Monthly Archives: October 2012

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween!

Yesterday afternoon, I did end up taking the kids to the Halloween grand opening of the park.

The weather wasn’t as chilly as it was in the morning, but it was still pretty cold, so we only stayed about a half an hour. It was really nice. They had a red ribbon cutting ceremony for the park. They handed out big sugar cookies to all the kids, and had hot cocoa, hot cider, and popcorn. There was also a candy corn guessing contest and a balloon artist.

They also had “trunk or treating.” I have never heard of trunk or treating before this year, and I’ve heard it mentioned several times this year. I was surprised to learn that trunk or treating has been around since 2000.

Due to safety concerns, trunk-or-treating was introduced in 2000 as an alternative to hitting the pavement for candy on Halloween night. Cars are parked in a circle at a school or church parking lot, with event-goers decorating their open trunks and dressing in costume in order to hand out treats.



The kids had a fun time and would have stayed longer but it was getting too cold for Baby McCutie Fairy Princess.

When we got home, we worked on Jacob’s Halloween costume¬† bit.

If you can’t tell, he’s going to be a zombie. Danny was a zombie last year, so luckily I have all the make-up and fake blood leftover. Halloween is kind of weird if you think about it, right?!

Happy zombie Danny:

Today’s Workout

  • 1.06 miles pink treadmill
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

Today is the last day for the pink breast cancer awareness treadmill, so I made sure to get one more mile in before body pump.

Danny has the day off of work today, so he joined me for body pump.

Well, we’re off to pick up my niece and then we’re going to Jaden’s school for the Halloween parade and party. I can’t wait to take the kids trick-or-treating!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you have any plans today? Are you dressing up?
  • Did you have Halloween parties at school when you were a kid? Some schools near us don’t have Halloween parties anymore. I’m glad my son’s does.
  • What kind of candy are you giving out? We’re giving out kit kats, milky ways, and twix!


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Fun, Halloween, Working Out

That’s Wild

Last Night’s Workout

  • Spin Class – 50 minutes

Last night, after Spin class, I met my family at Buffalo Wild Wings for their grand opening.

A hot and sweaty mess:

My family loves Buffalo Wild Wings, but we don’t have one close to us. Until now. The new Buffalo Wild Wings is literally 5 minutes from our house.

It was crazy busy last night, and we had to wait at least an hour to sit down. We also had 9 people, so we always have to wait for a big table.

I don’t eat chicken wings, and I tried to stay healthy since I ate a lot of treats over the weekend. I ordered a side salad with southwest ranch dressing and a veggie boat with blue cheese dressing. Buffalo Wild Wings is the only place that I ever eat blue cheese dressing. I love it with celery. Danny and I also shared some cheesy potato wedges.

The salad wasn’t the best, but it wasn’t the worst either. You can’t really expect a great salad from a place known for its wings.

My dad always orders the blazin’ wings. They are the hottest you can get – the hottest of the hot. I think he’s crazy! They’re so hot, how can they be enjoyable to eat? I don’t like spicy foods at all. I like everything nice and mild.

Today’s Workout

  • 1.21 miles treadmill
  • Butts and Guts class – 60 minutes

It is so cold here today. I froze just walking from¬† my car to the gym. I hate cold weather. But I guess I should just feel very lucky that I don’t live on the east coast. If you do, I hope you’re doing okay!

I had plans to take the kids to the grand opening of a nearby park this afternoon. They¬†are having a bunch of Halloween activities, but I think it’s going to be too cold, especially for the baby. Hopefully, the weather will be decent for trick-or-treating tomorrow! Sometimes, we get really lucky with nice weather and other years it’s freezing. You never know what you’re going to get here in Chicago land!


For breakfast this cold morning,¬†I had a Van’s organic flax waffle topped with a bit of peanut butter and blueberries.

I have had these waffles in my freezer forever, but for some reason I only like to eat them with blueberries, so I picked some blueberries up at the store yesterday. I have never had the flax waffle before, and it was really good.

Questions of the day?

  • Have you ever been to a Buffalo Wild Wings? What do you order?
  • Do you like spicy food?
  • What’s the weather like where you live?
  • Are you excited for Halloween tomorrow?


Filed under Breakfast, Dinner, Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

I Like my Tattoos Fake

thinkThin giveaway winner:


Congrats! Please email your shipping address to runeatplay at hotmail dot com, and I will ship out your box of thinkThin bars!

Today’s Workout

  • Elliptical – 15 minutes
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

I didn’t workout Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, so it was nice to get back to the gym today. Rest days are important, but I love getting back to the gym!

And I have Spin class tonight. Only two more classes left. I don’t know if I’m going to sign up for the next session because the time is kind of a pain.


I left on my temporary tattoos from the Halloween party because I thought they were kind of cool.

The only pic I have of the fake tattoo on my back:

I don’t think I would ever get a real tattoo, mostly because I’m scared. A) I’m scared of pain and B) I’m scared of my dad.

There’s honestly nothing I want on my body forever. I feel like I am always changing my mind about things as frivolous as shoes and clothes so how could I get something permanent on my body forever? I’m not against tattoos, I just don’t think they’re personally for me. The things I liked¬†ten years ago, I don’t like now. And the things I like now, I won’t like¬†ten years from now. Just my thoughts on the subject.

I felt pretty cool with my fake tattoos though.

After the gym, I went grocery shopping and to pick up food for Jaden’s school Halloween party. Guess what I got assigned to bring…

Carrots! Great, I’m going to be the mom all the kids hate. Oh well, Jaden and¬†I already made Halloween goody bags for his class, so maybe the kids will like me after all. I use to be Jacob’s mom, but now I’m Jaden’s mom. Jaden’s mom has got it going on….

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about healthy snacks, but Halloween is meant for candy!


Lunch this afternoon was another potato and egg bowl.

I have potatoes to use up, plus I’m just boring like that.

Questions of the day:

  • Do you have a tattoo? What is it?
  • Would you ever get a tattoo?
  • Do you pass out Halloween treats…or carrots?


Filed under Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Halloween Party 2012

Saturday night was our annual Halloween party.

Danny and I dressed up as a taco and Taco Bell hot sauce (which is pretty funny if you’ve actually seen the taco bell hot sauce before).

I saw the hot sauce costume on Pinterest. It was actually a group of girls and each one was a different sauce – fire, hot, mild, etc. I thought it was such a cute idea and just had to make it.

Since I was Taco Bell fire sauce, we decided that it made perfect sense for Danny to be a taco. :)

I made the costume by cutting up a men’s red t-shirt and lacing up the sides of it with ribbon. I can’t sew¬†to save my life, so it was quite the project for me. I made the top a little to big on accident, so I used the double-sided fashion tape to make sure that it stayed up during the night.

Everyone had awesome costumes. My dad’s was by far the most creepy.

He was the walking dead, and did an awesome job on his make-up. It creeped me out.

My step-mom was an 80′s girl.

Paul and Crystal also ended up being the walking dead (aka zombies), so it was pretty funny to see the three of them together.

Marlene and my grandpa were LMFAO and Where’s Waldo. Don’t they look so cute?

Brad and Katie, who hosted the party, were Dexter and his murder victim. If you’ve never seen Dexter, it’s a tv show on Showtime. Danny and I don’t watch it but my family is really into it.

They even made a Dexter “kill room” in their house, which was so creepy.

My dad’s friends came as The Nightmare Before Christmas.

The girls:

The party was so much fun, and there was lots of cool food and drinks.

And it can’t be a party without a little dancing.

Danny was a dancing fool, and it was quite entertaining. I’m pretty sure at one point, him and Marlene even had a dance off.

By the end of the night, we kind of mixed costumes up.

A few other pics from the night:

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! The winner of the thinkThin giveaway will be announced later today!


Filed under Family Fun, Fun, Halloween

It’s Only October

We had stupid flu shots scheduled for 9 am this morning. I stopped and got some McDonald’s coffee on the way.

McDonald’s already has holiday coffee cups, peppermint mocha coffee, and holiday mint McFlurries. Now, I love Christmas and all, but starting all this Christmas stuff before Halloween is a little too much for me. I like to enjoy Halloween and the fall time first, and then start holiday stuff in November. I’ve also seen Christmas commercials for PetSmart and Target. Doesn’t it seem like they’re starting the holidays earlier and earlier every year?!

Jacob was the brave one at our flu shots this morning and got his first. I, on the other hand, was scared out of my mind. Jacob was pretty amused at me being such a baby.

I was actually hoping that I had a fever so that I wouldn’t have to get one. No such luck. Whatever. I still got one. And my arm hurts.

Danny got his shot fine, but Jaden took a little bit of coaxing. Thankfully, we all got our shots in under ten minutes and then we were out of there.

Afterwards, we stopped at the store to get a few last-minute things for our costumes for the Halloween party tonight.

The tattoo was totally unnecessary. I just thought it was cute. Can’t wait for the party to see everyone’s costumes!

When we got home, I started slaving away over the stove to make the food for tonight…

…or I’m being lame and bringing store-bought cookies and making brownies from a box. One or the other.

Jaden tried his Angry Birds costume on with the pillows stuffed in it.

Have a wonderful Saturday!

Questions of the day:

  • Is it too early for Christmas stuff? When do you like to start celebrating the holidays?
  • Did you get a flu shot?
  • Any plans for today?


Filed under Family Fun

Custard is Good


Last night, we went to Culver’s for dinner for a community night for Jaden’s school.

The food was so-so. I had a salad, some bites of mashed potatoes, and a few fries. The best part of the night was Culver’s custard.

Their custard is delicious. It blows ice cream and frozen yogurt out of the water. Yes, I know. That’s a bold statement. But it’s true.

Custard is just so rich and creamy and delicious. I had chocolate custard topped with peanut butter cups. Normally, I’m a chocolate fan but I tried Danny’s vanilla custard and it was better than the chocolate.


I didn’t go to the gym this morning because I had a hair appointment and a few errands to run.

New lowlights:

Jaden¬†got an Angry¬†Birds costume for Halloween, and it has a two¬†little bags to put pillows in to make the costume look puffier. I thought it just took regular pillows, but it doesn’t – it uses travel size pillows, which of course, we don’t have.

So, not only did I spend $30 a blue piece of cloth with eyes painted on it, but then I had to go out and spend $8 on travel pillows.

Oh well, it makes Jaden happy, and he’s going to be the darn cutest little angry bird there ever was.

I also had to stop at Target, where I spent way more money than I planned on. But that’s to be expected, right? While I was there I spotted these gingerbread k-cups and had to get them. Those holiday flavored k-cups go fast! If I waited a week, they’d be gone!

Lunch was a quick stop to Starbucks for a spinach and feta wrap that I ate in my car.

This isn’t much else going on today. We’re just hanging out and putting the finishing touches on our Halloween costumes for tomorrow!

Questions of the day:

  • Have you ever had custard? Chocolate or vanilla fan?
  • Are you dressing up for Halloween? If you have kids, what are they going to be?
  • Do you like seasonal flavored coffee? Favorite kind?
  • Any plans this weekend? Any Halloween parties?


Filed under Dinner, Lunch

Babies + A Giveaway!

So, I thought we could talk about something a little different today – kids.

I have two boys, Jacob and Jaden, ages 11 and 5. Two kids seem like the perfect number to me, but I always thought about what it would be like to have a girl.

Then, my brother and sister-in-law found out they were expecting a girl, and I was beyond excited. I am perfectly happy having a niece because I can still shop for girl clothes, play dress-up and barbies with her, and go to Disney Princesses on Ice.

All the benefits of having a girl…without actually having one.

Crazy Faces:

I watch my niece in the afternoons, so I know what it’s like to have three children. It’s hard. I know that I am perfectly suited to have only two kids and honestly think that having three kids might make me very stressed out. I give a lot of credit to people with three or more kids. Danny and I decided that we¬†are done having kids.

We have two beautiful kids, two nephews, and a niece. We are very lucky because I know that some people struggle to have children and that must be an incredibly hard thing to deal with. To me, kids are what gives my life meaning (even if they do make me crabby sometimes). :) I could never imagine my life without children.

Yesterday, I was playing with my niece, thinking about how stinkin’ cute she is and how much she looks like her mama (my sister-in-law). Then it hit me that I would never see what my own little girl would look like. Would she be blond like me? Dark haired like Danny? I will never play barbies with my own daughter or brush her hair or talk about boys.

Something like that has never really hit me before because I am perfectly happy with my niece and I am lucky to have such a close family where I can see her everyday and play with her and dress her up. But she has a mom. I’m just Auntie Heather. Which is fine, don’t get me wrong. I just wondered what it would be like to have my own little girl.

I wonder if it’s because I am a girl that I wonder what my own little girl would be like. If we had two girls instead of two boys would Danny¬†want a boy?

Don’t get scared, Danny, I don’t plan on having another baby. I just felt sad that I would never experience a daughter of my own. But then I realized how truly blessed I am to have two healthy kids and a niece that I can still do all the girly things with.

Now that that’s out of my system…we can move on.


Breakfast was an oatmeal explosion. I seriously can’t figure out why it exploded. I cooked it the same way I do every morning. What a pain.

Today’s Workout

  • 5.33 miles treadmill
  • 10 minutes stretching

I ran over 5 miles on the treadmill this morning – I haven’t done that in a while! I guess I’m getting ready for Pile on the Miles.¬†Too bad these miles don’t count.

Earlier this morning, after I came home from bringing Jaden¬†to the bus stop, the Fed Ex man had left a box of thinkThin bars that I had won through their Facebook¬†page. If you haven’t already, you should check out thinkThin’s¬†facebook page – they do awesome giveaways for their customers and fans.

I have been buying thinkThin for years because not only do they have a lot of protein, but they taste delicious! So, I was excited when I won six boxes of the thinkThin cookies and cream bites bars.

They are portioned controlled bars with only 100 calories and 5 grams of protein. I had one after my workout this morning.

I was very lucky to win six boxes, and I love to share, so I am going to give away a box of the thinkThin bars to one of you guys that I will personally mail out to you.

All you have to do to enter is comment on this post telling me that you want to win the thinkThin bars. Easy peasy.

The giveaway will run through Sunday night. US residents only please. Good Luck!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you have kids? How many? Boys or girls?
  • Do you want kids?
  • Do you¬†want to win some thinkThin bars?!


Filed under Breakfast, Family Fun, Fitness, Giveaway, Working Out

Pile on the Miles 2012

Pile on the Miles 2012

I just signed up for the annual Pile on the Miles challenge on Monica’s blog. I also participated in Pile on the Miles last year.

The premise behind pile on the miles is pretty simple – instead of piling on the pounds during the holiday season, you work towards running or walking more each week. You set a personal goal for yourself and update a spreadsheet weekly. It’s a great way to hold yourself accountable as well as a way to win prizes!

Pile on the Miles goes from November 1st – December¬†1st, so if you’re interested, go sign up!¬†You don’t have to have a blog or even run tons of miles to sign up – it’s for everybody.

Yesterday’s Evening Workout

  • Zumba – 60 minutes

Notes to self:

a) You can’t dance to save your life. At all. Not even a little. But that’s okay because you’re having fun.

b) If you wear tiny shorts while dancing, they are going to keep riding up and make you look like you’re not wearing any pants. Then you’ll spend the next 45 minutes trying to pull them down while dancing. Do not wear shorts to Zumba again – even if it’s humid.

Today’s Workout

  • 1.35 miles pink treadmill
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

So far, I’m coming in first in Bingo with the most cards completed!

I’m not sure if it even matters who’s in first because¬†I think the final prize is a raffle drawing. Of course, it’ll benefit me because I’ll have more cards entered into the raffle, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed because the prize is a gym membership. I think they’re giving away a 3 month and a year membership. That would be nice because I pay $55 a month for my gym membership.

When I belonged to Cardinal Fitness, I¬†paid about $10 a month, but that only included the gym only. At my gym now, I get use of the fitness center, unlimited fitness classes, and use of the kid’s room. So, to me, it was worth it,¬†especially¬†the kid’s room when Jaden wasn’t in school.

After the gym, I had a couple of errands to run, so I packed a black cherry Greek yogurt in my handy-dandy cooler to eat after BodyPump. Only 100 calories and 10 grams of protein. Plus, black cherry yogurt is awesome.


For lunch today, I made an egg and potato bowl Рmy bowl included: scrambled egg whites, sautéed potato, garlic, broccoli,and cheese.

It was delicious!

Well, I’m off to work on my Halloween costume!

Questions of the day:

  • Do you eat more around the holidays?
  • Favorite holiday food?
  • If you have a gym membership, how much do you pay?
  • Can you dance?


Filed under Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Weighing In

Yesterday’s Workout

  • Arc Trainer – 16 minutes (am)
  • Body Pump – 60 minutes (am)
  • Spin Class – 50 minutes (pm)

Yesterday was the first time that I have ever used an arc trainer.

It kind of reminded me of an elliptical, except for you kind of glide on it more. The two big differences that I noticed were that you couldn’t let go of the handles and you couldn’t go backwards. Sometimes on the elliptical I like to pump my arms rather than hold on to the handles, but when I tried to let go of the arc trainer handles, I almost fell off (I am also pretty uncoordinated).

Also, you can’t go backwards on the arc trainer. On the elliptical, I like to switch between going forwards and backwards because you use different muscles¬†when you go backwards and your body doesn’t get used to the repetitive forward motion.

Overall, I think it’s good for an occasional workout, but I like the elliptical better. My calories burned were also similar to what they are on the elliptical.

Today’s Workout

  • 1.34 miles – pink treadmill (walked)
  • Butts and Guts Class – 60 minutes

This morning, I power-walked on the treadmill while reading Redbook magazine, and I came across this interesting scale.

Instead of showing you what you weigh, it only shows you how much weight you’ve lost or gained since the last time you were on the scale. I thought that was kind of interesting.

I know that everyone says that you shouldn’t focus on the number on the scale and that your weight fluctuates and your mood shouldn’t be dependent on what that number is – but I feel like I personally need to weigh myself often to stay on track.

I gained a lot of weight because I didn’t weigh myself for over a year. Weighing myself often helps me to see when those pesky pounds start creeping back on. I usually weigh myself at least three times a week. I try to avoid weighing myself on Mondays because the number is always higher because I usually indulge a bit on the weekends, but I’ll weigh myself Tuesday or Wednesday to make sure I’m back on track.

I think¬†a scale that only shows you how much you’ve lost or gained is an interesting¬†idea because sometimes I do get too focused on the number on the scale. I feel like I should weigh a certain number and get upset if I don’t. But I suppose on the other hand, if you saw that you had gained weight rather than lost (or stayed the same), you’d be just as upset. Maybe we should just do away with scales all together!!!


At the 5k on Saturday, they had Panera bagels with cream cheese. This is the first race that I’ve been to that actually gave out cream cheese with the bagels. They had the pink ribbon cranberry bagels that I have been dying to try, so I had one with blueberry cream cheese. It was so delicious. It was so good that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about that darn bagel.

So, today I decided to get a cranberry bagel from Panera for lunch. Except when I got there, I saw that they had pumpkin pie bagels! Since, I had already tasted the cranberry bagel, I went with the pumpkin pie bagel…with NY cheesecake cream cheese. Heaven.

Questions of the day:

  • Do you weigh yourself? How often?
  • Is your mood affected by the number on the scale?
  • What did you have for lunch today?


Filed under Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

Weekend Recap


Unfortunately, we weren’t able to make it to zombie paintball on Friday. :( I guess Groupon¬†sold an extremely large amount of these Groupons, and the wait at the paintball place was 3+ hours at times. So, Groupon¬†sent out an email saying that now you now had to pre-book a scheduled time and reprint your Groupon. What?! So, it just didn’t end up working out.

Instead, my family meet at Nick’s Pizza, a local pizza place, for dinner, and then we came back to our house to play cards.


On Saturday, we went to Mount Carmel Cemetery.

Mount Carmel Cemetery is where Al Capone and a lot of famous gangsters are buried. There are also a large number of religious figures buried there.

People actually come¬†to leave cigars and money on Al Capone’s gravestone.

Mount Carmel Cemetery has a lot of history and some interesting stories. One is the “Italian Bride.” A women had died during childbirth and was buried with her baby. Her mother kept having dreams that she was alive, so she got the grave exhumed after six years. When they open the casket, the young women was not decomposed at all. She was in exactly the same condition as she was six years ago, although the baby was decomposed.

A picture was taken of her perfect body and it was placed on her tombstone.

My dad and stepbrother took a guided tour of the cemetery a few weeks ago, so they knew a lot of interesting things. Honestly, being in a cemetery makes me slightly nervous.

They also got a book with all the famous people who are buried in Mount Carmel Cemetery. My dad tried to make me read it, but I just looked at the pictures.

Al Capone:

Saturday Night

We had dinner and a bon fire at our house on Saturday night. My dad perfected his “sandwich making over an open fire” skills.

We didn’t stay up too late on Saturday since the 5k was the next morning.


I ran the Sunrise Shuffle 5k, and came in 2nd place for my age group out of ten women. I missed first place by 11 seconds! But I was so happy to win a medal.

Sunday afternoon, we went to a local forest preserve to take some pictures of the kids in the leaves.

Somehow, it got turned into family picture day, and I obviously didn’t get the memo because I wore my Victoria’s Secret sweat pants. I like to add that they’re Victoria’s Secret sweatpants because it makes them sound a tiny bit classier than regular old sweatpants. And they should be considered classy for almost $40 a pair!

Then, we practiced jumping off a log to see if we could get a picture mid-air.

Great photo skills, Danny!

After pictures, we stopped for frozen yogurt. I was very excited because they had Halloween toppings!

I love those pumpkins! I love any candy that chewy and fruity.

I added pumpkin candies to my frozen yogurt, but I had to take them out and separate them right after we paid or else the cold yogurt freezes them and then they’re yucky.

Questions of the day:

  • Did you do anything fun this weekend? Anything boring?
  • What’s your favorite candy? Do you like frozen candy? I love frozen Snickers.
  • Favorite pizza topping? I’m a cheese only kind of girl. That’s the best part anyway.


Filed under Family Fun