Friday, September 28, 2012

Thank You! (and) Please Help!

This is probably not actually a big deal in the blogging world, but I'm kinda excited. Today I hit 200 page views! In less than 2 weeks! I suppose that if even one person like my blog enough to view it 200 times, I must not completely suck at this writing thing. 

Now, the blog-naming thing I do totally suck at. So I'm going to ask for your help. I would love to see comments below on what you think I should call this blog. If I pick your name, you win the satisfaction of knowing that you're a winner! Comment away!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Chosen One

We did it! We picked not only a honeymoon destination, but a vacation rental too! To recap, our requirements were:
  • Less than a 4 hour flight away
  • Warm-ish weather. 
  • Lots of fun things to do like museums, nightlife, restaurants, scenic areas.
  • Hot tub required (Seriously, we love us a good hot tub night.)
  • Some comforts of home - TV, internet, cell phones, kitchen, car.
And our top runners were:

  • Mexico
  • San Diego
  • Miami
So which did we pick? Drumroll please!
Photo Credit


I love San Diego, and fiance has never been there. He's actually never even been to California! SO we're excited to share a trip to a great city with tons of things to do. The weather will be fine. It's supposed to get down to about 50 at night and 65-70ish during the day. It's not warm enough to swim, but it should be pleasant. Truth be told, we were never completely comfortable with the idea of spending a week in Mexico just laying by a pool. We like to see and do things! We're really looking forward to SeaWorld, the San Diego Zoo, possibly a day at Disneyland, and a day in Tecate, Mexico. Definitely having a nice dinner in LaJolla and watching the seals at Children's Pool. So many options! So exciting!

We also decided on a vacation rental. 2 bedroom condo on a hill 1/2 mile from the beach with an ocean view on 2 sides. A private patio with BBQ, hammock, and again - ocean views. Best part? Our own hot tub on the patio! No sharing with strangers, me, my hubby, the ocean, and the stars. We. Are. So. Excited!

Monday, September 24, 2012


I would say that my fiance and I complement each other pretty well. Where I'm introverted, he's a people person. He's go with the flow and spontaneous, I like a realistic plan. He's good with clocks, I'm good with calendars. He's clean, while I'm messy. (Yes, I think I'm the messy one in the relationship! Yikes!)

We also have a lot of strengths in common. We're both good at communicating with each other. We have similar energy levels. We are both loyal to friends and family. 

Of course we also have weaknesses in common too. Most noticeably, we are both completely indecisive. For example, when we recently repainted the bathroom and kitchen, it took us hours to come to a conclusion on the bathroom color and days to decide on the kitchen color. We literally bought 6 different samples and went through at least 50 paint chips before we finally decided on a color! (More on that story soon...)

The current dilemma is where to take our honeymoon. We're about 3 1/2 months from the big day and still haven't decided. For a while we were convinced we'd go to an all inclusive in Mexico for a week, but the longer we thought about it, we just weren't sure if that option was really "us". 

After discussing it a bit, we have a few criteria for our honeymoon destination: 

  • Less than a 4 hour flight away
  • Warm-ish weather. 
  • Lots of fun things to do like museums, nightlife, restaurants, scenic areas.
  • Hot tub required (Seriously, we love us a good hot tub night.)
  • Some comforts of home - TV, internet, cell phones, kitchen, car.
Based on that criteria, we've added San Diego and Miami to the list of potential vacation spots. 

Here's our current pro's and con's list:

Obviously, San Diego is in the lead right now, I'm just really concerned about the weather. Anyone have any other pro's and con's or destinations to add to our list? Where did you take your honeymoon and what advice do you have for us?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

My Marathon Bag

Around mile 2 of my marathon this weekend, I mentioned that it'd be nice to see my fans because they had my bag with my sunglasses in it. One of the runners I was with was shocked that I had come prepared with a whole bag full of stuff for the day. "Wait, what? You have a bag!?

Of course I had a bag!

I could be classified as a chronic over packer. When I go away for one night I bring at least 2 shirts to choose from for the next day... and a pair of shoes to match each shirt... and accessories for each outfit. If I'm going away for a weekend, I have at least 4 different outfits, because, who knows what I'll actually feel like wearing? Maybe it's a bit due to the fact that I live in the Midwest where the weather is completely unpredictable? I'm also know for always having tweezers, Q-Tips, cotton balls, floss, mouth wash, band aids, etc. I the one to go to on a trip if you need something, or anything at all. So, yes, I had to have a bag for my big race.

Here's what I packed:

  • Bib Number: Obviously necessary! I also brought a Sharpie marker to fill out the emergency contact info.
  • Flip Flops: Running that long on asphalt makes my feet really hot and I didn't want to be walking around the park barefoot after the race.
  • Face Wash Towelettes: My skin is very sensitive and breaks out easily so I wanted to be sure I could wash my sweaty face.
  • Allergy Medicine and Advil: Breathing is nice when you're running and the Advil was in case I did have any injuries.
  • Phone and Headphones: I use Run Keeper to track my runs and listen to Pandora. Unfortunately, I had no signal for a good portion of the run, but I did get to listen to a few songs and there were DJ's and bands every couple miles on the race course. What a great surprise!
  • Sunglasses: Mostly from the ride there and home and hanging out in the park after the race.
  • Chomps and a Power Bar: These are my energy replenishing foods of choice. I don't really like to eat before I run so when I'm running more than 8 miles, I have a few bites of a Power Bar beforehand. After my first hour of running, and every 30 minutes after that, I chew on a few Chomps. It may just be psychological, but I feel like it gives my legs a little boost when I'm feeling slow.
  • Wallet: There were booths and vendors in the park after the race, but I was way too exhausted to visit any of them. I also missed out out on my free piece of pizza, free massage, and free stretching. There's always next year!
  • Bottle of Water: I knew they'd be giving it out at the race, but I filled up my own water for the ride home so I wouldn't have to remember to grab a couple extras after my run.
All in all, I had most of the things I needed. The one thing I regretted not bringing was hand sanitizer. There wasn't any in the porta potty and I definitely touched something wet in there. (EWWWW!) I ended up dumping half my bottle of water on my hand and made a conscious effort not to let that hand anywhere near my face. I'm still alive almost 2 weeks later, so I guess I'll be alright. Next year though, I'm adding it to my packing list!

Anyone other marathoners have suggestions on what to pack in a race day bag?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Only Half Crazy

All pictures mine
Last weekend I ran my first half marathon. It was only only my second race ever, and the longest distance I've ever ran. I'm was physically exhausted, but it was such a rush! Here's the recap:

5:00: Alarm goes off after a very restless night's sleep.
5:07: Roll out of bed and get ready.
5:23: Fiance realizes he's forgotten his hoodie at home. Fiance goes back home to pick it up.
5:37: Parent show up and we leave to drive to Chicago.
6:02: Stand in world's longest Port-a-Potty line.
6:31: Try to find someone I know to help me get to the starting line.
6:43: Find friends at the starting line. (Winning!)
7:00: Race starts.
7:11: Cross starting line.
7:12: Lose track of time.
Mile 1,2,3,4,5,6,7: Fantastic running pace! Beautiful weather! Beautiful views! Great music!
Mile 8: Cleared gigantic hill at the turn around.
Mile 9: Stop for Gatorade and twist knee.
Mile 9.5: Both knees lock up. Stop to stretch.
Mile 10: Give up and walk.
Mile 10.5: Talk myself into running. (It's only 3 more miles! You can do this!)
Mile 11: Give up and walk.
Mile 12: Friends come up from behind and encourage me to run. I run.
Mile 12.5: Give up and walk.
Mile 12.75: Run. Because it's better to look like I ran the whole thing than have functional limbs this week.
Mile 13: Parents and fiance are cheering! I wave.
Mile 13.1: Finished! Collected water, banana, granola bar, and medal.
10:02: Figure out what time it is. Meet parents and fiance in World Vision tent. They eat pizza. I drink a Diet Coke. We say hello and thank you to friends.
11:15: Lose track of time. Attempt to waddle back to car.
12:15: Get home and realize the cat's been locked on the screened in porch for 6 hours. I guess you can't win 'em all!

(That's me waving at Mile 13!)

I'm so proud of myself for committing to something and seeing it through. I mentioned that I hung out in the World Vision tent after race. I was actually running on Team World Vision and raising money to build wells in Rwanda. I've sponsored a child there for the past 5 years so it's a cause and a ministry that is very near and dear to my heart. I'm still accepting donations on my Team World Vision page through the end of this week. 

A big thank you to my wonderful fiance who put up with my lack of sleep and utter exhaustion during training, and my parents for driving us to Chicago before the sun was up even though they thought I was crazy, and to everyone who prayed for me, encouraged me, or supported my cause financially. I couldn't do this without you!

Fiance stole my shirt, but he'll be wearing his own next year!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Evolution of a Blog

In the beginning, Megan created... a blog! Or two, or three, or four.... This may actually be my fifth blog. Yikes! Let's be honest, I have no follow through. But I love blogging. I've written tried to write about my personal life, weight loss and nutrition, interior design, and an upcoming half marathon I'm about to run. (I actually haven't abandoned that blog yet, but I'll probably only write one or two more posts. Once my half marathon is done, my fundraising page will be unnecessary.) I wish I could remember the links to these sites, I'm sure they'd look awfully pathetic! I feel like this time, I may have it. Not only because I'm older and wiser (ha!), but because I'm taking all of my interests and combining them into one blog. I chose the name Peace Love Home because I feel that it represents the areas of life that I'm passionate about. 

  • Organizing and maintaining my daily life and tasks
  • Meal planning and nutrition
  • Running and working out

  • Date ideas and general thoughts from a soon to be newlywed 
  • And wedding planning ideas, frustrations, and reflections until then (January 11!)

  • Kitchen, bath, and other home design ideas from a professional remodeling retailer (That's me!)
  • Decorating and organizing ideas and tips
  • Lots of DIY projects!
I hope you stick around for all the bloggy goodness!