Tag Archives: half marathon

Thursday Things

Hello friends!!

I’ve been kinda slacking on the whole blogging thing, I know. Honestly I’ve been super focused on growing my Instagram account lately. Instagram sure isn’t making that easy thanks to it’s weird algorithms. But I have been making some progress on that front! ๐Ÿ˜

Instagram is lots of fun. And if you do it right it can also become a community of some really awesome and supportive people! I love the community I’ve become apart of on Instagram! But story telling, sharing thoughts, ideas, even just random ramblings is a lot easier to do on a blog! I mean, people come to blogs expecting to read! That’s not exactly the case on Instagram. A lot of people are there just to look at pretty pictures. Which is totally fine! It can just be a little bit limiting sometimes.

So I definitely want to get more back into blogging!! I know I’m not the best writer out there or anything, but lately I’ve been writing down these little…well I’m bot sure what to call them exactly. Poems? I don’t think that’s right… Anyway, I’ve shared a few of them on Instagram and I’ve gotten some very positive feedback from them and that’s just made me want to start writing and sharing more again on my blog! ๐Ÿ˜Š

So I figured I’d start easy and go for a “Thursday Things” post. I like to ramble and my “Thursday Things” posts are usually a pretty good place for me to do that! ๐Ÿ˜Š

So let’s get right into it!

Team ROAD iD!

Obviously I’ve already talked about being an ambassador for ROAD iD his year (which you can read about here. ๐Ÿ˜‰). I’m super duper excited to be working with a brand that I love and believe in the way I do ROAD iD. I’ve been wearing mine since 2015 and at this point I rarely ever take it off.

Last weekend I received my welcome package for team ROAD iD. They sent all of their Team ROAD iD members a bunch of fun goodies! And check this out! How awesome is the box it all came in! ๐Ÿ˜„

I was very excited about that hahaha. I’m also very excited about the neat-o things said box contained; more bands for my ROAD iD and a new badge for it, a t-shirt, stickers, a super sweet Thule backpack (I’ve needed a new backpack for a while now!), and a bunch of gift cards! I used one of the gift cards to get my dad a new faceplate fit his ROAD iD since the info on his wasn’t up to date, but the rest of then will be used in giveaways!! Probably on Instagram, but I might do one on here as well. I’m still trying to figure out how I wanna do all of that. But it’s coming soon so be on the lookout for that!

I’m very excited about the prospects of hosting a giveaway! I’ve never done one before but I’ve always wanted to, and now I’ve got the perfect opportunity to host one! ๐Ÿ˜Š Like I said though, I’m still working out the details, but I expect to be doing one next month!

But for now, if you need a ROAD iD now and don’t want to wait and attempt to win a giveaway, remember that you can save 20% on ROAD iD’s website by following my handy dandy link;

road.id/ashley

Okey dokey, enough about that! Let’s talk about running!

Last week I had an AMAZING week of running! It was soooo good! Like, most of my runs felt great and I had so much fun! It’s been a while since I’ve had a whole week like that. where most of it just felt fun and carefree even though I was putting in some hard work.

Unfortunately all of that fun came to an end this week…

I almost did it. I almost made it through cold and flu season without getting sick. Almost. On Monday I felt a little bit tired and my body was kinda heavy feeling, but I thought that maybe I was just tired from the work I’d put in last week. I did a super slow 3 mile slog on the treadmill (because it felt like -15 and I didn’t feel like dealing with that. ๐Ÿ˜‚), in hopes that I would feel better afterwards, but nope.

I woke up on Tuesday and my whole body felt sore. At that point I was at a loss as to why. So I skipped my run and spent an hour on my stationary bike instead and then followed that up with about 30 minutes of yoga. I was hoping that would help with the soreness, but honestly I felt worse afterwards than I did before, which I thought was weird.

But then I woke up actually feeling sick yesterday and it all kinda made sense after that. ๐Ÿ˜‚ So yeah, that sucks, but at least I know why I’ve felt off all week. I took a rest day yesterday and woke up feeling a little bit better today, but not 100%, so I took today off as well. I was doing so well and being super consistent with my running since the beginning of this year, so it’s kind of a bummer to have to stop that for now, but I also know that it’s definitely for the best and the thing I need most right now is rest.

But if I was gonna get sick now wasn’t the worst time to do it. ๐Ÿ˜‚ My first race of the year, a trail 10k in Colorado, is next month and I obviously want to be healthy for that!!

I’m doing that one with my dad who hasn’t really been able to train due to work, and since it’s in Colorado near the mountains the elevation change is gonna kick my ass. It always does. So it’s going to be a tough day for us and we aren’t exactly going to be “racing”. Especially since I’ve done exactly 0 trail runs in preparation for this.๐Ÿ˜‚ Honestly I’m hoping to rely on the skills I’ve built in the first 20 years of my life tracking around the woods and family farm. So at the very least I’m not a complete stranger to a little bit of off road terrain! Hahaha but we’ll see how that actually goes!

Honestly while it’s probably going to be slow and painful, it should still be a lot of fun! My dad and I have had lots of fun during the two other races we’ve done together so far, so I don’t think this one will be any different. ๐Ÿ˜Š

My dad and I am mile 13 of the Gobbler Grind Half marathon. Friendly reminder that you can use the code GG19AD to get $20 off of your entry fee for this race!! I hope to see you there this November! http://gobblergrindmarathon.com

Then in May my dad is coming to Kansas to do Running With The Cows 5k (one of my all time favorite races!) with me, and he’ll be doing the Gobbler Grind Half with me again in November! ๐Ÿ˜Š So far that’s all of the racing I’ll be doing this year. Although I would like to register for another 5k or two later this year, but I’m not sure if I’ll be able to make that happen yet. Mostly I want to because I’ve got done time goals I’m aiming for and I won’t be able to go after then running with my dad. Which is totally fine! I’d much rather get to spend more time with him that hit a PR. But I’d still like to end up with a shiny new PR this year. ๐Ÿ˜‚

Honestly I can do a fast 5k anytime I want on my usual running routes. That should be easy enough and I’m not the kind of person who only counts PR’s if they happen within a race. But the half marathon time I’m shooting for might be a little more difficult. Depending on how things go during the Gobbler Grind this fall, that might have to wait until next spring. Assuming I can get in another half then that is. We shall see.

But to back track a little bit, I’m currently nursing a cold and haven’t run in 3 days. ๐Ÿ˜‚ But really 3 days off isn’t too bad. I’ll be able to jump back into the swing of things pretty easily if that’s all I end up missing. Which I’m thinking it will be. I’m gonna test out my legs and lungs tomorrow with 2 or 3 easy miles just to see how I feel and then go from there!

But I think that’s enough for today!

Happy Friday Eve!

~Ashley

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Team ROAD iD

You guys!!!!! I’m super duper excited to finally be able to announce that I get to be apart of ROAD iD’s ambassador program this year!!!!!!!! ๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ˜„๐Ÿ˜„

If you’ve been following me for a while then you might already know how much I love my ROAD iD. I wear it all of the time! When I’m running, walking my dogs, or doing anything or going anywhere, really.!I seriously consider it to be one of my most important pieces of running gear. I even wrote a blog post about what ROAD iD is and why I wear it a few years ago. So I’ve been pretty loyal to this brand ever since I just kind of stumbled upon it back in 2015.

Lol as I was looking for photos for this post I realized that my teal ROAD iD band had seen 3 different Garmins before I finally broke it. ๐Ÿ˜‚

I had honestly never heard about ROAD iD until the day before my very first race/half marathon ever back in 2015. I went to packet pick up the day before my first half feeling super excited and very nervous since I literally had no idea what to expect, about the race and whether or not I could actually cover 13.1 miles on foot sure, but also because I had never done anything like this before and had no clue what to expect throughout the whole process. So when I revived my packet I didn’t even make it to the car before I had torn into the envelope containing my first ever race bib (it’s still displayed on my bedroom wall along with all of my medals and other race bibs ๐Ÿ˜Š). Number 136. I admired it for a while, just kinda soaking it all in. But of course I was curious as to what else was in that envelope. I found advertisements for other local races, a coupon for the KC Running Company Stores, and a coupon for $5 (at least I think it was $5. Hahaha it might have been more. Cut me some slack guys, it’s been a while! ๐Ÿ˜‰) off of a ROAD iD order.

At that moment I didn’t think much of it. I was too busy freaking out about my first half/race ever. But a few weeks after I finished my first race (which you can read about here, if you’d like ๐Ÿ˜) I decided to visit this ROAD iD’s website. I did have a coupon after all. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Hahaha I hate to sound super dramatic, but my life kinda changed at that point!

I immediately fell in love with the idea; a customizable, wearable ID tag. A place where you can put super important info that you never really want to need, but would definitely be happy to have on your person just in case anything were to happen. Better than having to carry your ID with you for sure! Especially since your ID doesn’t usually include your emergency contact’s info. So I ordered one that day, along with a super spiffy 13.1 badge, since I was a new half marathoner and all. ๐Ÿ˜‰ And now about 4 years later I still have my original face-plate and that 13.1 badge. They have certainly stood the test of time! They haven’t worn down at all and they barely have a scratch on them! ๐Ÿ˜Š I did eventually manage to snap very pretty teal stretch band by taking it off and putting it back on thought. But it took me almost 4 years to do that! So I’d definitely say they are durable!!

I wear mine EVERYWHERE! At this point I rarely even take it off! In the summer I end up with some really funky tan lines because I also wear my Garmin pretty much all the time. So my left wrist always ends up with two weird pale spots on it.๐Ÿ˜‚

For real though I think everyone should have one! At this point I’ve got my mom and dad wearing them and i’m currently working on my two sisters and my brother. ๐Ÿ˜‰

My mom has a seizure disorder which is included on her ROAD iD, along with a medical alert badge. She wears hers all of the time and it make her feel like she can actually go out in public and live a normal life despite her medical issues.

My mom is rocking some super sweet badges on her pretty pink ROAD iD.

My dad does all sorts of crazy things!! He hikes, runs, and climbs mountains, when he’s not busy driving semi trucks, training drivers, or basically running a trucking company, often accompanied by his Russian Bear dog, Niko or the “All American girl”, Barbie. So it was a pretty obvious choice for him to wear a ROAD iD during his many adventures.

My dad also rocks a pretty pink ROAD iD. If anyone needs a male model for anything you should probably hit him up on Instagram @martiniiijames.

I think it’s such an important piece of gear for anyone who has medical issues, does any kind of adventuring, traveling, or just enjoys walking their dog around the block. It’s certainly one of those things that’s better to have and not need it than to need it and not have it. Mine has definitely given me and my family a little more peace of mind while I’m out running. I literally will not run without it.

I think at this point I’ve gone on enough about how much I love my ROAD iD. Hahaha I’m just so super stoked to be able to represent a brand that I love and believe in this much! And to make things even more exciting I have a special link you can follow to get 20% off of your next ROAD iD order!!

Click here to save 20% on your ROAD iD order!! ๐Ÿ˜

Seriously my friends, if you don’t have a ROAD iD yet, if yours needs updating, or if you know a friend or family member who could use one, follow the above link, save yourself some money, and get yourself a little extra piece of mind!

Stay safe out there my friends! Wishing you all many happy healthy miles and lots of amazing adventures!

-Ashley

Gobbler Grind 2019 Ambassador

Yay!! I’m super excited to announce that I’ve been accepted as a Gobbler Grind race ambassador!!!

This is the half marathon that my dad and I did last November and had an absolute blast doing!!

This was seriously one of the most fun races I’ve ever done! I still can’t get over how freaking awesome all of the aid station volunteers were! They were legit the best out of any other race I’ve done! The course was also relatively pretty! ๐Ÿ˜Š

If you’re looking for an awesome half marathon to do in the Kansas City area this November I would definitely recommend this one!! Plus if you use my ambassador discount code, GG19AD, you can get $20 off of your entry fee! Right now that’s just about 33% off before the price increases, but once it does my discount will stay the same. So to save yourself a little extra money you should sign up ASAP!!

http://gobblergrindmarathon.com

Hahaha I’m already trying to convince my dad and one of my sisters to do it with me this year! ๐Ÿ˜‚ So will I be seeing any of you there?!? Again, you can use the code GG19AD to get $20 off your entry fee, here!!

Anyways, I’ve got some more exciting news to share with you guys but I can’t say anything until Monday, so be on the lookout for that!!

Ok, that’s all for now though!

Happy Thursday, everyone!!

~Ashley

13.1

I think 13.1 has become my favorite number. I wear it on my wrist and on my chest. Youโ€™ll find it hanging up on my bedroom wall, scribbled over and over into my training journal, carved into my Halloween pumpkins, and even inked permanently onto my skin.

I like to keep it around where I can see it, always. Itโ€™s a constant reminder of something I never thought was possible. Then a crazy dream. And then a reality that I had made for myself. โ€œIโ€™m not a runnerโ€, I would think to myself. But I became one by running. โ€œI could never cover 13.1 miles on foot! I just run for fun!โ€, I would tell people when asked if I ever thought Iโ€™d run a half marathon. โ€œIโ€™m not entirely sure I can go thisโ€, I told my husband as I signed up for my very first race. One with that scary and yet very tantalizing number attached to it. 13.1.

And then I did it. 13.1 miles covered on foot, mostly by running. I crossed the finish line, hugged my husband, had a medal hung around my neck, and while someone put a carton of chocolate milk into my hands I realized that I had become a new person. A person who was capable of dreaming big and doing something that scared the absolute shit out of her. A person who could do hard things. Someone who was determined to put in the hard work and make things happen. A โ€œrealโ€ runner.

And then I did it again. And again. And I plan to continue doing it for as long as I possibly can. 13.1. Itโ€™s a number Iโ€™ve come to love. A number I sometimes hate. A number thatโ€™s broken my heart into a million pieces and has made me question my life choices. But I keep coming back. Iโ€™m always chasing that 13.1 finish line. Because more than anything itโ€™s a number thatโ€™s taught me that I am capable of more than Iโ€™ve ever imagined.

Maybe one day Iโ€™ll decide to go after a 26.2. Now THATโ€™S a number thatโ€™s a number thatโ€™s been put on a pedestal. One of the biggest accomplishments you can achieve as a runner in some peopleโ€™s minds. A number that I just might be able to learn to love too.

But for now Iโ€™m going to stick with my 13.1. Itโ€™s a number Iโ€™ll always hold near and dear to my heart and will forever be one of my greatest accomplishments.

Spring 2019 Races

I have officially got two races lined up for this year already! Hahaha that doesn’t exactly happen often. I don’t really race much and I’ve never had two races lined up this early in the year! ๐Ÿ˜Š Well, technically I was registered for both of these races in December before the price increase, but whatever. ๐Ÿ˜‰

After Christmas I had several Visa gift cards burning a hole in my pocket and I figured a race would be a good thing to spend one of them on, so I decided to do the Running With The Cows 5k on May 11th. I’ve done this 5k in 2016 and 2018 and absolutely LOVED it, so I figured why not do it again? Plus it’s only 15 minutes away from my house, so super convenient. ๐Ÿ˜

The 5k is really just an add on to the half marathon they have though. One day I’d like to do the Running With The Cows half, but last year it was pretty hot and humid for May and I’m kinda terrified of doing a longer race on a hot day. Like, that’s one of my biggest fears. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Which is kinda dumb, because so far of done all of my half marathon training in the summer because I’ve always done my half marathoning in the fall. But I don’t know man, training in warm weather and actually racing in warm weather just seem like two very different things to me. Eventually though I am gonna suck it up and sign up for this half, but this is not that year. Besides, I just go to this race to pet the cows that they have there.๐Ÿ˜‰

I got to feed this mama cow last year! ๐Ÿฎ๐Ÿ˜Š

Alrighty, so not a very exciting story about how I ended up registered for Running With The Cows, but how I ended up registered for another spring race is!

So on December 30th, the day before New Year’s Eve and two days before all of the price increases for race registrations, my dad and I had been texting back and forth for awhile. He had found these cool “Sloth Running Team” t-shirts and he sent me a picture of them. Well I said that we obviously needed them because they also say “we’ll get there when we get there” on them, which is something we said A LOT during the half marathon we did together in November. After that I got nothing but radio silence for about 5 minutes and then the next text I got from him was a screen shot of the order confirmation for two “Sloth Running Team” t-shirts. ๐Ÿ˜‚

Obviously I was pretty stoked about that. So I asked him what race are we running next? He had found this trail running festival thing in Colorado in April and wanted to do either the half or the 10k there. They also have a full marathon, 50k and a hundred miler (I think?). Luckily he didn’t want to do any of those. ๐Ÿ˜‚

Anyway, I wasn’t sure about going to that because it’s hard for me to leave my small petting zoo behind. Especially now that the chickens are laying eggs. Luke and I noticed that they don’t seem to like it when I’m gone. While we were in Illinois for Christmas and then New Year’s Eve we only got one egg each time we were gone and that was over a few days. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Poor chickens.

My hens are laying some really good looking eggs though! And theyโ€™re tasty too! ๐Ÿ˜Š

But I told my dad I’d talk to Luke about it and see what he thought. In the meantime, I told him that I was doing the Running With The Cows 5k again, which he and my mom actually spectated at in 2016, so he knows how neat this race is. After that I got more radio silence, and then a screen shot of his registration confirmation for Running With The Cows. ๐Ÿ˜‚

So the Sloth Running Team will be tackling another spring 5k together! Last March we did a Whiskey Run 5k together and I’m pretty sure that’s what go him hooked on the whole racing thing. Hahaha I’m ok with that though! That’s how we ended up doing a half marathon together in November. That was an absolute blast!!

Anyway, I talked to Luke about the trail running thing in Colorado. He said while it’s hard to deal with everything around here on top of him working, he could handle it if I wanted to go do one of these races. So I told my dad that I was going to be able to go and to send me a link to their website so I could register, and asked him exactly which race am he wanted to do because we hadn’t really figured that out. ๐Ÿ˜‚

We eventually decided to do the 10k because that was the shortest race at this festival thing. I live in Kansas at 862 feet above sea level, according to my Garmin. My dad lives at almost 5,000 feet above sea leaving in Longmont, CO and that elevation change is rough. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I found the elevation map for this race which is in Fruita, CO and it is to too terribly crazy, so that’s good. It’s still gonna be hard as hell though.

Anyway, we didn’t end up registering that day though. My dad wanted to talk to my brother and see if he wanted to do it with us. But at that point in our conversation my dad had to go to work, so I didn’t hear anything else from him until the next day.

In the midst of our New Year’s Eve festivities at Luke’s dad’s house I received yet another screenshot from my dad. This one was a registration confirmation for the Desert Rats Trail Festival 10k on Sunday April 14th (which is the day before the Boston Marathon. I’m not sure why that’s relevant, but that was my first thought ๐Ÿ˜‚), for the both of us.

See that fun fact? Yeah, thatโ€™s what my dad came up with for me. ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

My brother didn’t want to do it, so it’s just gonna be the two of us again. Oh well, we have lots of fun doing these things together. My brother doesn’t know what he’s missing! ๐Ÿ˜‚

So yeah, that’s what I’ve got lined up for this year so far! I’m probably going to do another fall half marathon and at this point the only thing I’m really not sure about is weather or not I’m going to be doing it alone or if my dad will be with me. ๐Ÿ˜‚

But for now, this road runner who lives in Kansas is gonna have to figure out how the heck she’s gonna cover 6.2 miles on a trail in Colorado. I see lots of hill repeats in my future. ๐Ÿ˜‚ I’m also going to have to start getting used to running with my hydration pack again. Under normal circumstances I wouldn’t actually need to carry any fluid with me on a 6 mile run. But the air is much more dry in Colorado, so I’m thinking it would be better to carry water with me. Especially since the aid stations at this event are pretty far apart.

Anyways, those are my plans for this spring! My year of big goals is already off to a good start and I can’t wait to see how my dad and I do in these two races!

Happy Tuesday!!

~Ashley

Goals for 2019

Happy 2019!!!! I hope you had a fantastic holiday season and a safe and happy New Year’s celebration! ๐Ÿพ๐ŸŽ‰

Now that we’re 4 days into 2019 I thought I’d share my goals for the new year. Honestly I’ve actually had most of them planned out since November. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Mostly because that’s when I got my Believe Training Journal. It’s got a section in it about goal planning and that’s the first thing I filled out in it.

After that I spent some time really thinking about and refining what I came up with. Setting goals can require a little bit of soul searching. You’ve really got to admit to yourself where you’re at, the work you’re willing to/able to put in, and whether or not the goals you’re setting are actually realistic. I definitely believe in setting big, scary goals, but I also think if you’re going to set big goals you should set smaller, much more obtainable goals. Goals that can be used as stepping stones to set you up for success and get you that much closer to the bigger, scarier goals.

So, here are my big, scary goals for 2019!!

  • Run a 35 minute 5k
  • Run a 2:45:00 half marathon
  • Run 1000 miles this year

Yeah, considering my current PR times these are some really big goals! But I know I can run faster. I’m what I affectionately refer to as a slow runner, and I’m perfectly ok with that. But I still want to push myself and see what I’m capable of and I’m pretty sure that if I put in the work, I’ll be able to crush my goals. Or at the very least get close!

As for the 1000 miles on 2019, well, that’s mostly just a way to keep myself consistent. I ran 692.25 in 2018. That’s 118.9 miles more than I ran in 2017 which is pretty cool, but I know I have more in me. Hahaha if anything I think 2018 has built up my confidence and has really made me want to put in some hard work and get shit done in 2019!!

Now, as I’ve said, big scary goals are important. But you need smaller goals that are a bit more obtainable to use as stepping stones to get to those bigger goals. So I’ve got some of those as well!! ๐Ÿ˜Š

  • Hit 12,000 steps almost every day (similar to the 10,000 steps that I did almost every day in 2018)
  • Run a 10 minute mile
  • Run a 1:25:00 10k (I’ve actually done this before, but it’s been a while. I’d also really like to PR my 10k time, but for now this is my goal)
  • Get my nutrition in line (I’d also be happy to lose some weight, but I’m more concerned about nutrition and how it affects my performance)
  • Focus on the 1 precent-ers (yoga, strength work, foam rolling, getting enough sleep, things of that nature)
  • Keep writing Monthly Goal Check In post
  • Keep up with my training journal

Well, that about covers it! Those are my goals and now they’re out there for all the world to see! Not gonna lie, that’s kinda scary having it all out there because obviously there’s always the chance that I won’t hit my goals. But that’s exactly what happened with Operation Two Half Marathons In Two days. I had a big goal, something outside of my control prevented me from accomplishing it, I had to work through all of those feelings and what not but I lived hahaha. So even if I don’t hit my goals I know I’ll be able to get over it and move on. Honestly that’s I think that’s the hardest thing about setting goals. The possibility of failure holds you back, but once you experience it and make it through a failure in one piece it sure makes setting big, scary goals a little bit easier! ๐Ÿ˜‚

Okey dokey, that’s all for now!

Happy 2019!!

~Ashley

2018 Highlights Of The Year

Holy cow it’s the last day of the year!! ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

Congrats on yet another collective trip around the sun! The ride might feel long, it might also seem like it’s flying by at times, but at least we get to share the experience with some awesome (and maybe some not so awesome) people. At the very least it’s an interesting ride!

Seriously though, does anyone else feel like this year gone by really fast while simultaneously dragging on an on and on?!? Hahaha I don’t know, I guess it’s just been a weird year. Weird, but also good. ๐Ÿ˜

So I just wanted to look back month-by-month at all (or at least most ๐Ÿ˜‰) of my personal highlights from 2018. Last year I actual broke this idea up into two different posts, one for running and one for life in general. But for this year I’m just gonna stick with one post. I did have a lot of fun running-wise in 2018, but at the same time nothing really spectacular happened for me. I only accomplished one PR and that was for the longest run I’ve ever done. No shiny new time PR’s for me… So that’s kind of a bummer, but hey, now I’ve got a whole new year ahead of me to start working towards some other shiny new PR’s!!

Anyway, let’s get to it! Here are my month-by-month, personal highlights from 2018! ๐Ÿฅณ

January

Alrighty! 2018 kicked off with me putting one of my Christmas gifts from 2017 to good use!! My sisters bought me Run Fast Eat Slow by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky. What an amazing gift and an awesome cookbook! I must admit, while I do believe in eating clean, whole, nutritious foods, I can find some of it a little boring… But cooking with this cookbook taught me that healthy, nutritious food doesn’t have to be boring.

Around the end of December or early January, Kay Von D and Billie Joe Armstrong collaborated on a new eyeliner. Not gonna lie, I know nothing about makeup and have been doing my eyeliner in basically the same way since I was 16. But when an amazing artist and the guy who pretty much made guyliner (who also happens to be one of your own personal heroes) makes an eyeliner you buy it! And buy it I did! Hahaha and I’ve still got quite a bit of it left since I don’t often wear makeup.

img_8762

I think this photo came from Kat Von D’s instagram? Honestly I don’t remember, it’s been saved on my phone for a while haha.

Oh and I started dyeing my blonde streak purple in January. I’m not sure why I had never done that before, but I had always wanted to. So that was pretty cool.

PS, guess what eyeliner Iโ€™m wearing in this photo. ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰

February

I’m not sure if this really counts as a highlight, but looking back on it it makes me laugh really hard (I also kinda forgot that this happened this year ๐Ÿ˜‚). But I’m February I slipped in my living room (on nothing I might add), fell, and slammed my toe into the leg of our couch. I never did get it looked at by a doctor but I’m pretty sure I broke it. It’s fully healed now though, so that’s good.

In a weird twist of fate, my toe breaking escapade happened right before I got two root canals done. So I had some pretty sweet pain meds for both of those situations. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Seriously though, my teeth are REALLY bad and I began my journey to a healthier mouth in February. But I also ran out of insurance money, so it began and ended with those two root canals. But now that the new year is upon us I have insurance money again and can FINALLY get some more much needed work done on my teeth.

And last but certainly not least for February, I ended up going to Colorado with my dad and spending about a week there with him and my brother. I’m not gonna get into all of the details of our adventures while I was there, because I already have. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But we had a lot of fun together. Hahaha even on the 16 hour drive from Kansas to Colorado! Hahaha that drive is only supposed to take 11 hours, but my dad and I like to stop and do stuff!! Oh and I think my brother and I accidentally ended up in Nebraska in our way to Kansas. Oh man, those were some good times. ๐Ÿ˜‚

March

While I was in Colorado at the end of February Luke ended up buying a chicken coop and when I got back home we bought our first set of chicks of the year! Oh man I forgot how cute they were!! Unfortunately this was the set of chickens that my neighbor’s dog ended up killing because he kept getting into our yard. Luckily that finally got resolved, but I still wasn’t happy about losing all of our chickens…

Another adventure that was planned while I was in Colorado was running the Martin City Whiskey 5k with my dad! This was the first race we did together and it was so much fun!! Hahaha even though my dad ended up getting a little hurt at the end. But he eventually healed and I remember mentioning to him that now he needs to do a half marathon! I’m not sure how serious either of us were at that point though. But I was pretty stoked about my shot of Whiskey and super awesome post race breakfast and that was making me really look forward to some half marathoning!

April

Easter fell on April fools day this year, so on the first day of April Luke and were in Illinois celebrating Easter with our families. My grandma made a whole big lunch and lots of homemade desserts which is always fantastic! While we were there Luke, my brother who was also in Illinois for Easter, and I did some target shooting at our old house. We had to trespass a little bit on what used to be my grandma’s farm, but whatever. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I though I might be a little bit rusty because I don’t really get to shoot anymore, but I did alright. ๐Ÿ™‚ While we were there we ended up taking my brother and two of Luke’s brothers to the Saint Louis City Museum. We all had lots of fun there!

Later in the month Luke traded in our old Chevy Equinox and got a 2016 Dodge Ram. I feel like that was probably one of the best decisions that was made all year! Hahaha we’ve sure put the truck to good use since we’ve had it!!

May

On the second Saturday of May I did the Running With The Cows 5k for the second time! Eventually I need to do the half at this event, but I’m so glad I didn’t this year! It was super hot and muggy that day. Still a lot of fun though! I got to pet a baby cow, run a very pretty 5k on a super rural road that runs through a bunch of cow pastures, and then pick out food at the HUGE buffet they have for all of the runners. Seriously, they have some pretty awesome stuff there! I’ve been very happy both times I’ve left this race. If you’re ever looking to do a half or 5k in early May and happen to be in Kansas I definitely recommend checking this one out!

May was when we got our garden planted, built the chickens a bigger run, and just did a bunch of work outdoors. It’s not exactly glamours, but I sure do enjoy it. ๐Ÿ˜

For Memorial Day Luke and I threw a bit of a party for some family and neighbors. The guys had a bit of a rib cook off, and I baked a couple of pies and made a bunch of sides. The neighbor kid that I babysit came over to play with my brother-in-law’s girlfriend’s kids, and we had 5 dogs running around because my brother-in-law brought his with him. Oh and us and the neighbors were just constantly climbing over the fence into each other’s yards for various reasons. Haha it was a little bit chaotic, but lots of fun!

June

On June first we got our second batch of chicks. Not exactly a highlight because we only had to get them because our neighbor’s dog killed the first set. But still kind of a highlight because LOOK HOW CUTE!!!!

Later in June we ended up in Illinois again. We did a bit more target practice at my parents old house while we were there, but the real high point of this particular trip was taking Luke’s youngest brother to Troy Park and playing on the playground and Pokรฉmon Go-ing. Oh and we also picked up my sister’s old treadmill from her boyfriend’s mom’s house that night. Hahaha she literally gave me her treadmill because we have a truck and could actually haul it back home. Told you we’ve been putting that thing to good use!

Ok, just a little side note. Through  the spring I’d been talking to my dad about doing a half marathon with me. I had been looking into the Gobbler Grind and told my dad that I was only going to do it if he’d do it with me because this race was the day after the Longview half which I was already registered for. So at some point he signed us both up and thus Operation Two Half Marathons In Two Days was born!

July

July is Luke’s birthday month! Yay!! So on his birthday his brother, his girlfriend, her kids, and our next door neighbor kid all came over for Luke’s birthday and we threw him a little party. There was a cake and confetti and glow sticks and lots of dogs! What more do you need for a birthday party?!? ๐Ÿ˜‚

For the past several years Luke’s mom has planned/organized a big family vacation for a bunch of people on that whole side of the family. This year that included 25 people!! Hahaha it was easy for so many people to come this year because we went to Branson. MO and since most of us live in the Midwest that’s not too crazy out of the way. I think EVERYONE drove there. ๐Ÿ™‚ Anyway, we stayed in these cabins right next to a river so we spent a lot of our time there having a little too much fun out in the water. We did a lot of fishing, swimming, and those of us who were of age did a little a lot of drinking haha. ๐Ÿ˜‰ It was an absolute blast though. I think hanging out on the river was the most fun part, but we did do a few other things. We went to a slightly depressing animal “safari” thing. We also had a big birthday party for several people at the equivalent of a Chucky Cheese, and we went to the outlet stores several times.

On one of the days we were there (I think it was the second to last) we had a big cookout thing. Everyone cooked a bunch of food, but in the middle of it all a HUGE thunderstorm rolled in. So everyone rushed around to get their food done and into the different cabins, get all of the small children inside, and everything picked up and what not. Then, like the good Midwesterners that we are, we sat out on the cabin porches and watched it come! At one point somebody dared someone to stand out in the rain for the entire storm and eventually all of the “kids” (Me, Luke, his brother’s and sister. His step sisters, our nephew, and a couple of their friends) ended up standing in the pouring rain. It was hilarious! Although the next day we found out that was when the Ride The Duck thing got caught in the storm and a bunch of people die. It wasn’t so funny after we found that out.

Aaaaaaaand training for Operation Two Half Marathons In Two Days started near the end of July! If you’ve been following me for any amount of time you probably know that I do not do well in the heat and that I’m not a fan of summer running. But starting a new training plan for a big goal is always exciting!

August

This sunrise on August 4th reminded me that even though summer running is rough and that I absolutely hate waking up at 5 am, views like this make it totally worth it.

I guess August was a relatively uneventful month, as I have very few photos from then. ๐Ÿ˜‚ But we did go to a casino for like the second time. Not exactly my thing, but it was still a good time.

September

So, every year since we’ve been married, Luke takes me to a pumpkin farm to pick pumpkins, apples, and to get other fun fall things. We ended up going super early this year (on September 14th to be exact ๐Ÿ˜‰) because this summer was hot, dry, and brutal and I was very much over it. So the day the pumpkin farm opened its pumpkin patch we went and started all of our fun fall festivities early! ๐ŸŽƒ๐Ÿ˜Š

Later into September Luke’s mom added to my fall fun by sending me a big care package full of sweet Halloween stuff! She’s very much into Halloween as well, so she gets it. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I started putting some of it up that day! Luke wouldn’t let me start decorating outside until October though. ๐Ÿ˜‚

October

Yay October!! The brutal summer finally ended and it actually cooled down this year! It’s been FOREVER since we’ve actually had a chilly fall. That made me super duper happy!! So did all of the amazing fall foliage we had in the area this year! It’s been a long while since the trees have looked this pretty!

On October 5th we added a new member to our family!! On his way home from work that day Luke told me to be ready to leave when he got home because we were going on an adventure! That adventure turned out to be picking out a new puppy to be Finn’s future girlfriend! I made the right choice picking her out of the litter. Finn immediately fell in love with her.

The very next day I PR’d my longest distance run by doing a 14 mile long run! Haha I had to stop at home several times so I could let the new puppy out of her crate to pee and that did get a little bit annoying. But all in all this was a great run! I watched my watch while I hit and then went over the half marathon mark, because that was the first time I’ve ever done that in training and it was just so super cool!

On October 11th we went to Illinois yet again. This time for my mom’s birthday, one of Luke’s brother’s birthday, and his grandma’s and great aunt’s birthdays (they’re twins!!). Hahaha so we were kinda busy that time around! We only brought Whiskey with us for this trip just so she could get used to riding in the car, being by herself, and whatnot. But we ended up taking Luke’s youngest brother to Troy park again, this time with Whiskey, and apparently we went on the perfect day because there was some kinda of pet event going on! So there were all sorts of venders, rescues, and just people out there with a bunch of dogs! So Whiskey (and Luke’s brother, actually ๐Ÿ˜‚) got lots of positive socialization. We even met another red border collie while we were there! That was so cool!! Hahaha the other girl and I saw each others dogs, make eye contact and then booked it to each other so we could talked. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Oh man that was a great day!!

Oh and watching my grandma meet Whiskey for the first time was really cute too!! She used to breed German Shepherds, ran a dog boarding kennel, and was always super involved in the dog works (that’s where I get it all from!) so she LOVES meeting puppies. But I mean, who doesn’t?!

November

November got off to a really great start, with Whiskey and I watching the NYC marathon! Haha Luke signed up for another free trial of Hulu TV just so I could watch it (he did that for me in April so I could watch Boston as well ;). If you watched you know how amazing it was! If you didn’t, well, you really missed out!

November also brought the conclusion of Operation Two Half Marathons In Two Days, and oh boy it didn’t end in any kind of way that I thought it would. I DNF’d the first half! โ˜น๏ธ So that was really more of a low point of 2018. But the very next day I ran the Gobbler Grid half with my dad! It was the slowest half I’ve ever done, but it was also the most fun! Hahaha I’m so glad we ran that 5k together in the spring! If we hadn’t then this half might not have happened! Honestly I think this half marathon and the couple of days that I got to spend with my dad because of it was my favorite thing to happen this year.

The November fun didn’t end with that half marathon though! I ended up running a 5k on Thanksgiving morning! That was technically my first ever turkey trot and it was a blast!!! Plus they handed out pumpkin pies to all of the finishers instead of medals. That was awesome!! ๐Ÿฆƒ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿปโ€โ™€๏ธ๐Ÿฅง

And even after that there was still some more November running fun to be had! Haha we had a legit blizzard on November and guess who decided to run in it? That’s right, this girl!! Oh my gosh that was so ridiculous dangerous because we were experiencing high winds and white out conditions, but it was oh so much fun!!

December

Oh boy! November sure was busy, but believe it or not, December was even more hectic! We did lots and lots of fun Christmas stuff though!

On the 15th Luke took me (and Dean ๐Ÿ˜‰) to two different Christmas light displays! First we went to one that was more of a light show that synced up to music. Those are always cool.

We didn’t stay there long though. Our next destination was a park that covers almost every tree around this lake in lights! It’s so beautiful! So we walked around there for a while and took a bunch of pictures! Haha Luke’s not big on the cold, Christmas, or picture taking, so I really appriciated doing all of that all at once. That being said, we had a really good night. ๐Ÿ™‚

The next day Luke and I ended up exchanging Christmas gifts because we’re both terrible at waiting to give gifts. ๐Ÿ˜‚ Apparently we both had similar ideas this year, because he got me a “fuck” coffee mug and I got him a monogrammed glass for adult beverages. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Hahaha we know each other well.

On the 22nd we got our first eggs!!!!! You guys have no idea how excited I was! I’ve been waiting for this for such a long time!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ Ever since then we’ve been getting at least 2, sometimes 3 eggs a day from our hens. By this spring/summer we should be getting around 5-7 eggs a day! How freaking sweet is that?!?

We spent pretty much the rest of our December running around and getting stuff ready for Christmas. At 3 am on Christmas Eve we left Kansas and drove to Illinois so we could spend Christmas with some family. On Christmas Eve we started out at Luke’s dad’s, then we went to his grandma’s for a little bit. Then my grandma had a little party at her house of Christmas Eve, so we hung out there with her, my mom, and my uncle for a while.

Christmas Day was just as busy! Luke and I stayed at his dad’s house Christmas Eve night so we could open presents from them and Santa. After we did that Luke’s dad made us a late breakfast and we hung out there until noon when we went to Luke’s other grandma’s Christmas party. That’s always a big even! That side of the family takes Christmas VERY seriously and this year was no different. We had lots of food, presents, and fun. ๐Ÿ™‚ That night me, Luke, and one of his brother’s stayed up playing this game on the Playstation. It got out of hand very quickly but it was a lot of fun haha.

It was a busy Christmas, but a good one.

At some point during our stay in Illinois Luke’s dad convinced him to come back for New Year’s Eve, because he was actually going to be off from work for that. So we drove back to Illinois last night at we’re at Luke’s dad’s right now. So we’ll be ringing in the New Year with Luke’s dad, step mom, and 2 of his brothers!

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Oh man this post ended up being really long! Maybe I should have broken it up into two different posts. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Oh well.

Thanks to everyone who hung in there with me and actually read everything hahaha. Honestly though I think I want to start writing a recap like this at the end of every year! Looking back at all of the adventures I’ve had this year was fun and it reminded me that I have done a lot of cool stuff in my life. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that on days that feel never ending or mind numbingly boring. But life is full of ups and downs and the not-so-great times make the good times that much better! I hope you’ve had a wonderful year full of fun, laughter, adventures, and many happy, healthy miles!

Wishing you a wonderful New Years Eve and a very happy New Year! Stay safe and have fun out there! Here’s to making 2019 a FANTASTIC year!

Your happy, nostalgic, slightly sappy, blogger friend,

~Ashley