Mike and Liz Picture A Day

picaday

A year ago Mike and I decided to do a “picture a day” blog and we were pretty successful from January to April.  Then Blogger had to make things difficult on my life and change so I had no idea how to post pictures (I still don’t, but thank goodness for an IPAD with an app that I can semi-figure out).

Anyway, we both have been a little sad about not doing that blog or the old blog from before we got married up until last year (AGAIN…thanks to Blogger. Can you tell I am bitter?).  So I am working on it!  I was able to get the Mike and Liz Picture A Day blog up again, so here we go again!  It’s not centered, but it does the job! 

If you are interested….here is the link:

http://mikelizpictureaday.blogspot.com/

I’m excited to do this pre-“baby girl” so we can take pictures leading up to the day.  I know that it will be harder once she is around, but it’s worth a try!

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Hiking and Biking The Ocho

 So I have been taking it easy the last couple months now that school has started (stay tuned as to why I haven’t been racing…I’m sure you can guess!).  So I decided to go on a hike while Mike biked the Ocho course.  Love that course!  I love how it has an awesome, long, drawn-out climb, and then once you get to the top….it’s all downhill from there!

I could barely geta hold of Mike on the downhill because of his super speed down the hill!

Meanwhile, Barney and I decided to take a stroll, and of course had to play a quick game of fetch.

We then proceeded to go the top of the hill and see what was on the other side.  Since it was close to sunset, we heard a pack of coyotes VERY nearby.  If any of you know me, I am insanely afraid of them, plus add the fact that my dog is miniature in size and well…we booked it!

It was nice to get a little jog in on the hike to make it feel somewhat worthwhile.  I can’t wait to get back into the exercise routine again.

P.S.  Here is Barney’s Halloween costume this year:

My First Triathlon

 So I finally sucked it up and tried my first triathlon.  It just happened.  Every month I get an email from White Sands Missile Range letting me know about half marathons, triathlons, or other events going on in town.  The Yucca Triathlon popped up a few weeks ago and I talked Mike into doing it considering on our vision board Mike had put “to do a triathlon or duathlon”.  When it comes to that board, we can not let anything pass. 🙂

First of all, we only trained a week.  The bike has been an ongoing training, but I have to admit the running and the swimming made me a little nervous.  I love running in races, just not every day (unless I had a running buddy or something to train for).  I knew I was in trouble when we did the Color Run 5k in Albuquerque and I felt like crap.  And well, let’s see, the last time I went swimming was…..I can’t even remember. 🙂

The Yucca Triathlon starts out with a 8k run, a 45k bike, and ends with a 400m swim.  Mike and I had googled 8k and found out it was around 4 miles, so the whole time we kept thinking it was only a little more than a 5k on the run.  Piece of cake.  We didn’t look at the decimal until the night before and realized it was 4.9…5 miles!  Mike was bummed because of all the rain, they had to shorten the ride to 14 miles.  There was a terrible headwind, so it ended up working out that way.

Judging by the picture of me coming in on the bike, you can probably guess what the weather was like!  It was cold, rainy, and windy, which made it a memorable experience for the both of us. Mike took off on the 8k with no trouble and stayed with the group.  His buddy Jason and I ran together in the back of the group (which was my plan all along).  The transition to bike was pretty easy…grab a helmet, and put my bike shoes on and I was off!  I’m guessing that part felt awesome to me because of all the biking I have done, but really, it felt awesome.  The headwind decreased my speed in half on the way back.  I was hitting almost 30 mph on the way out, but on the way back, it was 13-15 mph.  The rain also decided to act up at that point too and the other riders looked so mad when I came up on them.

When I came back in, I was SO NERVOUS about the swim.  It’s not that I didn’t think my muscles can’t do it.  It’s my breathing.  I can’t control it enough to go under water and I panic!

I am so glad it was NOT open water.  I like having the mental image of eight lanes to go up and down.  Since I had a pretty good gap on the people behind me on the bike, I was glad to not have people behind me in the pool.  I know this is normally first in a normal triathlon, and I wonder how people do it.  But hey, I made it, even after stopping a few times for a few seconds to get my breath.

I did it in 1:52 minutes while Mike finished in 1:28.  The cool thing is that they print out all your times so you can compare them to all of the other racers.  If I wasn’t so slow on the swim, I actually could have gotten first in my category (30-34)!  I ended up in second place and I will take it!

I love the no makeup and crazy swimming hair picture.  Mike was making fun of my curly hair trying to escape.  It was way crazy!

Mike was in the category called Clydesdale, for guys above 200 pounds.  He actually had one of the fastest bike times, so I think he would have done great in his normal category. He rocked it!

We are very addicted and I had a lot of fun! Mike is sitting here right now asking me when is there another one we can do and I am wanting to do it again.  Don’t get me wrong, we look like a bunch of 80 year olds walking around today, but it feels so good.

P.S.  I am taking a huge liking to swimming too! Mike and I are getting memberships to the local aquatic center.  I am so excited!

Our Version of A Date Night

 Many marriage counselors have talked about couples making sure they have at least one night a week designated as a date night.  Very good advice indeed.  I love looking up articles on ideas of date nights and trying to do it.  Las Cruces is a little hard to be creative, so usually dinner and maybe a movie are what we could do….or…..we can go with our usual version of a date night like we did yesterday.

We drove over towards White Sands Missile Range to a campground called Aguirre Springs.  I highly recommend if you ever come through New Mexico to stop towards this direction.  First of all, White Sands is just 20 minutes away, but there is also some awesome hiking and camping too.

Mike was excited because it was the time of night where all the creatures were coming out.  He happened upon a king snake and a rattler, not to mention a herd of cows that ran off in a stampede.

Really I took this picture because my triceps were hurting from my gym workout earlier in the day.  I’m still not used to riding downhill on a road bike.  You use totally different muscles!

This was my piece of wildlife I came across on the road.  This guy was extra feisty and even started coming after me.  Usually, they just sit really still and hope to look like they blend in with their surroundings.

I know biking might not be your first choice of a date night, but I love how it gets us outdoors and not to mention, it makes us happy getting that awesome endorphin release.

P.S. Girl’s Nights are also a must too.  I actually tried to round up a group of girls earlier this week to go to dinner.  It ended up being three of us, but I love having to dress up and enjoy a meal that doesn’t involve me cooking and especially, cleaning the dishes. 

This picture was taken before I went because I tried on a new outfit of mine.  It reminds me of the pictures on Facebook where they make fun of teenagers making duck faces or taking their picture up high to make themselves look more flattering. Really, Mike wasn’t in the room and I wanted a picture of my outfit. 🙂 

Summer of Fitness and Other Nonsense

I just realized this week that I have less than two weeks left before I go back to school, so I officially have to hurry and get everything done on my to-do list!  Panic has struck!  I managed to get some back to school shopping in already, but I’m still on the hunt for a decent pair of work pants!

So I am planning a morning routine when school starts that still continues my two a day workout trend I have kept this summer.  I was told a lot of gym workouts are found on You Tube, so tonight I gave it a try!  I really wanted to try out Insanity because my goal this week is to do straight cardio with no weights.  I was told Insanity was way better for that than the usual P90X Lean Routine that I have tried in the past.(P.S. I was able to get down to my lowest weight for my wedding with P90X. See www.beachbody.com .) 

This was the site I tried.  I used the 20 minute fat burner workout.  It’s hard to hear but I just watched the people.  You can tell they are all dying because you can hear counting on the DVD but they all just stand there.  I’ll keep you posted on more workouts I try out:

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kuy4x_viY4M

The Olympics are coming!! Here is the schedule in case. 🙂 I am soooooo excited!

http://sports.yahoo.com/olympics/schedule/

Alright, here are some catch up pictures.  Stay tuned for some recipes I have tried!  I am on a roll with Pinterest! (I made my mom join today!)

1. Barney tried out a biking jersey in attempt to see if we wanted to use that as his Halloween costume.  Nay.

 

2.  My hair is now super light for the school year.  Blinding!

3.  We have had the worst wind and rain storms and this poor mother bird has had to sit in her nest to protect the eggs.  I was stressing whether she would make it or not.  She made it!

4. Mike has to sleep in the afternoon due to his graveyard shift and Barney has been trained to sleep at his feet when I run my errands.  He and dad are nap buddies.

5.  New duck toy.  It sqeaks.  Not too sure that was a good idea.  Why do dogs have toys anyway?

 8. I bought a set of curlers to try some different hair styles for school.  My attempt at being a girl.

 Question:  Any exciting things about this summer that have happened?  What would you say your summer 2012 theme has been?

Trying Out Pinterest Recipes

 Like I said in my previous post, my sister showed me some great recipes on Pinterest that I really wanted to try out.  I really want to take advantage of the fact that I am not working right now, so I am teaching myself how to cook and bake.  It is so fun!

These “Zucchini Chips” were great!  All you have to do is put some olive oil on them, and add a mixture of panko bread crumbs, salt and pepper, and a little parmesan cheese.  Bake for 22 minutes on 400 degrees…and deliciousness!  The link is found here:

http://bakehouse.squarespace.com/home/2011/7/20/zucchini-parmesan-crisps.html

Then I decided to try another recipe that caught my eye because of my HUGE love for chinese food.  I don’t live in a town that has PF Changs or Panda Express, so I had to bring the sweet and sour chicken to my kitchen.

It is VERY filling!  So you don’t need much of it, which is a good thing.  It is around 300 calories per serving so if you portion it right, then it’s not too bad.  You don’t have to use all the cornstarch and egg too so it helps to lighten it up.  It’s a little messy to prepare, but I give it two thumbs up!  Here is the link:

http://life-as-a-lofthouse.blogspot.com/2010/09/baked-sweet-and-sour-chicken-with-fried.html

I don’t know about you guys, but this month brings a lot of entertainment to the household!  The Tour De France has been played non stop, especially when there is a certain biking addicted husband in the house.  We’re not gonna lie, it’s not as exciting this year since Cadel Evans fell back and Contador (the villain) is not here this year, but it’s been fun watching the drama unfold.  Go Wiggins! 

“I sure do like this Tour De France!  Now buy me a bike…”

We can’t be too sad when it ends because the Olympics thankfully will take over! 🙂

Question: Are you keeping up on the Tour this year?  Any opinions about this year’s tour?

Fourth of July Madness

        Sorry for the delay on my Fourth of July post.  Let’s just say it was a VERY hectic week last week.  My dad and his wife came into town, all ten children of my husband’s family were in town, we had to speak in church, I had to teach Sunday School, and try to figure out how to time everything just right. 

Fourth of July Madness is a good way to title this post.  Let me tease you with a picture of Debbie (Mike’s oldest sister) and a burnt hole in her t-shirt.

We’ll get to that in a minute.  🙂  Like I said before, we don’t mess around when it comes to Fourth of July.  There is always a steak barbeque, games played, some fireworks watching, and the best part is the lighting of our own fireworks.

After our big meal, we took off to a local middle school to watch the city’s firework display, which was not a disappointment.  While we were waiting, the boys had to banter back and forth making fun of people, which led to some major laughs.

Then we headed back to the house where a “brother” (who will remain nameless due to the fact that he may or may not have picked up illegal fireworks) had brought some fireworks from out of state to have some good old fun with the family.  The audience was amused by the awesomeness.

Then it happened.  One of the fireworks was placed on the ground a safe distance from the crowd.  Little did we know, it was placed the wrong direction.

The fireworks then turned on the audience and lasted for about three minutes hitting walls, roofs, chairs, and people.  Even though I am laughing about it now, it was pretty scary.  Thankfully, Debbie only got a “holey” shirt in the process.

No animals or people were harmed in the process.  After the “incident”, we were very careful about the placement of the fireworks and it ended up being a pretty good show. 

Question:  Do you have any “incidents” with fireworks where it went a little too wrong?

I was reading in San Diego where the fireworks all went off in the first 15 seconds because of a computer glitch….how sad!