Sunday, October 30, 2011


As I mentioned in last night's post, yesterday was a most beautiful day in the big city. When we first got off of 280 I snapped a picture of the Bay Bridge. 
The city has two bridges, the Golden Gate and the lesser known Bay Bridge. The latter looks more like a normal span {it's not painted a beautiful rusty orange, for one} and is very much so a commuter route. The former is gorgeous and still used daily by commuters but is also a tourist attraction. One can actually walk the span of the bridge {over a mile but less than two} and there's a gift shop and yadda yadda yadda. 
Anyway, behold, the red headed step child of the two San Francisco bridges.
I also surreptitiously took some from-the-car pictures of the SF occupiers.

When we got to our parking spot right by the entrance to the bay this was the sight that greeted us.
Hardly any wind; that never happens folks!

Alcatraz was looking ominous in the distance.
"The Rock".
We geared up which includes this oh-so-haute running belt. 

The labels are explained as follows: 
1 - for Gatorade at the half way point then to be filled with water at drinking fountains. 
2 - pouch for the car key, chapstick and the Gu {I try to have one every five miles or so when it's a long run...they are kind  of gross [think pudding in the middle of a workout] but they're easy and I get a bit of a boost from them; running purists I am sorry to offend you but just deal with it}. 
3 - for water to wash down the Gu with. 
This belt has definitely seen better days; it's on marathon training número dos. I love it though because it really doesn't shake too much. As long as I wear it high up on my waist. But it looks hideous on me, as referenced above by the whohigh-waisted-situation so let's not talk about this anymore.
After our miles we went to Nick's Crispy Tacos and got a post-run feast that we took to Eddie's to share. I had just run a lot and was hungry so please don't judge; here's what Mikey chose to eat compared in length to what I devoured.

Keep in mind that his was a burrito and mine were tacos with much less bulk.
Then we carved pumpkins. This German guy

was very happy to be doing so.
I went for a stencil which I had never done and Eddie went classic.

My face isn't normally this red but I was a bad person and forgot to wear sunblock before running all over he&% and creation yesterday.

As a Bad Wife I forgot to take any of Mike carving his own creation but here we are, an Angry Bird and a Halloween something {girl? fan?}. 

And my creation...
thanks to the $ spot at Target I had some rhinestones to add to it. 
I forgot the final lit-up pictures so I'll give them to you tomorrow in "Marvelous Monday: Halloween edition"!
Enjoy your Sunday folks!
xoxo, natty ♥

San Francisco & Pumpkin.

Today we did our long run in the city {San Francisco}. It was also one of the most beautiful days I have EVER seen on the bay. There wasn't very much wind, it was super clear and in the mid 70s. Honestly, October in the Bay Area is our best kept secret; shhhhhhhhhh! After picking up some crispy tacos we headed east to friend Eddie's place for a casual pumpkin carving party. 
Since I ran a lot today and it's late, I'll leave you with one picture and the promise of more to come later {tomorrow, maybe} creation. Her name is "Kitty".

Yea for friends, running with my husband and the fun things that can be done with a squash {and that include glittery beads}!
xoxo, natty ♥

Friday, October 28, 2011

World Series.

We JUST watched the Cardinals win the series and I'm totally nostalgic for the Giants' win last year! Seeing the losing team always makes me a bit sad too...not to diminish athletics and I mean no offense to athletes but they're so much like little boys when it comes down to winning and losing at that least I think so, and it's so stinking cute!
We've got a few things on our plate this weekend including a pumpkin carving that was in part inspired by a similar fiesta in Minnesota last weekend; we definitely weren't there but wish we could have been. Mikey has a tentative costume and I think I'll be a black & orangey Halloween version of me...and Guinness' outfit will be revealed on Monday.
Powder Puff was a ton of fun today. I didn't get any pictures but the seniors won and lots of money was raised {I believe} for our sister community in El Salvador. I also won a DELECTABLE carrot cake {the focus is on the frosting, actually} in the raffle which made me even happier.
Good Friday to you all and happy weekend!
xoxo, natty ♥

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Things I saw on my run today.

An alternate title could be "What happens when I got bored while running too many miles by myself.". I took a few pictures before deciding to stop looking cuu-cuu and start running without increasing my risk of tripping over my own feet because I'm staring around and trying to take pictures. 
I started with some cat shots. Yes, I look for kitties while I run. It keeps me occupied and I think that cats look so ridiculous just sitting wherever they are. Or annoyed. Or scared. Or knowledgeable. Or furry. Or fluffy.
It only looks like she's running away.
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Then I was excited to see these pumpkins. I had actually seen a house with huge pumpkins growing in their front yard garden but the occupants were arriving home as I ran by and I didn't want to look too foolish {get it? Compared to how ridiculous I looked when stalking cats down strange driveways, pumpkin admiring seems totally normal; ha!}.

I saw this little hound stretched along his windowsill. He reminded me of my own long dog at home. When I got close, though, he got annoyed and started barking furiously at me. I was already running away by that point though.

I also run past a dance/costume shop some days, today being one of them. Their store-front decorations are always kind Not only are they just weird but often are super ratty; this dirty mannequins wearing bikinis that are falling off - not on purpose. Today was no disappointment. Chewbaca was out front luring in potential customers.
My miles felt great today. After several days of slumming I'm glad to be out and about and hope that I don't fall off the running wagon too badly again any time soon.Tomorrow is the Powder Puff game at school in the afternoon. It's, ahem, non-traditional since we're a non-traditional school. The coaches are teachers and the whole event is a fundraiser for our sister school in El Salvador. The girlies play flag football and people cheer and have fun. It's pretty cool.
Saturday we have another 20 miler in store. I write that down here and now to hold us accountable; if we were to beg out and I were to not mention the miles at all this weekend then I would feel pretty silly so this is my safety plan.
Our Halloween plans are pretty low-key. My aunt's neighborhood always has a parade so we'll go and take the dogs and walk and enjoy snacks at the end. Then we're setting out a fire-pit in our driveway and sitting out to pass out candy. When the candy-seekers ring the doorbell the puppies go just ape*&^% so hopefully this new scheme will prevent that. Are y'all more exciting that we are in your All Hallow's Eve plans? I should certainly hope so!
And to end, I just saw a commercial for something that kind disgusts me. I love to eat, as I'm sure I've mentioned, and I'm open to all sorts of edibles but preserved meats really gross me out. I'm talking about those nasty summer sausages that are sold at gas stations. But this stuff, a product I was never aware of, now joins those road trip nitrate sticks. Granted, I'm watching Jeopardy {again, not the heppest cat on the block = me} and I know that the commercials reflect the target demographic, thus placing me with those who actually eat and presumably enjoy "Steak-umm"s...I still think they look niz-ast-ay. Check them out here: gross. I don't want to get in trouble for slander or anything here...maybe it's good? They are touted as "America's Favorite Sliced Steak".
Anyway, off to dinner {not Steak-umms}!
xoxo, natty ♥

Wordless Wednesday™; "the freedom in my legs".

xoxo, natty ♥

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I'm Still Here.

My title references Joaquin Pheonix's disaster of a documentary. I won't put up a link to it because it's too ridiculous for that. The title also refers to my current state of ennui. I have just felt bli-zah of late and I think I need to do more than just hope it passes. Maybe my striped Halloween tights will help? Or my made-by-me Día de los Muertos dress? Pumpkin carving this weekend? Indian food for dinner tonight, for once, did not do the trick. I think it's because I'm actually really ready to not be eating restaurant food but it just so happens that this is how the cookie has been crumbling the past few days and for tomorrow as well; there have been things planned and places to go with no time to cook recently. There also has been not a lot of time or motivation to run...cue the major sad face.
Oh well. I find that I need to do this, dip down into the doldrums and take off a few days of being virtuous in order to keep myself from getting too fast at my miles or up onto my high horse. HA!
I did see a friend and her new BABY today which was lovely; those little things are so squirmy and cute! It was lovely catching up with her as it was last night with another old friend...yea for amigas!
Anyway, good evening to you all and I hope you're a bit more perky than I!
xoxo, natty ♥

Monday, October 24, 2011

Marvelous Monday.

Another Monday down! Life has been moving pretty quickly recently as our friend Ferris so poignantly said one epic day off. It's so super easy for me to get caught up in the muck and mire of our happenings and I've definitely been letting it get me down & out. Sooooooo...a few good  things for you all.

1. I'm currently getting my hair done and concurrently {well not right this minute duh!} getting in some grading which is fabulous considering how much I've been loathing said activity recently and I have nothing better to do while confined to a salon chair.
2. We're in the middle of some continuously nice weather; yea for our Central California Climate!
3. Cheeseburger pie is on the menu for tomorrow! Enough said.
4. That long dog of ours has a nutty outfit for next week. 
5. Now I can laugh at myself for actually publishing things like what's in #4.

What about yourself do you realize is totally laugh-able {and maybe in a not-so-cool way}? What are you grateful for today?

xoxo, natty ♥

Good day.

Again, a not so inspiring post for y'all...maybe. It depends on how easy to impress you are; HA! We puttered around today and got some errands done {maybe a new dog Halloween contest...just maybe}. We had a belated birthday dinner with my aunt. I actually took a picture of us two but it's on my phone which is concurrently updating it's new software so I can't do anything with it like upload it's pictures onto photobucket. Oh well...maybe tomorrow.
I also stumbled upon what I think to be the best police blotter of all time until now.

Why does it bother that lady if a man is enjoying chair sitting on a street corner? There is no need to begrudge him that simple please, thus I opine. Also, why must his portliness be mentioned? It seems to hold no bearing on the offense and merely paints an unnecessarily unattractive portrait of an innocent man.
Aaaaaaand the bajillion dollar question; why geese? Is there a "reporting party" out there in San Jose who is extremely paranoid and concerned for our local geese population? Maybe people actually want to just feed said birds and not tempt them into their vans for illicit activities. And why is it the first assumption, at 11:18 PM, that geese-luring is, in actuality, what's going on? 
Anyway, Good Beginning of the work week to You! May it be a Magnificent One!
xoxo, natty ♥

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Saturday flotsam.

* the hogs won...wooo pig sooie!
* open house at school/work today wore me out.
* I took a nap when I got home.
* we went to Costco {not a good idea when I'm tired and hungry and it's Saturday afternoon}.
* burgers are on the grill and we have plenty of things to to tomorrow.

That's all for the most boring random post.
xoxo, natty ♥


That's TGIF sounded out for you dear reader. Though this Friday is bittersweet; we have to go in for our open house tomorrow. 
Mister and I did some running earlier this afternoon and some eating this evening and will do some The Office watching now.
Happy end of traditional work week to you!

xoxo, natty ♥

Friday, October 21, 2011

Busy Bee.

A Bad Poem dedicated to You and a Play on Capitalizing only Certain Words, just for reading this blog. You're welcome.

A Busy Bee.
That's Mee.
Oh Yea {pronounced "yay"}, Yipee.

It's almost Friday!!!
xoxo, natty ♥

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fuligo Septica.

 Behold, Fuligo Septica, in all it's least I'm pretty sure it is.
We had noticed what looked like paper that had gotten wet on a patch of our neighbor's dirt. I literally thought it was just paper that had been left out in the rain two weeks ago and had gotten soggy and gross. Please don't ask why that wouldn't surprise me, but it totally doesn't. 
My grandmother, though, was concerned, so my old friend Google and I did some sleuthing. I really didn't know what to start searching for so I started with stuff like "white moldy thing on dirt"..."white dirt mold"..."white garden mold". After hopping through the various results I decided that this guy is the most likely culprit. You can read about it HERE
It's a slime mold; how gross is that? Super gross, that's what. What's even gnarlier is that the non scientific name is Dog Vomit Slime the above article from 1999 explains. It doesn't seem to be too pervasive, though, so we're not worried or anything. I just don't like the way it creeps over the brick border...kind of like it's alive...which I guess it is. 

In other random news, have y'all noticed that Halloween seems to be taking over the home decorating market, encroaching upon the traditional yule-tide hold on said endeavor? I did an informal study yesterday. On my five mile run, at about mile 1.5 actually, I started counting houses that have spooky accoutrement. I then gave up after I reached 40-something. I hadn't even reached mile four. It's not that I don't enjoy the day of witches {as it translates to in Spanish}. I actually love it because it's fun and low commitment. But that's a lot of orange lights, yo!!! 
Granted, every house wasn't all-out decked out. I counted anything from a lone little plastic pumpkin in a window to those huge blow up contraptions draped in orange and purple lights. I'm just...interested; this seems like a fairly new phenomena and I'm this unique to suburban San Jose? Is this holiday growing in popularity? If so, why? Might it be because of the same reasons that I enjoy this day? 
No matter you have plans for the big day? Where does your decorating style fall - carved pumpkins the week of, all out haunted hootenannies or nary a squash in sight?
This year, our main method of decorating has, unfortunately, been dog vomit slime mold and hopefully in the next week we'll get around to something more, ahem, traditional.
xoxo, natty ♥

Monday, October 17, 2011

Marvelous Monday.

I skipped this last week...and what a sad week it was!!! Without further ado...

1. Jeopardy is on TV right now; and I'm watching it!
2. There's an acorn squash in the oven making itself ready and yummy for us to eat in about 45 minutes.


3. It was gloriously beautiful and warm today.
4. Monday is almost over. Ha!
5. There's a scruffy dachshund enjoying the aforementioned trivia show with me.
I didn't get the clue, in case you're curious.

What has been lovely about your Monday? Have you been taking advantage of Fall's squash bounty? 
Hasta luego =).
xoxo, natty ♥

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Those Hogs.

I didn't mention how my Razorbacks did last week; they bamboozled Auburn!! Woooooo Pig Soooooie!!!!!!!!!! They had a bye this week {didn't play} and are gearing up to face Ole Miss next weekend; let's hope they beat those Rebels!!!!! Speaking of, Parade magazine had a feature on Ole Miss tailgating traditions. Various NCAA fan behavior was discussed, including certain highlights such as "Most Luxurious Digs" {the Cockabooses of University of Southern Carolina for all you Gamecock fans} or "Most Finger-Licking Food" {for Louisiana State University's Cajun/Creole inspired eats}. Arkansas was NOT mentioned though many other institutions I sense a bias? I thought we were friends, Parade Magazine, I thought we were friends...
I hope you all have been enjoying a good weekend; Guinness and I certainly have been with our coffee, newspapers and the couch all morning.
xoxo, natty ♥

The Mini-Moon ♥.

On Sunday we hitched a ride got dropped off at our mini-moon destination, the Hilton near the Gaslamp Quarter close to downtown San Diego and right on the bay that is also named for the city. 
We stayed here last summer for a wedding {that of the daughter of our hosts, actually!} and it's a really fun location. There are many boats in the marinas right in the bay and there's a fun shopping/touristy area within walking distance.
This is the view from out 17th floor room. The bridge connects to Coronado Island which isn't technically an island rather just a peninsula but it's easier to take the bridge than drive all the way around.The morning fog made for a scenic view.
We took the walkway from the Hilton to the aforementioned Gaslamp; the bridge is very futuristic looking. We walked along it.
We had a delicious dinner at a Chinese/Asian fusion place followed up by Pinkberry {which I normally disdain but they had this peanut butter & jelly concoction which drew me in and still has me wanting more [I actually did get some today after our 20 miles...that and an Italian sandwich and 4 tacos; HA!]}.
On Monday morning we went for a quick run along the bay and checked out the USS Midway. Brunch buffet at the hotel was followed up by a lovely nap, lounging by the pool and some perusing of the shops. This HUGE cargo boat was docked outside of our hotel the whole time we were there. 
This is Seaport Village which has so many funky stores including "The Little Viking" and one of those year-round Christmas shops {I LOVE those}.
Mike and I have a tradition {albeit rather new considering we started it just last year right after we got engaged} of getting a Christmas ornament for us as a couple. For 2010 we had a bride/groom one for us since we we saw a pretty one and a Hawaii one since we went there. We picked up a maritime Santa ornament that says "San Diego 2011" for this year. I'll put up a picture of him later maybe.
The day ended with another lovely dinner with our hosts and an 85 minute plane ride home. We had a fantabulous time on our little getaway and really enjoyed all the time with our hosts. Thank you so much to them again and to my Mr. Mikey for a wonderful weekend ♥.
Today we, as mentioned above, ran 20 miles in San Francisco. 20 is the highest distance in my training plan and we'll do it two more times in the next five weeks before we begin the taper that leads up to our early December marathon. I'll explain what the "taper" is as well as which race we're doing and why later this week probably; I'm sure it all sounds foreign unless you're cu-coo like we are.
Happy Saturday to you all!
xoxo, natty ♥

Friday, October 14, 2011

After "The Run".

When done running 19 miles, this señora appreciates nothing more than a good meal followed by an even better nap.
After I arose from the dead, as mentioned yesterday, we broke the fast with the family and friends of our hosts; it was lovely.
Sunday morning we all shared another meal, brunch. We walked to our original dining destination, right next door to the kindly sandwich shop. This place, apparently, is a staunch and rabid supported of October's main holiday {not Veteran's day, unfortunately}; Halloween was EVERYWHERE. 
Do you see the child being seated? He actually was excited about it all much unlike the other nearby youngins adults.

I kind of loved it.

I loved the creepy mummy army staring us down.

I LOVED this nasty gremlin/goblin creature. 
It's not a box-body, it's actually enveloping a tombstone.

Aaaaaand these things really did kind of gross me out.
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There were even baby Freddy Kruegers hanging from the ceiling in one particular corner of the patio but I failed to capture them on film cellphone camera. Anyway, the establishment was deemed "too gory" for a late morning {proudly not by yours truly!} meal so we schlepped across the street to a less spooky place that had guavosas which are like mimosas but with guava juice and not oj...yum!
I snapped a picture of this place for my dad.

Day two in southern cali was lovely and we headed that night to the minimoon portion of the weekend...more on that mañana.
Also, not one nor two but THREE of our friends {couples making that six individuals in case you're counting} welcomed their first born in the past week {and all boys too!}; sooooooo many heartfelt and warm congratulations go out to them...way to go guys & gals, the babies are so handsome!
Peace Love and Friday.
xoxo, natty ♥

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Getting there and "The Run".

San Diego; in III parts.
Part I shall be: getting there and "The Run".
Part II shall be: after "The Run".
Part III shall be: the "Mini-moon".

Mikey and I had a wonderfully lovely get away last weekend; we went to San Diego! We stayed one night with extremely nice friends of Mike's parents in the La Jolla area and the next night near downtown and the Gaslamp Quarter of the city. As mentioned above and so as to spare you, dear reader, a longer post with many pictures {kind of boring if you're not me or my husband} I'm splitting this little vay-cay into three parts. Also, it makes it easier on little ole me to organize it this way.

Ahem...without further ado - Part I.

We left bright dark and early Saturday morning. After a blessedly short flight of 80 minutes San Diego's airport greeted us with the fluffernutter {no, not the sandwich, though a few of those would have been nice too...} that can be seen in Monday night's post.

When we got to our hosts' house we geared up for 19 miles. 
Our digs for the first night.

Yep, you heard read it, 19 miles. Marathon training plans include mileage like this with some even going up to almost 30 miles so please stop looking at me in shock and really is quite natural to be running for several hours...NOT. But I still do it and love it.
The run was epic. 
I've done a marathon {and am training for one in December, hence the 19 miles...more on that soon} but long runs are still...for lack of a better word, long. We also made the choice to run starting from the house instead of driving to a local walking/bay/park area which meant that there were many hills over those miles. "Oh well" we thought...that just puts less time between finishing the run and the local sandwich shop which was on our agenda for afterward.
Setting our watch for the big run...thrilled about what was waiting ahead for us.
I'll ll just say that those hills made the sandwich, chips and two cookies I devoured taste that much better. At least that's what I'm telling myself and my sore knees {not something I encountered in my youth...a recent realization}. But really, it was so much fun...I am super-dee-duper lucky to have someone to run with and over eat with at the end...and we have fun chatting along the way.

The first mile was flat along the water; refreshing! Then the second mile was completely uphill...a long and slow 5, 280 feet {give or take a few}. We enjoyed flatness for several miles afterward but that up-hill turns into downhill on the way back and with 17 miles on my legs already, going up almost would have been more welcomed at the end of our run.

After a few miles we came to our first "stop"/"sight-to-see". A few years ago the Mr and I met in San Diego {back when we were long-distance} and he told me we were going to go hang-gliding. I was NOT excited about it but didn't want to hurt his feelings so I didn't say anything; hanging in the air, no matter what is holding me up, is not natural and I don't like it. It turns out that Mike was just teasing me {which I soon came to learn is to be my lot in life as his wife ♥} but we did drive to the outlook which affords a fabulous view. 
This was as we were running up to the spot.

Then the big lot where potential hang-gliders park their cars before jumping off into oblivion.

Then the view. I'm so lucky in many ways including having grown up in California, near-ish the coast, and having spent a fair amount of time at the beach in my life. Thus, I can be hard to impress with pretty coastal views. It might have been the scary prospect of 16 more miles left to do but I was floored by how pretty the shore looked. Look! 

So Pretty!
Then we ran and ran and ran. We passed Torrey Pines golf course and all sorts of nice walking paths. We descended a very steep hill back to the water at Del Mar and turned around after a much appreciated Gu and water break. The jog up said hill was tortuous...but we did it. Though it wasn't the last hill, that's for sure.
I got kind of delirious...not really though...towards the last few miles. I told Mike how much I love him and how appreciative I am of having a husband to run with and yadda yadda yadda. Then we hit the downhill that I mentioned. The long and meandering mile long down hill. We had tackled this dude on our way out when our legs were fresh but a mile downhill after many previous miles does not feel well on one's knees {or hips}. 
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The pictures really don't do the severity of this hill justice. Just imagine.
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Somewhere along the way we passed this sign and felt the need to take advantage of how appropriately it described our sojourn that day.
Don't worry...he's just hamming it up for the lens.

When we were done we feasted on sandwiches, chips, soda, gatorade and cookies at this delightful establishment
Check out all of those specialty sodas; 

three coolers worth! I thought this one was pretty funny; it looked good too but I didn't try it.
Ignore my dirty fingernail and nasty hangnail; for shame Nathalia!

That night our hosts shared a Breaking of the Fast dinner with us in honor of Yom Kippur; a first for me and I really enjoyed it.
Oddly enough it's hard for me to sleep well after that many miles so I was still pretty pooped the next morning but most definitely ready for the next leg of our mini-moon/getaway weekend!
More to come tomorrow...thanks for making it this far {supposing you didn't just skip ahead ;)}.
Also, if our hosts happen to be reading this : thank you SO SO SO much...we had an amazing fantabulous splendfierious time and are really, truly, appreciative of your kindness and and thoughtful hosting...¡muchas gracias!
xoxo, natty ♥