to my coworkers for WEEKS. So I picked up two dozen donuts for my office and a dozen for Adam’s office.
Friday + National Donut Day = Perfect excuse for a sugary treat!
Needless to say, my Friday started off pretty sweet! Work itself was productive but I was longing to be out in the sunshine. I managed to sneak in two errands in the afternoon. I needed to pick up Adam’s bib for Saturday’s half marathon (since I work downtown it is a lot easier for me to run that errand for him!) but I also needed to pick up a birthday gift for my friend. I was going to her 30th Birthday Party that night and knew what I wanted to get her for two weeks but never actually got moving on it. As luck would have it, a new store opened downtown last Tuesday selling exactly what I wanted to get her: a cactus and/or succulent!
My friend had recently been posting about plants more frequently and actually called herself a plant lady. I have an obsession with succulents and I thought that would be a fun gift for someone who is raising 4 kids and might not have time for a high maintenance plant. Also, I loved that it was a local business! Art Terrarium is an adorable shop selling only cacti/succulents, handmade pottery, and local art. I was in love the moment I stepped in there!
I might have taken too long to pick out my friend’s gift and I am still unsure if I made the right choice but I went with something that I would love to get and hopefully she loves it too! I didn’t take a picture of the one I bought for her but I did talk myself into getting myself a cactus for my office/cubicle. His name is Thomas and he is awesome! He apparently is a local plant, grown by a guy in Des Moines who apparently has a very green thumb and grows cacti from seeds. Unreal! I will be babying him while I figure out if I have enough light in my area of the building to make him happy… wish me luck!
After work I went home and had a snack and a beer with Adam before heading to the birthday party.
Now, confession time. I am a bit of an introvert. And by bit, I mean, I’m an introvert. Because of this, I had a lot of anxiety about going to a party for a friend I don’t know that well and her friends who I barely know at all (I had met a couple of them at one previous event) but many of whom know each other. It was intimidating. The party was lovely though. The girls were so sweet and kind and friendly. They really are a pretty unreal group. I was touched to have been included. I did feel like a bit of an outsider though. I think everyone there was married and all but maybe two of us had kids… It was tough at times to find common ground and I could feel myself starting to slip into a hole when I decided that I needed to go. My confidence lasted nearly 3 hours! Which was pretty good for me 🙂
I made it home a little before 10pm and went straight to bed. I was Adam’s ride to the half marathon bus the next morning and he needed to be there by 5:30am. So much for sleeping in on a Saturday morning!
After dropping Adam off on Saturday (and trying to not be too bummed that I wasn’t joining him, again, for a race), I went home and got ready for my day. After deciding to skip OTF, I knew I would have plenty of time to explore the Des Moines Farmer’s Market (as discussed in my previous post!) before going to the finish line to see Adam finish his race.
After struggling to find parking near the finish line (closed roads and private parking garages are the bane of my existence!) I walked the 15 minutes to the farmer’s market. It was just as glorious as I remembered! I wandered up and down each side street, checking out every booth. The market has a perfect mix of art, food, and fresh produce. There are also multiple live music locations so wherever you are, there is entertainment!
My first purchase was a small bouquet of wild-looking flowers from PepperHarrow Farm that won me over quickly, despite all the different flower booths. The flowers looked so whimsical and happy! They bring me joy every time I glance their way on my kitchen counter.
Despite my meandering, I was on the hunt Saturday morning to find something in memory of my sweet pup Tallulah who passed away a year ago Saturday. She was a spunky blonde long-haired dachshund who lived with multiple family members throughout her life but belonged to my youngest sister. She spent her final years with Brenner and I, and eventually Adam. She was definitely the princess of our household and I was excited to bring her to Iowa to experience snow (knowing she would hate getting her paws dirty!). Her illness last May came quickly and was devastating. She quickly went from a bright-eyed happy dog, barely looking her age (I honestly can’t remember… 12? 13?), but rather strangers often asked if she was a puppy. The whole family mourned her passing, especially considering how difficult her final days were. But for the past year I have been thinking about how I wanted something here, in Iowa, to remind me of her since I was unable to fulfill my promise that she would be coming with me. I purchase a locally-made golden rose, made of spoons (how cool is that??). The color, the rose, and the spoons all remind me of her (that girl could and did eat EVERYTHING). I miss her and still think of her every day, but I love that I now have something in my yard that reminds me she is in a better place.
Whew. That got deep. Moving on!
After making my rose purchase, I walked back to the half marathon finish line (grabbing a quick iced green tea from Starbucks on my walk). I found a spot about 50 meters from the finish line at about 1 hour and 35 minutes into the race. I knew Adam normally races about a 2 hour half marathon so I wanted to make sure I was there in time.
Well, this was not a normal race. As I mentioned at the top of this post, it was HOT. I watched multiple people collapse right in front of me, before the finish line. It was scary and as the clocked ticked past the 2 hour mark, I started to really worry about Adam.
I watched my coworker’s husband finish and then the two of them came to find me. I am so grateful that she was there to keep me calm as I had a minor panic attack with each passing minute of not seeing Adam. I was wishing I had done the race just so I wouldn’t be standing there helpless at the finish line, wondering if he had collapsed. Luckily, we finally saw him come around the corner, not looking good or happy but on two feet which is all I was praying for! I quickly said goodbye to my coworker and went to find Adam. He was frustrated with his time but he hadn’t had the opportunity to train in humidity and heat like that, the dehydration hit him hard. But he finished and I am so proud of him!
After he grabbed a couple beers, couple gatorades, and a couple chocolate milks, I drove us home. We made a big breakfast, had a couple mimosas, and promptly took a nap! After napping, Adam and I made our first trip to the neighborhood pool. I brought a book and we mostly laid out as far from the chaos of children as possible!
When we had our fill at the pool, we walked back home and I made a Blue Apron meal. It was amazing and so easy. If you’re interested in Blue Apron, I would be more than happy to provide a free coupon! I have a bunch that I am not using (everyone I know already has Blue Apron!), so just add your email in the comments!
We took a walk with the dogs after dinner and then watched a couple episodes of Bloodline. While Adam and I love that show, we were cracking up at the bizarre time warp this season. It has been nighttime for at least 48 hours at this point! Ha! Bed early again for me on Saturday night so I would feel refreshed for OTF Sunday morning.
I woke up feeling great and loving how early the sun rises! The dogs amazingly let me sleep in until 6:45am so I got up with my alarm. After taking care of them, I made myself toast with peanut butter before going to OTF. Now, that might seem like a super minor detail. But I never eat before a morning workout! It just isn’t my routine. But after the workout I had this morning, I think it is my new plan of attack! I felt so strong this morning! I burned over 600 calories and really pushed myself more than I have been able to lately. I think the extra fuel really made a difference.
Adam had a networking event at the Iowa Cubs game today so after OTF I got home and hung out with him a little before going to church without him. I miss having him with me but church is really a habit that I feel is helping to center me as I navigate this new place and my new life. Our church is very inclusive and I appreciate their approach.
After church I went to Hy-Vee using the list Adam and I put together this morning to prepare for Meal Prep Sunday! Adam is making chicken salad and normal salads for his lunch this week. I am making spaghetti squash with ground turkey tomato sauce. I much prefer warm meals so salads can be unsatisfying for me sometimes! After grabbing groceries, I came home and did meal prep for my meals and made a dozen hard boiled eggs for Adam and I to share all week. Tomorrow I hope to make some protein balls but I am still looking for a good recipe.
It was crazy hot out by the time I was done cooking so I decided to go over to the pool until Adam got back. The pool was a zoo but I managed to find a mostly secluded area to stretch out and read A Dog’s Purpose. It was really the perfect afternoon decision! I took a couple dips in the pool when the heat really got to me but otherwise I just read and listened to the background sound of kids laughing! Adam eventually joined me and we took a couple spins around the lazy river and laid out some more before heading home.
Once we got back I went to work on dinner, another Blue Apron meal (really guys, it is so easy!) and Adam grilled chicken for his meal prep. Dinner was amazing and I love having him around when we are cooking together, even if we aren’t working on the same meals!
Now I am quietly finishing up this blog post and getting ready for bed. Tomorrow is another week and I am excited about the things June has in store for me!
- Do you have a favorite protein ball recipe?
- Are you an introvert who struggles with hanging out with new people?