Tag Archives: family fun

Wisconsin Dells Fun

Good morning from The Wilderness Resort in Wisconsin Dells!

We’re coming home later this afternoon, and we had a great time. We stayed at The Wilderness Resort last year with my brother, sister-in-law, and niece but got separate rooms.

This year we opted to get a two bedroom condo so we could all stay together. It was only about $10 more per family than getting separate rooms and it included a full kitchen so we were able to save money by bringing our own groceries for breakfast and lunch.

We went out to dinner two nights but ate the rest of our meals/snacks in our condo. I need to go on a major vacation food detox when I get home.

Our condo is actually quite a ways away from the main waterpark but our area does have it’s own edge pool which I thought was neat.

There is a shuttle or water taxi that takes you to the main waterpark. The kids loved the water taxi.

We spent most of our time swimming, but yesterday after dinner, we took the kids out to mine for gemstones.

Jaden was in heaven because he loves rocks and all things shiny. We bought a bucket of gemstones in sand for the kids to share and they take their time sifting through the sand to find the gemstones.

Afterwards, you sit down and someone explains all the gemstones that you found (and of course, they want you to buy a necklace or earring setting for your gemstones).

The kids found a bunch, but I only remember emerald and garnet. Emerald is my birthstone and Jacob’s too!

We took the kid’s to the arcade last night and Jaden spent so much time trying to win a big ball from a giant claw machine. He was so upset that he couldn’t win one because so many other people were winning them. A family had won a few of the balls and the mom had the little girl give one to Jaden.

He was so incredibly happy and I told the mom that she had no idea how incredibly happy she just made him. It was a very nice thing for a family of strangers to do and I really appreciated it.

I believe that kids do need to experience disappointment in life because life isn’t all sunshine and roses, but at that moment, Jaden was so incredibly happy that I wouldn’t have changed it for the world.

Jacob won a ball all by himself :)

As much fun as we’re having, it’ll be nice to sleep in our own beds tonight!

Have a great Saturday!

  • Do you tend to eat more or less healthy on vacation?
  • Do you let your children experience disappointment?
  • Any fun plans this weekend?


Filed under Family Fun

Weekend Fun

Good Morning!

First off, a big congrats to all the ladies who ran the Zooma Half Marathon on Saturday. The Zooma Half Marathon Athletes trained very hard to be able to accomplish their goal of running their first half marathon. I am sad that I missed out on such an awesome experience but I’m glad everyone else did great! And a big thank you to the organizers and ambassadors who showed everyone so much support.


I’ll be running it next year :)


I might not have run the half marathon, but I sure carb loaded like I did.

I have been doing really good with my eating during the week. The weekend – not so much. Weekends are always my downfall, but I’m really trying hard to work on it because I feel like I’m undoing all the hard work I put in during the week.

Danny and I had a date night on Friday night. We went to a nearby restaurant called The Lucky Monk.

I wore a maxi dress that I recently got at JCPenney. I usually feel like maxi dresses don’t look right on me, but I love this one.

A little blurry but you get the idea:

The Lucky Monk got really good reviews online and I was excited to try it out. We started with the warm pretzel trio.

The tomato-parmesan dipping sauce was amazing.

I debated between ordering the fresh tossed spinach pizza and the crispy fish tacos. I asked the waiter and he recommended the fish taco.

Fries and rice. Don’t judge.

Unfortunately, the fish tacos were extremely spicy. My mouth was on fire. They were good, I just don’t enjoy spicy foods. Next time, I will definitely order the pizza.

I don’t even want to tell you what Danny ordered. Okay, okay. He got a grilled cheese burger – a burger between two bacon-stuffed grilled cheese sandwiches.

That is crazy. Thank goodness we don’t eat like this all the time. Danny said the heart attack on a plate burger was good, but he wouldn’t order it again. Overall, The Lucky Monk was a really good restaurant and our waiter was very knowledgeable about the menu and very friendly.

We thought about seeing World War Z, but it started at 9:45 pm, and I knew there was no way that I would stay awake until the end of the movie. I’m like 31 going on 80.


On Saturday, we took the kids to a touch-a-truck and kid’s day event. There were police cars, fire trucks, buses, and construction vehicles for the kids to climb and play on.

There was also a petting zoo that Jaden and I went into. Let me tell you, those goats are aggressive! One goat would chase people around and just grab all the food out of their hands. He scared me.

Jaden loved it. He tried sitting on the ground and holding the baby goats like puppies. It didn’t work. I finally dragged Jaden out of the petting zoo before the goats started really attacking and he insisted on waiting in line to get his hair “done.”

And by done, I mean in a Mohawk and sprayed red…with glitter.

He’s awesome.

Later this afternoon, we’re going to a family picnic with Danny’s family. Have a great Sunday!

How’s your weekend going?



Filed under Dinner, Family Fun

New Shoes

Yesterday ended up being one of those fun but totally unplanned days. After my 7 mile run and the kid’s swimming lessons, we headed to a local running store so I could look for some new running shoes. My current Mizuno 9s have been racking up the miles.

I really wanted to try out the new Mizuno Wave Rider 16 shoes. Luckily, they had them in a size 11 for me to try out.

The shoe store has a treadmill that they record you running on so you can see how you run and what shoes would work the best. I currently run in Mizuno Inspire 9s which are a stability shoe. The Wave Rider 16s are a neutral running shoe but when I tried them on, they felt awesome.

The video of me running on the treadmill didn’t agree with me about their awesomeness. While running in the Wave Riders, my right ankle and foot over pronated (turned inward) a lot. Only my right foot. My left foot landed straight.

So, the employee at the running store had me put on my Mizuno Inspire 9s and recorded me running again. With the support shoe, my foot didn’t turn in as much.

Then, she put a Super Feet insole in my Mizunos and had me run again. What a difference.

Having the Super Feet insole in my shoe made a big difference. My foot still turned in slightly but nowhere near as much as it did with the Wave Riders and the Inspires worn by themselves.

Finally, I decided to order another pair of Inspire 9s (they didn’t have my size in stock) and purchase the Super Feet insoles. The insoles aren’t cheap – $40, but after seeing what a difference they made, I think it’s a great investment. I am hoping that if my running form can be corrected then maybe I won’t have so much pain when I run.

Now, I just have to wait for my new shoes to come in! I’m really excited about the color too!

Speaking of Mizuno:

After buying the shoes we decided to walk around on the Riverwalk for awhile. The kids found a cool fountain to play in.

After walking for awhile, we came across paddle boats.

The kids were excited to use the paddle boats, so we paddled around for about 40 minutes. My poor legs were so tired from running yesterday morning, walking all day, and paddle boating!

We stopped at Noodles and Co. for lunch and I actually tried something different!

I had Garden Pesto Saute – charred sweet corn in light lemon Genovese pesto tossed with gluten-free fusilli noodles, red bell peppers, onions, pecans, feta, and spinach.

We walked around a bit more and stopped at Red Mango for frozen yogurt.

It was such a great day!

Today’s Workout

  • BodyPump – 60 minutes

Even after all that activity yesterday, my legs felt really good today. Nothing too sore except for my knee a little bit. I took a BodyPump class this morning, and will probably run tomorrow. It’s supposed to storm, so it might have to be a treadmill run.

Have a great day!



Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Running, Working Out

Egg Shell Shuffle 5k

Egg Shell Shuffle 5k complete!! (Warning: Lots of pics)!

This morning started out bright and early at about 6:40 am. The race didn’t start until 9:15 am, but I woke up early just so that I could drink a cup of coffee. I typically don’t drink coffee before races because I already use the bathroom enough as it is, but today I had my coffee.

We got to the race site at about 8:05 am, and the parking lot was already full, so we parked nearby on a side street. We met up with my dad, Sue, and Marlene shortly after we arrived.

Messing around:

My dad: The official bag holder, photographer, and baby sitter.

Thanks, Dad! You’re awesome!

The Easter bunny came out and said hello. He danced with Jaden, but don’t let Jaden’s face fool you – he was terrified.

The half marathon started at 8:30 am, and the 5k started at 9:15 am. Everything started on time which was nice, and I had time to go to the bathroom four times before the race. No joke – four times.

I was unsure what to wear since the weather was mild, around 40 degrees, but I knew that I would heat up quickly. There was also a little bit of a cold wind. I ended up wearing long shorts, Zensah calf sleeves, a short sleeve shirt, and a long sleeve dry fit shirt.

It seemed to work pretty well. I did get warm the last mile, so I just pushed up my sleeves.

I also got to wear my new Garmin 10 for the race! I got it as a Christmas present but haven’t been able to wear it yet because I haven’t run outside since last fall.

The first two miles went pretty good. I felt pretty good and had a good pace going. I’m slow and steady. After the first two miles things got harder – my calves started to get really tight. They haven’t been too bad on the treadmill, but with running outside and the hills and stuff, they didn’t want to cooperate. It was tough.

Three miles might not seem like a lot, but for me it is. Running is work for me. Hard work. The last mile, these thoughts started going through my head: I should have stayed at home in bed, Why the hell did I sign up to run a 15k in June, and Is it over yet, please let it be over.

I spotted Danny, and I knew that I must be close to the finish. I practically threw my iPod at him and took off. I can’t stand to wear my iPod a whole race, it starts to bug me.

I crossed the finish line and mine chip time was 31:48!! I was very very happy with that! My average 5k time used to be 36 minutes, so I am definitely improving. I placed #14 for my age group (30-34) out of 50 women, so I was also pleased with that.

After the race, I chatted with LosingLindy and her son. How awesome that they ran the 5k together! My kids just sat there and played their iPods the whole time. Great job, Lindy and V!

Danny, Marlene, and Sue are speedy!! Danny did awesome finishing in 25:09.

My stepmom did really good too (she’s another speedy one), and Marlene won second place for her age group!!

The prizes were Easter baskets and water bottles with gels instead of medals.

Great job guys!

The kids egg hunt started at 11:15am, and the kids had fun picking up all the eggs. The Easter bunny was also there handing out eggs, which was nice.

The adult egg hunt was crazy!

A whole bunch of adults running after eggs is chaos. Every time I bent down to get an egg someone would swipe in out from underneath me or trample me. Jeesh. I did manage to get a few eggs though.

There were some good prizes for the egg hunt but all my eggs were filled with candy.

With 7,000 eggs and only a handful of prizes, your chances of winning were pretty slim.

I enjoyed the race overall. I think it was well set-up, there was a good amount of porta potties, a lot of volunteers, lots of post race food, and I love love love getting a finisher’s medal. It makes me feel accomplished :)

I didn’t think the egg hunt was all that great. First, it started two hours after the 5k. I know they have to do awards and stuff, but that makes for a long day. Also, the adult egg hunt was just way too crazy. I would run the Egg Shell Shuffle 5k again but probably wouldn’t bother to stay for the egg hunt.

After the race, I treated myself to an iced coffee.

Then, we stopped by my dad’s house to borrow some chairs for tomorrow, and he showed me some more of the eggs he made.

How awesome is this mermaid?!

Have a great day and a wonderful Easter tomorrow!!


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Fun, Working Out

Easter Craft Time

Albion  Giveaway Winner:

#2 – OlivetoRun! Please email your shipping address to runeatplay(at)hotmail(dot)com  Congrats!

Today’s Workout

  • Plank #21 – 3 minutes and 6 seconds
  • 6.22 miles, treadmill
  • 10 minutes stretching

I signed up for Ali’s Virtual Running with Spatulas Race, and decided that I would run the 10k today.

Let me tell you, today was a horrible running day. I have good running days and bad running days. I like running, but it’s a struggle for me. I have never been a great runner or a long distance runner. I enjoy the challenge and trying to improve my running, but today was tough. My body just wasn’t feeling it.

I still pushed myself to complete the 6.2 miles. I ran a little over three miles, and then had to walk/jog the rest. But I did it…and now my legs are sore. I even wore my Zensah calf sleeves and Mizuno running shoes!

Ali’s virtual race goes to the end of the month, so I can always redo the 6.2 if I’m not happy with my time, but right now I’m just happy I did it. I still have the 10k on the bike portion to complete.

After the gym, I stopped by the grocery store and was surprised to find the new Chobani Flips yogurt.

Surprised but excited. I usually grocery shop at Meijer, and they don’t even carry the Chobani bites, so I was surprised to see the Flips. I bought two of the key lime with graham cracker and white chocolate flavors to try out.

I’m pretty sure that it’s going to be delicious :)

Easter Crafts

Yesterday, I made an Easter craft with my niece and Jaden. (Apparently Jacob is too old to make Easter crafts.) We did marble bouncy ball painting. Usually a marble or golf ball works best, but all I could find was a bouncy ball.

I love this kind of painting because it doesn’t make a mess and is great for toddlers.

I cut off the top of a pancake mix box, put in a paper shaped egg, added the paint and bouncy ball and let the kids roll it around until the egg was painted. My niece loved it. Great for fine motor skill and not messy! Win-win.

After the eggs dried, I glued them to a purple piece of scrapbook paper and wrote Happy Easter on it.

Only 10 more days until Easter, and only nine more days until the Egg Shell Shuffle 5k. I am a little bit nervous for the 5k because it’s going to be cold here, and I have never run an outdoor race in the cold. I am more of a hot weather girl! We’ll see how it goes!

  • What’s the last distance that you ran? Ever have bad running days?
  • Would you rather run in hot or cold weather? Any cold weather running tips?
  • Make any Easter crafts?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

Going to the Movies

Good afternoon!

First up, the winner of the Alexia Foods Giveaway:

#43 – Alw6ys - Janice, please email your shipping address to runeatplay(at)hotmail(dot)com.


Yesterday afternoon, we took the kids to see Oz The Great and Powerful in 3D.

I thought it was really good, and the kids liked it, but there was a few parts where Jaden had to hide his eyes under my coat. I guess he didn’t like the giant creepy flying monkeys with sharp teeth coming right at him in 3D.

Sometimes I like 3D movies and sometimes I don’t. They can give me a headache and make my contacts dry sometimes, but Oz in 3D was good.

Side Note: My favorite thing to get at the movie theater is an Icee, but yesterday their Icee machine was broken and it kind of ruined my movie going experience. Then I got over it.

Today’s Workout

  • Plank #17 (yesterday): 3 minutes and 2 seconds <— I finally hit 3 minutes!
  • Plank #18 (today): 3 minutes and 3 seconds
  • Elliptical 10 minutes
  • BodyPump – 60 minutes
  • 1.57 miles treadmill, walked at an incline

I always try to do at least 30 minutes of cardio on the days that I take BodyPump. I squeezed in 10 minutes on the elliptical before class, so after BodyPump, I walked on the treadmill for about 22 minutes at 4.0 mph with the incline between 3% and 5%. My calves were killing me by the time I was done! Even a small incline is no joke!

For a post workout snack, I had a Dannon Oikos cafe latte Greek yogurt:

This flavor is one of my favorites.


Lunch this afternoon was a green pepper stuffed with brown rice, spinach, and feta. I also sliced up a giant apple and ate it with some PB2.

  • What was the last movie that you saw?
  • Is there a snack/drink you always get at the movie theater?
  • Do you like watching movies in 3D?
  • Ever walk or run at an incline?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Lunch, Working Out

St. Patrick’s Day Fun

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!


Last night my family came over for dinner. I spent the day in the kitchen cooking corned beef…

…or I just threw it in the crock pot and walked away.

And I am wearing green – don’t you see my socks?

It came out really good…or so my family tells me. I’m not a meat eater, but I did try one little bite, and I just couldn’t get past the texture. I do not like the texture of meat at all. But it smelled really good. I had an Amy’s frozen pizza instead. :)

My dad brought over some green wigs to add to the St. Patrick’s Day fun. He’s very festive.

My niece was a little unsure what to think about the green wig at first, but by the end of the night, she loved it.

The boys drank their green beer.

My dad and stepmom brought a delicious giant cookie. Cookies are always so much better when they’re giant.

My dad also came up with the brilliant idea to bring over green silly string. I squirted Danny with the silly string once…

and then my family decided to bombard me with the silly string!

Thanks guys. I love you so much.

Danny automatically got out the vacuum and cleaned everything up because he’s a neat freak like that :)

It was a really good night having fun with my family and eating lots of food and dessert.

How did you spend St. Patrick’s Day?


Filed under Dinner, Family Fun

Chip Tasting Party Fun

Yesterday, we went to my grandparent’s house for a family game night and to try out the three new flavors of Lay’s potato chips.

Danny and me:

Sriracha, chicken & waffles, and cheesy garlic bread chips.

Surprisingly, my favorite flavor ended up being the one that I thought I would like the least – the chicken & waffle flavor!

I think I liked it because they tasted like maple syrup and were sweet. It sounds like an odd combo but all they tasted like was syrup. The cheesy garlic bread weren’t as good as I had hoped. I didn’t like the cheese flavor, but I’m also not a fan of cheese-its and cheese goldfish. And the sriracha were just way too spicy for my mild loving tasting buds.

It was a fun night visiting, playing games, and eating. Marlene baked awesome glazed donut cupcakes. Donuts are my #1 love in life.


Danny and I started out the day doing the plank-a-day challenge. I’m calling it day #3 (even though I missed day #1) since it’s March 3rd.

Plank Day #3

Danny: 1 minute 42 seconds

Heather: 2 minutes 33 seconds

Today’s plank was tough. I started to struggle around a minute and a half, but pushed through to get three seconds longer than yesterday! Doing this every day might be a little bit harder than I thought.

Today’s Workout

  • Stairmaster – 32 minutes, 134 floors
  • 1.11 miles treadmill

I headed to the gym late this morning to do a quick cardio workout. Post workout, I had a carrot cake Clif bar.

So good! I found these at Whole Foods last week, and also picked one up for my dad and Marlene. I have never seen the carrot cake flavor before and now I’m wishing that I would have bought more!

Have a good afternoon!

  • What was your plank time today?
  • Any workout? Rest day?
  • Favorite Clif bar?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine’s Day!

My wonderful husband is so funny…and knows me too well. This morning, sitting on the kitchen table was an empty bag of candy hearts…and a snack size Ziploc filled with 10 candy hearts.

I was kind of confused at first . Then Danny told me that he know how much I love candy hearts but always get mad at myself for eating way too many. So, he opened the bag and pre-portioned all of the candy hearts into single serving bags! Each bag has 10 candy hearts and is 120 calories.

Oh, and he brought all the other bags to work with him, so I couldn’t eat them even if I wanted. Well played, Danny. Well played.

Oh my gosh, I love him. He said he wasn’t sure how I’d take it – if I’d be mad or think it was funny. I thought it was pretty clever of him to come up with that. And it made me realize that ten candy hearts for 120 calories sure seems like a lot.

He also got me delicious chocolate covered strawberries.

My wonderful Dad also got me a little present.

Wine glasses filled with chocolate! What a sweet Dad I have :)  He also got a tiny bottle of Godiva liqueur for me and a tiny Jack for Danny.

I left a trail of Hershey kisses down the stairs for the kids, and they both had a little present waiting for them on the table. And yes, those are Christmas Hershey kisses. I had a whole bag leftover!

I’m saving all my Valentine’s treats for later and started the day off by heading to the gym.

Today’s Workout

  • 4.59 miles, treadmill

That’s the farthest I’ve gone in a while!

My right calf is still very tight and sore, so I wasn’t able to run too much. I alternated between walking and running for about an hour.

Awhile ago, I has diagnosed with compartment syndrome basically meaning my calf muscles are too tight in their sheaths. Some days they are worse than others, but lately they’ve been pretty sore. I am trying to remember to stretch and foam roll and will slowly try to ease back into running.

Post workout snack was a cranberry almond simple bar.

This afternoon, I am have Jaden’s Valentine’s Day party at school, and when we get home, I’m going to make our special Valentine’s Day dinner.

On the menu:

  • Caesar salad
  • Stuffed shells
  • Garlic bread
  • Funfetti cake (and chocolate covered strawberries!)

My sprinkles got a little crazy.

Enjoy your day!

  • Any plans tonight?
  • Do you ever pre-portion food?
  • Favorite holiday?
  • Favorite dessert?


Filed under Family Fun, Fitness, Working Out

Party Time

Yesterday, we celebrated Jaden’s 6th birthday with our family. (His actual birthday is Tuesday.)

I tried my hardest to make the Lego cake. They made it look so nice and easy online, but in reality, that cake took me hours and hours to make and came out looking like a five-year old made it.

It looked pretty bad in person. The cake itself tasted good, it was just a lot harder to frost than I thought it would be. I am not a baker.

Oh well, I did make M&M blondies that I thought came out pretty delicious!

I used this recipe (I doubled it) that I found via Pinterest.

And thank goodness Marlene made the cupcakes for Jaden’s party today. I’ll leave all the cake baking up to her from now on! She made Minecraft cupcakes (a computer game the kids love) and they turned out awesome.

Jaden was very excited and can’t wait for his friends to see them.

Jaden had a fun time at his party and thank you to my family for helping him celebrate! The babies loved my brother-in-law, Billy.

Danny and I:

The rest of the evening was spent playing fun party games. The kids played Twister…

…and the adults played Pin the Tail on the Donkey.

You’re never too old for party games.

This afternoon we’re off to Chuck E. Cheese to celebrate Jaden’s birthday with his friends from school. Have a great Sunday!

  • What’s your favorite party game?
  • Have you ever had a cooking/baking failure?
  • Favorite kind of cake?


Filed under Family Fun