Category Archives: Mitts and Paws

Workshopping

KITTENS.

This has really been quite the week.  This is me.  Right now.

Me

Watching Sharknado because apparently that is A Thing.

  • I know that this is straight from the department of First World problems, but coming back to work after being gone for a week (or more!) is So Hard.  And this Monday marked the fourth time I’ve done that this year.  It’s exhausting.  I knew if I survived the meetings I had today, that the week would be a success so as I was driving home after my last date with PowerPoint, I put a point on the board for Team Kat.
  • Jetlag hasn’t been terrible this time around, which is nothing short of a miracle.  It may have to do with our 30 hour journey home, in which our bodies gave up on any semblance of time-telling.  That being said, I have been crashing HARD at 9:00 PM every single night.  I can’t imagine that tonight will be any different.
  • In spite of the heatwave that is paralyzing the country, my Petunias have performed quite admirably.  I think they may have cousins close to the equator because otherwise I can’t find a way to explain how they’re doing so well.  Look.

Flowers

  • Otherwise, Le Jardin has largely been an act of willful ignorance.  I did move our hanging basket from the deck to our front steps because I don’t think the Impatiens were agreeing with their location, but before we left we were getting tons of rain (no need to water!) and then my mother looked after our plants while we were away.  Much less stressful than herbs (though I won’t be tossing my flowers into a summer salad any time soon).
  • My parents were in London the week before we headed out to Europe and they brought me back an eclectic potpourri of wonderful commemorative Royal Souvenirs (I know – so trashy, but they kill me).  It’s basically a Customs House around here these days.

Souvenirs

  • In other Good News, my mitts and paws are finally in order after 20 days.  It only took me three days longer to accomplish than I had originally planned (read: I thought they would be done on Monday), BUT they are done now.  I still think that going polish-free for Europe was the right idea but, restoring order?  So Centering.
  • I’m headed up to the cabin tomorrow afternoon and I am So Excited.  Yes, seriously, I need a vacation from my vacation.  What better way to do that than with a weekend full of pizza from Zorbaz, beer, sunning and running?
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100% Irish for a Day 10 Mile

On Saturday, I ran the Twin Cities in Motion 100% Irish for a Day 10 Mile.

01 Bib

To get into that race day spirit (and because now it is known fact that I prefer to run with my mitts in order), I addressed that situation on Friday with some mint polish.

02 Race Mitts

Am I the only one who is conflicted about whether we’re meant to be into mint or emerald this season?

About a week ago, Angie and I agreed that we would run it together.  The last time that we ran together was One Night In November, so we were EXTREMELY overdue.

Despite our lack of running together, we have been fairly good about getting together for drinks.  These are the important things in life.

She is training for Grandma’s and neither of us had any real aspirations beyond finishing safely so this was The Perfect Plan.

As we walked to Lake Harriet from the Lake Calhoun Executive Building parking lot, between the wind and the rain it became very apparent that our only objective for the day was going to be finishing.

When we got to the start line, we met-up with Amy and Jenelle (one of my sorority sisters!).  Originally, we had this grand vision of  enjoying a pre-race chat by the sweats check.   Instead, we all showed up in the corral with 10 minutes to spare.

Carrisa managed to get this rockin’ shot of the four of us ensemble.  Look.

04 Start Line

Not 30 seconds after this photo was taken, we were walking around a puddle of water that was probably 15 feet long and 3″ deep.

How thrilling.  I think that tells you how our race went.

At Mile 5 or so, Angie and I started Vine-ing.  Because the time to test out micro-vlogging apps is when you’re on the race course.  If you follow me on Twitter, then you should be able to catch that action as it comes.

Things we Vine-d: Mile 4, Our Playlists, The Mile 7 Water Stop and Ang Does A Water Feature.  We were a moving circus on two feet.

To add to the festive feel, I managed to inadvertently shuffle through all of the Sean Kingston on my running playlist.  Which means that I actually have enough Sean Kingston to warrant shuffling through it.

This was news to me.

Sean Kingston and Vine-ing, standing water and brutal wind aside, I crossed the finish line at 1:48:03.

05 Finish Line

For what it’s worth, I will say that this is probably the most put-together finish line snap I have ever participated in.

Angie and I did our best to bring light into the world with our matching headbands and hairbows, but Carrisa was clearly more on-point with her neon infinity scarf.

This bodes well for our spring races.

20 Mile Day.

I have a lot of good runs.  Which largely centers around the fact that if it does not end with severe GI distress or crippling injury, I put it in the win column.

Last weekend for a whole host of reasons that aren’t terrifically interesting, I swapped my 12 mile run for the 18 mile run on my schedule.

Cool.

I’ve been working very hard this training cycle to just step back and let the process work its magic, which has been largely successful.

Sometimes you just have to get out of your own way.

At the end of the day, unless you’re trying to Boston Qualify, marathon training is not rocket science.  There is a reason that you can buy a book or look up a plan on the internet and just go, provided you have the mileage to back you up.

So on Saturday morning, I rolled out of bed at 6:00 AM, did the breakfast thing and actioned my mitts.

Mitts

I’m sure you weren’t thinking that my weekly running workshop would turn into Barbie Beauty Shop.  I promise, it’s not.

But I cannot understate the importance of having well-done mitts when you’re racing or on a long run.

Chipped nail polish involves an amount of mental energy that I am not willing to use, ever.

Things that shine are motivating beyond measure.

Thus, being able to flash a bit of color and sparkle at yourself when spirits are flagging can go a long way.

Not Kidding.

So I hopped on the treadmill.

After about nine miles, I was feeling incredibly good.  I was focused, I was keeping my pace, I wasn’t feeling weird pain.  I was living in each mile (something that I am notoriously bad at) and running that mile.

And I knew that if things kept on going the way that they were (namely, avoiding pain) I was going to have a 20 mile day.

16 miles in, I decided I was more interested in listening to my iPod than watching the last nine minutes of my second episode of The Biggest Loser for the morning.  As Starships started playing, I could tell that I had it.

Watch

20 and done.

Just like 16 miles is the point where the marathon is cooked, 20 miles is the longest distance that you train up to before race day.   Most training plans have you hit that distance two or three weeks out from your race so I know that by most standards I am about two weeks early.

But in a morning, all of my race anxiety was erased.

Now I can spend the next four weeks concentrating on running healthy (it’s a new habit of mine) and running toward a finish line.

On Mitts

From the department of world peace, I re-did my mitts last night.  Why I’m feeling called to share this with you rather than Any Other Important Thing, I am not sure.

Mitts

I am especially into the color combination of alessandro’s Blue Lagoon and Julep’s Oscar.

I’m a major fan of Oscar, but the alessandro bottle has the world’s most dysfunctional brush and the color goes on really thin.  That does not work for me.

I’ve been very on it with the whole basecoat-topcoat thing lately.  It’s a pain to do, but my nails really do look Nicer.  Even if it’s only just for another day or so.

What are your favorite polish colors?

Best Weekend

For the last week of Minnesota Month, we visited the Steel Toe Brewing in Saint Louis Park!

Hello sweet friends!

This has been absolutely the most relaxing weekend in the history of earth.  The only things that I had on my calendar were dinner dates with girlfriends.  Like seriously, after a month of holidays and celebrations and racing and sickness, how great is that?

If this is how “normal” weekends are supposed to be, I want them to all be like this, all the time.

Saturday was a little bit sulky, weather-wise, but look at who I discovered in our yard.

I know.  I KNOW.  Happiest moment.

Marcus and I went to Excelsior Brewing’s Oktoberfest for a bit.  Because tents with polka bands in the fall are A Calling.  I had their Bitteschlappe Brown and Marcus had an Oktoberfest lager.

Not the greatest snap in the history of earth, but how great are those sunnies?  Hot pink just seemed like the right thing to do.

And today, after actioning Cafe Latte’s Turtle Cake for a co-worker’s birthday (don’t even get me started about the amount of batter and frosting I ate), I did some much-needed work on my mitts.

Color Club in Status Update.  Having well-organized mitts is just so cathartic, you know?

I finally got to watch Being Elmo.

It has been on my to watch-list for too long and it was just…pure joy.  Watch it immediately.  On your own, with your family, with your friends.  Whatever.  I’m not on some sort of moral crusade to eradicate violence and sex from The Television, but it was actually really refreshing to spend an hour watching something that was just so…none of the above.

XO

Making It.

Hello, survivors!

I don’t know about y’all, but by the time I pulled into the garage last night I was just exhausted.

And after looking over the posts from last week, I am doubly surprised that we managed to keep the wheels on the bus this go-round.

Regardless, the weekend is now and 99% of my plans for the weekend orbit around the concept of running-sleeping-eating-friends.

Cooking and a bit of cleaning fit in there somewhere too.

This morning Molly and I headed out for an 8.5 mile run down the Minneapolis Greenway and around Lake Calhoun and Lake of the Isles.  We workshopped like, probably a record number of topics.  Because, you know, it’s like doing coffee or drinks.  Except with your feet.

And a bit of huffing and puffing.

Anyway, through all of our chatter we managed to determine that not only does she work in Plymouth, but she and her fiance are moving like a mile or so away from where Marcus and I live.

Can I just say how excited I am to have a running buddy that lives nearby?  The whole situation is just so 11/10.

After a bit of napping (let’s be serious, this is a non-negotiable part of my life on the weekend), I decided to do something about the situation taking place on my mitts + paws.

For my mitts: Revlon Elegant.  For my paws: Color Club Jackie Oh!

It was hardcore soothing.  There’s just something about being able to look down without having to catch a glimpse of chipped polish.

Did I mention that I’ve also begun the process of discovering all of these great summer dresses that I forgot I owned?  Because there’s that, too.  I was about to have a major anxiety attack about what on earth I would wear this summer but apparently my wardrobe-that-knows-n0-bounds is well and truly boundless.

Unrelated: This slideshow of Prom on The NYT website was fascinating and worth the few minutes it takes to flip through.  And this Prom slideshow from the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired is doubly so.

Make it happen.

What are your weekend plans?

A Pleasant Surprise

Kittens, before we get going tonight, please continue to consider Paying It Forward.  It doesn’t need to be a grand gesture, it can be as simple as e-mailing a friend. 

And can I just say, that it has been so interesting to see where this conversation has traveled so far?  Because I continue to be astonished and amazed by the people who have decided to pass it on.  Lauren was so moved to share her story as well.

We continue.

Tonight, vanity.  Because I need a moment to process everything that has happened in the last 48 hours or so.

And like the local radio station that plays a Ke$ha song after they’re done workshopping something heavy to lighten the mood, I think we all need a little breather.

About two months ago, I won Sarah’s Julep Maven giveaway.  I didn’t even know what Julep Maven was.  But what I managed to take away from Sarah’s post was that it was a box with surprise beauty-things.

I was willing to get on-board with that.

Well, after a brief flurry of communication with Their (Julep’s) People, I had claimed my prize.

I was thrilled.

But the box never came.  Maybe it ended up in Timbuktu.  Maybe our mail carrier stole it.  I don’t think we’ll ever really know.  I don’t think it really matters.

So about a week ago, I decided to get in-touch with the lovely people at Julep to find out what was going on.  And to request a new box.  Since winning is more fun when you get something out of the deal.

They were so helpful and understanding (and equally as mystified!) and within 24 hours, a new box was shipped.

Thank God Customer Service still exists in some circles.

This week, it finally arrived.  It was well worth the wait.

The box.

It’s like getting a paid-for beauty present (except for the fact that mine was free).  Regardless, the goodies.

Inside was a bottle of Julep Topcoat for Hair  (a shine serum-type situation), and two nail colors.  There was Oscar, a lovely, shimmering gold polish and Meryl, which was a study in greige.  I’m still torn as to whether or not it’s street legal to name a gray shade of polish “Meryl.”

That is neither here nor there in the current moment.

So last night before I tucked into bed, I took a few minutes for some quality Kat-time and actioned some nails in Oscar.

I am loving it sick.

I think the best part is that it has great shimmer without being 100% all-over.  It’s a hard balance to strike with metallic and glittery polishes.

What’s your go-to nail color right now?