Gifting straight from the STL

Holiday shopping has begun in full force. Black Friday deals are already being released and you are beginning to see a lot of red and green around town.

As a person who doesn’t put her decorations up until December 1st, my inner self is saying slow the f*** down. Let’s enjoy the season of thankfulness for as long as we can.

However, I will begin Christmas shopping prior to December 1. I plan to participate heavily in the Shop Small campaign on November 25th. This campaign raises awareness for all the small business that depend on customers shopping small instead of with major retailers.

I admit that I will shop some at the major retailers but my goal this year is to shop local for 80% of my shopping.  I encourage you to get out in your community and shop. I guarantee you that you will find unique gifts. Yes, you might pay a little more at the small shops but by spending that little bit extra you are supporting not only a family business but a community.

What are your favorite local shops? Need STL suggestions? I have plenty!



Cupcakes and Running

I love a theme! I love running! I love cupcakes!

Luckily for me St. Louis has plenty of themed 5K’s including a cupcake 5K! 3 miles 5 cupcake stations.  And these were not mini cupcakes. These were full-size cupcakes. Once you entered the cupcake corral and chose your cupcake – white or chocolate cake- you had to finish the entire cupcake before continuing the run. For each cupcake you eat you were to take 3 min off your finishing time.


So I donned my best cupcake attire- cupcake headbandIMG_1617

and cupcake earrings


This was cupcake number 2


By #3 I was becoming a pro. Wiping off the icing and breaking the cupcake in 2 large pieces to eat.


Cupcake #4

and finally, cupcake #5 done. I was ready to head to the finish line and get some water.


I tracked my “cupcake time” on my running app, so it kept running during all the eating. That time came to 47:57, but I ate 5 cupcakes worth 3 min deductions each so 32:57 roughly official. I was stopping by watch at each cupcake stop and it mostly matches and I kept my pace under 11 min.


This is a fun race but I am glad it only happens once every year. Cupcakes and running are fun but I was so full after that race and all that icing was a little rough to handle.

Who will join me next year!?


What I did in October

I ran 10.79 miles. October was insane and running took a back burner.

I read one book: What She Ate: Six Remarkable Women and the Food That Tells Their Stories. Read mostly while eating. This book was ok,  some of the stories were interesting and some dragged on a little.


I listened to 3 audiobooks:

Hungry Heart: Adventures in Life, Love, and Writing by Jennifer Weiner – it’s about her life and read by her. Highly recommended.

The Next Best Thing Also by Jennifer Weiner. I have listened to many of her books, I would say this was middle of the road. A good listen but didn’t wow me.

Crazy Rich Asians (Crazy Rich Asians #1) This book was terrible! There at least 2 more books in the series, I had them on my Goodreads list but promptly removed them after I finished this book. The characters are awful in this book and I felt like every Asian stereotype was brought out in the book.

Travelled to Chicago with Jake, Mom, Dan, Sharon, Lucas, Brooke and Barb (Sharon’s mom). We planned a Chicago weekend so Sharon and I could run a 10K. The night before the race Lucas broke his arm while playing in a Chicago park. He was a trooper and made the most of his Chicago weekend. We also had the chance to visit with our Chicago and Bloomington relatives.

Fun times with Uncle Jake

I also ran my best 10K in the race along the Chicago lakefront.


run me
Race morning!

Official watch time! 6 miles in just over an hour! I will take it!

Jake and I traveled to Cape Girardeau, MO to meet our scholarship recipient and have dinner with some of our College friends. We opted out of the homecoming activities though!
I had a pumpkin Beerita date with my pumpkin loving friend Meagan! It was delicious and it was so great to find some time in our schedules to hang out!

Jake and I went to the symphony. Don’t ask me what was playing but it was beautiful.

Jake and I went to a concert at the Duck Room at Blueberry Hill. We saw Humming House. It was an awesome concert, I highly recommend seeing them if you can.

humming house

Jake and I dressed up as Candy Corn for Halloween. Thanks, Reynolds Designs for the awesome shirts! Ignore the ceiling we are in the process of updating the kitchen. This was us after hitting two Halloween parties.



I went to a family wedding in Wentzville, MO. We danced the night away and had a great time!
Taking a break from the fun! So blessed to have these guys in my life!

October was insane! It just seemed like it was one activity after the other. Let’s see what November brings!