2016 Glass Slipper Challenge

Untitled

Disney races are my absolutely favorite type of races.  From the expo to the finish line, Mickey really knows how to throw a good party.  For the second year in a row I completed the Glass Slipper Challenge.  My friend Kate joined me for the festivities.

Untitled

Before the race we ate at Morimoto’s at Disney Springs.  It’s one of the newest restaurants, so you know I was dying to get a table.  The duck was exceptional.  Best carbo-loading ever.

Untitled

 

The atmosphere was stunning.  I felt like I should have left the flip flops at home and opted for stilettos instead.

Untitled

In order to earn the coveted GSC medal, you have to compete the Enchanted 10K on Saturday and the Princess Half Marathon on Sunday.  It’s a very full weekend of Disney running, but I wouldn’t want it any other way.  My friend Kate is new to running and decided to do the 10K with me.

Untitled

The Half Marathon starts at the butt crack of dawn, but the sooner you get started, the sooner you are DONE.  Plus, there is so much nervous energy at the start line, it carries you through the first 3 miles.

 

Untitled

Once you see the castle, you’re about half way.  The race route goes right through Cinderella’s house and it. is. magical.

 

Untitled

There is honestly so much to look at, you totally forget that your stomach hurts, your toenails are falling off, you have a cramp in your leg, you’ve run 9 miles and it’s only 6:45am.

 

Untitled

Completing 19.3 miles is the easy part after going through the anxiety-inducing sign up process, the training, booking the flights and hotels, packing and travel.  It’s not easy being a princess, but honestly, being in a community of strong woman runners is more than I could have dreamed.  The love and support that I get both in person and in the Facebook runDisney community fulfills something deep inside of my soul.  Plus, who doesn’t love running around Disney in tutus?!?!  If you’re on the fence about doing a race, you will not regret it!! 

Anne<3

Reflections on Teaching

I’m not sure if I’m going though a mid-life crisis, or just want to get a few thoughts down before I start forgetting everything, but I feel compelled to tell some stories from my teaching days.  I left education in 2014, but lately I’ve been thinking about my time in schools and some pretty funny stories have cropped up.  I taught kids with special needs for 10 years, so of course, I had my ups and downs.  Many students are not what you would expect.  I never had a kid in a wheelchair, I never cleaned up drool, and towards the end of my career in public schools, I even taught chemistry.  Just for the record, chemistry is difficult… you can imagine how tough it was balancing chemical equations with kids on the ADHD Express.  Ya know what I mean?

Anyway, in my second year of teaching, I had a special assignment to be the second teacher in a variety of classrooms.  I had to help kids who were struggling with certain subjects.  Here is a story about one experience that I will never forget.  Enjoy!

 

westward expansion

It was time to get the kids ready to go outside.  We weren’t going to recess, we were doing a special project today.  Their teacher, Mrs. DiVivi, announced to the class that it was “Time to make Western Expansion come alive!”.  The bubble of energy in the room immediately shifted from a state of dogged concentration to one of excited elation.  The specialness of the day was all-consuming and everyone, even I, felt it.  I was also a teacher, but I was not the teacher, I was the special education teacher who came in to help one student who was struggling in math.  His name was George.  I sat and helped him during math time, in a little kid desk, almost as if I was a student.  Sometimes it felt that way too, but not as much on days like today, when I was invited to stay for the social studies hour and participate in facilitating special projects.  Today, I would take a role that at least resembled an adult.

I helped Mrs. D round up the students, all of whom were dressed in their various interpretations of old time-y Western wear and carrying pioneer-era food, bonnets, lanterns, and some had decorated wagons.  Mrs. DiVivi’s husband was a local taxidermist, so she carried a large box of animals that had been hunted, stuffed and mounted on very realistic plastic logs.  These creations included a rabbit, a snake and a raccoon mama with her three babies.  Their inquisitive expressions had been shellacked into place forever.  I carried the class juice boxes and we headed for the soccer field where orange cones were already set up to provide us with a designated track.

The idea was that each group of students would drag their wagon, filled with all of their provisions, around the field of cones.  This was supposed to simulate the hardship felt by early pioneers.  They had an hour to make it around the field 10 times and they were free to stop and rest or eat their snacks as needed.  Being 10-years-old, everyone wanted to picnic immediately.  My student (bless his slow-math-learning-soul) was responsible for his group’s blanket.  Not food, not juice, not the wagon, he didn’t even bother with a costume…just the blanket, George.  I can just imagine the negotiation that occurred during last week’s Westward Expansion planning session.  The group leader, a bossy girl with one of those 2 name deals, like Sierra Leone, reasoned that George might screw up his task.  She could not risk inedible cupcakes or wagon decorations that were just string and glue, so she assigned George a task that required no cooking, no designing, no thought, no risk.  Just bring a blanket, George.  That’s all we need you to do.  Your group is counting on you for a blanket, buddy, so you have to bring it.

George was on.  It was time to picnic and all of the other groups were unfolding their blankets.  Half running, half walking, George appeared from behind the soccer goal, huge shopping bag in hand.  He knew he didn’t measure up to the other students in so many ways.  He wasn’t as smart, he wasn’t funny (at least not on purpose), he wasn’t good looking, and George was incredibly small for his age.  He wasn’t so small that you just KNEW his mother drank like a fish while she was pregnant, but definitely not big enough to totally rule out that possibility.  George set his shopping bag down and pulled out a mauve monstrosity.  It was a blanket that was old enough to be from the real pioneer days.  Pilled and full of holes, George just kept pulling out more and more material until at last, the empty bag blew away in a sudden gust of wind.  I watched it fly to the top of a nearby tree and mentally labeled it a casualty.  The children had watched the bag soar and chatted about possibly going to retrieve it as I started to unfold the blanket.  What happened next is something that I will never forget.  I unfolded the huge pink nightmare only to discover… cat turds.  Hidden in the blanket, were bunch of dried up, but nonetheless smelly, cat turds – about six of them.  Cat turds that presumably had been laid by the family pet and then forgotten about some time ago, holding onto that fabric more securely than that rabbit on the plastic log.  Prying them off was not an option.  In the same exact instant I was horrified and felt protective over George and his gross, feces-laden cloth.  Sierra Leone was walking over and I knew that if she saw the wretched state of the blanket, she would make a huge deal out it.  It would mean merciless teasing for George from here on out until he (God willing) graduated from high school.

I quickly searched both sides of the blanket and saw that only one side was turd-y.  The other side was relatively clean.  I quickly placed the blanket turd-side-down and stood on the part of the blanket concealing the poop.  Sierra Leone looked at me up and down, but I was not meeting her gaze.  This was partly because I was intimidated by her and partly because I was a full 2 feet taller and it was easy to look right over her head.  “Can you get off so we can spread out the blanket?” she asked, obviously annoyed with my presence in her immediate vicinity. “Sorry Sierra Leone, I was just kicking out the blanket to spread it out, why don’t you try spreading it out with your feet?”  The look on her face was two parts confusion and one part disgust.  “Why would we do that?  Isn’t it going to get our blanket all dirty?”  Yes, yes, Sierra Leone, it was going to mess up your perfect plan for perfect pioneer picnic day.  It’s not what you had in mind when you made your checklist of what to bring that included suntan lotion in case it’s too sunny.  It doesn’t fit the picture of what your mother had in mind when she meticulously hand-crafted wagon wheel cupcakes for the entire class even though you only had to bring sustenance for your group.  I know I’m ruining your good time, but it’s either this small inconvenience or years of torment for my George.  George deserves this from me.  He’s already sobbing about the stuffed raccoon mama and her three babies having to die to make a cruel piece of “art.”  That’s the kind of kid that George is, he feels things.  I mean he really, really, feels things.  He has more compassion for that raccoon mama than most people will ever be able to muster for another human being.  And you’re not bad, Sierra Leone, you’re not a bad little girl.  You’ll go on to earn almost every end-of-the-year award in our school.  You’ll have more hand-crafted cupcakes, recitals, and homecoming tiaras than most girls could even imagine.  You’ll probably marry well, move out of this suburb and into a better suburb, raise your kids and make them amazing baked goods.  I can’t wait to see your real estate agent ad on a park bench one day.  You will make it!

George…eh, we don’t know.  I can’t see George’s future, but he’s probably not headed for the bright lights of real estate benches.  All I know is that I need to protect him from his circumstances.  I doubt his mother knew about the cat turds, but she probably wouldn’t have cared much either way.  Kids were kids and cats are cats, and we just do the best that we can.  I get it, but today I have to be the best special ed teacher I can be.  Sometimes that means sitting in multiplication hell and sometimes it means standing on cat turds.  Why do I do this?  Because I’m sure that there is a teacher in my past that stood on my preverbal cat turds.  That’s why we do it, because when you can, you must.

C’mon kids, help me kick this blanket.

One of THOSE days…

Untitled

I really have no room to complain, really.  I have a wonderful husband,  I get be a dog mommy to two fabulous dogs, I live in an awesome house, etc.  I really shouldn’t complain, and yet…some days y’all…some days just get to me.  The first problem today was that I received notification that I had a letter at the post office with insufficient postage.

OK, no big deal, I’ll just drive the 10+ miles, plus pay the needed 49 cents to retrieve said letter so that I may read its valuable contents.  I get to the post office after battling horrible DC traffic only to discover that the letter in question is nothing more than a Chanel ad.  A FUCKING ad.  FOR FUCKING CHANEL WATCHES.  Now I will never buy a Chanel watch because you made me go 10+ miles in the rain and traffic, Chanel- all because you didn’t know that a square envelope requires additional postage.  Coco would be mortified.

I called the Chanel store listed on the advertisement, explained that I was deeply dissatisfied with their knowledge of the postal system, and the exact sentiment expressed by the salesperson was, “I’m sorry, have a good day.” And then she hung up. HUNG UP.  I could have straggled the bitch right through the phone. Again, Coco, I hope you’re watching this shit from above because your people need help.

Untitled My second issue of the day came when I realized that a customer of mine had returned their challenge pack.  OK, I get it.  You thought twice about spending $140, or whatever…it happens.  It just sucks because I had met my goal and it’s the very end of the month, so getting new customers is tricky in the final hours.  I get it, I shouldn’t have been coasting, and I should never take for granted that I have my goal in the bag when I sell a challenge pack, but honestly, I’ve never had one person back out of getting these incredible tools!  Usually people are SO HAPPY to start something new, they never think about returning it!  I reached out to this customer 5 times since she ordered and never received a response…so I know I did my job.  Some people just don’t want to help themselves.  Or me.

Anybody wanna help a sistah out with this, here’s the link: 21 Day Fix

Untitled

Then, coming home from class, it was raining and traffic was a nightmare.  God bless the people that suffer through this every day.  I could not.  I would literally lose my shit.  By the time I got home, I was hangry, upset, and seriously had to pee.  It didn’t help that I absolutely HAD to stop and get gas on the way home.  in the rain. with no umbrella. FML.

UntitledAt least I got to come home to this guy- and my husband.  Husbands are always good for kissing your forehead and pour you a glass of wine.  OK, enough you guys.  I can’t.  I just can’t.  I’m going to bed.  

How do you get through tough days?  Leave a reply because I’m seriously in need of some ideas!

2 Chicks in Tiaras

Untitled

This is how I feel right now.  I’m recovering from running the DIVAS Half Marathon through beautiful Virginia Wine Country.  13.1 is no joke, but it was really fun.

P.S. Vito is not dead.  He’s just totally zonked out and his tongue is trying to escape from his mouth.  Plus, it’s sweater weather in Virginia <3

Untitled I ran the entire race with my good friend, Sarah.  After picking up our packets at the gorgeous Landsdowne Resort, we had dinner in order to fuel our bodies for war running.  Here we are with matching brownie sundaes.  

Untitled

The next morning I woke up at 5am and didn’t even brush my hair.

I just did like Elsa and let it go.

Untitled I had to take a picture of these two.  Look at their shirts!  I need that tank like, yesterday.  

Untitled

We ran through Virginia vineyards, and some very posh neighborhoods of Loudoun County.  It was lovely.  The weather was perfect, nice and cool with a bit of a breeze.  My only complaint is that the course was a bit hilly.  A lot of people commented that there was no chance of setting a personal record due to the hills.

Untitled Yes, we’re in pink.  Everyone was in pink.  The DIVA races are super girly and fab-u-lous.  We got tutus, tiaras, boas, and medals at the finish.  We chatted the entire way, so it really took our minds off of how much we were straining ourselves.  Sarah and I shared some sparkling cider and happy relief when all the miles were run.

Untitled

Could these medal be any more perfect for this blog??

Do you run solo or with a friend?  Do you also chafe from tutus??  Leave a reply!

Best Healthy Meal Ever

Untitled

I’ve been eating a ton of buffalo lately.  We have a farmer’s market in my neighborhood that sells all kinds of buffalo products- ground buffalo, buffalo steak, liver, even leather bracelets.

Untitled

If you don’t have one of these, you should definitely invest the $10.  It’s a spiralizer and you can make zucchini noodles for days.  You can get yours Here 

Untitled You can spiralize every little piece of zucchini.  I end up cutting up the parts that I can’t get through the spiralizer.  

Untitled

I decided to use a new sauce from Trader Joe’s.  It had a lot of capers, which is not really my cup of tea, but take a look at the sugar content…

Untitled TWO grams of sugar!  Yes!  It can be done!  

Untitled

Voila!  Dinner!  Super low carb and so much like regular spaghetti!  When it comes to the 21 Day Fix, it’s 1 1/2 green, one red, and one blue if you add cheese like I did!

Untitled

Plate of buffalo for the dogs 🙂

Untitled

You should totally try this!  I make buffalo or ground turkey “spaghetti” at least once per week.

 

 

What’s your favorite healthy meal?  Leave a reply!

Day of the Diva

Untitled

 

Well, it’s started!  My crazy Halloween planning is in full force!  This year’s theme is “Dia de los Muertos” or “Day of the Dead” and clearly, we needed all of these cool skulls from Jo Ann Fabrics!

Untitled And I also needed this awesome orange and black apron so that I can be the (self-appointed) Queen of Halloween!  My party isn’t until October 30th and yet, I can’t help but think nothing but Halloween thoughts.  I have a very vertical house with 4 floors, so my decorations are elaborate, and tricky to get up sometimes.  I’m planning a digital display on the first floor for the trick-o-treaters.  This year is truly go big or go home!  Wait, we’re going big AT home…more on the festivities later!

Untitled

All of this planning is making me hungry.  I tried out these new nut bars from Think Thin.  They have a bit more sugar than I would like (8 grams), but the taste is out of this world!  I get absolutely zero dollars from Think Thin, but I just thought I would share this tasty little snack.  Anne approved! 🙂

 

Untitled Speaking of things I love, I got my Love Finny sweatshirt in the mail today!  Finny is the son of a high school friend of mine.  He has Muscular Dystrophy and will one day be in a wheelchair.  He’s is the sweetest little soul and I love the design they came up with for these fundraiser shirts.  I always share their posts when they do these shirt sales, so be on the look out if you’re my FB friend.  If your not my FB friend, why the heck not?  If you’re on my blog, you should at least be following me on the ‘Book.  https://www.facebook.com/annebk Untitled

This was an incredible mail day.  I got my awesome new sweatshirt AND a new flavor of Shakeology!  I got a bag of the vegan tropical strawberry.  I can’t wait to bust into it!!

What’s your favorite thing to get in the mail?  Can people still not reply??  I will try and figure this thing out….again….thanks for reading!

The Theory of Orange

Untitled

 

My neighborhood got a new addition!  Today Orange Theory Fitness opened about 3 minutes from my house.  Right next door there is a European Wax Center opening, so once you have your hot body, you can also make it hairless.

Untitled You know when you work out on brand-new equipment?  It’s so shiny and new, I wish it would stay that way!  In the background is this amazing instructor named Tara G.  She’s a Lululemon ambassador and all-around badass.  #girlcrush

Untitled

So fresh and so clean clean.

Untitled I’m sensing a theme here.

Untitled

OK, so the workout details (AKA the reason you care about this post).  Half of the workout is done on the treadmill.  The trainer talks you through a series of speed drills.  You have the option of power walking at an incline, jogging, or running.  The other part of the workout is comprised of two stations- one at the rowers and one in a personal training area.  Today, we rowed for 5 minutes, then we went to the training area and did a series of strength training exercising, then we came back to the rowers and rowed 400 meters.  Finally, we headed back to the training area for several rounds of squats and ab exercises.  According to my trainer, the overall concept is always the same, but it’s mixed up differently every. single. time.

 

Untitled

Woof, it was seriously hard, but I felt amazing afterwards.  Every pore was cleaned from the massive amounts of sweat coming out.  

Untitled

Finale: one of my friends sent this picture from last Saturday night.  Perhaps I should write a post about my crazy debauchery that went down in the clubs and on the streets of DC.

Have you tried the theory which is orange??  Do you like debauchery?? Leave a reply!

Getting My Buzz On

Untitled

 

This morning I had to take my car in for service bright and early, so I stopped at Mickey D’s for an iced coffee.  I specifically asked for skim milk only in my iced coffee (because they don’t have almond, coconut OR soy milk- how spoiled am I that I’m mad about that?).

Untitled What I ended up getting was basically a cup-o-sugar.  I had already pulled out when I tried it and would have had to make two U-turns in the middle of Tyson’s Corner, so I just kept on driving.  Down the drain it went when I got home.  Not one to give up, I went to my local organic market to get the fixings for a coffee recipe I saw on…wait for it…PINTEREST!  I <3 Pinterest.  If Pinterest was a person, I would probably leave Linus for her/him.

(Pinterest would be a gay man, let’s be honest) 

Untitled

Here’s what’s in it:  cold brew concentrate, about half a cup.  The side shows you how much to use per drink.  This brand is yummy, but I feel like they’re all pretty much the same.  It’s all about what you put into the coffee that makes the drink, amIright?

Untitled A cup of almond, coconut, soy or regular cow’s milk. Untitled About 6 drops of this little secret: Sweet Leaf stevia sweetener in delicious vanilla creme flavor.  Where have you been all my life??  I am beyond grateful to the Pinterest gods for bestowing this gift upon me.  

Untitled I made it in the same cup, because #recycling. Seriously though, this is going to be my new go-to drink in the morning.  I love my Beachbody Energize and I will continue to drink that too, but man, this REALLY hit the spot- the sweet caffeinated spot.  

Untitled

In other news, I had a very expensive day at The Container Store.  I’m redecorating the home office, which currently looks like a landfill  a bit untidy.   I can’t be conducting important Beachbody business in our current, um, situation, so here goes nothing!   I can’t wait to show you next Wednesday when it’s all installed and lookin’ fine.

If you could redecorate one room in your house, which one would it be??  Leave a reply!

Sweet Doggie Dogs

Untitled

 

If you don’t have dogs, you’re really missing out.  When I come home to wiggly tails and wet noses, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.  I really can’t express how much I love my dogs.  They are so sweet and loving.  Next to my husband, they are loves of my life.

Untitled

They are my trail running partners, even if all they do is sniff around.  Seriously, not much running gets done.  I love taking them to the trail because they run around like puppies.  Both Sugar and Vito are former puppy mill rescue dogs, so giving them wonderful, peaceful lives is that much more fulfilling because I know the horror that they faced in the years before we got them.

Untitled

I’m on Day 2 of Round 5 of the 21 Day Fix.  I’m hoping to lose another 10 pounds by Halloween.  Speaking of Halloween, I tried on Vito’s costume to make sure that it fits.  Look at this little Super Dog in the corner, watching mommy workout.

Untitled This is your life when you’re 33 years old and have no children.

Untitled

Halloween – We’re ready for YOU!!

How are you preparing for fall?  Costumes for dogs- awesome or just kind of sad?  Leave a reply!

LA Lady

Untitled

 

I know that I’ve written a lot about my sugar addiction.  There is something else, just a sinister that has me by the hair….total celebrity addition.  My favorite celebrities are Bravo celebrities, or Bravo-lebrities, if you will.  I’ve been to my favorite hunting ground, SUR restaurant, several times in order to stock the staff that appear in the reality series, “Vanderpump Rules.”  Sorry straight guys, this post (and every other post in this entire blog) is not for you.

Untitled I’m honestly not exactly sure why I’m so hopelessly obsessed with this show.  Like many ladies before me who watched Days of Our Lives, or the Young and the Restless, I find the story lines so fascinating.  Will Stassi take Jax back after she finds out he’s been cheating?  Are Tom and Arianna going to get together despite his psycho ex trying to stop their relationship?  I just can’t get enough.  

Untitled

The difference between old soaps and reality TV is that you can actually go to SUR with your real best friend and see the “characters” that are on TV.  They have real names, that you actually know, and even have real jobs- like really being real servers that bring you really real drinks.

Side note: these white jeans fit much better now that I’ve lost some weight.

Untitled

This is Peter, he is the real manager at SUR, on VP Rules, and a Johnny Depp look-alike.Untitled Jessica and I also like to hit up PUMP –  Lisa Vanderpump’s newest gay bar creation.  It really was just as lovely as you see on TV.  Untitled That’s where we ran into Brandy Howard and Julie Goldman from the show “The People’s Couch,” also on Bravo.  Julie played a reoccurring role in Mindy Kaling’s “The Mindy Project” as well.  They were beyond nice, super funny, and retweeted all of my tweets.  

Untitled

We also have to mention running into Heather DuBrow, OC Housewife extraordinaire.  She took great care of her extremely drunk friends that night.  That Heather, always the responsible one.

Untitled

Final stop, the Sprinkles cupcake ATM in Beverly Hills.  AKA Heaven on Rodeo.

 

What celebrities are you following?  Can you believe the new season of Vamderpump Rules is starting soon?  AHHH!!  Can’t freakin’ wait!!!