Friday, December 31, 2010


2010 saw a lot of changes. Here's an abbreviated version of what I did this year:

-took care of my mom when she landed in the hospital
-saw Rascal Flatts and Darius Rucker in concert
-baked a lot of bread
-I planted a garden, which was fun even though it was mostly a flop.
-was a bridesmaid in childhood friend's wedding
-turned 25 and Ross surprised me with a trip to Omaha
-got a Garmin
-learned it's possible to climb 3 stories of an apartment building
-moved to day shift
-ran hard enough to justify an ice bath
-ran frequently enough to call myself a runner again
-took a mini-vacation to rural Missouri with Ross' family
-saw some of my best friends from high school get married
-finally ran 3 miles without taking a walking break
-chose a new primary patient at work who is now my Goddaughter
-quit taking Effexor XR for depression and anxiety
-joined a CSA and worked 2 farm shifts as part of our payment
-waxed philosophical about running
-realized life has taking quite a few twists and turns
-went to Okoboji for a cousin's wedding and found out another cousin is pregnant!
-watched my dad complete an Olympic Triathlon
-added a quotes page, a running page, and a recipe page to my blog
-took a much-needed vacation to Ft. Worth in August
-started to focus on changing the way I see, instead of changing the way I look
-made an inspiration board
-was a potential donor for someone with leukemia and got extensive blood testing done, but failed to be a perfect match
-stopped working so much overtime
-fell in love with my job again
-celebrated my 2 year wedding anniversary
-ran my first 10k and LOVED it!
-celebrated my mom's 50th birthday
-worked on improving my self-esteem
-watched my baby brother play varsity football at Rosenblatt Stadium
-went to Chicago with Ross- a first for both of us
-ran double-digits for the first time in 7 years
-I started having an asthma exacerbation in October, which still hasn't cleared up entirely
-we moved to a new apartment
-I ran a 1/2 Marathon with my best friend from high school!
-Ross surprised me with a one-day trip to Ft. Worth before heading to Amarillo for a belated Christmas vacation

Now that the bulk of the holidays are over and the New Year is approaching, it’s a fun time to reflect on our accomplishments from this past year. It's been so fun to look back on 2010 via my blog. It was a hard year, but I like to think I grew a lot.

What did you do in 2010 that you’re the most proud of?

I think my own answer would be my 10k in September. I trained well, took care of my body, and pushed myself to do something I couldn't have done a year ago! 

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Hello from Texas!

I got canceled from work on Tuesday. The low census rescued me from my 5th shift in a row. As if that wasn't exciting enough, Ross then planned an impromptu trip to Ft. Worth on our way to Amarillo!  We met good friends for dinner Tuesday night (I love friends and Piranha Sushi!) and stayed in a swank hotel at a cheap rate thanks to

Happy place

Very different attire than when the 3 of us ate out 4 months ago!
Wednesday morning, I got to go running on the Trinity Trail. A blissfully flat and uncomplicated way to run. I can't believe this trail used to be in my backyard! The weather was 60 degrees and cloudy, with a little humidity, which was a much appreciated change from the cold, dry air in Kansas. I actually got too hot on my run... that hasn't happened since this summer's heat wave.


So happy post-run

 I then showered (holy hotel shower massager) and Ross and I wandered around the Ft. Worth Water Gardens. It's something we always meant to do before moving, but never got around to it. Fortunately, it was across the street from our hotel, reminding us: better late than never. It was especially nice for us to see greenery and un-frozen water in the middle of winter!

We finished our whirlwind trip with a stop at Central Market (of course) and lunch at Fuzzy's.  What a great way to wind down 2010. Thanks, Ross!

Now we're in Amarillo with a whole week of relaxation stretching before us (with a little studying and running thrown in for good measure). I do believe this will be my longest break from work since September 2009. I so need this!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Plaza Lights

The Plaza lights will always hold a special place in my heart. Seeing them makes me think of big family dinners at Hibachi (you know, one of those Japanese restaurants where they flip shrimp into your mouth) and slow, leisurely walks through FAO Schwartz, in awe of how many toys exist! Hearing the clop clop of horse hooves pulling carriages through the lit streets takes me back to my childhood.

I haven't been to Hibachi since we moved back to KC, FAO Schwartz is long gone (sad), and I've still never been on a carriage ride (those people always look so cold!) but I still love the lights. Ross and I walked around last week and enjoyed the sights and sounds of Christmas!

We HAD to follow this couple into Victoria's Secret and get a picture: Mr. and Mrs. Claus!

Plaza lights = Christmastime. Warm memories on the cold streets!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Shift

The bad news is, I work Christmas Eve, Christmas, and the day after Christmas this year.  I'm less upset about that then the fact that poor Ross will be home alone for the holiday. (But he has his sister's present to make and an entire apple pie to eat, so he should be okay!)

The good news is, I will have Christmas off the next two years!  Plus, I get to spend "baby's first Christmas" with lots of babies at work tomorrow.

(photo from this etsy site)

Hope the holidays find you safe and warm and thankful for the Reason for the season!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Snowball Donuts

When my brothers and I were little, we always looked forward to the first snow of the season. Even if it wasn't enough snow to cancel school, it still meant our mom would make snowball donuts! Mmm little bites of heaven. I'm pretty sure we ate them just as fast as she pulled them out of the fryer and powdered them. I introduced Ross to the concept of snowball donuts when we moved here last year, and he's hooked.  Starting in November, I made sure to have the necessary ingredients on had so we'd be able to celebrate whenever the first snow came.

Thankfully, it's been a mild winter and we only had our first real snow last week. But it accumulated, and that's enough to justify donuts!

Snowball Donuts


1 can buttermilk biscuits (not the 'Grands' rolls, just plain buttermilk ones)
1-2 cups Crisco
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar


1. Scoop Crisco into a sauce pan and turn burner to medium-high.

2. While Crisco is melting, cut biscuits into quarters and mix the two sugars together in a bowl.

3. When Crisco is fully liquid, drop 1-2 dough balls into the hot oil at a time, turning quickly. If they brown almost instantly, turn the heat down to medium.

4. Remove from fryer when balls are browned on both sides. Place on plate lined with paper towels.

5. Every so often, dump all the "snowballs" from the plate into the bowl with sugars and roll around to coat. Repeat until all the donuts look like snowballs.

Pretty unscientific, I know, but so fun and easy to make!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Monster Cookies

These aren't Christmas cookies per se, but Ross' moms mailed us some holiday M&Ms and suddenly I really wanted some Monster Cookies. Apparently, different people call these different things, but these are flourless cookies made with oatmeal, peanut butter, and M&Ms and they are so. good.

I think they're called Monster Cookies because this makes a MONSTER batch. I counted 8 dozen (that's 96 cookies!) AFTER I'd already eaten a large amount of dough while baking. Perfect for handing out to anyone and everyone. These are fun to tailor to the nearest holiday by buying the appropriate colors of M&Ms (I've used orange and black for Halloween and pastel for Easter).

I got this recipe from my mom's collection and it's on a card in my grandma's handwriting. I'm not sure where the original recipe came from, but it's one of my favorites now.

Monster Cookies

6 eggs
1/2 lb. butter (2 sticks)
1.5 cups granulated sugar
1.5 cups brown sugar
1/2 Tbs. vanilla
4 tsp. baking soda

Mix these ingredients well and then stir in the following:

3 cups peanut butter
9 cups oatmeal
1 cup plain M&Ms
1 cup chocolate (or butterscotch) chips

Place large spoonfuls on un-greased cookie sheet and flatten slightly. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or until lightly brown.

I dare you to eat just one.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

If you don't hear from me...

...It's because I'm working 9 out of the next 12 days. And I'm determined to study and work out on those 3 days off! Oh, and bake Christmas cookies. Priorities, please.