Tuesday, December 28, 2010
I got some feedback from my in-laws on the Chrustmas dinner! My husband told me afterward on Saturday that I did a great job, and that he liked the way I carried everything out, but I thought he was just being nice.... ;)
But his mom called him and told him to make EXTRA EXTRA sure to tell me that she LOVED the food. And to make EXTRA EXTRA sure that I know my sister-in-law and father-in-law ALSO loved the food.... Wow. That made me feel good. My sister-in-law and MIL both are very negative, critical people, who don't hand out compliments! So, I'm super glad they liked all the food! My SIL also had 3 helpings of my candied sweet potatoes (I just make a whole-grain crumbly crust with nuts and oatmeal, no marshmallows. Yuck! to marshmallows!), and Germans usually don't like sweet potatoes!! (So they say!)
But I think the biggest compliment of all from my MIL was that she totally loved the atmosphere, hanging out with us, and how well I managed everything. She even said it was RELAXED! I've watched enough cooking shows on German television to know that's something Germans care about and take note of - they don't like it when the hostess seems really frazzled and chaotic. And my MIL ALWAYS tells me I'm chaotic! (I'm a bit of a scatter-brain...)
Well, I would say, being told that I provided a wonderful family dinner atmosphere is the highest compliment!! That was exactly what I hoped to accomplish and provide for them. (On top of the good, home-made-from-scratch food, of course!!) That was truly my "Mission Accomplished!"
Monday, December 27, 2010
The 2 weeks leading up to Christmas were just a disaster diet-wise! My running was right on target, and so was my ST pretty much, but diet??? Between being sooooooo incredibly busy, and simply grabbing anything that was available and easy to eat (usually ending up being store-bought bread, crackers, cookies, and CHOCOLATE!), to having feasts and parties, on top of doing a lot of baking and cooking myself - and I must admit: I am a HUGE nibbler!!! Oh my!
So, I have a few goals for the last few days of 2010:
1. Get back on track with tracking - write down all my food explicitly, every bite, every nibble, no exceptions. Put it into SP.
2. Cut out the sugar and alcohol, except for on NYE, and only at or after the party! That means, don't touch the kids' chocolate or cookies, and let the kids eat the left over pie - NOT ME!!
3. Get back to my healthy diet - lots of veggies, protein, whole grains. I just FEEL SO MUCH BETTER when I eat right.
4. Take pictures for the Rachel Mac Challenge.... NO TIME, seriously, I have had NO TIME! Though I think my pictures now are going to be worse than the first ones I took. I have not been on my game eating-wise, and it makes a HUGE difference.
5. Take pictures of me in my NEW SKINNY JEANS! I finally tried them!! I bought a couple of pairs, and definitely want to share!! I can't believe I can even fit into something like that and feel confident!
6. Get my long run in for this week on New Years Eve in the morning. Then I can stay up late, and not have to dread getting up early, or ditching my family for a long time on Saturday. It will be my last run for 2010, and I wanna go out with a BANG!!
So, time to tackle Monday!! The last Monday in 2010!! I am not one for making New Year's resolutions (because I think most of the time, they are crap, and I am one for constantly bettering yourself, not just at New Years), but I am thinking of a few specific goals for 2011.... That's for another blog though....
Happy last week of the year, everyone!!!
Sunday, December 26, 2010
How I did it:
LIke I wrote yesterday, I was trying to AVOID having to do my long run and my whole Christmas dinner extravaganza all on the same day, but lo and behold, my plans changed mid-week, and I just decided to go for it. For me, those long runs are the most important, so I try to really prioritize them, and not put them off. So, here is how I wrapped up Marathon Training Week 9 of 18!!
Wake-up: 4:15 am
Outside Temp: 14°F
Trail conditions: plowed a few days ago, but with 4" or so of fresh snow.
Projected run: A loop covering about 19 miles, though I wasn't sure because I hadn't run it yet.
I dragged myself out of bed after my alarm went off, tired but excited about my day. Went downstairs, started the fully automatic espresso machine (always gotta have my coffee first!), changed into my running gear, and started eating a banana and drinking water. Then I realized, I had not charged my Garmin after my last run, and it was around 45% after that run... So I checked... Sure enough, only 30%. I knew that would not last my estimated 19 miles. And there was NO WAY I wanted to go out for such a long run and have it die on me. So I plugged the Garmin in....
I decided not to waste the time, and instead started working on Christmas dinner prep. I made the crumbly crust for the candied sweet potatoes, I sauteed the onions and celery for the stuffing, and then mixed it in with the already dried breadcrumbs. So, I got to check a few "to-do" things off my list!!
Then I left around 6 (yes it took that long!). The sidewalk trail that I run on, which runs along the roads, had enough fresh snow on it that it really slowed me down. I decided to not waste my energy or time trying to run on it, and opted to run directly on the road. I have a few reflectors and also a red flashing light on my back, and the cars were sparse on Christmas morning. Why cause myself needless fatigue, right? I would say a good 80% of my run was directly on the road, which was also a bit snowy, but better than the trail. Anyway, I felt really, really great throughout my whole run, carrying what was a nice pace, at least for me... until that last 5 km. Then it started getting REALLY hard!! But I still pushed through and finished well, I think. Didn't stop to take any pictures though, this week. Just wanted to get my run done.
Total distance: 19.45 miles (31.3 km)
Time: 3:26:31 (Avg. 10:37/mile)
I got home at 9:40 or so, quite wiped out to be honest, my hubby had gotten all the kids fed, and was sitting at the kitchen table. I walked in the door (he could see me from where he was sitting), and did a dramatic (however fake) collapse to the floor!! I WAS SO GLAD TO BE HOME!! I filled him in on the details of my run as I stretched, then quickly made my breakfast.
By 10:30, we were already well into our Christmas dinner prep together. My hubby helped soooo much!! He peeled potatoes, pears, and parsley root. He tooked the skin off the baked sweet potatoes. He helped me set and decorate the table. He helped dish up the first appetizer. We worked really great together. His parents were scheduled to come at 4, so I wanted to be ready with the first appetizer at 4 sharp. I was gonna try to sneak in a snooze in the early afternoon, after puting the turkey in at 1:30, but that didn't happen. We just had too much to do. When they got here, everything was ready to start at least (the turkey still needed more time, but that was what I had planned on.) We all shared a glass of Prosecco, and started with the salad and proscuitto pears. Then I served the parsley root soup (an old German recipe), which seemed to be a big hit! Then I served the main course - the turkey, mashed potatoes, candied sweet potatoes, green beans, gravy, and stuffing... I only totally forgot to get cranberries to make cranberry sauce this year!! Other than that, the dinner turned out GREAT!! Served the dessert - a small slice of sweet potato pie with a side of German dessert, a vanilla pudding type dessert with a white wine foam on the top. They actually went really well together - the German dessert was quite sour, and the sweet potato pie quite sweet, so they really complimented one another.
Ok, ENOUGH ABOUT FOOD!! Sorry, I love cooking, and am starting to get better at entertaining and being a host, so yesterday was a HUGE success for me... ON TOP OF MY HUGE RUN!!
So, my plan for Week 9 had been:
Sunday: Rest (Yep!)
Monday: Tempo Run 6.5 mi, BodyPump
**Actual: ran 6 miles
Tuesday: Rest (Yep!)
Wed: Intervals 5.5 mi, BodyPump
**Actual: Ran 5 mile, TR... AWESOME!
**Actual: Ran 6 miles, with intervals
Friday: 18-19 miles (Not sure, but I am going to try a longer loop.)
**Actual: I rested
Saturday: a light 4 miles
**Actual: ran 19.45 miles!! WOOOHOOO! Longest run to date!! AND ON TOP of all the pressures of the holidays. I have a huge sense of accomplishment making it through that. =)
Plan for Week 10:
Monday: 9 mile run, BodyPump and Combat classes
Wed: 7 mile run, BodyPump
Friday: Long run: 17 mile run
Saturday: EZ 4 miles
I will like getting my long run out of the way for the week BEFORE the New Years Eve celebration. I know we will be up late, and I HATE trying to go running if its not early in the morning, so I am planning ahead for that!!
Anyway, sorry for such a long rambling blog!! HOPE EVERYONE HAD A WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS!!!! Happy holiday running to all!
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Stuffed full of turkey, stuffing, and definitely sweet potatoes!! I love me some sweet potatoes!! Dinner went so well. My hubby even told me I did an awesome job, and that he felt I carried everything out really well. My MIL really seemed to enjoy the food.
However I must say, havIng run this morning made it tough!! My 19+ miles this morning (just short of 3.5 hrs) was exhausting! But I had to recover quickly and jump into my preparation tasks. I must say, I'm sitting here now on the sofa, food is put away, guests are gone, dishwasher is running, and I'm about to pass out from absolute exhaustion. I had originally planned to do my long run on Christmas Eve to avoid this uber-exhaustion, but there was some talk of us changing our plans and doing our big dinner on Christmas Eve, so I ran on Thursday, thinking I'd do my dinner yesterday, and run today in peace. But no, plans changed again... So, I sucked it up and tackled that run, and then my huge dinner!
Friday, December 24, 2010
And not just for coffee!! This all bothered me so much yesterday, which is why I felt the need to vent and blog about it. So I urged my hubby to call his mom, and just talk to her again, but also to let her know that, for me, doing a big dinner with them was something that I really really love doing, that is would really mean a LOT to me if they would stay for the big ol' turkey dinner. He even told her (gently of course) that we were a bit offended that she had told us not to do it. I guess to her, making a big dinner like this and all the effort that goes into it, is totally not worth it, and is NOT something she enjoys (which I kind of suspected). So, she thought it would be the same for me.
Anyway, I am really glad that we got it all worked out!! At first, I was kind of disappointed when my hubby said they were gonna come, because I had already gotten to the point where I was hoping they wouldn't come AT ALL!! But that disappointment quickly faded, and my mind quickly jumped to how I could make it TOTALLY AWESOME FOR THEM!! WOOOHOOO! So excited.
I know my MIL can be a real pain. Sometime she is nearly impossible to be around. But when it all comes down to it, she is my family, and family is very important to me... ESPECIALLY AT CHRISTMAS!!
So tomorrow, this country girl from Washington State is gonna pull out all the "fancy" she can muster!! I want to have a wonderful time with my family, and make wonderful memories.
Here is my menu for tomorrow:
Pears cooked in white wine, vanilla, and maple syrup, cooled and then wrapped in Proscuitto, served over Feldsalat (don't know what that is in English), and dressing made from the juices from the cooked pears.
Warm Appetizer (doing 2 appetizers, since that is the official "fancy" standard for Germans!):
Candied sweet potatoes
Sauteed green beans with almonds
Sweet potato pie
A VERY traditional German dessert called "Vanilla Flammery topped with a white wine foam"
I make EVERYTHING from scratch - except for the bread for the stuffing - I bought the loaves. I am SOOOO EXCITED about this! I am hoping to make this super, super nice for both my family and my in-laws!
MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYONE!!!!!!!!
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