Tag Archives: garden

Thursday Things

Hello friends, and happy summer solstice!

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I’ve just got a few things I want to talk about today, so lets get right into it! ๐Ÿ™‚

This morning I had a dentist appointment. He cemented the permanent crowns to the two teeth I’ve had root canals done on, and then did a cleaning for all of my teeth. Oh man, it’s been a while since that’s happened! But the new crowns look fantastic and seem to fit in my mouth perfectly! I’m glad those two teeth have been taken care of but I’ve still got quite a bit of work that needs to be done on my teeth and I have no more dental insurance until next year. So unfortunately that’s going to have to wait. Hopefully my teeth will hold out for a while.

But anyway, while we were there I had to have like, 8 thousand x-rays taken and the dental assistant said I was one of the easiest people she’s ever worked with! I didn’t complain, or gag, or have any trouble while she was taking the x-rays with whatever it is that they have to put in your mouth to do that. Haha I told her if I can willingly sit through a 3 hour tattoo I can do this kinda discomfort, no problem! Then after the dentist had cleaned my teeth he commented on my pain threshold. I always find it amusing when people comment on that. Mostly because I’m very well aware of it haha. When I was 13 my appendix ruptured and the surgeons at the hospital were hesitant to even operate on my because “I wasn’t in enough pain”. After spending 3 days in the ER and having my body start to shut down they finally operated, and low and behold, it was my appendix, it had ruptured days ago, and my whole abdomen was a huge mess. So yeah, I’m very aware of my high threshold for pain. It literally almost killed me!!

Now if only I could take that pain threshold and transfer it to hot, sunny, gross days, when I’m trying to do a hard run. Then I’d be pretty much set haha!!

Anyway, after my dental appointment I did actually run outside today! The treadmill is nice, but seriously, nothing is better than how freeing it feels to run outside! Plus the weather was pretty nice too. We’ve had some rain just near by and that’s cooled things off quite a bit. When I started my run it was partly cloudy with a nice, cool wind blowing in and by the time I was done it was starting to drizzle a little bit. It was really nice!! I felt really good, my calves weren’t as tight as they were yesterday from the 2 treadmill runs I had done earlier this week, and I was listening to Let’s Go, which is probably my all time favorite Rancid album. It was a really good run. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

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The drizzle ended up turning into a nice little rain shower, which was fantastic! We’ve really needed some rain. It’s been really hot and the sun has been pretty intense and my garden has been suffering because of it. Even with daily waterings. It’s just been bad. But even so I’ve still gotten a good amount of strawberries, 1 zucchini, and 1 blueberry so far. I’ve also got a couple of small watermelons growing, the blueberry bush is full of berries that just need to ripen, my tomato plants are starting to grow little tomatoes, my zuccini plants are covered in flowers, and my peach tree is still covered in peaches. I’m thinking with the intense heat it’s not going to be a great year for my garden, but I also don’t think it will be too bad.

The garden might not be doing all that great, but the new chicks are! They’re eating and growing like crazy! They’re also incredibly messy and have taken to knocking their feed everywhere and perching on they’re feeder. Haha they’re funny little creatures.

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Alrighty then! That’s all I’ve got for today. But my half marathon training plan starts next month(have I mentioned yet that I’m running 2 half marathons in 2 days, yet?!?!?! ๐Ÿ˜‰ )! I am pretty excited for that, I find the challenges of training for a half fun, but since I’m training for 2 I’m going to be tweaking some things here and there. But I’ll get to all of that later.

For now, happy Friday eve!

~Ashley

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Well, Yesterday Was A Shit Day

It finally happened. We tried so fucking hard go prevent it. But obviously it wasn’t enough. So much time, money, and effort just got flushed down the toilet in what was probably a few short minutes. Yesterday Ozzy massacred our chickens.

Yup, after all of that extra work we did building that dog kennel around their coop he still found a way in and killed every single one. My poor chickens….

 

 

So that was just a terrible thing to find out first thing in the morning. Apparently he had slipped through the tiniest hole where the chain-link met the base of the kennel. And we had used fencing wire to attach the chain-link to the base. A lot of it. So he really had to squish himself to get in there, and honestly I kinda hope he hurt himself in the process. And of course this happened in the early morning before my dogs were outside or at the very least they would have been barking and maybe we could have done something. But nope. Around 6:30 ish my other neighbors saw that damn dog in our chicken coop because he figured out how to get in, but couldn’t figure out how to get back out again. But by then all of the chickens were dead anyway. So when Luke was getting into his truck to go to work and they stopped him and told him what happened. Luke went out there, let Ozzy out and made him go home, then came and told me.

It’s a good thing it was him to go do that and not me. I would have killed that damn dog. I grew up onย  a farm and dogs that kill livestock become a huge problem. It’s a hard habit to break and most of the time if the dog cost you a shit ton of time, effort, and money then it doesn’t get to live. Especially knowing that it might keep doing it. That’s just the way things are. Hahaha and the neighbors who found him in my coop told me the same thing yesterday. I heard “that dog needs shot” by so many people yesterday. But I mean, it’s kinda true.

But that didn’t happen. Mostly because we do live in town and discharging a firearm inside of city limits is illegal. And for good reason. So he’s lucky. Although he was really pushing that luck because I had to chase him out of my yard 3 more times that morning, because he kept fucking coming back…Ugh so that was really annoying.

But anyway, I also had to go to the dentist to get temporary crowns put on a couple of my teeth yesterday. So yeah, it just wasn’t a fun day all around. But Luke took a partial sick day from work so he could take me because I hate the scientist and didn’t want to go alone. So he came back from work at about 11 am and we buried the chickens before we left. I was told specifically not to go out there that morning because it was just going to piss me off even more when I saw it and Luke new it. And it was pretty bad. He broke all of their necks, probably just one right after another. So I mean, it was kinda lucky that he didn’t rip them to pieces, so we didn’t have a huge bloody mess to clean up, but it still sucked.

We finished that job just in time to leave and go to my dentist appointment. It was a long one too. Haha felt like I was there forever! But I got the temporary crowns put on the two teeth I’ve had root canals done on and the more permanent crowns are being made. So that’s a step in the right direction and I’m glad that I was able to keep well, parts of those 2 teeth anyway. But that whole process irritated my gums and now today my mouth just kinda hurts. My jaw is also super stiff and sore from having to keep my mouth open for so long.

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So yeah, yesterday just really sucked. But to make me feel a little bit better Luke went to Barnes and Noble and got me Stephen King’s latest book while I was getting my teeth worked on. He’s the best!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ He also ordered more chicks online and they should be here at some point later this week. Fun fact; did you know the deliver chicks in the mail? That’s how my dad used to get his and how we had to do it this time, since Tractor Supply only sells them in the early spring. And that is great and all, but now we’re all the way back to square one an that really fucking sucks. We were getting so close to ours starting to lay eggs. Now we’ve got to start the whole process all over again.

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New reading material from Stephen King did cheer me up a little though. ๐Ÿ™‚

Once we got home from my dental appointment Luke started keeping an eye out for Ozzy’s owner so he could go talk to him. He got home a little later than he usually does, but Luke finally caught him and told him what happened. Apparently he was pretty upset and offered to give Luke money for them, but Luke said he didn’t want money, told him he had already bough more chicks, so now he just wants Ozzy to stay where he belongs so that it doesn’t happen again. So now he’s really going to get to work on the fence between our yards that him and his cousin have been working to replace and now he doesn’t want Luke to cover half of the expenses anymore. We’ll still probably help him build it though. But hopefully a new fence will solve the problem. If not our neighbor said he’s also thinking about putting in one of those invisible dog fences just to be on the safe side. But no matter what we still have a few months to get it done, because the new chicks wont be able to be put outside until they’re older anyway.

So at least that’s getting taken care of now. It just really sucks that it took all 5 of our chickens being brutally killed for it to happen. I cannot even begin to express how mad I am about that. When you domesticate an animal like that and keep them locked up so they can’t get away and then end up using things they produce or even killing and eating them it’s your responsibility to keep them safe, happy, and healthy. It’s basically a mutual agreement you make with the animal; I keep you safe from predators. Provide you with comfortable shelter. Food and fresh, clean, water will always be available. If you get sick or injured, I’ll take care of it and give it proper medical attention. And in return, I get to use your products to feed myself and my family. And maybe that means you’ll die, but its my job to make sure you have a good life and everything you need before that happens.

For real, I take that shit really seriously and I couldn’t do it and I’m pissed. I let those poor chickens down and they paid for it by dying a terrifying and probably very painful death. I’m going to do better with the new chicks though. Luke feels the same way, so we’re going to be fortifying that chicken coop until is basically Fort Knox. And my neighbor is going to make sure that Ozzy doesn’t come back in our yard ever again. He also grew up on a farm type situation, so he knows and understands how devastating this loss was. I noticed that today he left Ozzy inside while he was at work, instead of in the back yard like he usually does.

Anyway, I’ve been trying to clean up the aftermath of the party that we had on Memorial Day. Our backyard is pretty trashed and the house is a mess too. But my mouth is currently unhappy and that’s making it difficult for me to want to do much. I can usually handle pain, but mouth pains is just awful. But today I got the Green Day mug and tank top that I had bough online last week in the mail today, and that did make me feel a little bit better. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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I suppose that’s all for today.

I hope everyone had a good Memorial Day Weekend!

~Ashley

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StrideBox, Earlier Mornings, and My Neighbor’s Dog, Ozzy.

Another month means another StrideBox! Yay!!

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Getting a box full of running goodies once a month never gets old! I was particularly excited about the Honey Stinger Cracker N’ Nut bar that came in May’s box! Those things have quickly become one of my all time favorite snacks. ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyway, it would appear that spring didn’t stick around very long. It’s been feeling more and more like summer here in Kansas. So far the highs are all in the 80’s this week, and on Wednesday (I think), it’s supposed to be around 89 degrees. And it’s just gonna keep getting hotter from here. Yuck… But on the bright side, summer is thunderstorm season and I do love thunderstorms! Watching storm fronts move in is basically one of my favorite hobbies. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Haha but anyway, I’ve got a 5k on Saturday and it’s looking like the weather isn’t gonna be too great for that. According to my weather app the high is gonna be 90 degrees. Cloudy, which will help a bit, but still, 90 degrees…Well, this race is at 8 am though, so it should actually be cooler than that, but still. Plus there are a few thunderstorms in the forecast before Saturday, which means it’s gonna be crazy humid…ย  I’m beginning to think the time goal I had in mind might not happen on Saturday. I know it’s only a 5k and if it were any other weather condition (cold, rainy, icy, snowy, even windy) I could and gladly would suffer through it. But for whatever reason I’ve never been able to do that when it comes to heat and humidity. It slows me waaay down, completely drains me, and leaves me feeling pretty shitty and tired for the rest of the day. Haha I mean, I always kinda feel tired and bleh when it’s hot out, but it just gets worse if I ran that day.

Anyway, I haven’t completely given up on my goal. I just might get super lucky! But I’m also prepared to accept the fact that the weather is what it is and I just not might be able to fight through it. And at the very least there will be cows, goats, and a huge buffet at the end. Even if I am only running the 5k, I’m gonna hit that buffet HARD hahahaha. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Ok, back to the point that I actually wanted to make. Since the weather has been getting warmer I’ve been having to wake up earlier. Right now I’m only having to get up at 6 am, which is only about an hour earlier than I usually do. So that’s not too horrible. But I’m able to get up, eat, drink my coffee and some water, brush my teeth, get dressed, and then get out the door just a little bit before 7 am. And that’s been working quite well, since the sun isn’t all the way up by then so it feels a little cooler. Plus the asphalt is still relatively cool since the sun hasn’t been shining on it for long at that time of day.

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View from my back porch at 6 am this morning.

So my run today was pretty pleasant, for the most part. It felt kinda cool even though it was in the high 60’s, there was a very nice breeze, and the sun was still mostly below the trees by the time I finished so I never got miserably hot. I felt pretty good during all 5 miles. The only real problem was my neighbor’s dog, Ozzy.

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You see, Ozzy is a relatively young dog, probably around Finn’s age, and my neighbor has had him for maybe 5 or 6 months (his old dog, Zadie, had to be euthanized. She was a really good dog and everyone was pretty upset about that.) Ozzy is also a red heeler (or maybe only part heeler, I don’t remember exactly), so he’s a herding dog. And obviously we have all sorts of small creatures in our backyard that look fun to chase. And for the past few weeks our chickens have really gotten his attention.

Anther thing that’s important to note is that the fence that we share with this neighbor is old and very broken haha. So he and Luke have been working on replacing it, but that’s been kind of a slow process because they both work a lot and our neighbor also goes camping a lot with his brother. That’s not been an issue until later last week though, when Ozzy figured out how to squeeze under the fence and started terrorizing my chickens.

So last Friday while I was feeding my little flock I saw a flash of white in what is usually a mostly black blur that happens in my backyard when all 3 of my dogs are running around, and of course it was Ozzy. Initially I wasn’t too worried about it. You can tell that he really wants to play with my dogs when he’s in his yard and they all like to run the fence line together. But after a few minutes of running around my yard he started to bother the chickens. Running around their coop, jumping on it, barking at them, and just kinda freaking them out in general. That pissed Finn off. Those are Finn’s chickens. He spends a lot of time trying to herd them through the coop (and sometimes he can even successfully make them move into a little group haha), but for the most part he just likes to sit near the coop and guard them. He does the same thing to the rabbit hutch. Those are his small animals and he has taken it upon himself to protect them. He’s also super protective of me (he will literally throw himself across my body and shield me from anything he thinks is a threat), the backyard, and pretty much anything he knows belongs to Luke and I. He’s a good dog, but he’s also still pretty young and dumb. He’s basically a teenager. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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So anyway, he ended up getting into a fight with Ozzy because he didn’t like Ozzy upsetting his chickens. Luckily they both stopped when I yelled at them and neither of them were hurt. So I put my dogs in my house, locked the chickens in their nesting area, and caught Ozzy and put him back in his yard. Then I covered all of the spots in the fence that he could squeeze under with rocks and bricks, hoping that would keep him out. And it did for the rest of Friday, but now he’s learned how to dig at them and move them just enough so that he can squeeze back under and he’s been in our yard at least once (but usually more than that) ever since. And like I said, I wouldn’t really mind him being in our yard, if he didn’t cause problems

So back to what happened today. I got up at 6, let Finn and Dean out (Luke was still asleep at this point and Lily will refuse to leave the bedroom if he’s still in bed. Haha she’s also super protective like Finn is. She’s just smarter and more mature about it. ๐Ÿ˜‰ ), then let the chickens out into the outside area of their coop and fed them. About half an hour later I found Ozzy in the yard, so I got him out, readjusted the rocks and bricks on the fence, and went out for my run. When I was about 3 miles in I ran past my house and saw he was back in my yard so I had to stop, repeat the whole process again, and then left to do the last two miles of my run.

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Ozzy and Dean watching me take off for the last portion of my run this morning.

Finished my remaining 2 miles, and of course I found Ozzy back in the yard again. And this time he was trying to dig under the coop to get to my chickens! Yeah, obviously I’m not about to let that happen. I’m already kind of irritated that he’s been upsetting them. So went through the whole process of catching him again, put more stuff along the fence in an attempt to keep him out, and then I lined the outside of the chicken coop with rocks and bricks. So if he does get in my yard and tries to dig underneath the coop again it should at least slow him down. Or at least that’s what I’m hoping. Haha the chickens did enjoy this though. The rocks and bricks were covered in all sorts of bugs and worms, so they got to have themselves a nice little bug buffet this morning. They seemed to enjoy chasing and chasing bugs to their little hearts’ content. ๐Ÿ™‚

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And of course there’s Finn and his long ass tongue on the other side of the coop keeping an eye on them haha. If you look at the top of the photo you can also see Ozzy claw marks on the wood of the coop. He’s scratched up the other side of the coop really bad… ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

So far he hasn’t gotten back into our yard since I caught him for the third time today, so that’s good. But here in a little bit Luke and I are going to go bury some rocks and bricks along the fence line in hopes that will keep Ozzy out of our yard until they can finish replacing that fence. Hopefully then he wont be able to get into our yard anymore and our chickens will be safe. At least from him haha. Last summer a raccoon took up residence under our shed. I haven’t seen him since last fall though so I’m hoping he’s gone for good. I’m pretty sure all of the feral cats are too afraid of my dogs to even attempt to get into my back yard (raise you’re hand if you know what tends to happen to feral cats on a farm! Yeah, I kinda miss having that option. Feral cats are nothing but a problem…). There are also a couple of foxes that live in my neighborhood. One lives under someone else’s shed a few blocks down, as a matter of fact! There’s not much we can do about them though, except hope that all of the dogs keep them away. And there are a lot of dogs in all of the yards surrounding our house haha.

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But of course my dogs are the best, and I’m definitely not biased at all about that. ๐Ÿ˜‰ย 

Well this post ended up being longer than I thought it was gonna be! Haha it happens though. Sometimes I just get going and I can’t stop! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway, I’ll definitely be posting about what goes down with my 5k on Saturday! Hopefully it doesn’t end up being as bad as I think it might be.

I hope your Tuesday was terrific! (That was super lame, I know.)

~Ashley

Will (and did) Run For Pizza, Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Green Beans, Oh My! And One More Week Until Running With The Cows! ๐Ÿฎ

Ya know, I don’t think that title is long enough. I feel like I could have done a lot better. I mean, why not just write the whole blog post in the title? Problem solved! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Haha obviously coming up with catchy titles is not my strong suit, but whatever, I make it work. I think…

Anyway, Luke and I have officially got our garden started! Last year we had to rent a tiller because ours had broken and neither of us knew how to fix it and we kinda didn’t want to mess with it anyway. But yesterday we bought a new one because it was on sale at Tractor Supply, and because why not? ๐Ÿ˜‰ So once we had that we were pretty much set on everything else, so we went to a local farm to get our plants.

I think the very first year that we lived in this house we started most of our plants from seeds, but that’s a lot of extra work haha! Plus I really like this farm we get ours from. Everything there is organic, non GMO, and the plants always look really good and do well, so that’s where we’ve been getting and will probably continue getting our plants. This year we ended up getting 16 tomato plants (8 “Jet Star” plants and 6 cherry tomato plants), 4 zucchini plants, 4 banana pepper plants, 4 watermelon plants, 2 green bean plants, another strawberry plant, 1 black berry bush, 1 raspberry bush, and a goji berry bush. We also wanted a few cucumber plants but they didn’t have any so we’ll have to get those somewhere else and hopefully really soon!

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So now that we were armed with our new tiller and most of the plants that we wanted, Luke recruited his brother and his whole crew to come “help” us put in the plants. Originally he just wanted him there because Luke wanted to build some structures for all of the vine plants, but we didn’t end up getting to that last night. We did, however, get some tilling done and the tomatoes, peppers, and berry bushes planted! I even had 3 kids (my brother-in-law’s girlfriend’s kids and my next door neighbor) fighting over who got to dig the next hole for me haha. That was pretty funny but it also kinda made the whole process take a little longer. Oh well, at least they had fun and we got some of our plants into the ground.

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During all of those shenanigans Luke had ordered pizza, and while I was eating I realized I was wearing a very fitting shirt haha! And I mean, it is very true, I will definitely run for pizza! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Actually, what I really like to do is have pizza for dinner the night before my long run, because it always seems like when I do my long runs go soo much better haha. Still not sure if that’s just a coincidence or not, buy hey, I’ll gladly say its true if it means I get to eat more pizza. ๐Ÿ•๐Ÿ˜‰ And at that point I was thinking that ended up working out really well for me, because I’d planned on doing a long run today.

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That didn’t exactly end up happening though. When I woke up this morning my calves were crazy sore. Not sure how I managed that one, but they were. Plus I was feeling kinda tired. I guess that’s not very surprising considering all of our gardening adventures last night. But I told myself I was gonna try for 8 miles anyway. And foolishly thought to myself that hey, maybe it’ll go really well and I can do 10. I did not do 10…

I felt alright during the first 3 ish miles, but by the time I got to 5 I was just absolutely done. The sun was all the way up at that point and I had started to heat up even more than I already was which sucks. Being hot is like, my least favorite thing ever, and it kinda turns me into a huge baby. But I stuck it out through another mile and a half before I just called it quits. Ooooh man it was really hard. But I’m happy with the 6.5 miles I got done. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Fueled by Honey Stinger.๐Ÿ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿซ Feet kept happy by Zensah. ๐Ÿงฆ๐Ÿ‰

Honestly I’m thinking it’s not a bad thing that I didn’t run 10 miles today. My next 5k is next Saturday and obviously I want to good and have fresh legs for that! And I mean, I’m pretty freaking stoked for this race! I did it once before in 2016 and it was so much fun! There were goats and a baby cow at the start/finish line, the course was pretty, rural, and full of cows, and there was a HUGE buffet at the end. Seriously, there was SO. MUCH. FOOD. It’s definitely my kind of race! And maybe one day I’ll end up running the half instead of the 5k haha. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Originally I was doing a 5k specific training plan for this race, but that kinda went to the wayside once I made the potentially bad decision to run two half marathons in two days. Haha I’m running the Longview half on November 10th and on November 11th my dad, brother, and I are going to do the Gobbler Grind half marathon so that should be interesting. But the second my dad signed us up for the Gobbler Grind I pretty much stopped everything I was doing and started focusing on milesย miles miles. I really need to start getting more in now that I’m attempting the crazy stunt, so I’ve been focusing on upping my mileage and have pretty much stopped doing speed work. Although I have thrown in a few short and fast sessions in over the last few weeks, just for fun. ๐Ÿ™‚

But anyway, I haven’t completely given up on the time goal I had for Running With the Cows though. Depending what kind of weather we get on race day (have I mentioned how big of a baby I am when it comes to hot/sunny weather? ๐Ÿ˜‰ ) and how I’m feeling next Saturday, I think I might actually be able to do pretty well! I mean, my dad and I crushed it at the Whiskey 5k we did together in March and I kinda want to see if I can do this race faster. But I guess I’ll just have to wait and see what race day brings! I’m pretty excited for it! But I’m even more excited about the buffet at the end. I’m definitely gonna go all out on that. ๐Ÿ˜‰ ๐Ÿ˜‰ ๐Ÿ˜‰

Okey dokey then! I just kinda wanted to give a little update on what I’ve been up to and to say how stoked I am about Running With The Cows next week! So that is all for today!

Happy Saturday from me and this chubby bunny!

~Ashley

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Happy First Day Of Spring!!

Hahaha flowers like that don’t bloom this time of year here in the Midwest. I just really like this photo (I took it during our family vacation in Florida last July). There are a bunch of daffodils popping up around my neighborhood though, and some of them have started to bloom!

Anyway, we are starting to get some spring-like weather in my part of Kansas. The air is starting to warm up and it rained pretty much all day yesterday. That’s typical spring time weather. We really needed it though. Things were really dry here. Haha and I was pretty excited about that because I love rainy days and think that running in the rain is a lot of fun! ๐Ÿ™‚ And yesterday’s 3 miler did not disappoint! I got soaked pretty fast. I also got frostnip on my legs because it was in the low 40’s when I ran. I probably should have put on my wind pants over my running tights. They’re usually pretty good at keeping me relatively dry. But oh well, it really wasn’t that bad and the redness, itchiness, and irritation that came with that was all gone by this morning. That was still totally worth all the fun I had in the rain yesterday.

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This morning’s run was nowhere near as fun though. I actually procrastinated doing it by making myself an actual decent breakfast. Who does that?!? Me apparently…

Usually in the morning I can’t be bothered to make anything exciting for breakfast. Sometimes I throw a few frozen, whole wheat waffles in the toaster and then slather them with peanut butter and honey. Other days I’ll just grab a piece of fruit and a cheese stick. Or on really lazy day’s I’ll just eat a Honey Stinger waffle along with my coffee. But I knew running wasn’t going to be very exciting today, so I took a little bit of extra time with my breakfast. I toasted some bread, spread some avocado on it, topped that with sliced, cherry tomatoes, and then fried an egg to go on that as well. Hahaha I know that doesn’t sound too difficult, but in the morning I never feel like putting that much effort into what I’m eating. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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I did eventually go out and get my run done, though. My 5k training plan called for 2 easy miles followed by a couple of strides, but those 2 miles sure didn’t feel easy… It actually seems to me that most of the “easy” runs I do don’t actually feel easy. They tend to feel more like I’m running through cold molasses. Oh well, I still did it though! Well, the 2 miles. I kinda sorta skipped the strides. I just wasn’t feeling it enough to do those.

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But on the bright side, running seems to be going a lot better this week than it did last week! I know it’s only Tuesday, but I’m thinking the rest of the week is going to go pretty well. But maybe I’m only saying that because tomorrow is a rest day and then for Thursday my training plan calls for 30 minutes of cross training, so I wont actually have to run again until Friday. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But still, I’m a lot happier about running this week than I was last week, so at least that’s something. ๐Ÿ™‚

But anyway, now that spring is here I really need to start thinking about what I want to plant in my garden and I’m going to have to start tilling and preparing my soil here before too long. So far I know I’m definitely going to be growing my staples; tomatoes, banana peppers, cucumbers, zucchini, lettuce, and watermelon. I actually want to grow my vine plants on some kind of structure this year to help make weeding and harvesting a little bit easier. I’ve got a few ideas for that and Luke and I will be starting work on those soon. I also really wish I could get root vegetables to grow a little easier here, but they never do well because the soil here is so full of clay. A lot needs to be done to remedy that…Or you can do raised beds filled with good quality soil but those are kind of expensive to make. Maybe one day though. But for now we’re planning on sticking with plants that we know do well here.

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A small harvest from last summer. That watermelon was sooooo good!! Haha I’m on a mission to grow several really good watermelons this year! It seems like each year I’ve grown them I’ve gotten bigger, better melons. And usually a few more than the year before. So I guess I must be learning something! And hopefully if that trend keeps up, I should end up with 5 or 6 really good watermelons this year! ๐Ÿ™‚

Now with the addition of our 5 chickens, we should end up getting a pretty decent amount of food from our backyard this year! I’m so freaking excited about having fresh eggs! I can’t wait for my chickens to start laying!! They’ve still got a while to go before they get to that point though. They are doing very well and growing bigger and getting more feathers every day! And as it starts getting even warmer they’re going to be able to spend a little bit more time outside. So far they’ve only been out twice for about 10-15 minutes at a time, just to make sure they didn’t get too cold. But in maybe two or three weeks, as long as it’s warm enough, we’ll be able to move them outside permanently. Haha I have a feeling we wont get that lucky though, it’s probably still going to be pretty chilly in April. If they were fully grown the cold wouldn’t be much of an issue, but when they’re young it’s very important that they’re kept warm.

Oh man, between my garden, the chickens, training for my 5k in May, training for my half marathon in November, the dogs, rabbits, and all of my other critters, plus another vacation we’re going to be going on with Luke’s family, I’m going to be crazy busy this spring and summer! It should be fun though! And besides, I’d much rather be busy than bored. ๐Ÿ˜‰

That’s all I’ve got for today! But what about you?

What are you looking forward to this spring? Any exciting plans?

Do you grow a garden? What’s you’re favorite thing to grow?

Does your city allow you to keep chickens? Would you if you could?ย (Technically my city doesn’t allow you to do it without a permit, but when have I ever let rules stop me?!? Luckily my neighbors are cool with it though, so it should be fine. ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

ย I hope you’ve had a terrific Tuesday!

~Ashley

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Yay StrideBox, Chick Update, and 5K Training

I got my March StrideBox yesterday! Yay!!

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I never got last months… The shipping tracker thing said it was delivered, but I think my mail lady might have stolen it. Yesterday I watched her scan it but then she didn’t put it in my mailbox and started to drive away. But I wonder if she saw me watching, because she ended up reversing the truck and putting it in my mailbox after all. Apparently I’m just gonna have to keep an eye on her whenever my StrideBoxes are supposed to be delivered. I have no actual proof, but like I said, I think she might have stolen last months.

I’m very glad I ended up getting this month’s StrideBox though! There were all sorts of neat/useful/and yummy goodies in there!! Super yummy protein cookies which I definitely already ate ;), sweet sunglasses, a bag that has a leak proof, air tight seal. That’s gonna come in real handy on rainy runs!! Haha I always bring my phone with me when I run, just in case, and on rainy days I usually just put my phone in a ziplock baggie. I think this bag thing is going to work out a lot better for rainy days. ๐Ÿ™‚

 

There was a also a Skratch Labs drink mix in there that I’m pretty excited about. Several different Skratch Labs products have come in a few different StrideBoxes and I’ve really liked all of them! I’m actually thinking I’m gonna have to order me some of their protein powered because I really liked it. I mixed it with plain water and it tasted exactly like chocolate milk! It was super yummy!! Haha that’s why I really enjoy getting these StrideBoxes! I get to try all sorts of new things that I would never see in a store or even think about picking up for myself. It’s pretty neat! Plus it’s basically like getting to open a gift every single month, and who doesn’t like that feeling?! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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I definitely recommend subscribing to StrideBox if you like trying new snacks, interesting running gear, and basically getting to open a gift every single month. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I hope I don’t sound too much like and ad or anything like that here, but this is something that I really love and a brand that I actually really believe in.ย  In all transparency, I am a StrideBox ambassador and I do get these things for free. But after trying it out I’m totally sold and would definitely pay for a subscription. It’s $15 per box and that includes shipping, which seems well worth it to me! You really do get some neat stuff in each box!! You can check out all of the details of what StrideBox is all about here. ๐Ÿ™‚

Not gonna lie, I wish I hadn’t eaten all of those protein cookies in one sitting yesterday. They were so freaking tasty…

Anyway, lets talk chickens!!

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I’ve had my own little flock for 3 whole days now, and I’m pretty sure I’m already a crazy chicken lady. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But in all fairness, I grew up on a farm in southern Illinois. I’ve been handling chickens literally for as long as I can remember. I’ve got a few interesting chicken stories spanning from my preschool days all the way through my time in high school, but those are stories for another day. Those were my grandpa’s and my dad’s flocks of chickens. Today I want to talk about mine!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Since they have to be in their brooder box under their red heat lamp its kinda hard to get good photos of them which sucks, but once they start needing that less and less and then eventually move into the coop I’m sure I’ll have tons of photos of them to share haha. Right now they’re currently growing like weeds. You can literally see them get a little bit bigger and grow a few more feathers everyday! That means they wont be cute little fluffy babies much longer and are gonna go through that award feather growing stage soon. That’s kinda sad haha, they’re so cute right now. But that also means we’ll be that much closer to getting eggs and that’s what we want!!

On Sunday I had started giving them a few meal worms. We usually keep a little container of live ones for our leopard gecko but I know that chickens love things like that so I figured it would be a fun little treat for them, and oh boy was it! They absolutely loved them and watching them chase each other and fight over them was pretty hilarious! Plus I made them take the worms from my hands, so now 3 of them will come running whenever I stick my hands in the brooder box. The other 2 are still kinda skittish but hopefully they’ll come around eventually.

They’re all pretty funny though! The more time I spend with them the more I’m noticing about their different personalities and its pretty great! I have a feeling they’re going to end up providing us with a bunch of entertainment! I’m gonna have to come up with names for them soon. Luke hasn’t liked any of the names I’ve suggested so far, but he’s said multiple time now that they’re my chickens so I’m gonna name them whatever I want to dammit!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

That’s probably enough chicken talk for now though. There will be plenty more as time goes on haha. They are a pretty exciting little addition to my backyard farm though! And speaking of my backyard farm, we’re going to have to get our garden tilled and think about what we’re going to be planting this year! I’ve got a pretty good idea of some things I want to get done, but a lot of that has to wait until it gets a lot warmer out.

Anyway, my 5k training plan officially started yesterday! I kicked off this little training cycle with an easy 2 mile run! ๐Ÿ™‚

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The very small amount of running I did in Colorado was fun and you definitely can’t beat the views there, but it was really nice to get back to running on the streets I know like the back of my hand. I never realized how much I enjoy zoning out on easy runs like yesterday’s and not having to pay attention to pot holes, cracks, and things of that nature. Sure running the same streets day in and day out can get a little boring, but it is nice to know exactly where everything is haha.

Anyway, this is the first 5k training plan I’ve ever done! I mean, at this point in my running career I’ve only done 2 “official” 5k’s, and I’ve always known that I’d be able to cover the distance without any issues so why train for it, right? Well now I know why! PR’s of course!! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Haha or you know, just being able to run strong and to your full potential, but this time around I’m chasing a PR! Kinda.

You see, between illness, injury, traveling, and general life stuff, I didn’t PR at any distance last year. I’m not at all upset with how my year in running went in 2017 but for 2018 I’ve decided I want to start chasing time goals again. But the 5k PR that’s listed on my “Goals and PR’s” page (which I desperately need to update haha. I’ll get to that eventually) is from 2016, I think? It may actually be from 2015! Either way, I know I’m not going to be able to accomplish that time at the Running With The Cow’s 5k in May. That’s currently my goal 5k. So for now I think I’m going to aim to run that in 38 minutes. For where I am currently that will be a challenging goal, but still obtainable. So for now that’s my plan! I’m gonna stick to an actual 5k training plan and work toward that time! ๐Ÿ™‚

I did the Running With the Cows 5k back in 2016, so I know the course is a little bit hilly, but it’s nothing that I’m too worried about.

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Today my training plan called for a rest day which I am gladly taking! I’m still kinda worn down from traveling to Colorado, being at that elevation that I’m definitely not used to for a week, and then traveling back home. So I slept in a little bit today which was nice. And I just plan on walking the dogs and maybe doing a little bit of restorative yoga, so that should be nice. Plus I do have another 5k to look forward to on Sunday and I at least want to be semi rested for that haha!

Some things have come up so I’m not 100% certain if it’s going to go down anymore (I might still be able to make it, but due to recent developments I’m not so sure about my dad), but my dad and I are supposed to be running the Whisky Run 5k in Martin City MO. The only goal for that is to have fun and then collect our medals, pint glasses, shots of whiskey, and then enjoy our post run Sunday brunch that will be provided, so that should be easy enough. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Oh man, I really hope my dad will still be able to do this 5k with me.

 

 

 

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I got this photo from KC Running Company’s Instagram account. I really want to add this medal to my collection haha. ๐Ÿ˜‰ย 

Obviously I’ll let you guys know if there are any further developments in our ability to do the Whiskey run, but until I know more about the current situation I’m going to plan on doing it! Running With The Cows will still be a-go no matter what, so at least there’s that haha.

But that is all for now!

Have a terrific Tuesday!!

~Ashley

 

 

My First Time In Nebraska, Home Sweet Home, and New Addition To My Backyard Farm!!

My brother and I left Colorado Friday evening around 5 pm and ended up going on a little adventure haha. To avoid taking the toll roads that are in Colorado and Kansas, my brother ended up going just a little too far north and we ended up in Nebraska. That was pretty funny. When we crossed the state line and saw the “welcome to Nebraska” sign we looked at each other and asked how the heck did we end up here? Luckily we were still heading east, so that’s all that mattered haha. So we drove through Nebraska, into Iowa for a little bit (that was my brother’s first time in Iowa haha I’ve been trough there when Luke and I went to visit his mom in Minnesota), down into Missouri, and then finally into Kansas. We ended up adding an extra hour to our trip, but neither of us were too worried about that. Although it did kinda suck that we finally got to my house around 6 am.

We brought my mom’s dog Bella with us. My mom is currently in Illinois with my grandma and my brother needed to get some stuff in Illinois from my dad, so that all ended up working out well. She road on my lap the whole way to Kansas and then my brother had her in a crate for the 5 hour trip to Illinois from my house. Apparently she did well on that ride too. I’m not particularly a fan of little dogs, but she is sweet. ๐Ÿ™‚ Although my dogs weren’t too sure what to think of her haha. Especially Finn. I don’t think he’s ever seen such a small dog before.

Apparently leaving the dogs/cats/rabbits/ferrets/Luke all alone for a week wasn’t a great idea. Apparently Luke spend the whole week living off of frozen food, trying to keep the dogs under control, and they all spent the week wrecking the house haha. So I spent yesterday scrubbing floors, doing laundry, washing dishes, and lots of other cleaning. Fun times…But someone needed to do it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway, yesterday Luke and I started our next new and exciting adventure! We are expanding our backyard farm with the addition of 5 new chicks!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ Luke bought/built a chicken coop on Friday while I was still in Colorado, and then last night we went to Tractor Supply and got a brood box, heat lamp, a feeder/water thing, feed, vitamins, and of course the chicks themselves! Originally we were going to get 4 Isa Brown chicks, but they only had 3 of them left. So we got them and 2 other chicks of a different breed. Not gonna lie though, I don’t remember what they are haha. That’s not really important though, they’re good for laying and that’s what we want!

So we got our new babies home and set up in their brood box and slowly started introducing the dogs to them. Luckily Lily grew up on a farm and has some formal training, so she knows how to handle and how to behave around livestock, so we weren’t too worried about her. Haha she was actually pretty excited to see them! She used to herd my dad’s chickens all the time! Dean doesn’t want anything to do with them, which isn’t surprising. Dean has very little in the way of herding instinct and is pretty wary of anything new. Finn was the one we were most worried about. He’s got very impressive herding instincts but he is still young and very immature. Plus he really likes to nip at faces, which would be really good if he was working on cows, but obviously not so good when we’re talking about tiny little chicks. He ended up surprising us though and was very calm and never once showed his teeth to them. He has absolutely no clue what they are but you can see that he wants to herd them so badly haha. But luckily it’s looking like the dogs wont be an issue at all, so that’s good. ๐Ÿ™‚

So far the babies seem to be adjusting well. They handled meeting the dogs perfectly fine and they seem to have done well over night. They’ve been eating, drinking, pooping, and pecking around their brood box. So I’d say so far so good!! ๐Ÿ™‚ They’ve got to stay inside in their brood box for several weeks, but once they have all their feathers they get to be moved outside into the coop. Well, as long as it’s warm enough outside. So that’s all pretty exciting stuff! And before too long we’ll have our own eggs! I’m super excited about that! Like just about everything, home raised eggs are sooo much tastier/nutritious than store bought eggs. ๐Ÿ™‚

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And pretty soon we’ll be tilling our garden plots and getting ready to plant some things! As sad as I always am to see winter go, spring is a pretty exciting time around here. ๐Ÿ™‚

Oh and I’ve currently got 2 5k’s on my scheduled to look forward to! Next Sunday I’m going to be doing a Whiskey 5k with my dad. That’s going to be a lot of fun!! My dad and I always have fun together but I think this is going to be extra exciting haha. It’s my dad’s first official 5k, we get a super spiffy pint glass at the end, and Jack Stacks is providing brunch for all of the finisher’s which is awesome! Jack Stacks has some very tasty food!! ๐Ÿ™‚

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This is basically the perfect 5k for my dad. His last name is Martin (and mind was too before I got married haha), he basically collects neat glasses like this, and he likes whiskey. So like I said, perfect! ๐Ÿ˜‰

And then in May I’m doing the Running With The Cows 5k again. I’m really looking forward to doing that! I had a lot of fun at that race back in 2016 and this year I even plan on training for it! I’ve never done an actual 5k training program before so that should be interesting. Training for that actually starts tomorrow, so I’ll definitely keep you guys updated on how that goes! I’m hoping I’ll be able to shave off a little bit of time from current 5k times, so hopefully I’ll be able to make that happen! ๐Ÿ™‚

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That’s all I’ve got for now! No weekly recap for this week. I pretty much posted everyday while I was in Colorado and I really didn’t do much running anyway haha. Plus I’ve still got a bunch of cleaning to do and I’ve got to tend to my flock of chickens! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Happy Sunday!!

~Ashley