Thursday, December 27, 2012

Bo's 28th Birthday

We celebrated Bo's 28th Birthday at Hal's, which many people claim to be the best steakhouse in Atlanta. It was very good, but we ranked it a close second to Chops, which is still our favorite. Our current standings have Bones ranked third and McKendrick's fourth - Bo says Rathbun's is fifth but I still have not been (maybe one day!).

he loves taking pictures!



It was such a delicious meal! We had carpaccio, martinis, caesar salad, lobster bisque, filet, ribeye, mashed potatoes, sauteed mushrooms, cognac, port, cheesecake, and chocolate cake - most are pictured below via iphone. To say we were stuffed to the brim would be an understatement and I was glad I wore a stretchy dress ;)




Since we ate so much on his actual birthday, we had carrot cake (his favorite) a few days later, and for many days after that! :) Happy Birthday, my love!









Sunday, December 23, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Bo and I have plenty to be thankful for this year, but most of all would be our friends and family. As in years past, we celebrated Thanksgiving twice. First, we hosted our annual "Friendsgiving" the Sunday before Thanksgiving. We had the usual crew of 22 for the evening, including Tillman, our first baby attendee. I had just ran a half marathon that morning and flew back just in time for a huge meal at home - everyone said I was crazy (perhaps...) but I thought it worked out just perfectly for me! I told him we could skip Friendsgiving this year since I wasn't there to help setup, and you'd think I suggested we jump off a cliff. I baked my pumpkin pie ahead of time and Bo took care of everything for the day. It's one of his favorite events so he insisted. I didn't argue! :) 








A few days later, we drove up to Blowing Rock to spend the rest of the week with Bo's family. We skipped out on all the hiking this year since I still wasn't feeling very well, but we had a very relaxing time catching up on sleep and watching movies and football.





smores!!



On the day we left, we stopped by Appalachian Evergreen to pick out our Christmas tree. I just love this tree farm! I probably say this every year, but this one is my favorite tree yet. More pictures to come, eventually...

Molly was a great helper


our tree - 9.5 feet tall!

we don't cut it down ourselves - we yell "chainsaw!!" and they do it for us :)

our most massive tree yet

all tied up and ready to head home to Atlanta!


Last year's Thanksgiving posts:
2011 Friendsgiving
2011 Thanksgiving




Sunday, December 16, 2012

13.1

Five years ago, Adrienne and I ran our first half marathon - and what I thought was surely my last. After that race, I was miserable and sore and never wanted to run again, much less run another half marathon! In my mind, it was a one-and-done deal, checked off the life bucket list never to be repeated. I think it took me close to a year before I really got back into running again, but only enough to maintain my weight (aka justify eating and drinking!).

Fast forward to last fall, when my foot started killing me and I had to stop running entirely. I eventually had surgery, earlier this year back in January. I think being forced to sit inside and be as inactive as I could, made me want to get back out there as soon as possible. One of my best friends, Kelly, ran the Disney half marathon about a week after my surgery and I was actually jealous of her. Crazy! Once I had my doctor's clearance, I started signing up for 5k races and eventually Kelly talked me, Dani, Susan, and Amy into running a half marathon together.

After months of training and virtually cheering each other on, it was finally race weekend! We got into Tampa Friday night and stayed up way too late catching up with each other. Saturday was a pretty low-key day making our way over to St. Pete, and taking it easy before the race on Sunday. We all joked that it was the longest period of time we've hung out with each other and not had a drink ;)

lunch in Tampa with Corie & Ashley

Our team, the Hootie Hoo Half Marathoners - Dani, Susan, me, Kelly, and Amy. Carb-loading dinner Saturday night!

all ready for the race - Gator themed, obviously! :)


Sunday morning we got up bright and early for the St. Pete Women's Half Marathon. We had great weather - sunny and overcast but not hot, although a little less windy would have been nice. It was an extremely flat course which was such a nice change from the hills in Atlanta.

before the race!





Amy and I ran the whole thing together! Well, almost the whole thing - I was fighting a bad sinus infection, which made it pretty difficult to breathe. Kinda important when you're running ;)  I made it up until the last few miles when I literally couldn't get any air into my lungs and stopped to walk a few times. Amy was such a trooper - she definitely could have left me in the dust, but she stayed with me and there is no way I would have made it without her!



Amy and I finished in 2:27, which is an 11:13 pace. I was hoping to finish a little faster, but realistically my goal was less than 2:30 - which we just barely beat. At that point, I was just glad to cross the finish line alive.  It was worth it, the medals we got are awesome!




We all finished within a few minutes of each other. Loved seeing these lovely ladies at the finish line! So proud of us!!

finishers!!

after!


My favorite part about running is definitely the post-race celebratory drinks :) 

cheers!!


Thankfully, my recovery after the race was a million times better than the last one. So much so, that we are already thinking about running another half together sometime next year. Who wants to join us?!




Sunday, December 9, 2012

Homecoming

The weekend after the Missouri game, we headed back down to Gainesville for Homecoming. My parents and Leslie also came up, so it was a very Gator-rific family weekend :)

Of all the years I've gone to Homecoming, I've never ran the Gator Gallop. It's a 2 mile race that kicks off the parade - and since I was training for a half marathon at the time, it was a nice change of pace from the longer runs I had been doing. I somehow convinced my mom and Leslie to run, and then they convinced our cousins, Tyler and Jenna, to run with us, too. This was mom's first race ever and she was glad it didn't kill her! Time to start training for next year.

Mom, Leslie, Jenna, Tyler & me




After the race, we planned on watching the parade, but we were starving and headed to lunch instead. We stopped by for just a minute and saw the Hare Krishna float.




Later that night we all went to Copper Monkey for burgers and beers before heading to Gator Growl. 

Leslie, me, Sarah & Paul, and Bo


For those of you non-Gators, Gator Growl is the largest student-run pep rally in the world and is held in the stadium. It was a decent show, but in recent years it hasn't been nearly as good as it used to be when I was younger. My favorite part is always the skits that make fun of other teams and schools, but every year there seem to be less and less of those. Tracy Morgan was the comedian this year and he was hilarious.





After Growl we went to Gator City to try and watch the season opener basketball game, but it was cancelled due to mist on the air craft carrier in Jacksonville. So we just hung out at the bar all night. Funny how I rarely went to Gator City as a student, but now it seems to be our bar of choice.





We played Louisiana-Lafayette, and (again) I cannot tell you what a stressful game this was - theme of the season this year!! The last time Bo and I went to the homecoming game was a few years ago when we lost against Mississippi State. We were *thisclose* to deciding we would never go back for homecoming since we were losing up until the last three minutes of the game, when our team made a miraculous come back and scored two touchdowns at the very end to win the game. Against a team we should have killed. We just took a deep breath and couldn't believe this team was now 9-and-1.



meanwhile, the rest of the family was on the complete opposite side/end of the stadium


siblings <3

just missing Mike!



As if that wasn't enough Gator events all in one weekend, we finished it off with a basketball game against Alabama State on Sunday. Since the game Friday night was cancelled, this one ended up being the season opener. Bo and I hadn't been to a home basketball game since we were students, so it was nice being back in the O'Dome. We left a little early to head back home, but they ended up winning 84-35. Total domination. Our football team should take some notes ;)




finally, a picture of all of us together :)

Such a great family Gator weekend!




Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Reunion Tailgate - UF vs Mizzou

This year, our annual Chi Omega tailgate was for the UF football game against Missouri. In years past, we usually picked the biggest home game - typically against LSU, Alabama, or Tennessee. The past two years' losses against Bama and LSU were rather devastating (not to mention, expensive tickets!). So immediately after our Bama reunion last year, we decided to pick a less popular game to attend, and one that our Gators would surely win. Katrina is recently engaged to a Mizzou Tiger, so we figured it would be a perfect weekend for everyone to get together and welcome those Tigers to the Gainesville.





We usually have a huge crowd, but we made it a much smaller to-do this year. Several cancellations (boo...you know who you are!) and a noon game didn't make for the best tailgating conditions, but we had such a great time anyway. Plus, we had a new addition to our crew with this little tailgator :)

Kelly & Dustin's daughter, Kyla - isn't she the cutest!





Bo and I were really excited for this game. Since we also went to the Texas A&M game earlier in the stadium, we got to see the Gators play both of our new SEC opponents this year.






Yet another stressful game, and we somehow barely pulled off the win. 8-1, Go Gators!




The nice thing about a noon game is that the bars are pretty empty until after dinner time. We all met up at Gator City and stayed for the entire night. I keep forgetting I'm not in college anymore ;)

boozin with Susan!

our Tiger / Gator table

love!

Even my brother made it out to see us! It's amazing how he only seems to turn up when free beer is involved ;)

Obviously, Mike is not yet officially part of the family as he still smiles and looks normal in pictures.

crazy clowns


Now the big question is...which game should we choose for our reunion next year?! Miss you girls already!