Hi there.

Happy Spring. Here in New York City we got a big dump of snow thanks to Nor’ Easter Toby. But it has mostly melted.

at the beginning of the storm

at the beginning of the storm

the morning after the storm

the morning after the storm

I got back at the beginning of the week from being away for 17 days. Away from home, away from Duncan. Needless to say it was tough. But it was for something very exciting…

Mr. SOTSS is opening a business. It’s a franchise called FASTSIGNS.

Welcome to FASTSIGNS :)

Welcome to FASTSIGNS 🙂

Basically a business that creates visual communications like signage for other businesses. In addition to traditional signage there is digital signage now added to the mix and even vehicle wraps. When Mr. SOTSS made the decision to do this I immediately jumped on board because I knew I could help him design the signs. He was really excited about the production part of it (actually building the signs). So this seemed like a great combo. This has been in the works for well over a year now and over that span it became clear that he, as the franchise owner, would be busy with many tasks at first, including the very important task of sales and that the production part is really more a dual role for the graphic designer…moi. I knew this would be a challenge for me, and as I learned while we were away, challenge is an understatement.

Let me back up for a minute and tell you about the trip which was to the corporate headquarters of FASTSIGNS, in Dallas, Texas. We had to complete a 2 week intensive training.

a little bag of snacks was given to each of us to help us get through the training weeks. And a BIG BINDER that was full of info by the time we left

a little bag of snacks was given to each of us to help us get through the training weeks. And a BIG BINDER that was full of info by the time we left

We set out back on March 2nd on a drive that would ultimately land us in Dallas, We were originally going to take our dogs which is why we opted to drive. We also thought it would be fun to see a bit of the country as we traveled (I think we covered 15 states total—New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansa, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Virginia, Maryland).

I insisted on taking photos of each state. If I was driving then Mr. SOTSS took the photo

I insisted on taking photos of each state. If I was driving then Mr. SOTSS took the photo

We ended up not bringing the dogs (HARD THINGS #1: Leaving my dog for 17 days! and HARD THINGS #2: Leaving my home for 17 days when I’d never been away for longer than 8 days before.)

We started the drive through a snow storm and the first 6 hours of the trip were very stressful for us but more so for me. I legit had a panic attack in the car and asked if we could pull over. And so we found a WalMart and he got new windshield wipers and I took a few deep breaths. HARD THINGS #3 was definitely getting through the snow storm. There was an 18-wheeler trying to make it up a hill on the Interstate and kept rolling back. We were the vehicle directly behind it.

But after that we were smooth sailing and made it to Ohio where we slept for the night.

Happy road trip AFTER the storm

Happy road trip AFTER the storm

The next day we drove through Kentucky and into Tennessee and when we got to Nashville we walked around for a few hours.

Hi, from Nashville

Hi, from Nashville

nashville-cashmuseum

music-row

 

silly timer-camera stuff

silly timer-camera stuff

sweet treat stop at Goo Goo Shop

sweet treat stop at Goo Goo Shop

Hi, from Nashville

Hi, from Nashville

nashville-cashmuseum music-row

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Another Memorable Winter Vermont Weekend

Well hello strangers?

I cannot even believe it’s been almost a month since I last posted. Well, yes, I guess I can. It’s becoming quite apparent that my blogging frequency will remain this way for a while. My feet are improving slowly and I’m going to test the waters with some easy run-walking starting next week and I truly hope to run a few 5ks this spring. I also registered for the super popular Spring Lake 5 miler that I have run a few times and spectated a few times. That’s in late May. I actually ran it last year as my initial toe injury was healing but just a month later I was back to limping 🙁

 

I got back Sunday night from such a lovely weekend getaway in Vermont with Mr. SOTSS.

A historic beauty!

The Inn at Weathersfield: a historic beauty!

This year’s trip was a little different than our last 3 trips because Mr. SOTSS’ sister was getting married. So instead of going at the end of January we went a month later. And instead of going to West Dover, VT we headed a bit further north to Perkinsville, VT to the Inn at Weathersfield, where the venue of the wedding would be.

inn-weathersfield

(You can read about our previous ski weekends here, here and here) First, let me say this Inn was the most quintessential bed and breakfast and the owners Richard and Marilee were so welcoming. I couldn’t help but notice this note that Marilee wrote to Thomas, the original owner of the Inn (when it was just his residence back in the late 1700s)

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We arrived Wednesday night just before dinner and basically had dinner and settled in.

A toast by the fire.....welcome to Vermont!

A toast by the fire…..welcome to Vermont!

Fresh baked cookies were waiting for us in the room daily!

IMG_5054

It was really a bizarre weather day, reaching 80 degrees at one point on the drive up. But thankfully Thursday morning we woke to temps below freezing because that’s what a Winter Vermont weekend getaway should be! Breakfasts were AMAZING!

Farm fresh eggs with lots of veggies, homemade sourdough toast, bacon and potatoes along with the very important first cup of coffee....heaven

Farm fresh eggs with lots of veggies, homemade sourdough toast, bacon and potatoes along with the very important first cup of coffee….heaven

Michael, the awesome chef made a veggie scramble. We’re talking eggs with carmelized onions, sauteed spinach and peppers and fresh sharp cheddar cheese. They source locally for all their ingredients. Oh and homemeade sourdough toast and even homemade grape jelly.

IMG_5071

Next up was a day of skiing. We went to Okemo Mountain which was about a half hour from the inn. I struggled a bit at first because there were some icy spots and a lot of groomed trails. But eventually my confidence gained and I felt less wobbly.

 

Still sporting my 25+ year old skis. I always giggle because NOBODY has skis this old anymore. But they work and I'm not ready to invest in new equipment that I only use once or twice a year.

Still sporting my 25+ year old skis. I always giggle because NOBODY has skis this old anymore. But they work and I’m not ready to invest in new equipment that I only use once or twice a year.

Okemo

Okemo

chairlift selfe

chairlift selfe

 

Friday and Saturday we got to snow shoe on the grounds of the Inn. We went as a group with the bridal party on Friday and then just the two of us on Saturday. I love being outside in nature and I love snow. It was so quiet and beautiful and I just couldn’t stop taking pictures.

:)

🙂

I love the way the tree trunks and limbs create such a beautiful pattern here

I love the way the tree trunks and limbs create such a beautiful pattern here

Hi there

Hi there

And the light filtering through the trees.....sigh. so beautiful and serene.

And the light filtering through the trees…..sigh. so beautiful and serene.

snow shoers

snow shoers

even a pop of blue sky

even a pop of blue sky

group shot!

group shot!

"just pretend we're having a casual conversation"

“just pretend we’re having a casual conversation”

 

And then the reason we were all there…..the wedding…

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Hi there. Happy Saturday!

Yesterday, the first Friday of November and OMG it was 75 degrees! Just beautiful!

I looked up and was rewarded with this view

I looked up and was rewarded with this view

I went to yoga on Monday and while not much new to report as far as progress goes I am definitely getting stronger with Crow Pose and that’s really exciting. I can’t believe it’s been 6 months since I started practicing yoga.

On Tuesday I finally had chance to run a few miles in those New Balance Fresh Foam sneakers and I loved them!

New Balance Fresh Foam maiden voyage

New Balance Fresh Foam maiden voyage

It was a quick 30 minutes so I’ll need to run in them a bit more to confirm but my toes felt comfortable and that’s really the most important thing for me right now.

And then on Wednesday I got a haircut and blowout.

Straight hair Sally (for a few hours anyway)

Straight hair Sally (for a few hours anyway)

But the straight hair didn’t last long. I went on a 5 mile hike that evening and the air was fairly damp.

hiking in the dark with flashlights/headlamps

hiking in the dark with flashlights/headlamps

But for a few hours my hair looked amazing! 🙂 I wore my new Altra Lone Peak hiking shoes that Mr. SOTSS got me for my birthday and they were awesome!

Altra Lone Peak hiking shoes

Altra Lone Peak hiking shoes

Oh, and my sister-in-law got me some Sketchers boots for my birthday that are really comfortable too.

happy feet

happy feet

So my fall footwear arsenal is starting to shape up 😉

Thursday I took a rest day and yesterday I planned to go for a run but I somehow twisted my knee in my sleep! I woke up yesterday and could barely walk. I think I know what I did. I tend to sleep on my side with the knee of my top leg sort of up and over the edge of the bed. I think I must have overextended it. The inside of the knee going down the leg hurts. I took some Ibuprofen yesterday and have been icing it and it feels a bit better today but I guess I’ll have to wait another couple of days before resuming running or yoga. I’ve slept in weird positions and woken up with stiff neck or sore arm before but never did anything to my knee before. Sigh! I’m truly injury prone. 2017 has been quite the year for sidelines.

all of her injuries are crimping my dog-walking lifestyle

all of her injuries are crimping my dog-walking lifestyle

I was happy to see this finisher photo of me from the Trenton 5k last weekend. I’m smiling! 🙂

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Gonna take a cue from the universe and just relax this morning. I’m hoping Mr. SOTSS and I can take the dogs for a walk in the park later. If the knee doesn’t cooperate I’ll be bummed.

Have a great weekend! Good luck to all those running the NYC Marathon tomorrow.

 

What does your Saturday look like?

Ever injure yourself in your sleep?

 

I ran the Trenton 5k this past weekend and can’t wait to tell you all about it but first I’ll just share a few highlights since my last post.

Well, I returned those Altra Torin 3.0’s that just didn’t seem to feel comfortable on my feet and ended up getting a pair of New Balance Fresh Foam (1080) sneakers.new-balance-frsh-foam

I sort of wanted to just exchange the Torin’s for a new pair of my beloved Escalante’s but they were out of my size so I tried on a ton of different kinds and these felt really comfortably. I’m hoping I don’t regret it but hey, I can return these too! Road Runner gives their VIP customers 90 days to return shoes from the originial shoe purchase. So I can keep going through the drill until January if I have too!

I haven’t actually worn the New Balance yet but I’ll most likely try a mile or 2 in them this week. After I left the store I went straight to the pizzeria where I got a few slices. Figured i’d celebrate my last night as a 43 year old with my favorite meal.

Yum!

Yum!

My birthday itself was rather lovely. I received beautiful flowers from Mr. SOTSS since I wouldn’t be seeing him until the next day. flowers-from-mr-sotssI went for a run and enjoyed the peak fall foliage right in my neighborhood.

Birthday Run

Birthday Run

local fall foliage

local fall foliage

Oh, and my sister in law sent me an Edible Arrangement.

Edible Arrangement with a side of cute dog

Edible Arrangement with a side of cute dog

And of course I walked with Duncan…

duncan-park-fallI also worked a ton. I’m being “blessed” right now with so much work. Freelance life is feast or famine and right now I’m feasting! But boy will I be busy the next few weeks.

Trenton Half Marathon 10k and 5k day

So on Saturday Mr. SOTSS and I drove down to Trenton, NJ so he could run the half marathon and I could run the 5k. My friend Jane was running the 10k (her first race since having her baby) and our friend Amy was also running the half. I’ve run the half in 3 previous years. You can read my recap for 2016 here, my 2014 recap here and my 2013 recap here.

It was so much easier this time around to watch Mr. SOTSS run a half because at least I was back in action and getting to run the 5k. If you don’t remember, he ran the New Jersey half back in May and I was too injured to run so I spectated and cried a whole lot.

trenton-half-5k-selfie

The half and 10k start together at 8am but we all knew from previous experience not to expect it to start on time. The 5k starts out 30 minutes after. So at 8:15 I wished Amy, Jane and Mr. SOTSS good luck and then I found a spot by the start to snap a few pics of the start of the race. trenton-half-startThey were off by 8:20 and then 10 minutes later so was I since the 5k stayed on schedule. I really planned to take it easy. My toe has been doing fine but my right foot has been giving me some frustration lately. Just feeling weak and achy. I guess it’s also getting used to running again. But within the first mile my body warmed up and I felt really good. I knew I wouldn’t get to see too much along the short course compared to the half but I got a nice view of the fall foliage along with its reflection right away. trenton-5k-sceneryMy happiness was palpable. I could feel joy with every step. And before I knew it I was halfway through. I noticed on my watch that I was keeping a pace just under a 10 min mile and was so surprised. I ended up finishing in 30:21 with a 9:47 pace. Woo hoo! That was quite a nice surprise.Trenton-5k-results

IMG_3678All of the races end at the same place in the stadium of the Trenton Thunder (minor league baseball team) and when you enter into the stadium, you run around the warning track along the outfield until you reach home plate. So as Jane entered from her 10k I ran alongside her and cheered her on.

Run Jane Run!

Run Jane Run!

I did the same an hour later for Mr. SOTSS as he finished and also for Amy just a few minutes behind him.

Entering the stadium

Entering the stadium

Amy bringing it home

Amy bringing it home

That was the BEST part of the day. Usually everyone is waiting on me. So I was excited to be there to greet them all.

Even when I’m back to running half marathons, I’d still consider running the Trenton 5 or 10ks. It’s nice to be at an event with options!

Yesterday we had a large get together with Mr. SOTSS’ side of the family and he had a cake for me so that I could officially blow out some birthday candles.

wish made!

wish made!

Duncan hasn’t been feeling well so we’re going to the vet tomorrow. It started a couple of weeks ago with his very predictable firm pooping consistency turning into soft serve. It’s been that way now for 2 weeks and then this weekend he started to do this weird sneezing/snorting thing. Hopefully it’s nothing serious. He’s eating, drinking and playing normally which comforts me 🙂

IMG_3695

Did anyone run this weekend?

Anyone celebrate anything this weekend?