Tag Archives: homegrown

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

 

 

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Half Marathon Training Day 17 and A Garden Update

So you know how right before a big event you have planned how you just don’t feel like doing anything? That’s definitely what I’ve had going on today. It was also one of those days where you realize it’s already 2:00 pm and you really haven’t done anything all day…

Well, I suppose that’s actually kind of a lie though. I did run this morning (although I did a lot of procrastinating before hand) and I also did a pretty decent amount of work in the garden after my run, so I suppose I did doย something.ย Haha I guess it just doesn’t feel like a lot after sitting around for most of the afternoon. I don’t know, I’m just in a weird mood at this exact moment I guess.

But anyways, my run did actually go pretty well! Especially considering that I didn’t get it done until after 9 am and it was getting pretty hot out haha. So the game plan for today’s workout was to warm up for a mile and then do 5 minutes of hard running, 1:30 minutes of rest, repeat 3 more times, then cool down with another mile. And I mostly accomplished that haha. I mean, I did everything but the last mile to cool down. At that point it was super hot, I tired, drained, and felt like it probably wouldn’t be a bad idea to skip that last mile. Especially since I did all of the hard stuff, anyway. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Nimrod is a great album to run to! Especially if you’re a pissed off at someone haha.

So even though I did skip that last mile I’m quite happy with how this workout went! Since the half marathon I’m training for has some pretty killer hills, I decided to push it just a little bit up the hills. I’m going to be ready to tackle those crazy rolling hills come November!! Haha but anyway, I didn’t do anything too crazy or intentionally seek out the bigger hills in my neighborhood, but I did tell myself to “run strong” up the hills I did encounter, instead of slowing down because it was hard and hot and uncomfortable. I’m quite proud of myself for handling the hills the way I did today. ๐Ÿ™‚

After inspecting my Fenix 5 and Garmin Connect, it would appear that I’m doing something right at the moment! According to my fancy Fenix (seriously though, all of the feedback you get from this thing is pretty impressive!) my training load is currently optimal! Yay!! And according to Garmin Connect (and my Fenix, I suppose) my run today should improve my anaerobic fitness and my VO2 max! Pretty exciting stuff!!

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Hahaha honestly at this point I’m not sure what I should be doing with all of this information. But I have a feeling that just maybe I can use it to start training more effectively and efficiently. I mean, following training plan is one thing, but knowing if you’re working too much, just enough, or not enough kinda takes things to a whole new level!

So I’m very pleased with how my run went this morning. I’m also very pleased with how my garden is doing!! I’m still a bit upset that my zucchini plants have died and my lettuce went to seed and is now all just weird stalk-y things (but hopefully that means I won’t actually have to plant lettuce next year, it’ll just start growing all by itself), but everything is doing quite well!! Especially my tomatoes. One could possibly argue that they’re doing a little bit too well. The plants got quite big and we didn’t space them out enough, so the bigger, stronger plants are killing a few of the weaker plants… It’s not really that bad though. I mean, I’m still getting a piss ton of tomatoes every day, so I pulled out two of the plants that were dying this morning. So now my bigger stronger plants wont have to fight for water/nutrients anymore, and hopefully that means they’ll produce even more tomatoes! Hahaha not that I need more or anything though.

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This is everything I picked this morning. There are 18 tomatoes there. I definitely don’t have a shortage of those!

The bigger watermelon that I had growing split a little bit before it was ripe because of all the rain we had gotten on Sunday. Sad face…I gave it to the rabbits though and they seemed to enjoy it! They ate the whole thing, rind and all! There’s still a smaller one (although it’s getting a little bit bigger everyday!) out there that’s doing really well, so hopefully that one will be able to grow, ripen, and be able to be picked before we get another day full of rain. And as you can see in the photo above, I’ve also got some good looking cucumbers and a few banana peppers as well! I think We’ve got enough cucumbers to make another jar of pickles! We’re definitely not going to have as many cucumbers/pickles as we did last year. Then we had 3 or 4 cucumber plants, now we only have one. But we’ve already got 5 jars of pickles made and growing season isn’t over yet! So it’s not like we’re suffering there either haha.

I think last year our garden definitely did a little better, but we also didn’t leave it unattended for 10 days last year…Plus everyone has an off year, but all in all I’m still quite happy with what we’ve got going on. I mean, I’ve got over 30 tomatoes sitting on my counter right now haha! Luke definitely need to get to canning them! ๐Ÿ˜‰

So yeah, gardening and running. That’s what my day has consisted of. Other than that I can’t really tell you what else I’ve done, because honestly even I’m not entirely sure haha.

This evening Luke and I are going to drive 30 minutes to go grocery shopping when he gets home from work. We had planned on getting that done yesterday and drove to the Aldi that’s 15 minutes from our house, but it turns out that they’ve closed for remodeling. So weย triedย to shop at Walmart, but that didn’t go well. First off, their produce is super expensive! And second off, we just didn’t know what else to get. Obviously they didn’t have the usually stuff we would get at Aldi and it just seemed like everything else was just boxed/frozen stuff that wasn’t all that great for you. I mean, I’m sure they have better options if you know what you’re looking for, but we did not. Hahaha it’s been quite a while since we’ve grocery shopped at Walmart…

So long story short, we ended up getting cherries, potatoes, bananas, and dinner for last night before we gave up and decided to go to the other Aldi tonight.

Oh, and hey! Look how close we’re getting!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ย I’m soooo freaking stoked for Friday!!!!

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Green Day shirt of the Day! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Haha I get a lot of weird looks when I wear this one, because I have one of those skulls tattooed on my shoulder (but in black because white wouldn’t have worked well haha).ย 

So yeah, that’s what’s going on with me. What’s going on with you? ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope everyone is having a good Tuesday!!

~Ashley

 

 

Photos From This Week

So, I got a little bit lazy this week and didn’t write down all of my workouts for my usual weekly recap and I don’t really feel like trying to remember everything from the week. Oops haha. Oh well, it happens to the best of us I suppose. So instead here are some photos from this week instead. I hope you enjoy!!

Monday:

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Tuesday:

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Wednesday:ย 

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Thursday:ย 

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Friday:

 

 

Saturday:

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Sunday:

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Actually Back To Scheduled Programming

Welp, it’s my first full week home back from Florida, so now I’m going to be posting the usual weekly recap, what I ate Wednesday, Friday fives, etc. posts, since I didn’t do any of that last week, or the week before. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Plus I kinda like to keep things on a scheduled and it’s kinda been driving me crazy that I haven’t been doing that lately.

Anyways, happy Monday! I hope you have a good day and a great new week!! I’m definitely doing to be trying to make this week a good one! Half marathon training round 3 officially starts this Sunday and I’m a little nervous because I currently feel very unprepared but I’m also very excited!

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At this point I haven’t officially registered for what will be my third half marathon, but hopefully I’ll be able to do that very soon. But the goal is to run the Longview Half marathon again! Haha I know at this point in my running career that this is the only half that I’ve done, and eventually I’m going to broaden my horizons and run a different half, but for now I’m sticking with this one. Mostly because so far, I’ve run every Longview Half except for the very first one, and years and years from now I still want to be able to say that. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But eventually I’m definitely going to start running more than one half marathon a year, but this is just not that year.

I’m thinking maybe next year I want to do the Running With The Cows half. I did the 5k last year and it was a lot of fun! It was a beautiful course, there were in fact cows, and there was a HUUUGE feast at the end of the race. But since I only did the 5k last year, I only had a bagel, banana, and chocolate milk, because after only 3.1 miles I didn’t feel like it would be right to eat any of the other goodness that they had there. Especially since it was probably around 9 in the morning at that point. Haha but I could totally justify partaking in the post race feast if I ย were to run the half. ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

 

But enough about future/past races. Lets talk about some current running stuff!

So, I ran one whole mile today! Yay! Haha but I’m currently doing this thing where I intentionally go out a little later in the day than I normally would, just so it’s a little hotter out and the sun is shining on me. And so far I can only make it a mile without feeling like I’m absolutely going to die under those conditions, but I feel like intentionally getting out in the conditions that are hard for me is going to make me more mentally (and maybe even physically) tough, and I’m hoping it helps me adjust to training in the heat a little better. Haha it still really sucks though. I’m so ready for fall to get here. ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

 

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All summer long I’m just a sweaty, gross, unhappy mess.

But I’ve been getting it done! Like I said, whenever I purposely go out later I’ve only been getting a mile of running done (I’ve been making a point to run a mile out and then walk a mile home), so that’s what I did today. I got out the door at 9 am when it was about 82 degrees, 70% humidity, and sunny without a cloud in the sky. So basically my least favorite conditions ever! Haha but at least today the humidity wasn’t all that bad. That was my one happy thought throughout all 12 minutes and 17 seconds of my run. ๐Ÿ™‚

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I’m so very excited about how awesome both of my new tattoos look!ย 

So yeah, I guess I’m trying to take my weaknesses and use them to make me better. Haha it’s not fun though…Especially since I’ve pretty much got a routine down where I run, walk the dogs, and then work in the garden, so when I run later in the morning sometimes the dogs don’t get walked (I don’t like walking them on the asphalt if it’s super hot and the suns been out for a while), and that means I have to be in the garden when it’s hotter and sunnier. That’s no fun. But the garden is definitely recovering from the 10 day’s it didn’t get cared for while we were in Florida! I’ve got two new watermelons growing out there, more cucumbers than I know what to do with, and a shit ton of green tomatoes, and a few tomatoes that are just starting to turn red/yellow. I’m very happy about all of that, but I am still mourning the loss of my zucchini plant…

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But anyway, I do feel like I’ve gotten a little bit accomplished this morning so now I need to sit down in the air conditioning, drink something with electrolytes in in (I’m a super salty sweater), and recover from being in the heat. It’s kinda sad, but the heat really does take a lot out of me and it takes me a while to recover haha.

Anyway, I hope you have a great week!

~Ashley ๐Ÿ™‚

Garden Updateย 

I don’t think I’ve really mentioned much about how my garden has been doing ever since Luke and I started planting stuff back in March. So I thought I might as well post a little update on it today. ๐Ÿ™‚

So the thing that’s currently doing the best and what I’m definitely most excited about is the peach tree! It’s absolutelyย covered in little green peaches that seem to get a little bit bigger every day!!!

I’m so super excited about it, because last year (at least I think it was last year) when we bought it it was supposed to grow peaches. It did at first but they all ended up falling off and the tree just took off and grew a good 4-5 feet taller. That was a bit disappointing, but apparently it was all for the best, because now we should have a whole bunch of fresh peaches! ย I’m already dreaming of pies and jams and jellies and grilled peaches… It’s going to be great!

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I’m also very excited about the amount of berries that are starting to form on my strawberry plant! Last year I only got 2 or 3 berries from it, but that’s pretty typical, strawberry plants tend to grow more and more berries every year. So pictured below is a little cluster of strawberries that are currently growing. They’re even starting to turn kinda red which is awesome!

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At the moment we really don’t have a lot going on in my big garden plots. Like I said before, Luke and I planted some stuff in March and that’s pretty much been it so far. Mostly because March/April is still a little bit early to plant anything else that we want to grow. We do have some lettuce, broccoli, brussel sprouts, and carrots growing though ๐Ÿ™‚

Unfortunately now it’s too warm for the broccoli and brussel sprouts to really do anything. I think all of the rain we got a week or two ago kinda stunted their growth and they just never really took off while it was still cool enough for them. So now I don’t think we’re going to get any heads of broccoli unless we can somehow keep the plants alive through the heat of the summer and into the fall. Then we might, but I’m not too sure. That’s ok though, because even if they don’t grow heads they’ll still keep growing and their leaves will get really big, and my rabbits really seem to like broccoli leaves.

I feel like the same think kinda goes fro the brussel sprouts, but I’ve never grown them before, so I’m just going to wait and see how that plays out.

The lettuce in these plots seems to be doing pretty well! I think it also got a little stunted by all of the rain, but once things dried out a bit and it got some sun it’s all started taking off! Pretty soon I should be able to start pulling off some of it and using it for salads and bunny food. ๐Ÿ™‚ That’s the great thing about lettuce, you can pull off a good portion of the leaves and it will keep growing back. So basically we’ll have and endless amount of lettuce all summer and that’s pretty sweet!

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Now out by our shed in a little plot we planted some carrot and onion seeds. The only problem is that root vegetables don’t tend to do well in our soil. It’s got too much clay in it. Although last year we just let the carrots grow all summer and into the fall, and we ended up with some decent sized ones, so we’re going to try for that again. As you can see in the photo below, I really need to weed out some of my carrot plants, but so far they seem to be growing just fine! I’ve only seen a few tiny little onion plants though and they’re not looking so good, so I’m thinking we’re going to have another year without onions. Oh well. I’m just happy that the carrots are doing well.

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You might have noticed that there is a lot more than just vegetables growing in my garden…I desperately need to do some weeding. But every time I had planned to it rained, and then I got sick and wasn’t able to. It’s just been a whole thing… Luckily today I felt well enough to do a little bit of weeding though! So I pulled some grass/weeds from just around my vegetable plants and out of my strawberry container. But I didn’t exactly have time to get rid of all of the weeds because I wanted to plant my flower seeds from Cheerios today, and wouldn’t you know it there were thunderstorms in the forecast.

So after riding the intimidate areas around my vegetable plants, I went out front, weeded the landscaping around the tree, put down my seeds, and made it inside right as it started raining. I’m hoping that the rain pushed the seeds far enough into the dirt that they’ll be able to take hold, but not too far down that they won’t be able to grow through the mulch. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.

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At the very least I feel like I got a little something accomplished today. This weekend we are planning on planting tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, watermelon, and a few other things. And I plan on actually weeding out all of my garden plots, so we’re going to have our work cut out for us! I’m pretty happy about that though, I enjoy growing things and it’s very rewarding to be able to walk out your back door, grab a tomato (or strawberry, or zucchini, or whatever) off of a plant you grew and cared for, and then eat it.

I also just wanted to mention that the African daisies (at think that’s what they were called) that we planted a few weeks ago are doing very well!! If you look closely in the photo below, you can see that this plant is covered in little buds and already has a bunch of flowers on it. ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

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Do you have a vegetable or flower garden?

Do you enjoy growing things?

What’s your favorite type of flower? (Mine are lilies and I have a bunch in front of my house that are getting ready to bloom and I cant wait!!!)